Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music – November, 2017

Welcome to November, 2017 edition of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

November, 2017 – month of a century+10 birth day of Prthviraj Kapoor and passing away of a noted thumri and khayal exponent Girija Devi.

Remembering Prithviraj Kapoor on His Birthday – the Dubsmash Way – Prithviraj Kapoor was honored with the Padma Bhushan in 1969 and the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1971.

Clockwise: From Top Right: Aawara (1951), Mughal-e-Azam (1960), Sikandar (1941)

No Singer Like Girija Devi Will Ever Be Born: Pandit Jasraj 

The Depth of Girija Devi’s Fluid Notes Will Continue to Anchor the Memory of Banaras by Navina Jafa – The energy that buoyed Girija Devi’s creativity as well as her magical execution of thumri and khayal emerged out of the mehfils.

Credit: Still from the documentary Girija Devi: A Lifetime in Music by Madhu Chandra, Debapriya Adhikary and Samanwaya Sarkar

We remember here her most famous rendering: Ras Ke Bhare Tore Nain: Raag Bhairavi

We will now take up tribute posts:

Shyama, the Impish Girl in the Dungarees, Is No MoreKaran Bali

There was magic whenever Geeta Dutt lent her voice for Shyama. This vibrant singer and exuberant actress complemented each other perfectly through several films like Shrimatiji.

5 Roles That Could’ve Changed Sanjeev Kumar’s Destiny as an Actor are those of Mirza Ghalib (in Mirza Ghalib, 1988); B V Pradhan in Saaransh (1984); Jailer Raghuvir Sinh in Kaalia (1981); Gabbar / Veeru in Shlay (1973) and Rana Bhojraj in Meera (1979).

‘Who’s Chitragupta?’ Only the Hindi film music composer of numerous forgotten gemsRudradeep Bhattacharjee – A reassessment of the composer, whose birth centenary falls on November 16, is long overdue.

[N.B.: I have picked up a two random, less heard, Mohammad Rafi songs, at the end of our present episode.]

Chitragupt- A Tribute also has picked a few rare songs:

Suna Hai Jab Se Mousam- Ramudada (1961) Kamal Barot / Lyrics- Prem Dhawan

Gori Tori Banki Chitwan Mein – Aadhi Raat Ke Baad (1965) Manna Dey / Lyrics- Prem Dhawan

The Uncommon Roshan – What sets legendary composer Roshan apart from his peers? What – if any – is the hallmark of his compositions? What makes him so different and so intriguing? Monica Kar takes a look.

A 16th November, 2015 article of Peeyush SharmaThe Magic of the Melodies of Roshan and Chitragupt – does not merely connect up Roshan and Chitrgupt through 16th November, respectively death anniversary and birth date….

Actor, producer, novelist and raconteur: Archival documentary reveals Prem Nath’s many roles : ‘Amar Prem Nath- Last of the Titans’ has been directed by his son, Monty Nath, and is being screened on Zee Classic…… Kalicharan (1976) contains a meta-moment: as the characters played by Prem Nath and Ajit play a game of chess, a police officer’s portrait hangs in the background. The figure in the painting is Prem Nath’s father.

Remembering Ghulam Haider on his Death anniversary is all-round memoir of Ghulam Mohammad’s major songs.

Remembering AMJAD KHAN on his 77th Birth Anniversary through his iconic dialogues.

Lata Sings For RD has a few less remembered songs: like, Din jaa rahe hain raaton ke saaye :Doosri Sita (1974) – Lyrics: Gulzar

The November 2017 episode of Fading Memories, Unforgettable Songs was dedicated to Salil Chowdhury’s Hindi Film Songs in Other Languages.

Here are posts on other subjects as well:

Percussion Discoveries: Kathak Bols Can Be Great Just for Listening, and I Have Finally Found a Queen of the Dholak! – The path of discovery takes us from LP recording of SItara Devi to 1951 film Dholak’s song Mausam Aya Hai Rangeen, in which dholak is being played all female cast (on the screen). The hunt for a real female dholak player does not find any result from India or Pakistan or the UK or the U.S.A. It lands up at some place closer to the countries in the Western hemisphere that obviously influenced the Latin-flavored jazz within that song from the film Dholak. Her name is Chantal (referred to at different times, I see, as Chantal Mangal or Chantal Khaderoe), and she is from the Caribbean – specifically, Suriname. She is seen performing @ Sarnami khana pakana and a live Baithak Gana. YT search leads to a couple of more performances – here and here.

