Monday, June 11, 2018

In 20th Kolkata International Festival, Amitabh Bacchan, Shahrukh Khan gave great speeches.


Amitabh Bacchan, Shahrukh Khan gave fantastic speech in inauguration of 20th Kolkata International Film Festival. The 20th Kolkata International Film Festival 2014, started off with a brilliant inauguration in Netaji Indoor Stadium on 10th November, 2014. It was a brilliant occasion by every standard. Mamta Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal managed to invite the major dignitaries from different parts of the world and especially India. The 8 day film festival started with the inauguration on 10th November, 2014. The legends who graced the occasion included Amitabh Bacchan, Jaya Bacchan, Aishwarya Rai Bacchan, Abhishek Bacchan, Tanuja, Shahrukh Khan and many others. The August gathering also saw Bengali legends like Ranjit Mullick, Madhabi Mukherjee, Moushumi Chatterjee, Moonmoon Sen and others. Shahrukh Khan in his short speech made sure that he could say something in Bengali. This is the third time he had inaugurated a film festival and he said in his own words that honest creation is what the spectators expect from the creators. Amitabh Bacchan gave an extended speech. He did huge homework for that. He emphasized on women empowerment. He mentioned that both in Bengali films and hindi films, the directors and writers emphasized on women’s social standing. Sarat Chandra Chatterjee’s Parineeta, Biraj Bahu told the same. Tagore’s stories also reflected them. While directors like Bimal Roy with films like Bandini, Sujata, Mehboob Khan with films like Mother India showed women’s individuality in Indian society, renowned Bengali directors like Satyajit Ray in his films Charulata, Pather Panchali had showed the different facets of women characters and also it was shown in films of other giants like Tapan Sinha who showed it in films like Jotugriha. Amitabh Bacchan’s speech was par excellence. Australian Filmmaker Paul Cox gave a brilliant speech explaining the importance of film festivals which brings expression of different countries and connects the countries together. Amol Palekar, Irfan Khan, Tanuja, Jaya Bacchan all congratulated the Bengali audience and the love for films in Bengal. Mamta Banerjee invited everyone and talked about the film festival showing films of 60 countries in Kolkata for the next 8 days. She also said what Bengal thinks today India thinks tomorrow. So Bengali writers, filmmakers and actors had been inspirations for other directors, actors of other parts of the world. So she expected everyone to enjoy the festival for the next few days.

Shriman Satyawadi became hit due to sublime performances of Shakila , Raj Kapoor.


Raj Kapoor and Shakila were brilliant in Shriman Satyawadi. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, due to high box office of blockbusters, the hit films did not get that recognition. For example, in 1960, Raj Kapoor’s film Shriman Satywadi was released. Due to super hit box office report of Jis Desh Me Ganga Behti Hai and all time blockbuster Dilip Kumar’s Mugha-i- azam, Shriman Satyawadi got lost in the crowd of brilliant films. But the film was successful. SM Abbas directed the film. Mahipatray Shah produced the film. The music was composed by Dattaram. Raj Kapoor was shown as an honest man whose father was an honest medicine seller. His father was falsely implicated by Mehmood’s father Radhakrishan. He deliberately kept narcotic drugs in his shop so that police could arrest him. He got a heart attack and died. Raj Kapoor was brought up by his neighbor uncle who send him to industrialist Nazir Hussain for job in Mumbai. Nazir Hussain and his daughter Shakila allowed Raj Kapoor to work in their advertisement company. Mehmood joined the same company and created a cream and pharmaceutical products which adulterated content. Consumers got skin diseases and one person died. Raj Kapoor left the company and did other jobs and finally worked as journalist in the Newspaper company owned by Moni Chatterjee. In the last scene Raj Kapoor went with Moni Chatterjee in the house of Radhakrishan to tell the truth relating to adulterated products. His son Mehmood shot a bullet on Moni Chatterjee. In a tassle with Raj Kapoor, Mehmood fell in an acidic pool and died. The film proved that honesty was the right policy. The music of the film became super hit. Mukesh’s songs “haal-e-dil hamara”, “ai dil dekhe hai humne” became bumper hit. Rafi’s song “rang birangi botal ka kaisa hai jadoo” was as big hit as Suman Kalyanpur’s song “kyun ura jata hai anchal” and Manna Dey’s bheegi “hawaano me” as well as Mahendra Kumar’s song “ek baat kahoon vallah”. Dattaram’s music was as brilliant as lyrics of Hasrat Jaipuri. Mehmood in a comedy cum villainish role was impressive. Nazir Hussain and Radhakrishan played very impressive roles. Raj Kapoor probably acted only in one film opposite Shakila. Both the artists matched each other. They should have been cast in more roles. The film and the music require restoration.

