Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs for Other Actors [2]

Manna Dey’s was the bridge who made passage of classical based songs to move to the comedy form. This happened during a period when the prevalent practice was required that the best songs can be created on a note of pathos only. The next slot was assigned to the songs of pure romance. Comedy songs were simply ‘filler’ songs. No one noticed the serious efforts that went into making of comedy songs. The music director had weave a tune which is very easy to sing, the lyricist had to use the ‘light’ lyrics, the actors had to try not be ‘loud’ and the playback singer had to improvise  on multiple styles in one song. Above all, it had to be so created in the film that the audience remains seated during the song sequence.

Obviously, all the experiments were not very successful in integrating all these differing elements in to a song that would stand competition with a tragic or a romantic songs. But some songs which did measure up to that competition, one of the most frequently seen common element was Manna Dey’s very distinct style of sinning the comedy songs.

While commemorating the birth centenary of Manna Dey, we have specially focused on Manna Dey’s comedy songs – first with Mehmood and then, in the last episode with ‘other comedy actors.  Presently, we take up the last episode of our Manna Dey centenary commemorative series, wherein we have recalled Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Agha and I S Johar.

Manna Dey – Agha

Agha(jan Baig) gained recognition as comedy actor very early in his career. Once the practice of allocating a song to a comedy actor became an established part of the Hindi Film formula, Agha also got to sing songs on the screen. He did not have a specific playback singer as his THE voice. As such, association of Manna Dey and Agha can be traced to an ‘Insaaniyat’ (1955) song.

Main Ravan Lanka Naresh – Insaniyat (1955) – with Mohammad Rafi – C Ramchandra – Rajendra Krishna

In this song Mannaa Dey sings for a charchter playing Ravana in the stage play. Agha seems to be absconding from the police, and gets a reprieve as he takes on the make-up of Hanuman, to save his skin. Mohammad Rafi sings for Agra-turned-Hanuman    on the screen.

Bum Bholanath Bum Bholanath – Rajtilak (1958) – C Ramchandra – P L Santoshi

Here is a tailor-made situation for a comedy song, with an element of comedy blended with the altruistic motives.

Phul Gendwa Na Maaro – Dooj Ka Chand (1964) – Roshan – Sahir Ludhyanvi

This is one of the landmark classical raag based comedy song. Even as the song is a parody of a classical Bhairavi thumri rendition, Roshan, Sahir and Manna Dey have ensured that song  maintains the basic charm of the original composition style.

Ho Gori Ter Banki Banki Chitawan Mein – Aadhi Raat Ke Baad (1965) – Chitragupt – Prem Dhawan

Chitragupt was quite adept in fusing the indigenous and western styles of song composition over a variety of moods. Presently, Chitragupt has set the opening of the song on a classical singing style, but then easily switches to western style, possibly to create the sense of comedy in the composition itself. Manna Dey is his very usual natural self at every twist and turn of the composition.

Manna Dey – I S Johar

I(nder) S(en) Johar, though may be known more as a comedian in Hindi Films, was a versatile film personality. He was producer, director and the story writer as well.  For some time, he administered a column of witty exchange of questions and answers in a well-known film magazine, Filmfare. The first film in which he acted was Ek Thi Ladki (1949) and the first film he wrote and directed was Shrimatiji (1952).. He also has several roles to his credits in major Hollywood films.

Are HaaN Dildaar Kamado Wale Ka Har Teer Nissane Par – Bewqoof (1960) – with Shamshad begum – S D Burman – Majrooh Sultanpuri

Here is the song that should suffice to vouch for the sense of comedy that I S Johar had. He sings, from the back of a radio, to pose that song comes out from the radio!

Manna Dey had two more songs in Bewqoof – which I S Johar had produced and directed as well -that had I S Johar on the screen. In Delkh Idhar Tera Dhyan Kidhar Hai, I S Johar masquerades as a girl (played back by Asha Bhosle) to entice two “gentleman” (played back by Manna Dey). Manna Dey also got to sing a line in Dhadka Dil Dhak Se., which is filmed as dance song on Helen (playedback by Asha Bhosle).

Yeh Do Diwane Dil Ke  – Johar Mahemood in Goa (1965) – with Mohammad Rafi – Kalyanji Anandji – Qamar Jalalabadi

Johar Mehmood In Goa was the first in the subsequent series of films that I S Johar di with his own name in the title of the film. Though the films had huge leaning on comedy, the background of each film was the contemporary historical perspective of the locale – which was also included in the film title. It was very unfortunate that such a talented personality churned out slapstick comedy films.

Pyaar Kiya To Marna Kya – Raaz (1966) – Kalyanji Anandji – Shamim Jaipuri

This is also a direct, and complete parody of Pyar Kiya To Darna Kya (Mughal-e-Azam, 1960)

The songs that we have now are not worth to listen in detail. Whether in terms of the quality of the music or from the quality of I S Johar’s screen roles. However, these songs do provide us Manna Dey’s comedy songs by the music directors, lyricists or playback singers not covered hitherto, or give us the types of films that I S Johar perceived (e.g. Nasbandhi, (1978). Moreover, we have satisfaction that we have done fair justice to the in completing the documentation

Bachpan KI Hasin Manzil Pe Jab Husn Guzar Ke Aaye  – Johar in  Bombay (1967) – with Usha Mangeshkar – Usha Khanna – Asad Bhopali

Besharmi Se Sharm Na Kar, Hera Feri Se Mat Dar – Teen Chor (1973) – with Mohammad Rafi , Mukesh – Sonic Omi – Rajendra Krishna

Ham Sab Ka Hai Subhchintak – Khalifa (1976) – with Kishore Kumar – R D Burman – Gulshan Bawra

Kya Mil Gaya Sarkar Tumhe Emergency Laga Ke – Nasbandi (1978) – with Mahendra Kapoor -Kalayanji Anandji – Hullar Muradabadi

We conclude our Manna Dey centenary celebration series here.

There could still be some comedy songs that may not have been covered in this series. We would take up these stray songs in our parallel, annual series, Manna Dey – Chale Jaa Rahen Hai .

+      +      +

All episodes relating Manna Dey’s centenary celebrations series can be read / downloaded by clicking on the respective hyperlink.:

Remembering Manna Dey

Manna Dey and Contemporary Lead Actors

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs

Manna Dey’s comedy Songs for Mehmood

Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Other Actors

Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music – May 2020

Welcome to May 2020 edition of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

We first pay our tributes to the artists who passed away recently:

Irfan Khan passed away on 29th April 2020. Irfan Khan’s Wife Sutapa Sikdar and sons Ayan and Babil released a statement about Irfan Khan’s untimely death.@ Our life was a masterclass in acting, learnt to see harmony in cacophony. Amitava Nag @ Irfan Khan – A Personal Tribute writes a heartfelt tribute. Anuradha Warrier feels the loss @ And Movies Will Never Be The Same.  Irrfan is a tribute from his follower.

