The Holi season is in. The perfect time of the year for roadside romeos, party-hoppers and bhang lovers to have truckloads of fun! After all, the catchphrase for the day is, ‘Bura na maano… Holi hai’. Just in case you still don’t have a DJ or a playlist sorted, this compilation is for you.

Unabashedly featuring all the Holi regulars… the list also has a handful of less heard yet interesting colour-themed songs that could just fit in your Holi playlist.  Let’s go for them first.

Mujhe Rang De (Thakshak)

Takes us straight to school times when a group of girls performed this one at the Annual Day function. This AR Rahman track is quite unlike his usual compositions if not for the choice of instruments. Conventional, peppy and foot-tapping, Asha Bhosle‘s energy owns this one.

Rang Rang Mere (Bollywood Hollywood)

An Indo-Canadian production, this Lisa RayRahul Khanna starrer wasn’t a really a bad film. Just that I wish the firang background dancers had some idea on what they were doing. Musically, Sandeep Chowta‘s soundtrack found several takers back in 2002. This Sonu NigamAlisha Chinai track was hummed a lot, thanks to its catchy melody.

Rangeelo Rut (Ustad & The Divas)

The second time I mention the stupendous Ustad Sultan KhanChitra duo in a write-up. This song deserves to be heard to be believed. Initially released in their abum ‘Piya Basanti‘, the track also found a place in their ‘Ustad & The Divas‘ that came 6 years later. The Rajasthani flavour is impeccable, to say the least.

Rangreli (Daawat-e-Ishq)

Sajid-Wajid‘s Daawat-e-Ishq was a decent soundtrack. Melodious to limit of being dubbed 1990s material, Rangreli ended the film with colour and zest. Shreya Ghoshal and Wajid Khan sing in full fervor thus making it an ideal festival track. By the way, I didn’t quite understand what Aditya Roy Kapoor was trying to prove with his two left feet.

Rang Deeni (Dev)

Kailash Kher‘s rustic voice is always a pleasure to listen. Interspersed with equally remarkable chorus, Rang Deeni gets its vibe just right.

Saat Rang Ke Sapnon (Saat Rang Ke Sapne)

This song credited to Nadeem-Shravan is a ripped off from Malayalam song ‘Poovenam Poopadavenam‘. Priyadarshan is the maker after all. Yet the song makes for a decent listen thanks to Alka Yagnik‘s sweet voice. It helps that the director knows how to shoot his songs.

Rangeela Re (Rangeela)

Urmila Matondkar parades the streets demanding everyone to go ‘Rangeela‘. Making everyone on the road ‘Rangeela’ without permission is what the Holi festival stands for in India. Nevertheless, this AR Rahman-Asha Bhosle number is a perfect pick for the genre.

….. over to the Holi regulars!

Holi Khele Raghuvera (Baghban)

No one plays holi like Amitabh Bachchan does. When the song is in his much-loved baritone, nothing should stop us from shaking a leg. This Aadesh Shrivasatava-Sameer track from Baghban is a festival favourite.

Do Me A Favour, Let’s Play Holi (Waqt – The Race Against Time)

Wasn’t this the first ever Holi party song? Anu Malik always knew how to break new grounds. Sung by Anu himself, Do Me a Favour is a must-have at every holi DJ event. The final minute of the song hits the kind of verve that the generation today would happily lap up.

Balam Pichkari (Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani)

Holi dancer number of this decade. Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone kill it there with those electric dance moves (quite easy for you to copy though). The myriad colours, Vishal Dadlani and Shalmali Kholgade‘s full-throated rendition and the catchy lyrics (Irshad Kamil) easily take our attention away from Aditya Roy Kapoor’s I-don’t-know-where-I-am-stuck moves. 😛

Dekho Aayi Holi (Mangal Pandey – The Rising)

In a film that had no other colour but red – there was no particular need for a Holi song. But Aamir Khan and Rani Mukerji getting drenched in colours and dipping themselves in the river was a juicy enough sight. Madhushree and Udit Narayan add the right groove to this high octane desi number.

Chhan Ke Mohalla (Action Replay)

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Sunidhi Chauhan, dance, holi, mohalla – when all these elements meet, the least you expect is a dhamaka. This Pritam composition doesn’t disappoint. Guess who’s back? Aditya Roy Kapoor with weirder dance moves. 😀

Holi Ke Din (Sholay)

We have all watched Sholay. This song is right there on our lips and the moves on our hips. And the chemistry between Dharmendra and Hema Malini – mashallah!

Ang Se Ang Lagana (Darr)

Darr is best remembered for Shahrukh Khan, but it had a stellar Shiv-Hari soundtrack to cherish. Predominatly a family-centred Holi track, this one has Sunny Deol, Juhi Chawla and Anupam Kher shimmy in colours while a miffed Shahrukh plays dafli in background. Guess someone took “Dafliwale Dafli Baja” quite seriously! 😐

Soni Soni Akhiyonwali (Mohabbatein)

Not too many colour references but how vigorously they dance! Three cheers to Archana Puran Singh for those robust yet seductive, feminine moves. Jaspinder Narula‘s raunchy vocals simply elevate the impact. Udit Narayan and the gang of young singers make sure that the song has something in store for everyone. The icing on the cake in Aishwarya Rai in the beginning and end of the track. My personal favourite among all Holi and colour-based tracks is this one.

Mohe Rang Do Laal (Bajirao Mastani)

Bajirao Mastani‘s classical number “Mohe Rang Do Laal” too was a Holi number. Spectacular instrumentation, a divine tune and Shreya Ghoshal‘s enigmatic vocals to boot. This one is class!

Tan Rang Lo Ji Aaj Mann Rang Lo (Kohinoor)

How could Holi have been shot in the black-and-white era? I say, there are very few songs as colourful as “Tan Rang Lo“. So vivid is the music… such life is in Mohammed Rafi saab and Lata Mangeshkar‘s voices. Bless us for being born in the same country as these legends’.

Lahu Muh Lag Gaya (Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram Leela)

A lilting, smooth yet foot-tapping composition that could make your Holi a sensuous affair. Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh ooze oomph like never before. The song also makes us question – Where on earth is Shail Hada? The man mysteriously appears in Sanjay Leela Bhansali soundtracks only to disappear soon after!

Rang Barse (Silsila)

Amitabh Bachchan + Bhang. Enough said!

Happy Holi…