Song Sketch

Tanha Dil Tanha Safar – Journey Of The Lonely Heart – Shaan

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Tanha dil tanha safar…

This song of singer Shaan talks about the journey of life. This philosophical line says that everyone has to travel their own journey alone; there will be friends, lovers, and influencing people who would come and go but the journey of the heart will continue to be a lonely one.

We can listen to this song so many times and yet not get bored. It is best enjoyed when played in the car while going on a long drive and if it is raining, oh my! It is a beautiful song from the album of the same name which was released in the year 2000. It was well received by the audience and Shaan won the MTV Asia Award for Favourite Artist India for this album. He has composed and sung all the songs except this title track which was composed by Ram Sampath.

In the video Shaan is shown as a person who is visiting his place after a long time and is seen walking the same roads that he took as a teenager and then later as a young college lad. He is seen moving forward but his mind is moving back into the memory lane. The familiar pathways, the incidents, his friends, his love – everything is coming back to this now successful man who once was a carefree boy. He recalls how he had started his journey.

Aankhon mein sapne liye
Ghar se hum chal to diye
Jaane yeh raahein ab le jaayengi kahan
Mitti ki khushboo aaye
Palkon pe aansu laaye
Palkon pe reh jaayega yaadon ka jahan
Manzil nayi hai anjaana hai kaarvaan
Chalna akele hai yahan
Tanha dil, tanha safar
Dhoonde tujhe phir kyoon nazar

He left this place with sparkling eyes which were full of dreams of the future without even knowing where these unknown paths would take him and today he has achieved his so called goal but the memories of this place bring a tear to his eye even today. But he now realises that these memories would meet the same end as that little tear, they would wither away soon as there will be newer heights to climb and new goals to achieve, meet new people and walk new unknown paths to be tread. He now knows that he will have to leave behind everything one by one and walk forward, yet my eyes yearn for my roots.

Dilkash nazaarein dekhe
Jhilmil sitaarein dekhe
Aankhon mein phir bhi tera chehra hai jawaan
Kitni barsaatein aayi, kitni saugaatein laayi
Kaanon mein phir bhi goonje teri hi sada
Waade kiye the apna hoga aashiyaan
Waadon ka jaane hoga kya

He has witnessed many a beautiful sights, experienced so many starry nights and yet the memory of his beloved, the imprint of her face is still fresh in his mind, his eyes. He has listened to thousands of raindrops falling on the ground, yet the voice of this girl still resonates in his ears. He has promised her the moon, the stars, and everything and yet he left her for the better future.

He also remembers his favourite music teacher who was just like his friend; who taught not just music, but life. He also remembers his demise, his burial, his end. He remembers how the teacher left this world after knowing that his beloved had passed away. And that perhaps makes this boy realise that even true love leaves you when the time comes to embark their own journey alone and you too start your journey all alone.

In the end, he meets with the stark reality that one needs to go forward alone without anyone. We have come to this world alone and we leave this world alone. In the between we meet people. We love, we fight, we make up, we make friends, relatives; but we still are alone, everyone is alone.
The song ends with Shaan repeating the words Tanha dil many times reminding us of this bitter truth. The entire song has undertones of sadness, just like the video. It tells us about life as it is, without sugar coating it. It is bare and in front of you but not in your face. It takes you into the fact slowly. Such is the pace of the song; it pulls you right into it slowly. You become engrossed in it entirely becoming a part of it and you go down the memory lane visiting your choicest memories one by one realizing somewhere that all that remains in the end are memories and the lonely heart.


  1. Tanmay Moitra

    October 9, 2018 at 5:48 am

    You explained it very well, I also remember this song when it first came I was in School and I still listen to it many times. Such a great melody.

  2. anjana rajmohan

    January 29, 2019 at 3:58 pm

    Guys please tell me who wrote this song?

    • Piyush Khanna

      May 28, 2020 at 8:19 pm

      It was written by Shaan himself!

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