1958 films are remembered for brilliance of Vaijayantimala, Dilip Kumar


1958 is remembered for brilliance of Dilip Kumar and Vaijayantimala.By 1958, the scenario of Indian films changed. From the dominance of few superstars like Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Ashok Kumar, the Bollywood industry also propagated sophisticated actors like Balraj Sahani, Bharat Bhushan, Pradip Kumar and others. Actresses like Vaijayantimala topped the list adding competition to Nargis, Madhubala, Meena Kumari and others. Directors like Bimal Roy, Ramesh Saigal, Satyen Bose did a great job. In respect of music in addition to Naushad Ali, Shankar Jaikishan, the other composers did magic including Dattaram, Salil Choudhury, SD Burman, OP Nayyar and others. Madhumati was the greatest blockbuster of 1958. It was produced and directed by Bimal Roy, and written by Ritwik Ghatak and Rajinder Singh Bedi. The music for the film was composed by Salil Choudhury with lyrics written by Shailendra. The film stars Dilip Kumar and Vyjayantimala acted the lead roles along with Pran and Johnny Walker. On a stormy night, Devendra (Dilip Kumar), an engineer, drives down a hill road with his friend to fetch his wife and child from the railway station. A landslide blocks their path and the friends take shelter in an old mansion off the road. Devendra finds the house uncannily familiar. In the large front room, he finds an old portrait which he recognizes. His friend and the old caretaker join him, and Devendra, amidst flashes of memory from another life, sits down to tell his story while the storm rages outside. In Madhumati Anand (Dilip Kumar) had come to Shyamnagar Timber Estate as its new manager. An artist in his spare time, he roamed the hills and fell in love with Madhumati (Vyjayantimala), a tribal girl whose songs have haunted him from a distance. Anand's employer, Ugra Narayan (Pran) was a ruthless and arrogant man and as Anand refused to bend down to him like others, he incurred his wrath. Anand also had enemies among his staff including Tiwari. Sent away on an errand, he returned to find that Madhumati had disappeared. He learned that Madhumati had been taken to Ugra Narayan, and confronted him but was beaten unconscious by Ugra Narayan's men. While Ugra Narayan's men were taking Anand's body out of the palace, his men met with Madhumati's dad (Jayant) who had to fight for her own daughter's death. He did it and won but died laying down in the road while Charandas (Johnny Walker) hided the body and took it to the hospital. It was a film relating to re-incarnations. All the songs in the film became bumper hits like Lata’s “aaja re pardesi”, “zulmi sang aankh lari”, Rafi’s “tute hue khwabone”, “jangal me mor naacha”, to mention a few. The entire team of Madhumati took away all the filmfare awards. Dilip Kumar was adjudged the best actor
, Johny Walker the best supporting actor, Salil Choudhury the best music director, Bimal Roy the best director. The film also received the national award for best film in 1958. Chalti Ka Naam Gaari was the second biggest hit of the year. Very significantly all the 3 brothers Ashok Kumar, Anup Kumar and Kishore Kumar acted in the film. It was directed by Satyen Bose. In the film the brothers owned a garage. Ashok Kumar fell in love with Veena, but could not marry her. From that time he hated women. His brother Kishore Kumar fell in love with Madhubala. KN Singh played the role of villain in the film. The music of SD Burman became super hit with songs like “haal kaisa hai janabka”, sung by Kishore Kumar and Madhubala. Yahudi was the third biggest hit film of 1958. Dilip Kumar played the character of a yahudi, or jew in the film. It was a love story made in the backdrop of Roman Empire. At the end of the film Dilip Kumar became blind. Sohrab Modi, Meena Kumari, Nigar Sultana and Dilip Kumar gave landmark performances. The music of Shankar Jaikishan was outstanding with Mukesh’s hit song “yeh mera diwanapan hai”. Phir Subah Hogi was the fourth biggest hit film of 1958. The film was produced and directed by Ramesh Saigal and starring Raj Kapoor and Mala Sinha in lead roles. The movie was an adaption of Fyodor Dostoevsky's immortal novel, Crime and Punishment. Ram (Raj Kapoor) is a poor law student who supports his education with money orders from his mother and things he pawns. While struggling with his poor finances, he save a boy from accident. Seeing the poor condition of the boy's family he gives all his savings for the boy's treatment. Ram keeps visiting the boy and falls in love with the boy's elder sister Sohni (Mala Sinha). Sohni's father Gopal is addicted to liquor which Harbanslal keeps providing him with. Harbanslal has a mean motive in doing so as he wants marry Sohni. To prevent Sohni's arranged marriage with Harbanslal, Ram decides to rob the pawn broker. But he is caught in the act, and he murders the pawn owner. Ram's conscience keeps telling him to admit his crime. But he never picks up the courage to do so. The police inspector on the case keeps suspecting Ram for the crime. With no proof he, too, is helpless. Ram learns that police have already arrested another thief and have charged him with this robbery and murder. On the last day when the court is to rule in the case, Raj makes up his mind and admits. He pleads saying how he was acting in self-defense against real villains of the society. The court sentences him for three years of imprisonment. Sohni promises that she will wait for his release and then marry him. Raj Kapoor, Rehman and Mala Sinha’s performances were outstanding. The music of Khayyam was very impressive with hit songs of Mukesh, “chin-o-arab hamara”, “wo subah kabhi to ayegi”, “phir na kije meri gustakh nigahon ka gila”, to name a few. Sadhna was the 5th biggest hit film of 1958 with Vaijayantimala and Sunil Dutt in the lead roles. It was produced and directed by BR Chopra. The music was composed by Dutta Naik. Lata’s song “aurat ne janam diya mardon ko”, became super hit. Vaijayantimala received the best actress award for playing a complex role of tawaif in the film. Phagun was the 6th biggest hit film of 1958 with Bharat Bhushan and Madhubala in the lead roles. The film was directed by Bibhuti Mitra. OP Nayyar’s music stormed Bollywood. Rafi’s song “mai soya ankhiyan miche” became super hit. Raj Kapoor’s Parvarish was the 7th biggest hit film of 1958. It was directed by S Banerjee. Dattaram composed the music of the film. Raj Kapoor and Mehmood were born together, but due to accident in the hospital, Nazir Hussain could not identify who was his real son. He was a Thakur. Mala Sinha’s father Harnam Singh gave word to him to marry his daughter with his actual son. Radhakrishan, the uncle trained Raj Kapoor and Mehmood. Raj Kapoor sacrificed his solvent family and deliberately consumed alcohol to show Mehmood was the actual son. At the end the reality was revealed. The music of Dattaram was impressive, with Mukesh’s song “aansoo bhari hai” and Manna Dey’s song “masti bhara yeh sama” became super hit. If the films of 1958 are summarized, it will be seen that while historical films, social films, all created impact on viewers mind. While directors like Bimal Roy, Satyen Bose and others made realistic films, the actors like Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Bharat Bhushan, made significant contribution. Actresses like Vaijayantimala, Madhubala, Mala Sinha, Meena Kumari created sensation. Music directors like Salil Choudhury, OP Nayyar, SD Burman, Khayyam made significant contribution. Singers like Rafi, Mukesh, Talat, Lata, Geeta Dutt and others were very prominent in the films. The films and the songs should be restored.

Guru Dutt, Rafisahab and music in his films.


Melody in Guru Dutts films and combination with Mohammad Rafi. Today, 9th July is the birthday of noted Director Guru Dutt. He was born in 1925 on this day. Rafi became a living legend in the mid-50s after dominating bollywood films over ten years and singing for nearly all the giant productions and leading actors of bollywood. He had very strong combination with thinking actor Guru Dutt. Guru Dutt had created his image in bollywood films in different categories being a thoughtful director and producer, dynamic actor, good choreographer. One of the numerous reasons for which his films became super hit in the 50s and 60s include the brilliant songs sung by Rafi during the golden age. Rafi’s songs in Guru Dutt’s Aar Paar, composed by OP Nayyar became super hit. It was followed by Mr and Mrs. 55 released in 1955. Songs picturized on both Guru Dutt and Johnny Walker had melody and sweetness. Rafi’s songs like “dil pe kiya aisa jaadu”, “muhobbat karlo aji karlo”, “sun sun sun sun zaalima”, composed by OP Nayyar, created landmark in the mid-50s and Rafi emerged as the greatest singer of bollywood films during that time. The same combination of Guru Dutt, OP Nayyar and Rafi gave everlasting hit in the film 12 O Clock with songs like “mai kho gaya”. When Guru Dutt used SD Burman for composing songs in the film Pyaasa and Kaagaz Ka Phool, Rafi was used brilliantly for the legendary music of those films. Both the films won national and international awards and remain a landmark in the field of story-telling. Rafi’s songs “sar jot era chakrae” picturised on Johnny Walker and “hum aapke aankho me” and “yeh mahalon yeh takhton yeh taajon ki duniya” picturised on Guru Dutt had emotions, passions, comedy, tragedy everything embedded in them. Rafi’s duet combination with Geeta Dutt was bolstered in the film. The lyrics were outstanding as well. The films marked the best music given by SD Burman in his entire lifetime. Guru Dutt can boast himself to have given lips in one of Rafi’s best ghazals sung in the history of bollywood films titled “chaudavi ka chaand”. Guru Dutt picturised the song sequence with colour, showing his passionate relationship with Wahida Rehman in the film Chaudavi Ka Chand. Ravi’s music in the film showed the pardanashin culture of muslims in India during the early 60s. Rafi also sang songs for Guru Dutt in the film Saanjh Aur Sawera, composed by Shankar Jaikishan. The title song “yehi hai who saanjh aur sawera” sung by Rafi became very popular. Meena Kumari balanced the powerful performance of Guru Dutt in the film. The other films where Rafi had contributed for Guru Dutt include Bharosa where Ravi composed melodious tunes including “yeh jhuki jhuki naina” picturised on Guru Dutt and Asha Parekh. Guru Dutt’s music in the film Baharen Phir Bhi Aayegi composed by OP Nayyar, created sensation in the mid -60s. It was a tragedy, that Guru Dutt died before the release of the film and could not see the success of the film. The songs sung by Rafi and picturised on Dharmender mesmerized the audience and still haunts people all over the world. One of those brilliant songs include “aap ki haseen rukh me aaj naya nur hai, mera dil machal gaya to mera kya kasoor hai”. The uniqueness of Guru Dutt’s relationship with Rafi lies in the fact that whether the composer was OP Nayyar or Shankar Jaikishan or SD Burman or Ravi, the music composed for whom had philosophical thoughts embedded in them and Rafi gave expression to the mesmerizing lyrics of evergreen tunes which had become immortal over a period of time. The films and the songs should be preserved and restored.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Mahanayak Uttam Kumar's death anniversary brings memories of the superstar.


