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Fading Memories….Unforgettable Songs

Fading Memories…. Unforgettable Songs: December 2020

Mohammad Rafi’s First Solo Song With The Music Director: 1967-1969

To commemorate Mohammad Rafi’s anniversaries, [Born: 24 December, 1924// Death: 31 July, 1980] we commenced a series of articles on Mohammad Rafi that essentially tried to bring the solo song of Mohammad Rafi from the first film with the music director.  Beginning 2016, we have taken up one five-year slot every year, in the chronological order, starting from 1944, the year in which Mohammad Rafi sang his maiden solo song in Hindi Films. Till now we have covered

We have reviewed the first part of the years 1964 – 1966 for the present 5th  Six-Year Period , and for the time last part of the present series in July 2020. Presently, we will take the last three years – 1967 to 1969 – of this 5th period.

As has been noted by the musicologists and the Film Music historians identify three main stages for the first 25 years of a 50-years long active career. ‘40s was the period for Mohammad Rafi to create his space in the playback singing. The period of 50s was the period of consolidation and strengthening his position. He started getting varied song genres by almost all music directors and emerged as THE voice for many of the heroes of that period. One male playback singer who was displaced totally by the end of the ‘50s was Talat Mahmood. ‘60s was the period he was considered to adapt to racy compositions that was now becoming the order of the day. He was the automatic choice for the next generation heroes who came up on the scene in the early ‘60s.Mohammad Rafi developed customized theatrics for most of the heroes.

In the year ’69 Rajesh Khanna suddenly came out of his initial struggle period with Aradhana, 1969, (Music S D Burman, but virtually conducted by R D Burman because of SDB’s ill health) and Dushman, 1971 (Music- Laxmikant Pyarelal). R D Burman and Laxmikant Pyarelal were the new stars of the emerging, new, generation of the music directors, who had huge success in the use of Kishore Kumar as THE voice of Rajesh Khanna. As a result, Mohammad Rafi started losing his top position. He continued singing almost till the end and did have quite a few ‘good’ songs, history records this period as the period of the afterglow after the Sun has finally set for the day.

Moreover, as was observed in the first three years of the present 5th Six-Year Period, on one hand, the entry of new music directors who were to succeed in the years to come seemed to dry-up considerably. On the other hand, the music directors and the lead actors of the previous generation, who distinctly preferred Rafi, were distinctly seen ‘aging out’. It therefore makes all the more sense to complete the series of Mohammad Rafi’s First Solo Song With The Music Director with year 1969, as we take up the years 1967 to 1969.

1967

The year 1967 has 88 solo songs for Mohammad Rafi.  Mohammad Rafi has had fairly popular songs from the films like Aman. An Evening in Paris (music director for both – Shankar Jaikishan, Amne Samne (Music: Kalayanji Anandji), Nai Roshani (Music : Ravi), Naunihal (music: Madan Mohan), Palki (Music: Naushad), Taqdeer(Music: Laxmikant Pyarelala). From his many popular songs during 1967, I would even consider Hum Intezaar Karenge Tera Qayamat Tak (Bahu Begam; Music :Roshan, Lyrics: Sahir) and Tere Pyar Ne Mujhe Gham Diya (Chhaila Babu, Muic: Laxmikant Pyarelala, Lyrics: Asad bhopali) that has strong shades of charm – less theatrics, more depth – of Rafi that we had seen during later pat of ‘50s. Mohammad Rafi had had two songs in Oriya film a’Arundhat’ and one in Gujarti film, ‘Sneh Bandhan’ –

Milan Na Deep Sau Bujai Gaya Chhe  (Muisc: Dilip Dholakia)

The year 1967 has only music director Bhushan, who has his first ever Mohammad Rafi solo song. If I have been able to get all correct references, Bhushan seems to have only one more film – Purani Pahechan (1971) – subsequently.

Baithe Baithe Dil-e-E Nadaan Ye Khayal Aaya Hai – Maikhana – Lyrics: Kidar Sharma

We have here Mohammad Rafi that we usually hear in his NFS ghazals – playing with lyrics of mukhada differently every time, with deep emotions, sans all loudness even when he raises the scale a few notches.

