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Next Big Thing: Meet wordsmith Irshad Kamil


Somen Mishra,CNN-IBN
Jan 18, 2008 at 03:04am IST

Mumbai: When other lyricists just play around with all those mera dil tere liye kind of rhyme and meter, lyricist Irshad Kamil uses Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi words to give a distinct flavour to his songs. Because his songs have worked even when the films didn’t, we think Irshad is the Next Big Thing.

A heartfelt ghazal paved the way for Irshad's entry into Bollywood. Music composer Sandesh Shandilya heard it and decided to give him a break in Chameli.

Born and bought up in Punjab and with a doctorate degree in contemporary poetry, Irshad came to Mumbai after director Lekh Tandon asked him to pen the dialogues for his serial.

“I came to Mumbai for two weeks only but stayed on for seven months. Later on when I went back to Punjab, I realised that I have lost my job too,” Irshad said.

Irshad returned to Mumbai and started writing screenplays for TV soaps. His initial foray into cinema with Chameli, Socha Na Tha, Ahista Ahista, Shabd and Karam met with little success.

However, last year's runaway musical hit Jab We Met put Irshad's lyrics on top of the charts.

“I have got many offers but am in no hurry to sign 25-50 films at one go. I prefer to do five films that would have my signature,” Irshad said.

Now, apart from lyrics, Irshad is moving on to write screenplays too. Though, Bollywood's same old romantic situations prove tough for any lyricist to go beyond the usual words like ishq, deewana and mastana, Irshad says there is a way out.

“The trick is to get into the character's skin to get new words for some situations. Otherwise it’s impossible to write songs for same love stories again and again,” Irshad said.

And here's how the lyricist would like to sign off in his own words:

Main wo hoon jiske khoon me khuddari aur zid bhi bahe

mere saath chal meri shart par, chal na sake to na sahi

is beumidey daur ki main aakhiri umeed hoon

ye satr ek sachai hai koi na pade to na sahi

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