It’s camembert

The late eighties and the early nineties were tumultous times – the soviet union collapsed, the berlin wall fell, and the Scorpions, in all their honest to goodness campiness, sang ‘Winds of Change’. Bad hair ruled, Saddam invaded Kuwait, and over in India, Mithun Chakraborty released ‘Nambri Aadmi’.

I have fond memories of this period – cable had yet to make its arrival in most indian homes, and chitrahaar was our biggest source of Hindi music – the billboards and MTV’s most wanted put together, except that the songs on chitrahaar were never particularly wanted, and neither were they particularly new. Still, (strictly when viewed through the lens of nostalgia) it was a great show, and particularly awaited every week.

If you were, like me, avid chitrahaar followers, you would remember the image of a grinning idiot dressed up as a band-master, doing a peppy hip-thrusting, disco-pointing dance that would have put Travolta to shame. An angry looking father and a demure but confused bride completed the image. One of the paragraphs went:

Tere se marriage karne ko main
Bambai se Goa aaya,
Pun tere father ne mujhko
Red Signal dikhlaaya

The singer was His Nasal Highness Kumar Sanu. The music had little touches of big band jazz, folk and bluegrass (c’mon, you don’t actually believe that, right?), but for the most part it sounded like something a below-average Indian marriage party band had belted out. (You know the kind? The ones that can be found in many north indian towns, accompanying the baaraat and mangling songs like ‘Ley Jaayenge, Ley Jaayenge Dilwaale Dulhaniya Ley Jayenge’, while the groom rides his ghodi and assorted friends and cousins get hammered and dance about upfront?)

The song I am talking about was so honest in its cheesiness that it has made a permanent stamp on our minds. Released in 1992, starring the gorgeous Farheen, and the handsome Ronit Roy, from the super-duper (ahem) hit movie of the same title, ladies and gentlemen, I give you, “Jaan tere naam”.

First time dekha tumhe, hum kho gaya,
Second time mein love ho gaya.

Ye akhha India jaantaa hai,
Hum tumpe martaa hai!
Dil kya cheese hai jaanam
Apni jaan tere naam kartaa hai!!


28 Responses to “It’s camembert”

  1. Megha Says:

    What dairy product is my heart, my love ..
    I dedicate my loo itself to you!

    Yesh indeed, this song has a permanent place in my .. um .. heart. Farheen (aka ‘skinless’) in a dharmsankat, at having to choose between the band-master monkey and the other idiot in a penguin-suit that her pop is forcing her to marry. Although since I have happily forgotten the penguin-suit actor, Ronit Roy was probably the more memorable one of the two. Guess people dedicating their potties to you can do that.

  2. ggop Says:

    I had to look up Ronit Roy on Google images to remember how he looked!
    (Don’t have access to any indian soap operas)
    Was Farheen the madhuri dixit lookalike?

  3. witnwisdumb Says:

    Awesome artwork…. πŸ˜‰

  4. Tabula Rasa Says:

    welcome back! now how about a rendition of “phoolon sa… chehra tera”? (remember the guy from harvard?)

  5. lovemarks Says:

    he he… (chuckling at the post). Ronit Roy never made it big in the movies, but he def was remembered well and today he’s the most-wanted star on TV!

  6. scout Says:

    i remember that song. i also remember having a crush on the dude.. wazzisname. although i couldn’t have been very old. but yes, chitrahaar was fun… wednesday nights no? πŸ˜€

    nice blog, btw. fairly useless statement that, but thought i should say it.

  7. Menagerie Says:

    Oooooh! I actually remember liking that movie!

    Especially there was this song, where the Madhuri lookalike heroine was wearing a shiny red dress, and Ronit Roy and her were singing, ‘Hum lakh chupaye pyaar magar duniya ko pata chal jayeeega, lekin chup chup ke milne se, milne ka mazaa to ayega’

    Shoot, that was 1992!! Now I feel OLD πŸ™‚

  8. Ideasmith Says:

    LOL…I remember the movie too and yes, I liked it too (gulp..blush..)

  9. Nirwa Says:

    ROFL!! His Nasal Highness Kumar Sanu!! ROFL ROFL ROFL!!

    And yes, I do remember Chitrahaar, though I was very young then.. Used to come on Fridays, right?

    Good one! πŸ˜€

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  16. Anonymous Says:

    haha Good one!
    How can anyone not like chitrahar..I remember the wednesday chitrahar used to be new songs and the Friday chitrahar old ones (or maybe the other way round). The early 90s songs always bring back memories of school days. Another funny song is the Aamir-madhuri “aaj na chodenge tujhe dum duma dum” from the movie Dil i think πŸ˜€
    u shd watch it now, its sooo funny πŸ˜€

  17. tilotamma Says:

    actually I do remember this one :-))

    Father se thera kya lena mujhe..


  18. Essar Says:


    You know, I always thought *I* was
    the only idiot devouring such trash (no, back then it wasn’t quite that) with such dedication but after blogosphere happened, I realised that nope, that’s the story of the entire generation!
    I saw that film. And many many others starring Avinash Wadhavan, Ayesha Julkha, Krishan Kumar, ashivini bhave, akshay kumar. Ah one golden age, that.

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