1968

The year 1968 has 82 solo songs of Mohammad Rafi. The successful films for the year include Aadmi, Sangharsh (music director for both ; Naushand), Brahmchari, Jhuk Gaya Aasman, Kanyadaan, Mere Huzoor  (All: Shankar Jaikishan), Mere Hamdam Mere Dost (Music: Laxmikant Pyarelal) , Neel Kamal (Music: Ravi).

I would pick up Mile Na Phool To Kanton Se Dosti Kar Li (Anokhi Raat, Music: Roshan, Lyrics; Kaifi Azmi) and Dil Ki Awaz Bhi Sun Mere Afasane Pe Na Jaa (Humsaaya, Music: O P Nayyar, Lyrics: Shewan Rizvi) as real Rafi-touch songs.

We have five music directors – Ved Shethi, Parmarthi Ashwatham, Ram Kadam, S Kishan and Jimmy / Premnath recording their first solo songs for Mohammad Rafi this year.

Ved Shethi has only one Hindi film to his credit.

Ek Nanhi Si Kali Roye Daali Ke Liye – Aanchal Ke Phool – Lyrics: Naqsh Lyalpuri

The song is background genre song, that describes the fate of the child protagonist. The lyrics for these songs usually convey the meaning for the song. Singer has to ensure that he /she remains faithful to that message.

Pamarthi Ashwatham belongs to those music directors who have rendered music for the films that were originally made in South Indian languages.

Kaahe Ka Rona Dhona – Ram Aur Raheem (1968) – Lyrics: Sant Kabir

The film was directed by V Nagaiya. Nagaiya and Surya Kumari were in the lead roles. It had as many seven Mohammad Rafi solo songs, all Saint Kabir’s bhajans.

Ram Kadam was essentially a music director of Marathi films (113 films) who has also scored music for three Hind films and 1 Telugu film. We have two solo songs for his 1968 film Raaste Aur Manzil.

Jalte Jalte Ho Gayi Gam Ki Raat, Ho Gayi Gam Ki Raat, Khatam Hua Dil Jalte Jalte – Raaste Aur Manzil – Lyrics: Ibrahim Faiz

This is a poignant mood song. Rafi has done full justice to the mood.

Main Bahut Door Chala Aaya Hun – Raaste Aur Manzil – Lyrics: Ibrahim Faiz

Hindi films show the heroes resorting to heavy drinking to forget his sorrows. That always an ideal situation for a drunkard genre film.

S Kishan seems to have composed films earlier too, however all these B or C grade films never seem to have even faintly succeeded at the box office.

Ab Madad Farmaiyiye Mehboob Subahani Meri – Tattar Ki Haseena – Lyrics: M Yusuf

This is film which uses the folk themes – this time for the Tattar community of Mongolia. As can be expected, the composition has a strong influence of Mid-east music style.

Jimmy (James Singh), a Christian Sikh, from Ludhiana, had a long stint at Hindi films, but was not rewarded according to his merits. However, he has attained fame as the first music director  to have a ‘yodelling’ song – Ek Do Teen Char, Bagon Mein Aayi Hai Bahar – by Kishore Kumar (With Asha Bhosle, Muqqadar, 1950). Shrimatiji (1952) is his relatively more remembered film.

One more music director- Premanth– is also credited as (joint) music director for the film Tarzan In Fairyland.  However not much information is available about him

Hindi Cinema has all kinds of films made with Tarzan and King Kong. It seems Tarzan and King Kong also were infected with song-singing virus. The film Tarzan In Fairyland has one Mohammad Rafi solo – Ho Gaalon Pe Gulab Liye Nainon Mein Sharab Liye – probably composed by Premnath, for which I have not been able to find a digital version on the net.

