Aged 64 in the year 2022, Anjaan was born in a small village near Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh on 24 February to a Hindu couple. His father, Lalji ‘Anjaan’ Pandey was a popular poet and lyricist of that time. The song ‘Khaike Paan Banaras Wala’ from the movie Don was penned by his talented father. Sameer has been bred on Hindi film songs from a very early age due to his father’s profession. He quickly developed an inclination toward songwriting under his father’s influence and tutelage. After finishing his schooling and college in Varanasi, he enrolled in the Banaras Hindu University to pursue a master’s degree in Commerce. Anjaan’s father wished for him to get a banking job after the completion of his formal education. Lalji wanted to see his son become a Chartered Accountant. This was because Sameer’s grandfather had been a banker and his father nudged Sameer in the same direction. But Sameer’s passions lay elsewhere. Even during his college days, he did not give up his love for writing beautiful songs. Once he finished his education, his father urged him to get a job as a banker. But soon after joining the Central Bank of India as an officer, Sameer realized that the banking world was not for him. Having his long-brewing dreams realized, Sameer moved to Mumbai at the ripe age of 22. And the whole nation has witnessed what happened after Sameer entered the music industry. He has stacked hit over hit songs ever since he started writing for Hindi films. Sameer Anjaan’s wife’s name is Anita Pandey and together they have three children. Their daughters’ names are Sanchita and Suchita and they have one son called Siddhesh. Sameer lives with his family in Andheri, Mumbai. In his free time, Sameer enjoys reading and writing. The list of his favourite lyricists includes Bashir Badr, Rahat Indori, Gulzar, Anand Bakshi, Mazrooh Sultanpuri, etc. His favourite singers are Lata Mangeshkar, Kishore Kumar, Kumar Sanu, Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik. Sameer revealed his favourite song to be “Chitthi Aayee Hai” by Anand Bakshi in an interview. Sameer credits his father for being the sole influence on his stature in the Indian music industry. In many an interview, he has spoken of Lalji with a spark of reverence in his eyes while quoting “Whatever I am today is only because of my father.”
Anjaan received his big break as a lyricist in the film Bekhabar (1983). “Maar Ke Kataaree Mar Jaibe” was the first film song he ever recorded in the year 1984 for the Bhojpuri film Bairi Saawan. The song was sung by Suresh Wadkar and Preeti Sagar, two very famous playback singers of that time. In the late 1980s, he continued doing small projects in films like Ek Baar Chale Aao, Jalwa, Swarg, etc. Sameer started garnering recognition with his hit songs in movies like Dil and Aashiqui in the year 1990. He has written the lyrics to all the songs in these two movies. He even bagged an award for one of his songs in the movie Aashiqui. In the same year, he wrote all the songs in the famous romantic drama film Baaghi: A Rebel for Love. In 1991, he wrote all songs for another romantic drama Saajan and most of the songs for the films Saathi and Afsana Pyar Ka. In the following years, he wrote the lyrics to a number of hit Bollywood songs. He rose to prominence in the early 1990s and established himself as a master of romantic songs. He was signed up to write all the songs for the films Deewana((1992), Inteha Pyar Ki(1992), Dilwale(1993), Aatish(1994), Anjaam(1993), Krantiveer(1994), Laadla(1994), Barsaat(1994). In 1996, he wrote famous songs like “Aaye Ho Meri Zindagi Me” and “Pardesi Pardesi Jana Nahi” for the Hindi romantic drama Raja Hindustani(1996). His crowning song was Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in the year 1998. The song had been a super hit at that time. It received so much appreciation that even now 24 years later, we still hum the song on leisurely cab rides or catch it playing in quaint cafes and roadside tea stalls. In the 2000s, Sameer wrote songs for popular films like Dhadkan, Hera Pheri, Dhaai Akshar Prem Ke, Biwi No 1, Rehnaa Hai Tere Dil Mein, Kabhie Khushi Kabhie Gham, Mujhe Kuch Kehna Hai, Jodi No 1, etc. In 2002, he wrote the song “More Piya '' for Devdas, a wildly popular romantic drama. In 2004, he wrote all the songs for the first film in the Dhoom franchise starring Abhishek Bachchan, John Abraham and Uday Chopra. He is also the lyricist for all songs in the Hindi patriotic movie Ab Tumhare Hawale Watan Saathiyo. Most recently, he has worked on films like Hungama 2, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 and Janhit Mein Jaari, a comedy-drama film released on 10 June 2022 starring Nushrat Bharucha as its lead actress. Over the course of his 40+ year-long career, Sameer has had the opportunity to work with amazingly talented people. He is the go-to lyricist for the music composer duo Nadeem-Shravan as well as Anand-Milind. He has worked alongside top-notch celebrities like Anu Malik, A. R. Rahman, Vishal-Shekhar, Pritam, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Adnan Sami and the likes. His album Aap Kaa Surroor sung by Indian singer and actor Himesh Reshammiya remains the highest-selling album to have ever been released to date. His other albums include Tera Chehra(2002) sung by Adnan Sami, Kabhi Aisa Lagta Hai(2004) sung by Lucky Ali, Moods with Melodies(2021), Himesh Ke Dil Se(2021), and Super Sitaara(2021).
4. Awards and Nominations
Anjaan has collected a shelf full of awards and nominations in his prolonged journey in the Hindi music industry. He has bagged the Filmfare Award for the Best Lyrics thrice for his spellbinding songs. The first one he ever received was for “Nazar Ke Saamne” from Aashiqui in 1991. The next two awards were for “Teri Umeed Tera Intezar” from Deewana(1993) and “Ghungat Ki Aad Se” from Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke(1994). Apart from winning this category award at the Filmfare, he has also been awarded the title of Best Lyrics at the Zee Cine Awards for his song “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai” from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1999. Not only this, but Anjaan has managed to enter the Guinness Book of World Records for writing the most number of songs: 3524 for 650 movies in 2017. There existed no such category in the said book but Anjaan pioneered a new one. Such is his excellent songwriting calibre. He has also been awarded Awadh Ratna Award, Hindi Urdu Sahitya Award and Sunday observer Screen Award. Prime Minister of India himself bestowed upon Anjaan the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Award. Moreover, Amitabh Bachchan, the legendary actor of Bollywood released a biography on Sameer titled “A Way with Words” written by Derek Bose. Such is this phenomenal lyricist and songwriter’s talent that his songs are unlikely to fade from memory anytime soon. He writes simply to evoke emotions within his audience. He prides himself in writing songs in a common man’s language without smattering it with a fancy vocabulary. That is one of the reasons why his songs still seem to be popular even as modern music takes over the world.