Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Is Gulzar a plagiarist? Or was he inspired by Jim Morrison?

I have often wondered if Gulzar is a plagiarist. Of course he is not.

Here is what he says in the lyrics of his much celebrated song in Kaminey:

aaja aaja dil nichode
raat ki matki tode
koi good luck nikaale
aaj gullak to phode

English translation:

Come, let us squeeze our hearts
Break the pot of the night
Let us take some good luck out
Let's break the piggybank pot!

Full lyrics here

And then, it invariably reminds me of the celebrated lines of The Doors in Moonlight Drive

Let's swim to the moon, uh huh
Let's climb through the tide
Penetrate the evenin' that the
City sleeps to hide
Let's swim out tonight, love
It's our turn to die
Parked beside the ocean
On our moonlight drive.

Here's the song

Oh, no! Jim Morrison was an inspired rockstar and Gulzar equally magical in a different way. The rest of the two songs meander in different senses. And take their own course.
The spiritually-inclined badboy rockstar who died young and wizened old man of Bollywood may be far apart, but their sensitivities speak the same visual imagination. Someone must ask Gulzar if he ever heard (perhaps inspired by his daughter), "Moonlight Drive."
But surely, "penetrating the evening" and "breaking a pot of (called) the night" have a striking resemblance.
Coincidence? Great men think alike?

Perhaps he was inspired. Only inspired. Only just.