Bol Ri Kathputli: Personifying the Puppet Perfectly – Among the memorable dances picturised in Hindi films, Bol Ri Kathputli from Kathputli (1957) is an innovation in terms of choreography and music. Anand Desai and Antara Nanda Mondal explore the finer nuances of this exuberant story of the puppet personified by Vyjayanthimala, written by Shailendra, composed by Shankar Jaikishan and sung by Lata Mangeshkar.

Folk Dances in Bollywood’ presents some popular folk dances of Bollywood.

Merchant Ivory classic ‘Shakespeare Wallah’ restored, to have limited re-release along with 29 other Merchant-Ivory productions.

And They Made Classics – Director-Writer Duo of Bimal Roy and Nabendu GhoshAntara Nanda Mondal – Directed by Ratnottama Sengupta, And They Made Classics goes behind-the-scenes through an interview with Nabendu Ghosh that was taken in 2005 where he talks about his association with Bimal Roy. The film explores behind the scenes stories about the casting, the arguments, the reactions, the way they worked, along with clips, stills, documents.

[N.B.: Antara Nanda Mondal had published Nabendu Ghosh: The Master of Screen Writing on 26th March, 2016 to commemorate the birth centenary of Nabendu Ghosh.]

The Story of Babul mora naihar chhooto hi jaye-The Queen of Thomris is historical narrative of The Famous thoomari, with video clips of different versions.

RD Burman and His LyricistsPeeyush Sharma and Antara Nanda Mondal take us through a journey of discovering and enjoying gold nuggets of RD Burman’s music created with some of the most prolific lyricists he worked with.

‘Aaj Phir Jeene Ki Tamanna Hai’ from ‘Guide’ is an ode to life – In Vijay Anand’s 1965 film, Waheeda Rehman finally let rips after a lifetime of sorrow and neglect.

S D Burman’s Love and Hate for Lata traces some of S D Burman’s great Lata Songs

Madhubala, As Anarkali, Unveiled In Madame Tussauds Delhi

My Favourite ‘EYE’ Songs lists songs that describe a certain quality of the eyes, it can be romantic, naughty, sad, quiet, magical, frightened or just beautiful!

Incomplete Films: Ek Tha Raja Ek Thi Rani

Ek Tha Raja Ek Thi Rani saw Nargis paired opposite Kishore Kumar for the first time, a most unusual pairing. The film, written by Inder Raj Anand, had them both in double roles, in a tale of mistaken identities

Controversy in Bollywood Films  discusses some of those Bollywood films which made controversy at the time of their release.

Is that really a lesbian moment in ‘Khwab Bankar Koi Aayega’ from ‘Razia Sultan’? – Kamal Amrohi’s historical is chiefly remembered for its soundtrack, which includes a daring clinch between Hema Malini and Parveen Babi

There is Always a Story Behind a Great Song bring forward some of these interested inside stories to the readers.

In our series Micro View of Best Songs 1948 @SoY of Best songs of 1948: And the winners are?, we continued with the posts on Female Solo Songs. Having heard Suraiya, Geeta Dutt, Shamshad Begum and Raajkumari, we explored solos songs of Surnder Kaur, Other Female Singers and the 1st of 3 parts of Lata Mangeshkar solos.

We will begin the end of the present post with a post on The 11 Emotions of Mohammad Rafi which has presented Mohammad Rafi’s ‘ability to express the emotions which make up different slices of life across 11 different Ras (emotions).

We will also listen to two of the great but receded-from-the-memory-songs of Chitragupt:

Dharati Aaazad Hai Aaasmaan Aazad Hai – Sindbad The Sailor (1952)

Itni Badi Duniya Jahan Itna Bada MelaToofan Mein Pyar Kahaan (1963) – Prem Dhawan

I trust you will always feel free to proffer your suggestions for making this series of posts more lively and informative….

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The Micro View of the Songs of 1948 @ SoY : Setting The Stage

Wait for the curtains to go up for a review of songs for the particular year @ Songs of Yore is more than an eager wait. It is preganat with more unknown songs now.  Having covered songs of 1955, 1953, 1951, 1950 and 1949 in the previous years, SoY has now crossed the threshold well into the Vintage Era as it now ventures into ‘Best songs of 1948: And the winners are?

As noted in the overview turnkey article, we now enter the period which has two quite distinct characteristics:

One, Lata Mangeshkar did sing over 40 songs of which you can count about ten memorable and a couple of all-time great songs, yet she was not the sole pole star, as she became from 1949 onwards. Therefore, dividing the female playback singers as Lata Mangehkar and ‘others’ as (has been) done for 1949, 1950 and 1951 would not be a true reflection of reality.

Secondly, the Vintage Era also means entering a period of more unknown than known, therefore, the year-wise review would now be more a discovery trip.