Uttam Kumar’s death anniversary brings great memories of the superstar of Bengal. Again, 24th July, 2017 will bring memories of Mahanayak Uttam Kumar.In 2011, the walls of the Tollygunge Metro Station had been filled with the pictures of films of Uttam Kumar. In fact the people of Tollygunge cannot associate the place without the existence of Uttam Kumar whose works glorified the different studios which carried on the legacy of Bengali Film Industry. Mamta Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal had also provided support to revive the Uttam Mancha and take care of Shilpi Sangsad, an organization created by Mahanayak Uttam Kumar to help the needy actors, actresses, technicians, etc. Oscar winning director Satyajit Ray acknowledged the dynamic presence of the legendary superstar in Bengali films and made a film Nayak in 1966 based on the story of Uttam Kumar. His original name was Arun Kumar Chatterji, who was a clerk in Port Commission before joining Bengali films. When he joined films with Drishtidaan in 1948, he had to struggle to create his image as against he established heroes like Asit Boron, Bikash Roy and others. In 1952, his film Basu Paribar struck at the box-office and he overtook Bosonto Choudhury, Asit Boron and became the leading superstar of Bengali films. All the qualities of a romantic hero was possessed by him, including a standard height, good complexion, manly voice, romantic hairstyle and unique dialogue delivery. Any dress suited the legendary superstar including Punjabi, dhoti, coat, Bengali dresses, etc. He had acted in the films of all the legendary directors of the golden age including Satyajit Ray’s Nayak in 1966, Chiriakhana in 1967, Tapan Sinha’s Jhinder Bandi in 1961, Upahaar in 1955 and Jotugriha in 1964, Ajoy Kar’s Harano Sur in 1957, Saptapadi in 1961, Suno Bara Nari in 1960, Agradoot’s Bipasha in 1962, Surjo Toron in 1958, Agragami’s Sagarika in 1956, Shonkhobela in 1966, to name a few. Uttam Kumar acted opposite all the leading actresses of Bengali celluloid including Suchitra Sen, Arundhuti Debi, Manju Dey, Sabitri Chatterji, Supriya Choudhury, Mala Sinha, and others. His combination with Suchitra Sen had given everlasting classics and both of them still remains the most romantic pair in Indian silver screen. Uttam Kumar’s films were based on rich literature including Tagore’s Khokababur Protyaborton, Subodh Ghosh’s Suno Bara Nari, Samaresh Bose’s Kuhak, Sorodindu Bondhopadyay’s Chiriakhana, Shankar’s Chourangi. The films were related to different types of stories including comedy stories, tragic stories, soft romantic stories, etc. Uttam Kumar had acted in around 205 films (including bollywood films like Amanush, Anand Ashram, Choti Si Mulakat, Dooriyan, Kitaab etc., ) in a span of 35 years, and all his films had remained everlasting treasures. Out of his 205 films, around 37 of them ended up being blockbusters, around 50 were super hit films and around 50 were hit films. Actor Shatrughun Sinha in his interview before Bengali media had disclosed that when he was working in Pune Film and Television Institute, the graduates had unanimous view that Uttam Kumar, Raj Kapoor and Dilip Kumar were the greatest superstars of celluloid and had Uttam Kumar acted in more number of bollywood films, he would have remained as great a legend as Dilip Kumar or Raj Kapoor. Even the singers who had sung for him including Manna Dey, Shyamal Mitra, Hemanta Mukherjee, Manobendra Mukherjee, etc., agreed that they did not find any actor who was parallel to Uttam Kumar in giving lips in songs. He made the viewers feel that he only sang the songs. Actor Shatrughun Sinha in his interview had said that during his student life in Pune Film and Television Institute, the upcoming actors used to debate about the charishma of Uttam Kumar, Raj Kapoor and Dilip Kumar. Although there was no unanimity about the finest actor among them, there was consensus about one fact had Uttam Kumar established himself in bollywood films by acting in more number of films, he would have been equally an international figure like Raj Kapoor or Dilip Kumar. Articles after articles can be devoted to Uttam Kumar who was one –man –industry in Bengali films. His films should be revisited to create motivation for making better quality films in future.

Multitalented Kishore Kumar was remembered on birth anniversary.


Kishore Kumar had been remembered on his birth anniversary on 4th August, 2017. Kishore Kumar died on 13th October, 1987. Kishore Kumar, the master entertainer had been one of the most colourful personalities of bollywood who just became more and more and more popular over the years, now it is almost 26 years after his demise. In respect of his acting performances hardly any actor even dared to imitate him as his improvisations were spontaneous. The part that is followed by numerous singers all over the country is his singing style. When KK acted as hero in bollywood films he showed his acting capability even in playback singing like the song “c a t cat, cat mane billi” in the film Dilli Ka Thag. He brought out all the sounds of the animals that were named in the song. In the film Chalti Ka Naam Gari, in the song “paanch rupaiya bara ana” he imitated SD Burman and in every paragraph he had created a new style which justified the lyrics. In Half Ticket he showed the childishness in the song “chil chil chillake” composed by Salil Choudhury, which became very popular among children. He even sang the ladies version of the song “o sawariya” in the film Half Ticket, when he was teasing Pran during a song sequence. He had acted opposite many versatile actresses like Nutan in Dilli Ka Thug, Madhubala in Jhumru, Vaijayantimala in Aasha, to name a few. All his innovations created history when he concentrated in playback singing only in the 70s. He made the audience realize that he was singing for Dev Anand, or Rajesh Khanna or Big B, to name a few. His songs “gata rahe mera dil” from Guide, “roop tera mastana” from Aradhana, “kuch to log kahenge” from Amar Prem, “tere mere Milan ki” from Abhimaan have created history over the years. With Big B he had a tremendous combination and had sung in almost all the films of Big B till 1987, including Don, Shaan, Mr. Natwarlal, Do Aur Do Paanch, Amar Akbar Anthony, Muqaddar Ka Sikandar, Kaalia, Silsila, etc. The list can go on. In the 80s, it was KK all the way, when he had no competitors. All his songs in Big B’s film Namakhalal, Sharaabi, became record hits. Even in Rishi Kapoor’s Saagar, his song “saagar kinare” had romantic appeal. Composers like RD Burman, Bappi Lahiri, Rajesh Roshan could not think about any composition without KK. He provided playback for almost all the leading actors of bollywood in the 80s, namely Amitabh Bacchan, Rishi Kapoor, Vinod Khanna, Anil Kapoor, Mithun Chakravarty, Kamal Hassan, and others. He became the legend of legends and all the actors of the 70s and 80s are indebted for his colourful playback. After his death Kumar Shanu, Abhijeet, Vinod Rathod, Babul Supriyo and other singers had established themselves by following his style of singing. It has not happened with any other playback singer of bollywood. His styles were very entertaining, romantic and filmic. Articles after articles can be devoted to the master entertainer and it can be said that he had remained alive all over the years in his numerous films and thousands of songs. His films and songs should be preserved.

