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The Top 15 Hindi Film Songs of 2023

Last updated on: December 12, 2023 13:24 IST
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2023 was the year of earworms.

Songs from big ticket movies regaled on the strength of spunk and swagger even as pre-existing bangers like Diljit Dosanjh's Lover in Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani, Bees Saal Baad's Beqarar Karke Humein in Jawan and an Iranian wedding favourite Jamal Kudu in Animal grew a brand new fanbase in the course of enhancing the storytelling values.

It wasn't all sound and fury, of course. Lowkey melodies found their way into a listener's heart just as well.

Sukanya Verma lists 15 of her favourite Hindi film songs in no particular order.


Jhoome Jo Pathaan from Pathaan
Music: Vishal and Shekhar

Lyrics: Kumaar
Singers: Arijit Singh, Sukriti Kakar, Vishal and Shekhar

Rocking those tailor-made lyrics -- baat karte hain hazaron, hai tajurba humein yaaron -- like only Shah Rukh Khan can, Pathaan's utterly charismatic Jhoome Jo Pathaan and its viral hook step set the tone for all-the-rage chartbusters all year long.


Jawan Title Track from Jawan
Music: Anirudh Ravichander
Lyrics: Raja Kumari
Singers: Anirudh Ravichander, Raja Kumari

King Khan's golden run continued in Jawan whose uber cool title track by the ultra-talented Raja Kumari offers a killer ode to the superstar's stardom and supremacy on screen and off it with its mix of showboating rap and robust rhythm.


Tum Kya Mile from Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani
Music: Pritam
Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya
Singers: Arijit Singh, Shreya Ghosal

Rocky Aur Rani's lust develops into love over a playlist of vintage Bollywood classics, paving the way for a fresh-as-snow declaration of their feelings.

Where KJo paints their larger-than-life admissions against Kashmir's pristine white scenery and Alia's dreamy chiffon saris, Tum Kya Mile truly comes alive in Amitabh Bhattacharya's gorgeous dilemma, Be-irada raaston ki ban gayi ho manzilien. Mushkilein hal hain tumhi se ya tumhi ho mushkilein?

Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani has several lilting songs in its kitty but this one had me at Aayi Hain Tumse Rangeeniya.


Mere Aasman Jal Gaya Reprise from Ponniyin Selvan 2
Music: A R Rahman
Lyrics: Gulzar
Singer: Khatija Rahman

There are two versions of this song, of which the crushing, pre-climatic one by Khatija Rahman is an absolute favourite.

Rahman's pensive lamentation of that exact moment culminating into Ponniyin Selvan's greatest tragedy movingly captures the story of Nandini-Aditha's doomed romance.

None of it lost in its Hindi translation thanks to Gulzar's profound understanding of their lifelong sorrow.


Pyar Hota Kayi Baar Hai from Tu Jhoothi Main Makkar
Music: Pritam
Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya
Singer: Arijit Singh

The ever reliable troika of Pritam-Amitabh Bhattacharya-Arijit Singh paint the town red dishing out the ultimate Casanova anthem, Pyaar Hota Hota Hota Kai Baar Hai.

Agree or disagree, the sheer infectious notes of this number will have even the ones with left feet burning up the floor.


Tere Vaaste from Zara Hatke Zara Bachke
Music: Sachin-Jigar
Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya
Singers: Varun Jain, Sachin-Jigar, Shadab Faridi and Altamash Faridi

Tere Vaaste revamps the outdated 'chaand taare' poetic sentiment into something so refreshingly charming in a melodious marriage of romance and qawwali, the upshot is right away repeat mode.


Banjaare from Almost Pyaar with DJ Mohabbat
Music: Amit Trivedi
Lyrics: Shellee
Singer: Nikhita Gandhi

Amit Trivedi's delightful score for Anurag Kashyap's abstract take on modern-day romance deserves a lot more love its way.

The entire album is a vibe and Nikhita's vivacious rendition of Banjaare's youthful expressions and mercurial tempo is a glorious example of what it stands for.


Kuttey from Kuttey
Music: Vishal Bhardwaj
Lyrics: Faiz Ahmad Faiz
Singer: Rekha Bhardwaj

Often when a movie fails, a lot that's good about it goes under the radar.

Aasman Bhardwaj's directorial debut didn't strike a chord but the end credits song composed by his father Vishal and performed by mum Rekha successfully bring out the sarcasm in poet Faiz Ahmad Faiz's absurdist musings.


Arjan Vailly from Animal
Music: Manan Bhardwaj
Lyrics: Bhupinder Babbal
Singer: Bhupinder Babbal

Rooted in Sikh warrior history, one doesn't need a master's in Punjabi to understand the pulse-racing aggression of Bhupinder Babbal's vigorous paean to one of its heroes that is used to blood-curdling effect in a lengthy, pre-interval action sequence of this year's most unruly movie.


Dilon Ki Yeh Doriyan from Bawaal
Music: Tanishk Bagchi
Lyrics: Arafat Mehmood
Singers: Vishal Mishra, Zahrah Khan, Romy

The irresistible shifts in Vishal Mishra's vocals single-handedly elevate Tanishk Bagchi's festive medley of tunes into a silky smooth, addictive attraction.


Va Va Voom from The Archies
Music: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
Lyrics: Javed Akhtar
Singers: Tejas

Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy's music is a fountain of youth.

It's time to feel young and restless all over again in Va Va Voom's rock and roll beats tapping into the cheerful nostalgia of Zoya Akhtar’s comic book musical.


Chandu Naache from Jubilee
Music: Amit Trivedi
Lyrics: Kausar Munir
Singers: Swanand Kirkire, Amit Trivedi

Strictly speaking, Jubilee is not a movie and yet, Vikramaditya Motwane's Web series, set in the black and white era of Hindi films is, hands down, the most cinematic thing you'll see this year.

Among its many, many attributes is composer Amit Trivedi's tribute to the music of that period, which he lovingly recreates in his own personality.

It has several soulful songs but Swanand Kirkire's exuberant Chandu Naache comes closest to embodying it in spirit.


Mann Na Rangave from Khufiya
Music: Vishal Bhardwaj
Lyrics: Sant Kabir
Singer: Rahul Ram

Vishal Bhardwaj's slow burn espionage drama is high on ambition that’s not limited to storytelling alone.

Bhardwaj's collaboration with Indian Ocean band member Rahul Ram, pitching in as a new age guru dispensing wisdom in rockstar concerts, ensues in the compelling, catchy chants of Sant Kabir's philosophy.


Main Parwana from Pippa
Music: A R Rahman
Lyrics: Shellee
Singers: Arijit Singh, Pooja Tiwari, Nisa Shetty and Rakshita Suresh

Rahman's playful touches, Shellee's lively verse and a super versatile Arijit Singh showing off his frolicsome side turn Main Parwana into a wholesome treat.


Kho Gaye Hum Kahan from Kho Gaye Hum Kahan
Music: Achint
Lyrics: Javed Akhtar
Singer: Achint

Arriving in the final leg of 2023, Kho Gaye Hum Kahan is a sublime mix of retro genres and contemporary ambiance against the backdrop of a social media obsessed generation.

It's instant love for the '80s pop feel in Kho Gaye Hum Kahan's title beauty and its part indie, part electronic, all mellow splendour.


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