Credit: Business As Usual by E P Unny, April 2020

In a tribute to Rishi Kapoor @ Amitabh is ‘destroyed’, Simi mourns her ‘darling’ & Lata holds on to memories of Chintu note Shubhangi Misra and Yimkumla Longkumer. Anuradha Warrier extends the Hyphen In Between the Rishi Kapoor’s tweeter tag line “Son of a famous father, father of a famous son. I’m the hyphen in between.” by stretching it a little further to note that he was also the hyphen between the superstardom of Rajesh Khanna and the juggernaut that was Amitabh Bachchan. Jai Arjun Singh @ Rishi Kapoor, in memoriam notes that looking back on his work during that time, it’s interesting to consider how often he seems to be a silent or passive presence, or how often we see the character he plays in relation to someone else

That passionate voice of music – Radio Ceylon host Gopal Sharma, known as ‘the first RJ of India passed away at the age of 88 on 22nd May. Sharma’s greeting “Awaaz ki duniya ke doston … ” became synonymous with him.

Deepa also has paid a very intimate tribute @ Gopal Sharma – A Boon Companion from the World of Voice

We can listen to his voice in this video clip:

We pick up other tributes and memories:

Should Phalke, 150, Be Forgotten?  – On May 3, 1913, Dadasaheb Phalke’s Raja Harishchandra was released commercially. May 3 was finalised as the day the National Film Awards would be given out every year. Ratnottama Sengupta wonders how the Government of the world’s largest filmmaking country had made no plans to mark Phalke’s 150th anniversary this year.

Kaagaz Ke Phool is Guru Dutt’s masterclass in filmmaking and heartbreak – Guru Dutt’s classic, tragic film is brought to life by subtle performances and dialogue, gorgeous camerawork and Kaifi Azmi’s haunting lyrics.

On the B.R. Chopra’s birth anniversary, The Print looks back @ Gumrah, BR Chopra’s tale of a woman’s desire that challenged conventions back in 1963 – Gumrah, said to be inspired by the love story of Dilip Kumar and Kamini Kaushal, was refreshingly bold and managed to stand apart from the many adaptations that followed.

Anokhi Raat – A Unique Look at the Bitter Truths – Asit Sen’s Anokhi Raat, true to its name was a unique film that told the story of an unusual stormy night – the storms being both within and outside. Sundeep Pahwa looks back at this film with some memories, observations and trivia. Monica Kar (in maroon font) ponders on the memorable songs of this film, which was the swan song of music director Roshan.

‘Hansraj Behl – A Forgotten composer’ is a look-back to his songs in Part 1 and Part 2.

Raat Aur Din, directed by Satyen Bose, was the perfect swansong for Nargis – Nargis Dutt’s performance as a woman with an identity disorder in this 1967 film won her the first National Award for Best Actress.

Shailendra Sharma @ Golden Era of Bollywood has posted following memorial tribute posts:

In our Manna Dey birth centenary series, after Manna Dey and his contemporary lead actors, and Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs for Mehmood, we are on the first part of the last leg,

SoY too pays tribute to Manna Dey @ Remembering a special singer Manna Dey

May 2020  episode of Fading Memories, Unforgettable Songs takes up the less-heard songs of Manna Dey in the series Manna Dey – Chale Ja Rahein Hai…. – 1951 – 1953 . Till now we have his

We will now take up the articles on other subjects:

“Quarantine” or “Lockdown” Dances (in other words, more dances in people’s homes) – As the title suggests, this is a quick compilation of videos posted by the classical-home-performers while fighting the boredom of this lockdown period.

Jetha Ramdhanu Othe Heshe: The Smiling Rainbow of Talat Mahmood (Tapan Kumar’s) Bengali Songs – Among the many tributes and special features on the legendary singer Talat Mahmood, few, if any, talk about his remarkable repertoire of superhit Bengali songs he sang in the early part of his career. Under the name of Tapan Kumar, Talat Mahmood began his Calcutta sojourn with his first record of Bengali songs in 1944. Sounak Gupta chronicles that illustrious journey, remembering the velvet-voiced singer.

Remembering Talat Mahmood for his happy mood songs,

Songs and contra-songs lists songs of opposing truths. E.g. songs on एक/अनेक (one /many)

Howard Roark’s speech in the courtroom in The Fountainhead (1949)

Ek chidiya anek chidiya (animated short film) by Bhimsain

Madhulika Liddle lists  Ten of my favourite ‘multiple version’ songs – male/female solo versions and Ten of my favourite ‘multiple version songs: one voice, two solo versions

Sadma is an achingly beautiful story about a love that defies labels – Balu Mahendra’s Hindi remake of his Tamil classic, Moondram Pirai, was a milestone in his, Sridevi’s and Kamal Haasan’s careers.

SoY initiates Best songs of 1945: And the winners are? , the 10th episode in the annual series Best songs of year. We will take up Micro View of Songs of 1945 from next month.

We end the post with a few songs of Mohammad Rafi, each one of which basically has a link with the topics discussed in the present post, we have picked up:

Tera Jalwa Jisne Dekha Woh  Diwna Ho Gaya – Laila Majnu (1945)  – with S D Batish – Pt. Govindram – Tanveer Naqvi

(Mohammad Rafi has made maiden on-screen appearance @ 1.17in this song.)

Bulbul Mein Hai Naghmme Tere – Laila Majnu (1953) – with Khan Mastana – Ghulam Mohammad – Shakeel Badayuni

Yeh Duniya – Yahudi (1958) – Shankar Jaikishna – Shaiendra

Tum Jahan Jaoge Mujh Ko Wahin Paoge – Chor Darwja (19650 – Roy Frank – Koifi Azmi

Yeh Diwane Ki Jid Hai – Laila Majnu (1976) – Madan Mohan – Sahir Ludhyanavi

I look forward to your inputs to enrich the contents of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

Disclaimer: This monthly series of posts is my best-effort-based compilation of posts on Hindi film songs that I normally visit regularly. As I record my sincere thanks to all the original creators of these posts, any other posts that I have nor covered herein shows my lack of awareness of existence of such posts and is by no means any disrespect to their work. The copyrights to the posts, images and video clips remain the properties of the original creators.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs for Other Actors [1]

We have noted that Manna Dey’s formal association with comedy songs with the text-book comedians of the cinema roots in Manzil (1960) song Hato Kahe Ko Jhoothi Banao BatiyaN.. This certainly blazed a trail that distinguished the career of Manna Dey as well as Mehmood.  As can be expected many other music directors subsequently used Manna Dey’s voice for comedy songs with other comedians as well.