1969

The year 1969 has 114 solo songs for Mohammad Rafi. The films that had all Rafi songs on the high-popularity chart were Aaya Sawan Jhhom Ke (Music: Laxmikant Pyarelal), Chirag (Music Madan Mohaan), Pagla Kahin Ka (Music: Shankar Jaikishan) and  Pyar Ka Mausam (Music: R D Burman).

It is really interesting that one music director who changed the course of Hindi Male Playback Singing history – though, officially, as assistant to S D Burman in Aradhana – has three solos and one duet for Rafi in Pyar Ka Mausam (Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri, all of which have been filmed on the lead male actor, Shashi Kapoor. Of the three solos, Che Khush Nazare….Ke Khud Pukare Ke Hai Pyar Ki Manzil is a mandatory song wherein hero entices heroine by his happy-go-lucky mannerisms. Tum Bin Jaun KahaN had four versions in the film – two each by Kishore Kumar and Mohammad Rafi, each with a happy and sad shades version each respectively. The Kishore Kumar fans o one side and Mohammad Rafi fans on the other side were strongly divided then, as they may probably be divided today, as to which of the version is better delivered by the singer. Well, I have no intention to step into the quagmire of that discussion here. Rafi – Lata duet – Ni Sulatana Re – was the undisputed THE popular song of the films. The irony of the fate that is Hindi film music is that it was Pyar Ka Mausam that turned out to be launching pad that ser R D Burman to the outer orbit of success.

Narayan Dutt is again a music director about whom not much is known. The only notable feature that can be be note of the film ‘Pujarin’ is perhaps the only film wherein Rehana Sultan is not in her ill-famed ‘bold’ roles.

Piya Ki Nagariya Taj Ke Gori Jaaye Re – Pujarin – Lyrics: Madan

This is a background song, for the one of the extremely popular Hindi Film situations of Bride Farewell from her parental home after the marriage.

With that we also bid farewell to our Six-Part series Mohammad Rafi’s First Solo Song With The Music Director…. Till we meet again for a series on Mohammad Rafi’s Duet Song From the FIRST Film With The Music Director.


Both episodes of the 5th Six Year Period of Mohammad Rafi’s First solo with a Music director – 1964-1969 can be downloaded as one file by clicking on the link.


All six parts of the series Mohammad Rafi’s First Solo Song With The Music Director can be read / downloaded as one file by clicking on the hyperlink.


All episodes of Fading Memories…. Unforgettable Songs, from January 2020 to December 2020 can be read / downloaded by clicking on Fading Memories…. Unforgettable Songs 2020.

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Fading Memories….Unforgettable Songs

Mohammad Rafi’s Solo Song From The FIRST Film With The Music Director: 1952-1953

We have taken up to celebrate Mohammad Rafi’s anniversaries by publishing a series of articles that enlist the solo song of Mohammad Rafi with the music director for the first time in any film. The first 5-year slot of 1944 to 1948 was covered in Part I and Part II in December, 2016. We have covered 1949  and 1950-1951 of the 2nd five-year-slot of 1949 to 1953.

Presently we will take up years 1952 and 1953 of this 1949-1953 period..

 [For the sake for structured documentation, I will be following the alphabetical sequence of Film names in the post.]

1952

Year 1952 had 80 songs to Mohammad Rafi’s account, of which 32 songs were solos.  Naushad gave a slew of Rafi hits in Aan and Baiju Bawra. For Deewana, Naushad had one of Rafi’s immortal Tasweer Banata Hun Teri Khoon-e-Jigar Se.Ghulam Mohammad had had Rafi in films like Ajeeb Ladki, Amber and Sheesha, C Ramchandra in  Saaqui and Maadn Mohan had him in Anjaam. Chitragupt had Rafi songs in a religious film, Bhakta Puran and a Sinbad series film, Sindbad The Sailor. Rafi gets repeat preference by several other music directors too.

O Moorakh Insaan Apne Ko Pehchan – Annadata  – Mohammad Safi – Anjum Jaipuri

Mohammed Safi was an excellent Sitar player and music arranger. He has provided music independently in about 14 films and was a key assistant to Naushad.