Happy birthday to Raakhee Gulzar.


Happy birthday to Rakhee. The viewers of bollywood films wish happy birthday to Rakhee on 15th August, 2018. She had contributed in bollywood films for more than 30 years. She had contributed both as a leading actress and also as a character actress. Rakhee came to limelight with her successful film Sharmilee opposite Shashi Kapoor in the early 70s. The songs of the film composed by SD Burman became very successful, including the songs “khilte hai dil yahan”, “megha chaye aadhi raat”, etc. Rakhee played a double role, one being calm and quite named Kanchan and the other who was outspoken named Kamini and created attention. In the mid-70s Rakhee acted in landmark roles including the one in the film Kabhi Kabhi opposite Big B and Shashi Kapoor. She loved a poet played by Big B, but had to marry Shashi Kapoor. The poetry of Big B created a great impact in the life of Rakhee. The songs of Mukesh and Lata composed by Khayyam in the film including “mai pal do pal ka shayar hoon” and “kabhi kabhi mere dil me” made the viewers spellbound. Rakhee acted in many landmark films opposite Big B including Shakti Shamanta’s Bengali film Anusandhan, hindi film Barsaat Ki Ek Raat, Kala Patthar, Kasme Wade, etc. In the early 80s Rakhee played the role of her lifetime opposite Dilip Kumar in the film Shakti. She played the role of the mother of Big B, who faced the hostility between Dilip Kumar and Big B, one being the protector of law, while the other being the lawbreaker. The scenes where she praised her law-abiding husband her performance had outcast Big B, and viewers said that Rakhee’s performance was as brilliant as Dilip Kumar in Shakti. The film became super hit. She was brilliant in the film Shaan. She played the role of the wife of Sunil Dutt. After the death Sunil Dutt, her small interaction with Shashi Kapoor and Amitabh Bacchan, who were the brothers of Sunil Dutt in the film, had shown the class of acting of Rakhee. Rakhee by that period of time created her own class in character roles. She was outstanding opposite Suresh Oberoi in the film Shraddhanjali. In the 90s, Rakhee played many character roles in films like Anil Kapoor’s Ram Lakhan, Shahrukh Khan and Salman Khan’s Karan Arjun, Bobby Deol’s Soldier, to name a few. She had acted in more than 100 films and continues to act in many contemporary films. Rakhee had also acted in many character roles and challenging roles. Her performance in Aparna Sen’s film Parama requires special mention. She had affair with a middle-aged neighbour. When the truth relating to her extra-marital affair was known to her husband, she lost her value in the family. She showed the helplessness in the respective story. She had performed in both commercial films and parallel cinema and in both forms of films she had kept a mark. She was sublime in the other Bengali film Shubha Maharat. The viewers expect her to continue the good work in the years to come.

Great Rafisahab was remembered on death anniversary.