Before we fully explore this dimension, it is certainly worth its while to note that Manna Dey has recorded quite a few comedy songs for what is broadly termed as Hero in the cinemas. We begin our present, and last for the time being, leg of Manna Dey’s career journey.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs for Lead Actors.

We have had a multi-part series journey of Manna Dey’s Songs for the Lead Actors. Barring a few songs, we had refrained discussing Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs with Lead Actors there..

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs for THE Kapoor Brothers

The active singing careers of some of the playback singers like Mohammad Rafi, or Kishore Kumar or Manna Dey have spread over several decades and were so potently dominant in their own times that each one having rendered playback voices for the Kapoor Brothers Trio has not attracted any attention. Manna Dey singing a comedy song for each of the three Kapoor brothers, there for does require a special mention.

Manna Dey and Raj Kapoor

Manna Dey had emerged as the principal alternative playback voice for Raj Kapoor from the very first film – Awara (1951) – of their association. It was therefore very obvious that he would get to sing special situation songs like, a sad song Tere Bina Aag Ye Chandani or sheer romantic duet Pyar Hua Ikrar Hua or very light-station dance number Mud Mud Ke Na Dekh or a song bordering to a classical comedy song Dil Ka Haal Sune Dilwala.

However, the first truly comedy song that Manna Dey sang for Raj Kapoor for the first time came up in Paravarish (1958)

Mama Oh Mama Oh Pyare Mama.. Gharwale Khaye Chakkar… – Paravarish (1958) – with Mohammad Rafi – Dattaram – Hasrat Jaipuri

Manna Dey was used as (almost) a default playback for Raj Kapoor in this film. So it was very natural that Manna Dey would playback to Raj Kapoor and Mohammad Rafi to Mehmood.

Next big comedy song that Manna Dey sang for Raj Kapoor came up in Dil Hi To Hai (1963)

Laaga Chunari Mein Daag Chuupaun Kaise – Dil Hi To Hai (1963) – Roshan – Sahir Ludhyanavi

It was Mukesh who was the default playback singer for Raj Kapoor in this film. However, for so strong classical rag-based comedy song, Roshan easily seems to have preferred Manna Dey

Manna Dey And Shammi Kapoor

Manna Dey had had an occasional chance to playback for Shammi Kapoor – Ab Kahan Jaye Hum – in Ujala  and a few other films, which we have covered in details in our Manna Dey – Shammi Kapoor piece earlier.

Meri Bhains Ko Dand Kyun Mara – Pagla Kahin Ka (1969) – Shankar Jaikishan – Hasrat Jaipuri

It was Shankar Jaikishan who again recalled Manna Dey for a full-fledged comedy song, filmed on Shammi Kapoor, when Mohammad Rafi had become THE ShammI Kapoor Playback voice.

Manna Dey and Shashi Kapoor

Manna Dey also had his share of Shashi Kapoor songs. It was in Pyar Kiye Ja (1966) that he gets a very light song to sing for Shashi Kapoor

Sun Le Pyar Ki Dushman Duniya – Pyar Kiye Ja (1966) – with Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle – Laxmikant Pyarelal – Rajendra Krishna

This is a cry against the tyranny of the world towards the young people in love, but presented in a lighter tone.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs with Other Lead Actors

We have had a detailed look at Ashok Kumar – Manna Dey Comedy Song Jaa Re Beiman Tujhe Jaan Liya (Private Secretary, 1962; Music Director – Dilip Dholakia; Lyrics – Prem Dhawan), in Ashok Kumar – Manna Dey piece @ Manna Dey and Lead Actors. So, we will be satisfied here with taking a note of that one excellent comedy songs of Manna Dey. Of course, no discussion of Manna Dey’s comedy sngs for Ashok Kumar can ever be complete without mention of Babu Samajo Ishare, Horn Pukare (Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, 1958; Music – S D Burman; Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri)

One of the rarest find while working for this entire series is Manna Dey’s Comedy Song for Vijay Ananad.

O Mister, O Mister Suno Ek Baat – Agra Road (1957) – with Geeta Dutt – Roshan –  Prem Dhawan

Vijay Anand was considered to be one of the most competent drifters of the films. Picturization of the songs was his forte. He would suddenly briefly appear, in Alfred Hitchcock’s signature style, in some in  the films he directed,  His attempts to act, and that too as lead actors, have been considered to be equally rare, and by and large not very successful.

Agra Road was his first maiden such effort. The film direction was in th every able thriller film directors, (Nagina -1951– fame) Ravindra Dave.

Here Vijay Anand is seen lip-synching Manaa Dey in a very light situation dance sequence. Of course, he himself wi very seriously dressed in a full suit, a tie, shoes and all.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs with Other Comedians

After Hato Kahe Banao Jhoothi Batiyan (Manzil, 1960) for Mehmood, we get to listen Manna Dey’s comedy songs for full-fledged comedians in 1962 for Johnny Walker.

Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Johnny Walker

The default playback voice for Johnny Walker has always been Mohammad Rafi. Mohammad Rafi had in fact so much developed a style of throw of words that synched perfectly with Johnny Walker’s theatrics that just by listening  to a song one would know this is Johnny Walker song..

Arre Kisne Chilman Se Maara – Baat Ek Raat Ki – S D Burman – Majrooh Sultanpuri

It is probably no coincidence that it is S D Burman who has chosen to use Manna Dey for Johnny Walker, taking on a contrarian step of not using Mohammad Rafi.. In fact SDB has already used Mohamad Rafi for Johnny Walker, right in this film – Aaj Ka Din Bhi Pheeka Pheeka. However, for this classical styled mujra, S D Burman has opted for Manna Dey. S D Burman has maintained spaces for Johhny Walker’s signature theatrics, while creating one of the most iconic comedy song in the annals of Hindi film history.

We have next three songs, all composed by Kalyanji Anadji.

Mere Mehboob Mujhko – Haseena Man Jayegi (1968)  – with Asha Bhosle –  Kalyanji Ananadji – Qamar Jalalabadi

This is a masala comedy song involving a sulking ‘the other half’ with our ‘comedian’ displaying all the theatrics available in his arsenal to win her over.

Ek Anar Do Bimar – Baazi 1968   -Kalayanji Anandji – Shakeel Badayuni

The templates are so rigidly cast, that even a new combination of music director – lyricist also is not able to inject any noteworthy variation.

Haye Re Raama Raam Qasam Kaisa Aaya Ye Zamaana  – Ek Haseena Do Deewaane (1972)  -Kalyanji Anandji –  Qamar Jalalabadi,

If a film has a comedian, and that too of the order of Johnny Walker, or Mehmood, he has to be allotted one song. By now there are some standard templates typecast. Any one of that template style will be lifted up and a song will be worked out by crafting some variation here or some variation there.

