'I miss the 1980s era.'
Besides Vidya Balan's voluptuous figure, the other thing that's really catchy about The Dirty Picture is the music, especially the song Ooh La La. And we have Bappi Lahiri to thank for it.
Ooh La La has become an anthem of sorts. And Bappida is very happy with the results.
"After a long time, I have enjoyed singing. The lyrics, choreography and the overall look of the song are just incredible," Bappida says.
Bappida seems to be smitten by Vidya's sensuous dancing style in the film, and is all praise for her: "I have become her fan. She has danced very well in the song. She has surpassed Silk Smitha. She is a very talented actress."
The composer is all praise for music directors Vishal-Shekhar: "They have done a fantastic job. They have recaptured the 1980s flavour in such a beautiful way. I have already received so many compliments for this movie. The response to the music is overwhelming."
'The lyrics are bold, but not vulgar'
Bappida has worked with the film's director Milan Luthria before, in Taxi No 9211. The song Mumbai Nagariya had been a big hit.
While the makers could have roped in any contemporary singer, Vishal and Milan insisted on Bappida.
"Milan and Vishal-Shekhar decided that I should sing the song. During the recording, Milan told me Ooh La La will rock the charts," Bappida says.
Ask him about the bold lyrics, and he immediately replies, "The lyrics are bold, but not vulgar. Today, there are so many songs with vulgar lyrics. Also, the situation needs to be taken into consideration. The lyrics were required to be bold."
The song has received an overwhelming response in America too.
"I am a jury member for the Grammy awards and that took me to Los Angeles," Bappida explains. "A lot of fans came to me and said the promos are looking fantastic and that they loved it."
'Bollywood is trying to copy Hollywood'
Bappida has given some memorable music in the past, with films like Disco Dancer, Himmatwala and Sharaabi.
"Last year, my original songs I Am A Disco Dancer and Yaad Aa Raha Hai were recreated in Golmaal 3," Bappida says. "This year, I did a song in Ragini MMS. But Oh La La has brought back the 1980s era in Bollywood.
"The '80s were an outstanding era. Jeetendra and I had 14 silver jubilee films. Today, Bollywood is trying to copy Hollywood. The songs do not have a recall factor. Within a month or two, people move on to new songs."
"I miss the 1980s era. My style of songs will never get old because the music is very catchy."
This feature was first published on Rediff.com in December 2011.