Dil ibadat

As a singer, KK is one of those hidden gems. Not that he is unknown by any means, but over more than a decade, he’s sung some of the most iconic songs of Hindi cinema, while always remaining a fairly low profile character. His singing has a versatility and a certain heart-wrenching quality that none of his peers can match, and Dil ibadat from the 2009 film Tum Mile is the perfect example of his strengths.

I haven’t seen Tum Mile. While I think Soha Ali Khan has done some very decent roles, whatever little I’ve seen of Emraan Hashmi has not endeared me to his talents. But this song has stuck in my head from the first time I heard it played on the radio. So much so that I had to look up the song and what film it’s from to figure out these details for this post.

The video of Dil ibadat, which I hadn’t seen for the couple of years that I’ve been hearing this song, is actually quite interesting and non-standard. An entire song set around the hero painting the heroine of the piece, as she sits on a bed in candle light, may not be the most original cinema, but as Hindi songs go, it’s fairly refreshing. The entire thing is beautifully lit and shot by Prakash Kutti with direction by Kunal Deshmukh. A very limited single setting is covered with an interesting set of camera work and some decent editing. Soha Ali Khan demonstrates a great range of silent emotion through the song, while Emraan Hashi behaves, well, artistic.

The star of it all for me is the song itself and KK‘s rendition of it. As always he puts his heart and soul into it and the very eclectic music from Pritam is an essential flourish in a song that has a wide range of tone. Sayeed Quadri‘s lyrics are appropriately poetic but at the same time light. The man has a talent for writing he most eloquent Urdu while never seeming cumbersome. This is a great example of that light touch:

Tujhe tujhse tod loo, kahin khudse jod loo
Mere jism-o-jaan main aa, teri khusboo odh loo


Let me break you away from yourself, and make you a part of me, perchance
Enter my body and soul, so that I may envelop myself in your fragrance

It looses a lot of the lightness in translation, but for anyone who can understand the original words, they are a wonder of light intricacy. Dil Ibadat is a great song and great entry into the world of KK‘s singing and Sayeed Quadri‘s deft lyrics.

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