Mohammad Rafi had remained one of the greatest singers of all times.
On his death anniversary on 31st July, 2017, great Rafisahab is remembered all across the world. He is considered one of the greatest singers of all times. Rafisahab remained an eternal singer. Even after more than 36 years of death, his songs had remained immortal and relevant even today. Relationship with Shankar Jaikishan. Shankar Jaikishan composed music in almost 195 films in that golden age. One of the great reasons of Shankar Jaikishan’s huge success was due to the great combination with immortal singer Mohammad Rafi Sahab. If Rafi’s stylish andaz relating to westernized compositions are adequately it is Shankar Jaikishan who had used it to perfection. They had used Rafi for singing romantic songs with Japanese orchestration in Love in Tokyo, released in 1966 including songs like “aja re aa zara aa”, “Japan, Love in Tokyo”, “ o mere shahekhuba”, etc. In Biswajeet’s April Fool, released in 1964 SJ’s composition for Rafi including “aa gale lag ja” had westernized background. At the same time Rafi’s song “tumhe chaha” with Suman Kalyanpur was a great rendition in pensive mood. SJ’s composition for Rafi in Shammi Kapoor’s An Evening in Paris, in 1967, like “akele akele kahan ja rahe ho”, “raat ke humsafar”, had loud French music with echo effect and Rafi’s intonation was also westernized. Shankar Jaikishan gave a completely different style of music to Rafi in Rajender Kumar’s Aarzoo, released in 1965 with songs like “aji ruth kar ab”, “chalke teri aankho se”, “ai nargisi mastana”, etc. SJ had given songs addressing children to Rafi including “nanne munne bache teri mutthi me kya hai” in Boot Polish which was produced by Raj Kapoor and released in 1954, “hai na bolo bolo”, “re mamma re mamma re” in Shammi Kapoor’s Andaz, released in 1971 and “chakke p chakka” in Brahmchari, in 1969. Rafi pronounced the words with childish accent and SJ used the orchestration to attract children. There were ghazals also given by SJ for Rafi including “rukh se zara nakab”, “kya kya na kahe” in Jeetender’s Mere Huzoor, “unke khayal aye to” in Raj Kumar’s Lal Patthar, “saaze dil ched de” in Pradeep Kumar’s Rajhaath, etc. Besides SJ’s creation involving Rafi in somber mood had created great impact including songs like “teri zulfon ki judai to nahi maangi thi” in Dev Anand’s Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, “ehsaan tera hoga mujhpar” in Shammi Kapoor’s Junglee, “yaad na aye” in Rajender Kumar’s Dil Ek Mandir. Shankar Jaikishan had used Rafi’s classical andaz in the songs “radheke tune bansoori churai”, “ajahu na aye”, etc., and combined the ragas with devotional andaz. SJ has given music in almost 200 films within the span from 1949 to 1971, and at least each year they composed music for approximately 10 films. As Rafi was given predominance over other male singers SJ had use him in regular intervals even without doing injustice to Mukesh, Manna Dey, Kishore Kumar, Talat Mehmood and others. Songs like “kaun hai jo sapno me aya” from Jhuk Gaya Aasman, “to bura maan gaye” from Ayee Milan Ki Bela, “yeh ankhen” from Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, “tujhe jeevan ki dor se” from Aasli Nakli, “dheere dheere chal” from Love Marriage, “badan pe sitaren lapete hue” from Prince, “mai kahin kavi na banjayun” from Pyar Hi Pyar, “mai gayun tum so jao” from Brahmchari, had not lost their flavour even 40 years after their creation due to sheer brilliance of Shankar Jaikishan. It is really tragic neither Shankar Jaikishan had received the accolades that they deserved nor Rafi’s association with them had been glorified but history says that the combination of Rafi with Shankar Jaikishan had produced invaluable creations which had become immortal over the period of time. Relationship with OP Nayyar. Whenever the name of OP Nayyar appeared in the minds of the audience, the name of immortal singer Mohammad Rafi had come together, without whom OP Nayyar was incomplete. The relationship between the two greats can be compared as tea and milk. OP Nayyar started his career with the film Kaneej in 1949. Guru Dutt had created his image in bollywood films in different categories being a thoughtful director and producer, dynamic actor, good choreographer. One of the numerous reasons for which his films became super hit in the 50s and 60s included the brilliant songs sung by Rafi during the golden age. Rafi’s songs in Guru Dutt’s Aar Paar, released in 1954 and composed by OP Nayyar became super hit. It was followed by Mr and Mrs. 55 released in 1955. Songs picturized on both Guru Dutt and Johnny Walker had melody and sweetness. Rafi’s songs like “dil pe kiya aisa jaadu”, “muhobbat karlo aji karlo”, “sun sun sun sun zaalima”, composed by OP Nayyar, created landmark in the mid-50s and Rafi emerged as the greatest singer of bollywood films during that time. In many of the songs Geeta Dutt did a great job in duets sung along with Mohammad Rafi. The same combination of Guru Dutt, OP Nayyar and Rafi gave everlasting hit in the film 12 O Clock with songs like “mai kho gaya”. Also in CID, OP Nayyar and Rafi combination created gold with songs like “aye dil mushkil jeena yahan”, “leke pehla pehla pyar”, “ankhon hi ankhon me”, etc. The magic combination of Rafi and OP Nayyar mesmerized the audience in Dilip Kumar’s Naya Daur. The super hit songs “saathi hath barana”, “mangke saath tumhara”, “mai bombai ka babu”, contributed a lot in the absolute success of the film. OP Nayyar received the filmfare award for the best music director only once in his career. Credit goes to Rafisahab for the great rendition of each songs of Naya Daur. The brilliant combination of OP Nayyar and Rafi continued in Raj Kapoor’s film Do Ustad. All the songs in the film became extremely popular including “tu ladki mai ladka”, “ruk ruk ruk, chor na de diwane”, “nazron ke teer mare kas kas kas”, etc. Rafisahab was the first choice of OP Nayyar, and inspite of Raj Kapoor’s voice having closeness with Mukesh and Manna Dey. OP Nayyar gave all the songs of Do Ustad released in 1959 to Mohammad Rafi Sahab. Even in Bharat Bhushan’s Phagun, OP Nayyar composed all the songs for great Rafi Sahab. So of the most super hit songs included “kaun se pardesi mera dil le gaya”, “tum rooth ke mat jana”, “mai soya ankhiya miche”. Qamar Jalalabadi’s words were as brilliant as Rafisahab’s velvety voice. Joy Mukherjee’s film Ek Musafir Ek Hasina did brilliant business in the early 60s. Raj Khosla’s musical thriller released in 1962 addressed every section of the society with romantic performance of Joy Mukherjee and Sadhna. All the songs of Rafi and Asha picturized on Joy Mukherjee and Sadhna became super hit. It includes songs like “aap yuhin agar humse milte rahe”, “mujhe dekhkar aapka muskurana”, “phir tere shahar me”, “mai pyar ka rahi hoon”, “bahut shukhriya, bari meherbani”, “humko tumhari isqh ne”, to name a few. Rafi was elegant as ever in the songs “phir tere shahar me” and “humko tumhare ishq ne”. OP Nayyar was probably at his best in the film and his blend of eastern and western music created the romantic mood for the film. Joy Mukherjee, Rafi and OP Nayyar’s magical combination continued in the film Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon. Most part of the film released in 1963 was shot at picturesque locations of Jammu & Kashmir and the landscape was as romantic as the songs sung by Rafi and Asha in the film. The prominent songs included “banda parwar, thamlo jigar”, “lakho hai nigahon me”, “nazneen bara rangeen hai wada tera”, “aanchal me sajalena kaliyan”, “zulf ke chayon me chehere ka ujala lekar”, to name a few. Rafi had shown his excellent classical skills in the songs “zulf ke chayon me”, and “aancal me sajalena kaliyan”. Asha Parekh showed her dancing skills to perfection in the film. Rajender Nath played the role of the relief character in the film. In fact OP Nayyar maintained the same standard of music in Shammi Kapoor’s film Kashmir Ki Kali and Biswajeet’s film Mere Sanam which were made after Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon. Joy Mukherjee’s combination with OP Nayyar continued in the film Humsaya. In that film Sharmila Tagore got the lead role opposite Joy Mukherjee. By that time due to emergence on new actors and actresses in bollywood films, Joy Mukherjee’s popularity declined and the film also did moderate business. In respect of the songs, Rafi’s song “dil ki awaaz bhi sun” became hit. But OP Nayyar gave a number of songs to Mahendra Kapoor was well which did not strike gold in the box –office. Besides Rafi’s western romantic mood is utilized by OP Nayyar in a very stylish way in the songs “Diwana hua badal, sawan ki ghata chayi” and “Yeh Chand Sa Roshan Chehera” in the film Kashmir Ki Kali, 1964 picturised on Shammi Kapoor and “Humne to dilko aap ke kadmome rakh diya, is dil ka kya karenge yeh ab aap sochiye” in the film Mere Sanam, 1965 and “Phir Miloge Kabhi is baat ka wada karlo, humse ek aur mulakat ka wada karlo” in the film Yeh Raat Phir Na Ayegi, picturised on Biswajeet. In all these songs the sarengi and santoor had played a very pivotal role accompanied by the intoxicating appeal of Rafi’s voice. In the film Baharen Phir Bhi Aayegi, Rafi’s ghazal “aap ki haseen rukh” composed by OP Nayyar and picturised on Dharmender was extremely romantic and made the audience spellbound in the early 60s. OP Nayyar composed peppy numbers for Rafi Sahab in Dharmender’s film Muhobbat Zindagi Hai in 1966. Rafisahab’s song “na jaane kyun” was as brilliant as “tumhari mulakat se” and “yeh purnur chehra yeh dilkash ada”. The list of films where OP Nayyar and Rafi’s magic flabbergasted the listeners just goes on including films like Tumsa Nahi Dekha, Basant, Phagun, Kismat, etc. One article is too small to explain the domination of OP Nayyar and Mohammad Rafi in bollywood films of the 50s and 60s. But the songs and the films had not become obsolete and listeners can listen to them again and again. The songs and the films should be restored. Relationship with Naushad Ali. Naushad Ali is remembered for his brilliant tunes over a period of 50 years down the memory lane. In the 40s, he composed music in many films including Anmol Ghari, but he stormed bollywood with romantic songs in Dulari, including “suhani raat dhal chuki” sung by Rafi, all the songs of Andaz, where he composed Rafi’s songs for Raj Kapoor and Mukesh’s songs for Dilip Kumar. In the 50s, Naushad’s composition in Baiju Bawra made the listeners speechless. He won filmfare award for the best composer for his brilliant classical presentation in songs like “o duniya ke rakhwale”, “man tarapata”, “tu gangi ki mauj”, etc., sung by Rafi and Lata. Rafi’s range was used to perfection and from that time the Rafi Naushad combination provided gems after gems. The different ragas and their timings were explained by Naushad in the film. Bharat Bhushan and Meena Kumari gave able lips in the songs composed by Naushad. Songs of Uran Khatula, like “wo dur ke musafir” sung by Rafi for Dilip Kumar also shook bollywood in the mid-50s. In the 60s Naushad was unstoppable. His composition in Kohinoor for Rafi titled “madhuban me radhika nachere” and “do sitaron ka zameen” picturised on Dilip Kumar displayed the brilliance of Hindustani ragas. Naushad’s composition in Rajender Kumar’s Mere Mehboob, Naushad displayed the ghazal culture of Lucknow and Aligarh. The songs “mere mehboob tujhe meri muhobbat ki kasam”, “ai husn zara jag”, etc. sung by Rafi and picturised on Rajender Kumar was per se excellent. Naushad composed