We would once again to end an episode in this series by ruefully noting the sudden drop in the quality of compositions that Manna Dey had to sing as the years pass, starting always from an iconic song to end with most certainly the forgettable song.

We have one song that can help us move away from that gloom –

Munh Se Mat Laga Ye Cheez Hai Buri – Johnny Walker (9157) – with Mohammad Rafi – O P Nayyar – Hasrat Jaipuri

This is an all-Johnny Walker- Mohammad Rafi song. Manna Dey has played back for some unknown ‘on-screen’ friends. But that has not made a shade of difference to Manna Dey – he matches a note-to-note with Mohammad Rafi.

That is the beauty of a really ‘class’ composition!!

We still have one more episode-worth material for Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Other Comedians. We would take that up in our next episode.

Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music – April 2020

Welcome to April 2020 edition of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

April was the month of COVID-19 induced nation-wide lockdown. So here are two posts on the subject:

Lockdown Lyrics: Songs for Covid-19 Times is a bunch of upbeat songs that, in some way or the other, relate to this lockdown. Enjoy!

Here a few representative ones :

My Favourites: Songs of Sickness looks at the songs that have the medical interpretations of the lyrics that would make for some interesting illnesses, e.g.

  1. Chhuo Na Chhuo Na Alabele Mere Saiyan – Honeymoon (1960)- Sabita Banerjee, Mukesh – Salil Chowdhury – Shailendra

.“Guide, The Film: Perspectives” – Lata Jagtiani & Other Writers | Blue Pencil, New Delhi, 2019 | ISBN: 978-81-939555-2-9 – review is a good by-product of COVID-19 lockdown. A quote by RK Narayan, pointedly mentioned in the post, has all the more relevance in these times – loneliness is the only truth in life. The post also adds a very perceptive conclusion that “Marco discards Rosie, who, in turn, discards Raju, and, finally, Raju discards the physical world to self-actualise”, because there is room for only one at the peak of self-actualisation.

And then there is one for the children too, in the form of a list of some of the best children’s movies @ CHILDREN’S MOVIES TO SEE DURING LOCKDOWN

We pick up other tributes and memories:

The immortal voice: The echoing memories of KL Saigal on his birth anniversary – Sharad Dutt offers a tribute to KL Saigal on his 116th birth anniversary (4 April 1904 to 18 January 1947). A film career that merely lasted fifteen years (1932-1946), K L SAigal performed in just about 36 films and rendered about 185 songs in Hindi, Urdu, Persian, Punjabi, Bangla and Tamil, thus proving the dictum that it’s not the extensiveness but the intensity of those renderings that bequeaths the mantle of immortality.

[N.B. – For those who would like to know more about Sharad Dutt , here is Guftagoo with Sharad Dutt.  Sharad Dutt has authored a national award winning book, Kundan: Saigal’s Life and Music, which has  a treasure of  archival records, rare photographs and posters of Saigal’s films.]

Versatile musical genius – Kamal Dasgupta – Sharad Dutt – With a career of about fourteen years, Dasgupta have approximately 8,000 songs under his belt including 80 Bengali movies – his unique contribution was the invention of a shorthand method for swaralipi

Anuradha, or the musical genius of Pandit Ravi Shankar, Lata Mangeshkar and Shailendra – Music is in every frame of Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s film, and the soundtrack is the kind that stays in one’s head for a long time. Anuradha won the National Award for the Best Feature Film and was nominated for a Golden Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival. To mark the 100th birth anniversary of Pt. Ravi Shankar, it would be fittingly appropriate to spend time with the music of Anuradha.

Veteran Actress Nimmi No MoreYesteryear actress Nimmi (a.k.a. Nawab Banoo) breathed her last on 26th March, 2020 evening in Mumbai. She was 88 years old.

We have two posts in a homage to the career of Nimmi –

The isolation of Bhuvan Shome is all too real in a time of social distancing – The thing about Bhuvan Shome is that actually, very little happens. In terms of its actual plot, the 96-minute Hindi movie, adapted from a Bengali story by Banaphool, could easily be a 20-minute short film. But then it wouldn’t be the classic it is, the movie that pioneered an entire cinematic movement. As a tribute to Utpal Dutt’s 91st birth anniversary, watch Bhuvan Shome not only for the pioneering example of cinema it is, but also for its strangely beautiful depiction of a different kind of loneliness.

Ranjit Chowdhry (1955-2020): ‘Khoobsurat’ and ‘The Office’ actor dies at 65 – Across three decades, Chowdhry worked with Basu Chatterjee, Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Mira Nair, and Deepa Mehta.He passed away in Mimbai 0n 15-4-2020

Ranjit Chowdhry in Last Holiday (2006). | Paramount Pictures

Johnny Walker: Comedy’s Humane Face – Johnny Walker (a.k.a. Badruddin Jamaluddin Kazi) worked under a strict self-imposed regimen as to his demeanour. He was never loud. He never took recourse to slapstick and was never vulgar. He became another name for comedy in Hindi cinema. And if there were ever an idol to symbolize mirth and laughter, it would not be surprising if it resembles Johnny Walker in appearance.

Remembering Satyajit Ray: The Rare Master of All Trades – Though the world chiefly knows him as the creator of some of the most elegant films ever made, he was also a multi-talented mind.

Shailendra Sharma @ Golden Era of Bollywood has posted following memorial tribute posts:

Jawani Diwani was candyfloss Bollywood, but it turned many stereotypes on their head – To mark Balraj Sahni’s death anniversary (13-04-1973), here’s a throwback to Jawani Diwani, a movie that he is not known for, but that would be poorer without him. it is his character upon whom the wheel of Jawani Diwani turns. His is not the lead role, but it is the one that makes the gossamer-thin plot move forward, and he plays it with the restraint and dignity we all know him for.

In our Manna Dey birth centenary series, after Manna Dey and his contemporary lead actors, we have taken up the last of Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs. For Mehmood

March 2020  episode of Fading Memories, Unforgettable Songs takes up Hasrat Jaipuri – Beyond Shankar Jaikishan: 1958. Till now, we have covered :

The songs from 1950 to 1953 in 2017,

The songs from 1953 to 1955. In 2018, and

The songs from1956 -1957 in 2019

We will now take up the articles on other subjects:

Amar Prem tells the story of relationships that have no name but the power to break hearts – Not Shakti Samanta, Rajesh Khanna or Sharmila Tagore — it was Anand Bakshi’s lyrics that gave this movie its soul.