Kit Jaoge  Ghanshyam Murari Jaane Na Doonga – Mordhwaj – Narayan Dutt – Bharat Vyas

The most striking feature of the song is so complex orchestration in support of the song as well as for the interludes.

We find second part of the song on YT.

1953

The last year of the 2nd Five-year period of Mohammad Rafi’s career is quite rich in terms of the ‘first film wherein Rafi had a solo song with the music director’ as well as the films with the music directors who seem to have started giving Mohammad Rafi as lead male playback singer. If we have to select one Mohammad Rafi song from this year that has stood up the tests of time that would easily be Madan Mohan’s composition – Ye Duniya Pagalo Ka Bazaar. For the purpose of records, we note that the year had 31 solos songs of Mohammad Rafi out of a total of 71 songs.

Asides:

This should go on records as the only year where Mohammad Rafi has played back in the films which had the three Kapoor brothers.

Ghata Mein Chup Kar..Jo Dil Ki Baat Hoti Hai – Baaz – O P Nayyar – Majrooh Sultanpuri

O P Nayyar gets to toe in the narrow space through this Guru Dutt film which went on create a crescendo in the years to come. Guru Dutt also comes up in this directorial venture for the first time as a n actor too. The present song is cast in quawalli style. Interestingly, OPN has chosen Talat Mahmood for Mujhe Dekho Hasrat Ki Tasveer Hun Main

Koi Ameer Hai Koi Gareeb Hai – Dana Pani – Madan Junior – Kaif Irfani

The film credit has Shashi Kapoor to as one of the actors, who would have been 14 then.

Ajab Tori Duniya Ho More Rama – Do Bigha Jameen – Salil Chowdhury – Shailendra

Here is the song that can be said to be one more defining step in Mohammad Rafi’s career.

Jal Jal Ke Shama Ki Tarah Fariyad – Fariyadi – Baldev Nath Baali –  Muzaffar Orakhzai

The song is cast in what we know as Mohammad Rafi’s signature style for the songs of sad mood.

Mohabbat Aur Wafa Ki….Chanda Ka Dil Toot Gaya Hai Roney Lage Hai Sitaare – Khoj – Nissar Bazmi – Raja Mahendi Ali Khan

The film has Shammi Kapoor in the lead role. It is said that Mohammad Rafi had charged only Rs. 1.00 to sing this Nissar Bazmi song.

Sulag Rahi Hein Husn Ki Sigdi Aaja Pakaye Prem Ki Khichadi – Madmast – V Balsara – Madhukar Rajasthani

Deft use of mandolin in the prelude and interlude has the distinct imprint of V Balsara. It seems Rafi was mandated to deliver this light-toned song with a dead-pan expression.

Chudiyan Lelo Gori, Pehan Le Chudi – Paapi – S Mohinder – Raja Mahendi Ali Khan

The record-worthy feature of the film is that this is the only film wherein Raj Kapoor was seen in a double role. And of course, we can count one more film where Rafi has playedback for Raj Kapoor.The film had another solo too – Tera Kaam Hai Jalna O Parawane – which had gained immense popularity.

Naram Naram Yeh Garam Garam  Yeh Chane Gagan Ke Tare – Rangeela – Jamal Sen – S H Bihari

We have picked up this song over two other solos – Nadaan Na Ban E Matwale..Kuchh Haath Nahin and Sun Sun Meri Kahani Mushkil Hai Jaan Bachani – because it is similar genre as that of the earlier song. That genre is small-tradespersons-selling-their-wares-by-singing-on-the-streets songs.

To conclude the statistics the music directors with whom Mohammad Rafi sang his first solo song for the 2nd Five-Year-period of Mohammad Rafi’s career, we have had 10 films in 1949,  5 each in 1950 and 1951, 2 in 1952 and 8 films in 1953.

At this stage, Rafi has had established fairly wide base of association with music directors – of the vintage as well as golden era. Also, now more and more of his songs with repeat-music directors are getting high popularity. That sets a very interesting tone for the next 5-Year period.