light songs in Mughal-i-azam for Lata including “pyar kiya to darna kya”, “mohe panghat ke nandlal”, and again composed thumri sung by Bare Ghulam Ali Khan in the same film. Naushad also composed Bhojpuri music for Dilip Kumar in the film Ganga Jumna. The songs “nain lar jaihe” sung by Rafi was one of the examples of Naushad’s control of Bihari folk tune. Naushad was at his best in Dilip Kumar’s Leader. All the songs in the film sung by Rafi and Lata flabbergasted the listeners, including “ek shahenshah ne banwake haseen tajmahal”, “teri husn ki kya tareef karun”, “mujhe duniya walon”, etc. Naushad was excellent in Dilip Kumar’s Ram Aur Shyam. All the songs sung by Rafi and Lata in the film including “aye hai baharen dekho”, “yeh raat dulhan bangayi”, “mai hoon saki”, etc. Critics consider Dil Diya Dard Liya as one of the best creations of Naushad. All the songs in the film became superhit including Rafi’s “dilruba maine tere”, “koi sagar dil ko behlata nahi”. Naushad Rafi and Dilip Kumar continued with their level of excellence in the film Aadmi, with Rafi’s songs like “na aadmi ka koi bharosa”, “aaj purani rahon se”, etc. Besides, Naushad composed excellent music in Rajender Kumar’s Palki, Saathi, Ganwar, etc. Rafi’s hit songs in those films included “dil-e-betaab ko seene se lagana hoga” sung with Suman Kalyanpur. Naushad faded away from film music in the 70s, causing huge loss to the film industry. The classical gharana related to thumris, kajris, ghazals, etc., faded away with Naushad. Music became popular, but lost its class. Naushad received Dadasahab Phalke for his excellent contribution to bollywood music. His songs and the films should be preserved and restored. Relationship with Roshanlal Nagrath. Whenever any reference relating to everlasting singer Mohammad Rafi comes, the attention goes to the big budget films and songs for big banners. Rafi is known the most for singing catchy numbers for Shammi Kapoor under the composition of Shankar Jaikishan and classical songs for Dilip Kumar under the composition of Naushad Ali. Although Rafi had sung brilliant songs for all the leading actors of 40s, 50, and 60s, much had been written about the successful films where both the songs and the films did excellent business. But Rafi had sung excellent songs for Pradeep Kumar under the composition of Roshanlal Nagrath, where even if the mass was not touched, the class was addressed and the royal andaz of singing showed the range of Rafi to suit his voice for any form of playback singing. The magic of Roshanlal Nagrath, Pradeep Kumar and Mohammad Rafi started in Aarti released in 1962. Phani Majumdar directed the film. Four of the songs of Rafi stand out, “aapne yaad dilaya”, “ab kya misaal doon”, “baar baar tohe kya” and “tere bin lage na jiya”. Some of them were solo songs, while others were duet songs sung with Lata Mangeshkar. There were other duet songs of Rafi with Asha Bhosle, but the ones in pathos andaz like “aapne yaad dilaya” mesmerized the audience. The lyrics of Majrooh Sultanpuri, the composition of Roshanlal Nagrath, the voice of Mohammad Rafi and lips of Pradeep Kumar made the viewers spellbound. None of the songs had lost their charm even today. The magic continued in the film Tajmahal in 1963. M. Sadiq directed the film. Pradeep Kumar played the role of Shahjahan while Beena Roy played the role of Mumtaz Mahal. Here the combination was different with Sahir Ludhiyanvi writing the songs for Roshan which were sung by Mohammad Rafi. Four of Rafi’s songs were masterpieces including “jo wada kiya wo nibhana parega”, “paon chulene do phulonko inayat hogi”, “chandi ka badan”, and “jo baat tujhme hai”. Roshanlal Nagrath won the filmfare award for the best composer only once in his life, that was for the composition of the music of the film Tajmahal. He deserved it many more number of times. Sahir Ludhiyanvi won the best lyricist award for the lyrics of the film. Rafi was as outstanding as Pradeep Kumar in the role of Shahjahan. The magic continued in the film Chitralekha in 1964. Kidar Sharma directed the film. Pradeep Kumar, Meena Kumari and Ashok kumar played the main roles. Rafi’s song “man re tu kahe na dheer dhare” is still considered one of the 10 best bhajans Rafi had sung. Sahir Ludhiyanvi wrote the songs of the film. Rafi’s other song “cha gaye badal” was equally impressive. The Roshan, Rafi, Pradeep Kumar combination continued in the film Bheegi Raat in 1965. It was directed by Kalidas. Rafi’s songs in the film “dil jo na keh saka”, “aise to na dekho”, “jane wo kaun hai kya naam hai”, “mohabbat se dekha” all were masterpieces. Some were duets with Suman Kalyanpur, while the others were solo songs sung by Mohammad Rafi. Lyrics were written by Majrooh Sultanpuri. The words were excellent. Rafi was unparallel in all the songs. The combination continued in the film Bahu Begum in 1967. It was directed by M. Sadiq. Rafi’s songs “hum intezar karenge tera qawamat tak”, “dhoond ke layun kahan se”, “vakiv hoon ishqgade” were all masterpieces. While some had ghazal andaz, the others were stand out qawallies with Manna Dey. Roshan was as brilliant as Mohammad Rafi as Sahir Ludhyianvi. In the same year, the combination was sublime in the film Noorjahan. Rafi sang the songs “aap jab se kareeb aye hain” and “wo mohabbat wo wafayen” in style. For a change the lyrics were written by Shakeel Badayani. The unfortunate death of Roshanlal Nagrath in 1967, ended the journey of Rafi with Roshan and Pradeep Kumar. Otherwise masterpieces after masterpieces could be created. Rafi’s archive should preserve the songs of Pradeep Kumar and Roshan, which showed the royal andaz of music existing in the courts of Mughals, Pathans and Sultans in India. Relationship with Madanmohan Kohli. If any composer had utilised the ghazal andaz of Mohammad Rafi to the best of his potentiality it is Madanmohan whose name appears in the minds of the lovers of music across the nation. Madanmohan’s father Rai Bahadur chunnilal send his son to Dehradun to join the army. Instead he left the army and joined All India Radio in Lucknow. He came in contact with Ustad Faizz Khan, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan and carried on their legacy in the compositions he made for 30 years which can be classified as masterpieces. As Madanmohan was not associated with the Big Banners like RK or Navketan, he was not categorised with any star of bollywood during 50s, 60s, 70s. Further he never wanted to balance the popular test of music and excellent class of classical compositions he created. But the compositions were so rich in lyrics and tunes that the musical pandits had no way but to admire them. The golden age of bollywood music was categorised with the excellence of Mohammad Rafi and as such if any composer neglected Rafi and tried to reach the summit of popularity they have invited their own downfall. Madanmohan did not make such a mistake. He started his career with the film Ankhen in 1950. He also composed music for Raj Kapoor’s film Ashiana in 1952. His notable songs for Rafi in the film Railway Platform, 1956, include “basti basti parbat parbat”. In Gateway of India, 1957, Madanmohan used Mohammad Rafi for the song “do ghari woh jo pass aa baithe” picturised on Bharatbhushan. It was very successful and strengthened the everlasting bond of Rafi with Madanmohan. Rafi’s intoxicating appeal in the song “kabhi na khabhi kahin na kahin koi na koi toi ayega” in the film Sharabi, 1964, composed by Madanmohan can be classified one of the best songs in sombre mood. The most majestic ghazals of Rafi composed by Madanmohan include “kisiki yaad me apnako hai bhulaye huye” and “baad muddat ke yeh ghari ayi” from the film Jahan ara, 1964, picturised on Bharat Bhushan. Talat Mehmood’s song in the same film “phir wohi sham wohi gham wohi tanhai hai” was also based on ghazal andaz. The classic lyrics were written by Rajinder Kishan. The film titled Ghazal, in 1964, was based on ghazals and Rafi was outstanding by every standard in the song “rang aur noor ki baraat kise pesh karun.” In the same year Rafi’s patriotic flavour was bolstered in the song “kar chale hum fida jan-o-tan sathiyon” in the film Haqeeqat, where Rafi’s ghazal titled “hoke majboor usne bulaya hoga” shared with Bhupinder Singh, Manna Dey and Talat Mehmood was sensational. The majestic lyrics were written by Kaifi Azmi. In the film Neela Akash, 1965, picturised on Dharmender, Rafi’s song “akhri geet muhobbat ka sunayun to chalun” showed the tragic note of Madanmohan. In the film Need Hamari Khwab Tumkhari, all the songs were sung by Rafi including “husn ne jab isq se takraya tha”. Returning back to ghazals, Rafi’s song “aap ke pehlu me akar” in the film Mera Saya, 1966, was as outstanding as Lata’s title song “tu jahan jahan chalega mera saya saath hoga”. The lyrics were written by Raja Mehendi Ali Kahan. Raj Khosla’s crime thriller ended up becoming a musical blockbuster just like Woh Kaun Thi, in 1964, where Madanmohan’s composition “naina barse,” “lagja gale”, etc. for Lata Mangeshkar was probably the most immortal creation in the history of film music, with Sadhna giving life time performances in ghostly characters in both these films. The landmark ghazal “tumhari zulf ke saye me sham karlunga” in the film Naunihal, in 1967, is probably one of the five best ghazals Rafi did sing in his life. Experts in music realise that ages will pass, but no second singer can provide blood and flesh in the superlative ghazal of Madanmohan the way Rafi had done in this song. Kaifi Azmi has written sensational lyrics for the abovementioned song. People started thinking that Rafi and Madanmohan were made for each other. The belief was put to action in the next film Dulhan Ek raat ki, in 1967, picturised on Dharmender in the song “ek haseen sham ko dil mera kho gaya. In the film Chirag, 1969, “teri aakhon ke siwa duniya me rakkha kya hai” Madanmohan combined ghazal with light orchestration to try to inspire the common listeners in understanding these type of songs. In the film Heer Ranjha, 1971, picturised on Rajkumar, Rafi’s song “yeh duniya yeh mehfil” was well acclaimed by music lovers. Rafi was outstanding by every standard in the song “tum jo mil gaye ho” in the film Hanste Zakhm, 1973, where Madanmohan synchronised lightning with his own orchestration. Madanmohan also gave a tremendous break to Bhupinder Singh in the song “dil dhoonta hai, phir wohi, fursat ke raat din” written by Gulzar in Sanjeev Kumar’s Mausam in 1975. Rafi had the song “chari re chari kaise gale me pari.” Madanmohan’s last performance with Jaidev brought out Rafi’s Himalayan range in the film Laila Majnu in 1977. Rafi’s songs “tere dar pe aya hoon,” “barbad muhobat ka duya saath liye ja”, picturised on Rishi Kapoor showed his master spirit of adapting to tunes of middle east which was the geographical location where the story was based. Madanmohan died in 1975, without even seeing the success of Laila Majnu, it appeared like out of seven sur in every octave one sur had gone, because, the majestic combination of Madanmohan with Rafi cannot be forgotten through ages. Rafi’s archive should restore Madanmohan’s combination to let the next generation know about the high esteem with which Madanmohan addressed Mohammad Rafi during the golden age of film music. Articles after articles can be written to show the indispensability of Rafisahab during the golden age. For listeners the intoxication still continues. Rafisahab’s voice sunke lagta hai sunte jay bas suntey hi jay. His admirers pay their respect and homage to the noble soul.

