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'Badan Pe Sitaare' song: Sonu Nigam's style, Anil Kapoor's energy bring this Rafi classic to life 

Originally composed by Shankar-Jaikishan, the song has been re-arranged by Amit Trivedi. 

Shriram Iyengar

There is something about Mohammed Rafi. 38 years after the legendary singer passed away, the Hindi film industry continues to be enthralled by the magic memory of his voice. In Atul Manjrekar's Fanney Khan, Anil Kapoor's character worships the singer. Naturally, the makers of the film have released a remix of Rafi's 'Badan Pe Sitaare' from Prince (1969).

The song captures the fandom, passion, and musical element of the film's lead character, Fanney Khan, played by Kapoor. The actor is shown re-creating Rafi's iconic number on stage for a community programme. The 62-year-old actor is all energy as he shakes and dances to the original composition of Shankar-Jaikishan and Rafi. His shimmery golden suit and 1960s-style troupe of middle-aged background dancers make for a funny sight. Kapoor certainly brings a lot of energy and movement to the song, but seems to be let down by one thing.

The actor's voice is played by Sonu Nigam. While Nigam is an impressive imitator of Rafi's timbre (in fact, Rafi is one of Nigam's greatest idols), his voice does not match Kapoor's. At times, it feels a surreal sight to hear Nigam's voice move in sync with Kapoor's actions. The singer does an extremely good vocal rendition, with impressive callisthenics.

The song is re-arranged by Amit Trivedi, with little changes to the original. The key change is the addition of a trumpet that is the leitmotif of the movie. Although in a funny moment towards the end, the trumpet continues to play over while its player (Kapoor) is shouting exuberantly in the video. But perhaps, we are reading too much into it.

The song offers nothing notable to add to the original composition by Shankar-Jaikishan, and it would be too much to compare Nigam with Rafi. Yet, it makes for a good tribute to the legendary singer on his 38th death anniversary (he died on 31 July 1980).

Fanney Khan is directed by Atul Manjrekar and will be released on 3 August.

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