Hemant Kumar – the man with the golden voice.
Hemant Kumar was one of the notable personalities who made significant contribution in bollywood and tollywood music. He composed music for the films Nagin, in 1955, with Pradeep Kumar and Vaijayantimala and won the filmfare award for composing quality music. The other films where he composed music include Dilip Kumar’s Paigham, Biswajeet’s Do Dil, Bees Saal Baad, Guru Dutt’s Saheb Bibi aur Ghulam, Biswajeet’s Kohra, Rajesh Khanna’s Khamoshi, etc. His notable songs include “jane woh kaise log” for Guru Dutt, composed by SD Burman, “yeh raat yeh chaadni” for Dev Anand, composed by SD Burman, “yeh nayan dhali dhali” for Biswajeet, composed by himself etc.
The notable songs sung by other singers in his composition include “kahi deep jale” by Lata, from the film Bees Saal Baad, “tera husn rahe” by Rafi, from the film Do Dil, “woh shaam kuch ajeeb thi” by Kishore, from the film Khamoshi, etc. He had sung huge number of rabindra sangeet in Bengali including “tumi rabe nirabe”, “tomar holo shuru”, “purano shei diner katha”, “jokhon porbe na”, etc. He was a big asset for Bengali film industry with most of his compositions being devoted for Uttam Kumar, the greatest superstar of Bengali celluloid. He composed music for the notable films of Uttam Kumar including Shapmochon, Harano Shur, Shaptapadi, Dui Bhai, etc. Uttam Kumar’s voice matched with his voice and whenever he gave playback for Uttam Kumar people thought he was singing himself.
Hemant Kumar was also a member of the IPTA and was associated with Salil Chowdhury. He had sung some of the landmark songs of Salil Chowdhury including “palki chale”, “runner chuteche”, etc., which were classical poetry written by famous Bengali poetsa like Satyendra Nath Dutta, Sukanta Bhattacharya which were converted into songs by the legendary composer Salil Chowdhury. Hemant Kumar also composed music for the films of noted Bengali Director Tarun Majumder including Fuleshwari, Dadar Kirti, Gana Debata, etc.
It is difficult to highlight the songs and compositions of Hemant Kumar in a small article because he was involved with Bengali playback singing, bolllywood films, Bengali modern songs and rabindrasangeet. He was producer and director of some films, too. He was rightly called the man with the golden voice, because whenever his voice appeared before the audience they used to get spellbound. His creations should be preserved and restored.