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Bollywood SoundsThe Cosmopolitan Mediations of Hindi Film Song$
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Jayson Beaster-Jones

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199993468

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199993468.001.0001

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The Language and Lyrics of Hindi Films

The Language and Lyrics of Hindi Films

(p.74) Chapter 4 The Language and Lyrics of Hindi Films
Bollywood Sounds

Jayson Beaster-Jones

Oxford University Press

This chapter is centered upon the languages and lyrics of film songs. Following an analysis of a 1957 S. D. Burman song, the chapter discusses the historical and filmic trends in the period from 1957 to 1969. It notes that musicians from the former Portuguese colony of Goa were essential in creating the sound of film song through their familiarity with Western instruments and harmony, as well as their knowledge of international music. The chapter then addresses the complications surrounding language and lyrics of Hindi films in light of the cosmopolitan orientations of lyricists and their heterogeneous audiences. This leads to a discussion of the ghazal, a common lyrical form of song until the 1970s. After an analysis of a classic ghazal of the 1960s, the chapter concludes with a discussion of the music director S. D. Burman and two of his songs.

Keywords:   lyrics, lyricists, ghazal form, Goa, S. D. Burman

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