Twenty-five years after Yaadon Ki Kasam’s Laxmikant-Pyarelal composition, Baith mere paas… , Lata Mangeshkar has once again sung for Zeenat Aman in Kapil Sharma’s Dunno Y... Na Jaane Kyun. The song is the film’s title track, Pal mein rishte badal jaate hain…, and took its composer, Nikhil Kamat, three months to compose.
"I sung it for Kapil who loved it and suggested we get Lataji to sing it since it reflected the film’s theme," recalls Kamat, who admits he had the legendary singer in mind, even though a soft rock number like this was never her specialty.
"I guess, it was because it reminded me of her Aandhi number, Tere bina zindagi mein koi shikava to nahin… I knew she had stopped singing for Hindi films, barring a few exceptional tracks, but still, without giving myself time to think, I called her on her landline and crooned the song to her in my voice. She asked me to send a CD across and, to my surprise, the next day called to say she’d do the song if I could tweak it to suit her style," says Kamat.
On the dot
He admits that he couldn’t sleep the night before the recording, wondering if he would goof up. As D-day dawned, he turned into a nervous wreck, wondering if his singer would change her mind at the last minute.
"But Lataji was there on the dot, she rehearsed the song with me for a couple of hours, then went in for recording and sang. We finished the song in one go, in a marathon recording of six hours," says Kamat. "She may be 81, but believe me, she sounds like a sweet 16 year old."
Zeenat Aman, he says, had tears in her eyes when she learnt that Lata Mangeskar, who had immortalised her with the Satyam Shivam Sunderam songs, would be her voice again. She congratulated Sharma and Kamat on bringing back Helen, Lataji and her together in the same film.
The track brings back memories of Aman’s romance with her husband, Kabir Bedi, who after marriage, left her to support the family and retreated to an ashram in the hills.
“He returns after many years and brings back a long-forgotten past,” explains Kamat, adding that the ‘antara’ is also played in another scene in the film, when Sharma learns that his homosexual lover is married and a father. “It’s a song of love and betrayal, beautiful and bittersweet, with western beats, guitar and live drums,” says Kamat. “It’s unlike any Lataji number you’ve heard before.”