Baaja that was Harmonium that was Music – Indian music has a history of a strange love-hate relationship with the harmonium. The present post presents songs which has visually appealing presence of Harmonium. I have picked up one song from this post here:

‘Mera Sundar Sapna Beet Gaya’ – Filmistan Studio – It as a banner which with its wonderful music based high quality movies mesmerized its viewers leaving an indelible imprint on their minds. It was this banner which gave us ace composers like S D Burman(Shikari, 1946) and Hemant Kumar (Anand Math, 1952) and well-known producer-director like Subodh Mukherjee. The beautiful and bubbly actress of the 1950s, Shyama had also made her debut as a heroine under this banner. Hindi Cinema’s first totally western music inspired song – Aana Meri Jaan Meri Jaan Sunday Ke Sunday  – was also made under this banner.

Revisiting ‘Yehi Sach Hai’, the short story that inspired ‘Rajnigandha’books to film  –  Nirupama Kotru – Manu Bhandari’s Yehi Sach Hai was published in 1966. Basu Chatterjee’s Rajnigandha, the 1974 movie based on Yehi Sachi Hai, waters down some of Bhandari’s more radical ideas, while retaining its core themes – a woman’s romantic dilemma, and her quest for a well-paying job.

A Rivière of Asha Bhosle – S D Burman Gems- Her transformation from Geeta-esque Asha to a complete playback singer with her own adaptable style is clearly seen under the baton of S D Burman. E.g.. Dil Ki Manzil Kuchh Aisi Hai Manzil – Tere Ghar Ke Samne (1963) – S D Burman – Hasrat Jaipuri

How film composers have used raag Maand to express love and longing – In Hindi cinema, both SD Burman (Piya Tose Naina Laage Re, Guide, 1965) and Naushad (Bachpan Ki Mohabbat – Baiju Bawra, 1952) picked Maand for situations that expressed passion.

We end the post with a few songs of Mohammad Rafi, each one of which basically has a link with the topics discussed in the present post, we have picked up:

Jaane Kahan Gayee Dil Mera Le Gayi Woh – Dil Apna Aur Pree Paaryi (1960) – Mohammad Rafi – Shankar Jiakishan – Shailendra

Phir Teri Yaad Naye Geet Sunane Aayee – Bekhabar (1964) – S Mohinder – Raja Mahendi Ali Khan

O Lakshmi O Sarsu O Sheela O Rajni… Dekho Kya Kay Laya Ye Mausam Is Bar – Kahin Aur Chal (1965) [Unreleased] – Shankar Jaikishan – Hasrat Jaipuri

Hame Pyar Karne Na Dega Zamana, Agar Ho Sake To Mujhe Bhul Jana – Pyar Ki Baazi (1967) – with Geeta Dutt –  Jimmy – Indeevar

I look forward to your inputs to enrich the contents of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

Disclaimer: This monthly series of posts is my best-effort-based compilation of posts on Hindi film songs that I normally visit regularly. As I record my sincere thanks to all the original creators of these posts, any other posts that I have nor covered herein shows my lack of awareness of existence of such posts and is by no means any disrespect to their work. The copyrights to the posts, images and video clips remain the properties of the original creators.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs – Mehmood [4]

Even though we have travelled to three episodes of Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Mehmood, we are still in the ‘65/’66/67 period of Mehmood’s career, even though the trails from there have led us to ‘70s and even ‘80s. We have seen that most of the songs on this later part of Mehmood’s career trail have yielded forgettable songs., from those music directors only who created some of the most memorable songs that Manna Dey played back for Mehmood. So, the root cause possibly is the trajectory that Mehmood’s career took as he grew more established in his career. Playing the roles of different types of the people from across the varied walks of the life from Indian diversity seemed to be the key to his success.  Even as he would on a new character, his acting style, dialogue delivery, basic build of the character, selection of situations for the songs was seen to be getting type cast into some his past successful roles as the chosen few model templates.

Simultaneous with this was the gradual decline with beginning of ‘60s, of the successful second-generation golden period music directors who formed the backbone for taking the Hindi Film music to a melody height in 50’s.  The music was getting more repetitive, less lasting and more commercial.

We take up this fourth, and last, link of Manna Dey-Mehmood chain in the backdrop of these circumstances. As we will see, the pattern that we saw in the previous episode, repeats here also. Of the three music directors we have for the present episode, two begin with reasonably ‘good’ Manna Dey- Mehmood songs, but then slip into the lane of churning out some quite unforgettable songs.

We once again would emphasize that basic intent of our ‘Remembering Manna Dey’ series was not judging the quality of Manna Dey’s songs across the passage of the years. We have only sincerely attempted to look at Manna Dey’s career with some specific angles so as to get as many varieties that we could come across under one common reference point.

In the chronological order of the year in which the film was released, it is Ravi who would be the fulcrum around which we would list Manna Dey – Mehmood songs.

De Data Ke Naam Tujhko Allah Rakhe – Ankhen (1968) – with Asha Bhosle|– Ravi – Sahir Ludhyanavi

‘Ankhen’ was intended to be spy thriller themed masala film. The spies were made to go to the extent of combing the dusts on the streets as beggars to get the clue of the abductors / villains, with some honing device tucked in ther beggar wheelbarrow. Manna Dey and Asha Bhosle have made their best efforts to make the song quite vearble.

Muslim Ko Taslim Arz Hai.. Main Hun Ek Hazzam Pyare – Do Kaliyan (1968) – with Mehmood – Ravi – Sahir Ludhyanavi

Mehmood dons the role of an unemployed educated in this song. The idea of venturing into a mobile hair-cutting saloon does appear like an out-of-the-box- start up idea. But the song has turned up to be a run-off-the-mill average song .

Khali Dabba Khali Botal Lele Mere Yaar– Neel Kamal (1969) – Ravi – Sahir  Ludhyanavi

The household scrap purchase was an important street business. It was an important in the recycling cycle of many of the used domestic wares. So Mehmood ‘s choice of donning role of that character was a good idea, but the way the song is created and filmed, the idea turns out to be damp squib.

Cycle Pe Hasino Ki Toli – Amaanat (1975) – with Mouhammad Rafi, Asha Bhosle – Ravi – Sahir Ludhyanavi

The film bears 1975 as the year of release, but looking the age of Manoj Kumar or Sadhana,or Ravi’s song composition style (recall – two quite the then known ones Matalab Nikal Gaya Hai To Pahechanate Nahi and Door Rahe Ke Na Karo Baat or not so known credit title song Har Ek Din Mein Aramaan Hai Amanat – all by Mohammad Rafi), the film seems to have been produced a decade or so earlier and seems to have been stuck for release. The situation of the songs – a group youngsters on a bicycle picnic- also belonged to that period. The lyrics and the singing styles of each of the singers helps in maintaining the mood of the song

Kalayanji Anandji have apparently only one song in Manna Dey, Mehmood genre. In fact they seem to have opting for Mehmood songs in Mehmood’s own voice, at least in these three instances –  Lori Suna Suna Ke (Purnima, 1965), Gali Gali Gaon  Mein (Paras, 1971) and Hoshiyar Rahena Khabardar Rahena (Vardan, 1974) – in a major departure from the then popular practice of using Manna Dey, or Mohammad Rafi.