The post under consideration – Best songs of 1948: And the winners are?  – has presented quite an  encompassing overview in an established template: –

Musical landmarks: Like a golden Jubilee (Mela) and a silver Jubileen (Anokhi Ada) under the belt Naushad hasestablished his morchical position. His nearest rival C ramchandra has Nadiya Ke Paar and Kidkiin the year under review. Ghulam Hiader has presened his swan song on now the Indian soil – Shaheed. Raj Kapoor directs his maiden film Aag with Ram Ganguly as music director. Lata Mangeshkar has hardly any presence in these films.

Other important musical compositions are no less noteworthy nor have lost their charm. We will enlist them here –

Anil Biswas:

Gajre

Door papia bola – Suraiya
Baras baras badly bhi bikhar gayi – Lata Mangeshkar

Veena

Wo teekhi nazron se mere dil par – Mukes

Husnlal Bhagatram

Tere Naino Ne Chori Kiya – Suraiya

O Door Jaanewale – Suraiya

Khemchand Prakash

Marne Ki Duaen Kyon ManguN– Kisore Kumar’s maiden solo song – Ziddi

Chanda Re..Ja Re Ja Re – Lata Mangeshkar – Ziddi

Ghulam Haider

Grihasthi

Tere naaz uthane ko ji chahta hai – Mukesh & Shamshad Begum

Pugree

Ek teer chalanewale ne dil loot liya – Mukesh & Sitara (Kanpuri)

S D Burman

Vidya

Laayi khushi ki duniya – Mukesh & Suraiya

Bahe na kabhi nain se neer – Mukesh

Debut

Asha Bhosle – Only a line Bahana Khush Ho Ke Sangam Manaye – in a chorus in the song Sawaan Aya Re – Chunariya

Kishore Kumar’s first duet with Lata Mangeshkar Ye Kaun Aya Re – Ziddi

Prem Dhawan Chanda Re..Ja Re Ja Re – Ziddi

RK Films Aag

Geeta Dutt – Lata Mangeshkar’s maiden duet Har Shai Pe Jawani Hai – Majboor

Mukesh – Lata Mangeshkar duet Ab Darne Ki Koi Baat Nahin – Majboor

Ab Yaad Na Kar – Ankoha Pyar

Khayyam (as Sharmaji & (Rehman) Vermaji with Aziz Khan) Dil Dil Yun YuN Karata Hai – Geeta Dutt, Aziz Hindi – Heer Ranja

Lata Mangeshkar first song with Shamshad Begum and Mohantara Khushiyan Manayen Na Kyun Ham.. Kismat Hamare Saath Hai.. Jalanewale Jala Karen – Khidki

Surinder Kaur Itne Door Hain Huzoor Kaise – Pyar Ki Jeet

Padmini as dancer-actor in Uday Shankar’s Kalpana

S Mohinder – as music director in film Sehra and as a singer Ae dil Uda Ke – Sehra

Jaan Nissar Akhtar – as lyricist in Shikayat

Sahir Ludyanavi – as a lyricist for Badal Rahi Hai Zindagi – Azadi Ki Rah Par

Snehal Bhatkar – as a music director in Suhaag Raat

Bharat Bhushna and Geeta Bali – as actors in Suhag Raat

Fact file and Trivia notes that five songs of Meena Kapoor for Anokha Pyar were recorded on Lata Mangeshkar; Leela Chitnis played mother for first time in Shaheed; Mohammad Rafi holds a falg pole in Watan Ki Rah Mein Watan Naujawan Shaheed Ho; Ameerbai Karnataki composed music for Shahnaz, once only in her career; Vidya Nath Seth sang firve songs for Rooplelka of which he composed one song too.

List Of Memorable Songs is a fairly representative list of films, music directors and known as well as less-known songs that were released in the year. I have re-compiled this list, under the title Memorable Songs of 1948, by adding the relevant link to YT file.

For the year under review, Special songs also cover the songs which open a path of discovery on their own well as they have thir own personality. In this case too, I have brought these songs on the same page with List of Memorable Songs of 1948.

The stage is now set to commence our journey into the Micro View of the Songs of 1948. As the List of Memorable Songs and Special Songs have covered most of the well-known songs for the year, we will restrict our micro-view to in-depth listening of not-so-well-known songs. We will then combine our impressions of these songs with that we already have for the well-known ones to present our point of view in so far as

Best male playback singer
Best ‘other’ female playback singer
Best songs of Lata Mangeshkar
Best duets
Best music director

are concerned for the year 1948.

All the posts that will appear on this subject here have been tagged as Songs of 1948 @ SoY.