Govinda is an evergreen superstar and his songs are nothing less than cult classics. Though we don’t see much of him on the big screen anymore, the actor does make the odd appearance or so. He was at the Masala! Awards in 2017 and also appeared in a film called Kill Dil with Ali Zafar, Ranveer Singh and Parineeti Chopra. The film was a critical and commercial failure but Govinda, as always, stood out with his pitch-perfect performance.
Here Subhash K Jha selects the top ten favorite songs from the evergreen Govinda.
1. Aapke aa jane se (Khudgarz)
There was something about Govinda’s song-and-dance that made his heroines lose their inhibitions and just go with the frenzied flow. Even the la-di-dah Neelam mastered those sadak chaap steps in no time at all. Uncharacteristically this song was a suave upmarket number designed to pander to the polished. Though Govinda didn’t give voice to this Rajesh Roshan composition (Mohd Aziz did) the actor loves to sing this song for friends and for the bathrooom shower.
2. Gori gori o baanke chori (Shola Aur Shabnam)
What a pair Govinda and Divya Bharti made! If only she had lived she would have made a steady jodi with Govinda. Watch him woo the hoity-toity diva with this peppy Bappi Lahiri number sung in Govinda’s own voice. Sizzle pe sizzle!
3. Do bol kehke hum toh hare hain (Radha Ka Sangam)
This movie produced by Govinda and directed by his brother Kirti Kumar gave him a rare opportunity to lip sync to his brother’s voice. Jee haan, this lovely duet composed by Anu Malik was sung by Kirti and, ahem, Lata Mangeshkar. The fact that Kirti could barely hold a note in place didn’t deter the Nightingale from singing from her soul, and Govinda from dacing with his sole.
4. Oh laal duppatte wali zara naam toh bataa (Aankhen)
Though this tapori eve-teasing number was sung by four individuals it was Govinda’s vernacular vibrancy that set the screen ablaze. They don’t make ‘em like Govinda any more, though Ranveer Singh tries hard.
5. Aa aa ee (Raja Babu)
Okay , so Govinda didn’t mind a spot of vulgarity in his gana-bajaana. In this sinfully catchy number he wore a pyjama and kurta with dark glasses and a topi. After every line he raised his kurta and thrust his pelvis into the camera. We didn’t know where to look.
6. Sarkai lo khatiya jada lage (Raja Babu)
The most controversial song of Govinda’s career. The moral police jumped at Govinda and his co-star Karisma’s collective throats as they jumped on to the khatiya for a trust with the ghatiya. The couldn’t-care-less couple performed what can only be called a phantom-copulation dance with their clothes fully on. Govinda much later admitted, ‘Thoda zyada ho gaya’. You ‘shed’ it! Karisma’s children, one hears, are not allowed to watch Raja Babu.
7. Kisi disco mein jaayen kisi hotel mein khaaye (Chote Miyaan Bade Miyan)
Romantic poetry reached the eatery and the disco with this track attack. Govinda’s slow-mo dance movements with Raveena Tandon giving him tit for tat was one of Ganesh Aacharya’s career’s choreographic highlights.
8. Meri pant bhi sexy meri shirt bhi sexy (Dulara)
Another number rendered by Govinda that caused an uproar. I mean, who used the word ‘sexy’ 20 years ago in a Hindi film song? That’s Govinda for you. Ahead of the times.
9. Ankhiyon se goli mare (Dulhe Raja)
Son of a gaana! If the Hindi music were ammunition, this track would be a revolver. Aimed to kill the dancefloor it made Govinda gyrate with Raveena as though there was no tomorrow. Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone tried doing a Govinda-Raveena’s goli gana in Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram Leela. Original toh original hota hai.
10. Main toh raste se jaa raha tha (Coolie No. 1)
Bhelpuri vendors found their business booming after Govinda, in the very spirited company of Karisma Kapoor sang about what happened when he stopped at the roadside to have bhel puri. There were no khatiyas here. Iss baar kissiko mirchi nahin lagi. All was well in Govinda’s gaana-tantra.