Mere Dil Se Dil Ko Jod Do – Suhaag Raat (1968) Manna Dey– Kalyanji Anandji – Indeevar

By now, even this type of chhed-chaad romance songs of Mehmood had drifted to become too trite and loud.

For our present plot we now take up Manna Dey’s ssongs for Mehmood, composed by Laxmikant Pyarelal. In comparison of their use of Mohammad Rafi for a male playback singer slot in the years before ascendancy of Kishore Kumar in 1969, they have used Manna Dey very selectively.

Let me confess that I have not taken any extra pains to search all of Laxmikant Pyarelal’s Manna Dey songs for Mehmood on the screen. I have not gone beyond a few known films for this purpose. We may have missed out some of Laxmikant Pyarelal compositions of Manna Dey for playback to Mehmood on the screen, but, I am personally satisfied that,  the ones that we get to listen here do represent a fairly predictable pattern of what to expect from other such songs, if there are some more.

O Meri Maina Tu Maan Le Mera Kehna – Pyaar Kiye Jaa (1966) – with Usha Mangeshkar – Laxmikant Pyarelal – Rajinder Krishna

Mehmood and very young, and fairly junior in those days, Mumtaz, dish out some loud dancing while singing this song.

A For Apple B For Baby – Sadhu Aur Shaitan 1968 – with Asha Bhosle – Laxmikant Pyarelal – Rajinder Krishna

Mehmood succeeds fairly in mimicking child-like mannerism here. Manna Dey, as usual, gamely matches Mehmood’s on-screen theatrics.

Qatal Hua Nazon Ka Pala Mera – Meri Bhabhi (1969) – with Suman Kalyanpur – Laxmikant Pyarelal – Majrooh Sultanpuri

Laxmikant Pyarelal has experimented with parodying a bride departure marriage folk tune song.

Jawani Tera Bola, Budhapa Tera Munh Kala – Anokhi Ada (1973) – with Asha Bhosle – Laxmikant Pyarelal – Majrooh Sultanpuri

Memhmood caricatures role of an old drunkard here.

It is on a not-so-happy note that we end this episode and our Manna Dey – Mehmood combination songs series. Pain is more when we look at the very promising beginning of their association. The feeling of sadness of both the talents not getting their due deepens as the years went on. Mehmood gradually slipped along to become very repetitive in his theatrics, even when he did stick to playing a multitude characters from across day-to-day life. Manna Dey, on the other hand would seem get most of the compositions that all these composers may have composed just to fill in the typical comedian song slot of a film. His best efforts to salvage the song with his high-quality singing could not raise the song to a n average song, from their very low-level birth DNAs.

In the next episodes we will take Manna Dey’s comedy songs for other actors.

All episodes of Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs For Mehmood can be accessed / downloaded in a single file by Clicking on the hyperlink.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs – Mehmood [3]

In the first part of this Manna Dey’s songs for Mehmood, we saw Mehmood’s career graph on the rising mode. The second part can be said to be the period when his career had peaked. The present, third part takes off from the year 1966 where we had ended second part. As we progress through this part, we come across a stage whereat we feel the beginning of the end of Mehmood’s career. As we have set a limit of end of ‘60s as our period of interest in so far as our core of focus in so far as Manna Dey’s sinigang career in Hindi Films, we are relieved form not being forced to witness the final decline of Mehmood’s career. However, we may, still, will have to bear some pain of listening to some not-so comparable Manna Dey songs for Mehmood

Allah Jane Main Hoon Kaun – Pati Patni (1666) – R D Burman – Anand Baxi

Pati Patni was produced by Mehmood. This was the fifth film of R D Burman’s career. The song is tailor-made for Mehmood’s typical theatrics, but Manna Dey is able to make tolerable.

Meri Patni Mujhe Satati Hai – Pati Patni 1966 – with Surendra and Johnny Walker – R D Burman – Anand Baxi

In a rare situation, Om Prakash, Mahmood and Johnny Walker, three comedians of different styles and essentially of different periods have come together, in a song. Surendra sings for Om Prakash and Johnny Walker for himself – another rare incidence.

Kaise Dekha Hai Mujhe Ji O Ta Ta Thiyo Ta Ta Thiyo – Pati Patni (1966) – with Asha Bhosle – R D Burman – Anand Bakshi

This eve-teasing song, which, in Hindi films, invariably succeeds in sealing up the relationship of mutual love, is also tinged with a touch of comedy.

Nir Ta Ta – Chandan Ka Palna ((1967) – With Mohamad Rafi – R D Burman – Anand Baxi

This song is also a parody of classical singing. Rafi plays the role of Guru (Dhumal) to which the disciple, Manna Dey (Mehmood) plays pranks.

Baat Karate Ho Baat Karana Nahin Aata – Chandan Ka Palna ((1967) – With Asha Bhosle – R D Burman – Anand Baxi

Asha Bhosle (Mumtaz)  sings in the ‘modern’ style to Manna Dey’s (Mehmood) old-fashioned Bangla style, but that does not seem to have any adverse effect on their romantic feelings.

Aao Aao Aao Sanawariya – Padosan (1968) – R D Burman- Majrooh Sultanpuri

Padosan was the film wherein what is typically termed as supporting roles, play more dominant roles than the official lead pair. The song carries on the Mehmood’s parodying of south Indian (Tamil_ accented Hindi

Ek Chatur Naar — Padosan (1968) – with Kishore Kumar – R D Burman – Majrooh Sultanpuri

The song is said to be inspired from  Saraswati Devi‘ s composition [Jhoola(1941), Singer – Ashok Kumar,  Lyrics –  Kavi Pradeep. Manna Dey losing to Kishore Kumar in this song   is also said to be his quiet repentence of having won against Bhimsen Joshi in Ketaki Gulab Champak Ban Phoole [Basant Bahar, 1956, Shankar Jaikishan, Shailendra)

Muthu Kodi Kawari Hada – Do Phool (1973) – with Asha Bhosle and MehmoodR.D. Burman – Majrooh Sultanpuri

The song is a direct lift from a Tamil film. The first two words mean – Give me a kiss.

Mehmood, by now, seems to resort more and more to some loud theatrics for his comedy acts. Music director(s) and Manna Dey battle to maintain the classical or regional styles.

