Changes Witnessed by Bollywood Music Over the Decades

Have you ever noticed that a Bollywood song from the 1960s is immensely different from a song set in the 2010s? Yes, obviously there will be a difference because of the time gap, but why do most of us feel inclined towards the classic melodies, while some of us love the new ones?

The music, video, lyrics, acting, dressing, everything has changed over time. Even the music has gone through major changes.

The truth is that Bollywood has no existence without its song and dance sequences. It has shown us the fun of dancing around trees, swirling through the valleys and mountains.

Composers nowadays are inclined towards making remixes out of old songs. The beauty and innocence of the old melodies cannot be discovered anymore, but technology has made a lot of new things possible.

Gaana Pehchaana Fun Blog for Every Week

Today’s Gaana Pehchaana blog will be a passage through the different decades putting light on the important features of each decade and how the music, as well as the films, have changed over time. We also have fun games like TMK, Bgahgam Bhag, and Aur Sunao in which you can select the decade before playing.

Let’s find out the changes in each decade!


Did you hear of songs like Pyar Hua Ikrar Hua, Aye Dil Mujhe Bata De, Saiyan Dil Mein Aana Re, or O Nigahe Mastana? These are classic hits, but what makes people enjoy them till today? These songs had no glitz, glamour, or artificial way to bring people nearer. It’s only the plain simplicity of the appearance, dressing, and acting that turns these into all-time favorites.

Most songs from the ’50s were shot in non-moving frames and the focus would remain significantly on the eyes and the eyebrows, the face, and graceful movements with minor cut-ins of the moon, the stars, the flowers, and leaves. The eyes would speak volumes. Eyes were the strongest weapons possessed by actors in that decade.


Dancing songs gained massive popularity in the 1960s. Dancing had a different perspective in the films of the 1960s and dance sequences were intelligently placed.

Graceful and gorgeous heroines like Vyjanthimala, Waheeda Rehman, and Mala Sinha who were professionally trained in classical dance forms danced their hearts out in the movies. Their dancing was a means of expressing happiness and had nothing vulgar about it. Watch songs like Hothon Pe Aisi Baat, Raat Khadi Thi Chhat Pe, Piya Tose Naina Lage Re, and Hansta Hua Noorani Chehra to experience the magic of the ’60s.


The 1970’s witnessed it all. It was called the generation of cabaret, the era of romance, bold glances, bold moves, and heaps of glamour. The shy and sweet actresses from the 50’s just vanished into thin air.

You’ll stumble into loads of party numbers from the romance as well as the cabaret genre. The specialty about cabaret in the 70s was that it could be either found at the climax for adding the thrill element or actresses could be found performing it in the bad man’s den. Every actress could not dance the cabaret.

An actress had to be properly trained in the dance form like Cuckoo or Helen to perform it. Cabaret was not every actress’ job.

The hypnotizing glances and flexible body movements made eyes pop and jaws drop. “Piya Tu Ab To Aaja, Mera Naam Hain Shabnam, Chura Liya Hai, Main Jat Yamla Pagla Deewana are some typical songs from the 1970s.


Junior Burman was the king who ruled in the 1980s. The major difference between the 70s and 80s is that for the 80s movies, we did not have different actresses performing the dance roles. The lead actress did it. Zeenat Aman and Parveen Babi were the most popular. They danced and acted really well.

The 80s saw a craze for disco and disco numbers which were gaining massive popularity. People became so crazy for disco that they danced like crazy while watching these films in the movie halls and a few halls in some parts of India were said to have fallen apart because of the mad dancing.

Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhonsle, and Kishore Kumar kept ruling over the industry with their voices. New crooners and songstresses like Yesudas, Anwar, Bhupinder Singh, and Hemlata began finding a place for themselves in the industry. Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor, Sridevi, Amrita Singh, Meenakshi Seshadri, and heaps of other heroes and heroines came up to give a face to these big voices. Janu Meri Jaan, Aap Jaisa Koi, Laila O Laila, Raat Baaqi Baat Baaqui, I’m a Disco Dancer, Dekha Ek Khwab, etc are some of the hit Bollywood songs from the 1980s.


The last decade of the 20th century brought the biggest transformations in the modes of technology and picturization. Lots of new actors and actresses entered the industry and the old ones lovingly welcomed the newbies with open arms. 

The Khans Salman, Shahrukh, Amir, and Saif along with actresses Madhuri, Karishma, Sonali Bendre, Manisha Koirala, Tabu, Kajol, Urmila Matondkar became the most sought after stars.

Onscreen romance became the trend of the day and things that were thought to be bold became normal. Family films and celebratory movies like Hum Sath Saath Hain were greatly loved. Almost every climax or situation ended up in singing and dancing. The number of dance sequences became so frequent that people would at times get irritated. Television opened its arms to private productions and VCR as well as cable networks made the songs accessible to a larger audience.


The 21st century introduced a wide variety of genres, but as the number of movies made went up, the theme of these films worsened.

Out of so many films, most did not seem to be in touch with the real world.

Most compositions did not have a sense of tune. The moves weren’t pleasing. Skin showing became normal.

Aishwarya Rai and Hrithik Roshan became the most popular pair because of their great dance moves and brilliant acting. The Khans won over many more hearts. Happily ever after songs became commonplace and Karan Johar’s Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham was a highly acclaimed movie of the decade.


These epic 10 years brought about some of the all-time famous item numbers packed up with hell loads of action. These songs are still the heartthrob of parties. The start of the decade introduced Sheila Ki Jawani and Munni Badnam Hui.

Our heroines were portrayed from a different perspective. The camera was focused specifically on the bodies and before you notice their performance, the shot changes a number of times.

The lyrics have become worse and the stars appear like decked-up mannequins even during the most unexpected scenes.

Remixes like Laila O Laila makes us think of Sunny Leone swaying to an already popular song turned into a phenomenon by Zeenat Aman.

This decade saw plenty of promising lyricists like Swanand Kirkire whose clever lyrics have been beautifully adjusted into the meters of melodies from films like Barfi, Hazaron Khwahishen Aisi, Munna Bhai, English Vinglish, 3 idiots, etc.

It does not matter whether the song is an old one or a new one, each of them has something special.

Every song is a piece of art, but we miss the old melodies more than the new ones. Closeups in those songs meant shooting the vivid face and eye expressions of the submissive heroes.

Nowadays, it’s all about close shots of the actor or actress’s abs and legs.

In the olden days, lyricists spent hours and hours creating the perfect lyrics with the best meaning and these lyrics would not even be misleading. These days, most of the lyrics don’t make any sense and are created just like that.

The new decade that we are witnessing at the moment has moved to the OTT platforms and the music will be experiencing unlimited transformations.

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Jasmine is a well-trained writer who loves experimenting in her writing, therefore her writing area is quite diverse. She loves to write about everything around her. She knows what can interest her readers, thus her contents always contain hidden facts and surprising details. Being an all-rounder, Jasmine always keeps her research game on-point so that she can herself updated on her surroundings.

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