Greatest actor of all times Chabi Biswas was remembered on his birth anniversary.


Remembering legendary actor Chabi Biswas on his birth anniversary. The nation remembers legendary actor Chabi Biswas on his birth anniversary
on 12th July, 2017. His superlative class of performance had been acknowledged by brilliant directors like Satyajit Ray, Hrithik Ghatak, Raj Kapoor, Tapan Sinha, but he had remained unsung, unhonoured, unlamented. Ray had a very serious personality and hardly required any improvisation as his innovative scripts had almost everything embedded in them. But Chabi Biswas brought out his own dimensions in the role of Feudal Lord in the film Jalsaghar released in 1958. He combined the aristocracy and the dignity of the feudal lord in the colonial period and at times astonished Ray himself with his dynamic performances. He even sold his wife’s ornaments to organize a musical program in his banquet room to maintain his dominance as a feudal lord. Singers from renowned classical gharana came and performed in the show and the entire village was invited to witness it. With the loss in revenue and poverty during British regime, he committed suicide by dying on horseback. He was sublime in the film Debi released in 1960, where he visualized Goddess Kali in the human form in Sharmila Tagore, his daughter –in –law. The entire concept was related to his belief and his son Soumitra took exception about the thing but was helpless. Sharmila Tagore became sick as it was awkward on her part to see his father-in-law touching her feet as she was believed to be Debi, the human form of Goddess. Chabi Biswas was majestic in his classic role in the film Kanchenjungha released in 1962. Ray experimented with a remote subject where the greatness of the Himalayas freed the mental blockade of middle-class bengalies. Arun Mukherjee, one of the unemployed youth even did not accept the job offered by big industrialist played by Chabi Biswas. At the end of the film Chabi Biswas realized the greatness of the great mountain range and surrendered before it. The film could not be understood by mass audience as it dealt with the concept of realization although the colourful photography of Ray in Darjeeling was well appreciated. But critics had acclaimed Chabi Biswas and said that he was the last name for the depiction of aristocracy in any form. His dignified performance in the films of legendary directors like Ajoy Kar, Tapan Sinha, Prabhat Mukherjee, Agragami, Agradoot had not been forgotten by the mass. He had remained sublime in Prabhat Mukherjee’s Bicharak (1958) in the role of a charishmatic advocate, Tapan Sinha’s Kabuliwala (1957) in the role of an Afghan father, Ajoy Kar’s Suno Baranari (1960) in the role of a wealthy Barrister, Agragami’s Headmaster (1959) in the role of an old headmaster, Bijoli Baran Sen’s film Manik, where he played the role of a handicapped grandfather, Sudhir Mukherjee’s Dadathakur (1962) where he played the role of Sharat Pandit, Premendro Mitra’s film Chupi Chupi Ase (1960) where he played the role of a detective in a crime thriller film, to name a few. He died in a tragic accident in 1962 and Indian celluloid lost one of its greatest actors ever. His films should be preserved for projection of dynamism, class, dignity, aristocracy and majestic demeanour.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Happy birthday to Neha Dhupia