We end this episode here by taking up Manna Dey – Mehmood Songs composed by R D Burman only. In the next and concluding episode of Manna Dey – Mehmood combination we will continue our journey form 1966, but through the songs of other music director

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs – Mehmood [2]

The 1st episode of Manna Dey’s comedy songs, we tracked development of Mehmood’s career, under the lens of Manna Dey’s voice as playback. S D Burman’s 1960 song Hato Kahe Ko Jhoothi Banao Batiyan did play major role in shaping Manna Dey’s career track on comedy songs, but Manna Dey virtually becoming Mehmood’s behind-the-screen voice appears to firm only by 1964. This impression will be further consolidated in our present episode, wherein we have only partially covered Manna Dey- Mehmood combination songs till 1966.

Incidentally, we carry forward trough in Manna Dey – Mehmood comedy songs under the baton of a particular music director, who has otherwise given some of the most notable Manna Dey songs – across different genres.

Kaisi Jhulmi Banayi Taine Nari Ke Mara Gaya Brahmchari – Chitralekha (1964) – Roshan – Sahir Ludhyanavi

Even if we do not consider Roshan’s two earlier Manna Dey comedy songs (that we plan to take up for detailed discussion in the subsequent episodes)  – Laaga Chunri Mein Daag and Phool Gendawa Na Maro – the song is an exceptional aberration from within other songs that Roshan – Sahir duo has so majestically composed for the film.

Haye Re Main To Prem Diwana Mera Dard Na Jaane Koi – Bedaag (1965) – Roshan – Shakeel Badayuni

Roshan now comes back with a tightly composed light, classical based tune. This time it is Shakeel Badayuni who has parodied the first line of a famous Meerbai bhajan Ae Ri Main To Prem Diwani, which Roshan has so melodiously composed as a Lata Mangeshkar solo in Nauabahar (1952)

Jaane Na Dunga Na Jaane Dunga  – Daadi Maa 1966 – with Asha Bhosle – Roshan – Majrooh Sultanpuri

Set to a very the then popular tonga rhythm genre, Roashan has once gain very skillfully deployed the semi-classical base tune while making room for comedy theatrics of the song. Shashikala who commenced her career in the heroine roles, and accepted well as vamp in the later part of her career, is seen here pairing with Mehmood in a comedy role.

Rehne Ko Ghar Do – Biwi Aur Makan (1966) – Hemant Kumar – Gulzar

Produced by Hemant Kumar and directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Biwi aur Makaan centres round five young men, bosom buddies from their college days, who have vowed that they will stick together (which means living together) until each of them has a job and is independent. Mehmood, wielding his signature mannerisms, in a rustic youth role, is on the look out for a room for the five musketeers.

Duniya Mein Do Sayane, Ek Jhooth Hai Ek Sach   – Biwi Aur Makan (1966) – with Hemant Kuamr and Jayant Mukherjee – Hemant Kumar – Gulzar

Hemat Kumar has composed a very light mood song on a faster rhythm-based composition.

Hamare Hal Pe Reham Karo Ke Humse Aur Nahi Hota – Biwi Aur Makan (1966) – with Mukesh, Hemant Kumar  – Hemant Kumar – Gulzar

Two of the musketeers, masquerading as girls, vent their frustrations of playing this roles, to which the third one (Mehmood) cajoles in classical style, by lauding the roles of women in this world.

Anhoni Baat To Ho Gayi Hai – Biwi Aur Makan (1966) – with Joginder, Talat Mahmood, Mukesh – Hemant Kumar – Gulzar

One of the musketeers has now been stung by the arrow of Cupid. Two other friends excitedly try to make him understand the futility of such errands. The fourth one resorts to serious dialogue, with a biting tongue-in-cheek counselling.  Hemant Kumar and Gulzar have worked out a very innovative song for such a situation.

Dekhi Anadi Teri Preet Re – Biradari (1966) – Chitragupt – Prem Dhawan

Like many times in his valiant career, Chitragupt so forcefully holds the fort in an otherwise forgotten film. He has conjured up a very light classical composition which is made more lively by Manna Dey’s now well-experienced voice modulations for such songs.

Tum Jo So Ho Khuda To Nahi – Biradari (1966) – with Mohammad Rafi – Chitragupt – Prem Dhawan

The song is performed by Shashi Kapoor, Mehmood and Kanhaiyalal on the screen. But only two singers – Mohammad Rafi and Manna Dey – have been pressed in to playback the song. So what happens is that each of the three performers gets to lip sync both the singers. As we follow the performers on the screen and the singing voices in sequence, we can clearly make out that all three are singing lines by these two singers, by rotation.

Beta Jamure Ek Bat Kahega, Hanji, Kya Jhuth Kahega,  Naji – Biradari (1966) – with Mohammad Rafi – Chitragupt – Prem Dhawan

The song is set to a classical Monkey and his Guardian master roadshow. Songs of the roadshow genre songs bring in load of benign messages for the erring humanity.

Arara Arara Rang Do Sabhi Ko Ek Rang Mein – Biradari (1966) – with Mohamad Rafi, Suman Kalyanpur – Chitragupt – Prem Dhawan

This is not a comedy song. However the festival of colours, Holi, is always celebrated with loads of earthen pleasure. The song is a very playful presentation of that gay mood.

Jodi Hamari Jaamega Kaise Jaani – Aulad (1968) – with Asha Bhosle – Chitragupt – Majrooh Sultanpuri

Chitragupt, in very able company of very versatile Majrooh Sultanpuri, once again pumps life into a a very simple comedy situation – hero trying to be a westernized guy, heroine pulling towards her tadeonal culture. Manna Dey and Ashaa Bhosle also ably chip in.

Manna Dey – Mehmood combination have still some more songs in 1966 itself. But we shall take them up in the next episode along with later year songs, to conclude the Manna Dey – Mehmood comedy songs set.

Manna Dey’s Comedy Songs – Mehmood [1]

Manna Dey, with his unique style and unforgettable voice, was marked out among his great peers – what was then known as male playback quartet of Mohammad Rafi, Talat Mahmood, Mukesh and Kishore Kumar. His versatility was unparalleled; his singing could convey the vast gamut of human emotions and he could effortlessly switch from serious songs to musical comedy. His many such songs of ‘50s are still remembered with same passion as they were liked then.

In our previous series of ‘Manna Dey and the contemporary lead actors several shades of Manna Dey’s singing style. With the passage of time, as the share of romantic songs showed a shrinking trend, we see Manna Dey slowly shifting to singing songs that were extremely challenging, but now for the character actors.

