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Thursday, October 24, 2013
Legend of legends Manna Dey passed away.
On 24th October, 2013, legend of legends Manna Dey passed away. He was 94 years old. Manna Dey was a unique singer in bollywood history whose brilliant classical andaz commended respect from the giant composers of the golden age that Is 40s, 50s and 60s. Lifetime Achievement award, Padmabhushan are few feathers in his cap which show the esteem with which the country greets him.
He had very understanding with giant composers Shankar Jaikishan. Manna Dey rose to fame in 1955 with Raj Kapoor’s film Shree 420, where his songs “mur murkena dekh”, “pyar hua ikraar hua”, “dil ka haal sune dilwala” were all super hit. Shankar Jaikishan’s composition, Raj Kapoor’s lips and Manna Dey’s expression synchronized in the musical blockbuster.
In Basant Bahar, SJ gave classical tunes to Manna Dey. The song “sur na saje kya gayun mai” stands out. In Raj Kapoor’s Chori Chori, based on Hollywood film Roman Holiday, Manna Dey’s song “yeh raat bheegi bheegi”, “yeh to batayo kit um mere kaun ho”, “aaja sanam” mesmerized the audience. The SJ Manna Dey combination was at their best in those songs. Raj Kapoor and Nargis played the same role which Gregory Pegg and Audrey Hepburn played in Hollywood and Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen played in the Bengali film Chawa Pawa.
SJ’s tune “tu pyar ka saagar hai” sung by Manna Dey in Balraj Sahani’s film Seema was a masterpiece. The other landmark songs sung by Manna Dey composed by SJ included “cham cham bajere payelia”, also the song “mai tere pyar ka beemar hoon kya arz karoon” picturised on Mehmood in the film Love In Tokyo, “ai bhai zara dekhke chalo” picturised on Raj Kapoor in the film Mera Naam Joker, to name a few.
In Shammi Kapoor’s film Pagla Kahin Ka, Manna Dey’s song “meri bhais ko danda kyun mara” became big hit. Besides Manna Dey’s folk andaz in Raj Kapoor’s film Teesri Kasam in the song “chalet musafir moh liyo re” was well appreciated by the critics. Also Manna Dey’s song “suraj aa pass” and “muskura ladle muskura” became extremely popular in the early 60s.
It is not possible to highlight the magical combination of Shankar Jaikishan and Manna Dey in a small article. Shankar Jaikishan were probably the composers who used Manna Dey’s talent to the best possible level considering the effort of Roshanlal Nagrath, Madanmohan and others. The films and the songs of SJ and Manna Dey combination should be preserved and restored. Shankar Jaikishan exploited the brilliance of Manna Dey.
During 1950s and 1960s, Mohammad Rafi ruled bollywood music and used to be considered the uncrowned monarch of playback singing. Some of the most legendary songs of the decade were sung by Rafi including “man tarpat hari darshan” in film Baiju Bawra composed by Naushad Ali, “ajahu na aye balma sawan bita jay” in film Beti Bete composed by Shankar Jaikishan.
During that decade Manna Dey, the classical singer having huge range and brilliant control was used to sing difficult songs. Shankar Jaikishan exploited the excellent talent of Manna Dey in the best way. In Raj Kapoor’s film Shree 420, Manna Dey’s songs like “dil ka haal sune dilwala”, “pyar hua ikraar hua hai” and “mur mur ken a dekh” had romantic andaz. Same were the songs in Raj Kapoor’s Chori Chori where Manna Dey sang “yeh raat bhigi bhigi”, “jahan bhi jati hu”, “aaja sanam madhur chandni me ham”.
Manna Dey was famous for his classical andaz. Shankar Jaikishan used the talent in Bharat Bhushan’s film Basant Bahar in the songs “ketki” and “sur na saje kya gayun mai”. SJ and Manna Dey combination stormed bollywood in Balraj Sahani’s Seema with the song “tu pyar ka saagar hai”.
Manna Dey’s classical andaz was used in Shammi Kapoor’s Janwar in the song “ankho ankho se” and Raj Kumar’s film Mere Huzoor in the song “jhanak jhanak”. Manna Dey SJ created magic in Rajender Kumar’s film Zindagi titled “muskura ladle muskura”. His folk andaz was used by SJ in Raj Kapoor’s film Teesri Kasam in the song “chalet musafir”.
SJ and Manna Dey were sublime in Raj Kapoor’s Mera Naam Joker as well in the song “ai bhai zara dekhke chalo”. Shankar Jaikishan after giving due respect to Mohammad Rafi, Mukesh, Talat Mehmood and others did absolute justice to Manna Dey’s classical talent. It was sad that Jaikishan expired in 1971, otherwise the magic combination of SJ with Manna Dey would have continued. The songs and the films require publicity.