Steeped in the tradition of classical music, Manna Dey easily straddled over a diverse range of genres, from khayal and thumris to popular Hindi music with a Western tilt to traditional folk songs and Vaishnav kirtans and even Rabindra sangeet. But it was in his rendition of popular songs with a classical tinge that Manna Dey stood unmatched. It was this very distinctive style that made him an ideal choice for comedy songs on the pattern of classical music.

That also was the time when career of Mehmood, was taking the firm shape of a comedian actor. So it was more natural that Mehmood would gravitate to Manna Dey as his playback voice for creating his own different identity as a THE comedian.


Mehmood (Ali – B: 29-9-1932 – D: 23-7-2004), the eldest of sons the dancing star of ‘40s, Mumtaz Ali, was a very versatile artist who could act, dance or sing. However, he is best known as an actor who took the role of a comedian at par with the leading hero of the film. When he didn’t overstep the mark into the cheap antics or drippy sentimentalism, Mehmood could delight the viewer with pure physical comedy with his mimes and on-the-dot comic timing.

The very early footprints of Mehmood’s career can be seen by minutely observing films Do Bigha Zameen, 1953 (a peanut seller), Nastik, 1954 (a henchman), Pyaasa, 1957, ( hero’s negative shaded brother), C I D, 1960 (a cameraman), Kagaz Ke Phool 1959 etc. His first major break as a comedian was in Paravarish, (1958) and then in Chhoti Behan (1959), where he got nominated as Best Supporting Actor for Filmfare award.


Here is the first Manna Dey connection song of Mehmood’s beginning of the career –

Chhod Ayodhya Ke Mahal – Sati Pariksha (1957) – Sanmukh Babu – Saraswati Kumar Deepak

The main lead actor for this mythological film was Daljeet. Mehmood seems to have some side role, but his name does appear in the credits.

Mehmood also started getting roles as the main lead actor at the early stage of his career.

We have one more duet, wherein the song is filmed on Mehmood –

Pyar Bhari Ye Ghatayein Raag Milan Ke Sunaye – Qaidi No. 911 (1959) – with Lata Mangeshkar – Dattaram – Hasrat Jaipuri

Mehmood is paired with Nanda in the lead role in the film.

Mehmood was again in the lead role in Pyase Panchhi (1961).

Babu Bol Ke Kaisa Roka Hamne Dhundha Kaisa Mauka – Pyase Panchhi (1961) – with Geeta Dutt – Kalayanji Anandji – Qamar Jalalabadi

The song is duet, classified under ‘teasing songs’. Here Ameeta teases her beloved Mehmood for making him stop where she likes – she conclusively closes the debate at the end of the song. Mehmood facial expressions narrate his innocence of a ‘gentleman’ hero.

This should go as a rare song wherein Kalyanji Anandji have chosen voice of Geeta Dutt !

In 1961, Mehmood also produced his maiden film – Chhote Nawab, where he gave opportunity to R D Burman to take up an independent music direction assignment. All male songs of the film, filmed on Mehmood, were played back by Mohammad Rafi.

Mehmood produced a comic-horror film Bhoot Bangla in 1965. He assigned music direction to R D burman again. R D Burman, now, dared to experiment with voices of Manna Dey and Kishore Kumar,, for the songs on the lead male character.

Aao Twist Karein Jaag Utha Hai Mausam — Bhoot Bungla (1965) – R D Burman – Hasrat Jaipuri

The song, an inspired version of Chubby Checker’s 1961 hit, ‘Let’s Twist Again‘. The song has been sequenced immediately after O Mere Pyar Aaja, a classically oriented song, performed by Tanjua on the screen, as a mockery of the choice for a youth festival competition song. (Does it also ring the warning to the older generation music directors? )

On its own, Aao Twist Karein now stands as a benchmark icon for a ‘western song’ genre in the Hindi Films.

Manna Dey is so heartfully carefree in the delivery of the song, and seems to draw quite a tough competitive line while sinning “J..a…a…g Utha Hai Mausam”,  to Kishore Kumar in the other two songs in the film – Jaago Sonewalo Suno Meri Kahani and Ek Sawal Hai Tum Se Yeh Mera.

Pyar Karta Ja Dil Kaheta Hai, Katon Mein Bhi Phool Khila – Bhoot Bangla (91650  – R D Burman – Hasrat Jaipuri

Manna Dey is once again in his carefree elements in this ‘young’ crowd picnic song. Mark the way plays the prelude alaap or the end the line Payr Karata Jaa, with his own version of yodeling.

Mehmood finds it convenient to give play to his inner comedian streak to deliver the expressions of carefree mood of the song.

On a parallel track he also was getting lucrative, and increasingly successful assignments as a comedian in films like, Sasural (1962), Raakhi (1963), Dil Tera Diwana (1963) etc. The songs filmed on him were either played back by Mukesh (In Sasural) and Mohammad Rafi. Mehmood’s comedian track went on a winning spree, so Mehmood seems to have concentrated on that path of his career.

Manna Dey – Mehmood association took up the shade of comedy song in a classical moulid with Manzil (1960).

Hato Kahe Ko Jhoothi Banao BatiyaN – Manzil (1960) – S D Burman – Majrooh Sultanpuri

S D Burman has conceived this parody of originally Faiyaaz Khan Saheb’s Bhairavi Thumri Are Batiyan Banao Chalo Kahe Ko Jhoothi in all sincere classical mode, and Manna Dey was an ideal choice for the rendition of the song. Mehmood adds his own colors by his facial mannerisms on the screen,

S D Burman maintained this tempo in their next project together as well.

Pyar Ki Aag Mein Tan Badan Jal Gaya – Ziddi (1964) – S D Burman – Hasrat Jaipuri

The practice of sugar-coating a comedy song in classical style moulid seems to have reached perfection now.

Main Tere Pyar Mein Kya Kay Na Bana – Ziddi (1964) – with Geeta Dutt – S D Burman – Hasrat Jaipuri

S D Burman now gives us a pure comedy song, all earnestness.

Use of Geeta Dutt, after such a long time is welcome on one hand but being deployed for a comedy song is not so welcome.

Before we take a short break in our journey of Manna Dey’s comedy songs for Mehmood, we need to take a painful pinch of salt of falling standards of such songs as well. We will take up an out-of-turn song from Naya Zamana (1971), since this was an S D Burman song – the last in Manna Dey – Mehmood – S D Burman comedy song saga.

Aaya MaiN Laya Chalta Firta Hotel – Naya Zamana (1971) – S D Burman – Anand Bakshi

As we will see in our next episode too, the music directors who were instrumental in setting very high standards of Manna Dey’s comedy songs have also been instrumental in creating such abysmal lows in the genre.

For the time being, we will leave this discordant note for break and continue our journey of Manna Dey – Mehmood comedy songs in our next episode too.