Happy birthday to Neha Dhupia. The viewers of bollywood films wish happy birthday to Neha Dhupia on 27th August, 2018. Neha Dhupia, the daughter of Commander Pradip Dhupia of Indian Navy, had attracted public attention after winning the Miss India Universe 2002 crown in that year. After beginning her career in the film Qayamat: City Under Threat, she impressed the viewers with challenging role in the film Julie where her glamour was used to perfection. But she got a notable role in the film Kya Cool Hai Hum in 2005. She acted opposite Ritesh Deshmukh where Tusshar Kapoor and Isha Koppikar were the other pair. Isha Koppikar, the police officer in the film was sent by Anupam Kher to investigate a case relating to a habitual offender. Tusshar Kapoor was suspected to be a murderer and Isha Koppikar was sent to his house to monitor his activities. Ritesh Deshmukh had an affair with Neha Dhupia and married her at the end of the film. The film was serio-comic in nature and Neha Dhupia performed very well in her respective role. She also got a purposeful role in the film Shootout At Lokhandwala. The film was related to a real-life story where the Bombay police had trapped the underworld group in a house in Bombay and fired at them. Sanjay Dutt gave a memorable performance in the role of Encounter specialist in the film opposite Vivek Oberoi who played the role of a mafia don. Neha Dhupia did her part very well. She did even better in the film Chup Chup Ke, in the role of the sister of Kareena Kapoor. Shahid Kapoor pretended to be dumb in the film and stayed in their house. Neha Dhupia acted as a mediator between Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor and helped in the marriage between the two. Neha Dhupia knew that Shahid Kapoor could speak but never informed Sunil Shetty or Om Puri or any other member of the house about it. Although the film was related to the serio-comic relationship between Om Puri, Paresh Rawal and Rajpal Yadav, Neha Dhupia kept her mark in a reserve role and in some of the sequences even acted better than Kareena Kapoor. She was even impressive in her supporting role in the film Singh is Kinng, where Katrina Kaif and Akshay Kumar had the lead roles. Singh is Kinng also did good business in India and abroad. But if her performance in the earlier films like Sheesha and new films like Mithya are compared it will be found that initially the stylish screen presence and bold performance of Neha Dhupia was publicized by the producers. These days the acting skills of Neha Dhupia are used. She had been bold enough to act in the role of a prostitude in the film De Dana Dan in 2008. The role required comedy timing and she did extremely well. In 2009, her performance in the film Raat Gayi Baat Gayi bagged her the nomination for Star Screen Award for the best actress in a supporting role. She had two releases in 2010 where her two films, Action Replay and With Love to Obama had different roles. Although her performances in the films were appreciated the films did not do good business. In 2012 she had acted in the film Rush where Imraan Hashmi, Sagarika Ghadke and Aditya Pancholi had played important characters. In 2013, she acted in the film Ungly with Sanjay Dutt, Imran Hashmi and others. Unless she grabs any glamourous role in near future she will not remain in the rat race where the competition between Priyanka Chopra, Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor, Sonakshi Sinha is very keen.

Ashok Kumar, Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor dominated bollywood films of 1950.


The biggest Bollywood hit films of 1950. The 1950s began with new types of films in Bollywood. While stars like Ashok Kumar already himself in Bollywood arena, new stars like Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor rose to stardom. Actresses like Nargis, Madhubala, Geetawali, Nalini Jayant, Suraiya dominated Bollywood films. In the previous decade in the 1940s, Dilip Kumar’s Andaz and Raj Kapoor’s Barsaat were the biggest blockbusters. Samadhi was the years’s biggest blockbuster of 1950. It was directed by Ramesh Saigal, who was one of the top directors of Filmistan with films like Shaheed (1948), Samadhi (1950) and Shikast (1953). The music was composed by C. Ramchandran, with "Gore Gore Banke Chhore" (Oh Fair Lad) sung by Lata Mangeshkar and Amirbai Karnataki, and picturised on Kuldip Kaur and Nalini Jaywant, becoming a popular song. Ashok Kumar played the lead role in the "patriotic spy-thriller", "the film turned out to be the year's biggest hit with a gross profit of ₹ 75 lakhs". The 2nd super hit film was Babul. By 1940s Dilip Kumar already established himself as tragedy king with the success of the film Andaz. Babul had Dilip Kumar in another tragic role, where he was teamed with Nargis and Munawwar Sultana. It was directed by S. U. Sunny. The music composer was Naushad Ali, and he had Shamshad Begum give playback for seven out of the twelve songs in the film. A famous song by Talat Mehmood and Shamshad was "Milte Hi Anken Dil Hua Diwana Kisika". Shamshad Begum along with Suraiya, Lata and Geeta Dutt were dominating Bollywood music at that time. Naushad Ali had Talat Mehmood singing for the first and last time under his baton. The famous Talat solo was "Husnwalon Ko Na Dil Do Yeh Mita Dete Hain" (Don't Give Your Heart To The Pretty Ones, They Destroy It). The songs of this film made Talat the "most sought-after ghazal singer". Over a period of time Mohammad Rafi started singing almost all the songs for Dilip Kumar. The film was a big success and grossed an estimated ₹ 70 lakhs. The third biggest hit film was Dastan. Dastan was directed by A. R. Kardar, with Raj Kapoor, Suraiya, and Veena in the main roles. The film was a tragic melodrama narrated in a flashback by Suraiya's character. This was the only film in which Raj Kapoor and Suraiya starred together. The "waltz-type rhythm" song "Tara Ri Tara ri" sung by Suraiya and Mohammed Rafi, became a popular number. Inspired from the film Enchantment (1948), it's referred to as "one of the biggest commercial hits,” with a business of 65 lakhs. Very significantly Naushad Ali used Rafisahab to sing songs for Raj Kapoor and not Mukesh. Suryaiya sang for herself. The 4th biggest hit film was Jogan. Jogan directed by Kidar Sharma, featured Dilip Kumar and Nargis. It was described as Dilip Kumar's "most powerful portrayal as a one-way love seeker". It had Nargis playing a Meera-like Sadhvi and has been referred to as a "most famous classic". The film grossed ₹ 62 lakhs. Incidentally Rajender Kumar made his debut in Bollywood films in a small role in the film Jogan. The music was composed by Bulo C Rani and all the songs were sung by Geeta Dutt, including the hit song “ghunghat ke pat khol” The fifth biggest hit film was Sangram. Sangram starred Ashok Kumar and Nalini Jaywant again. Written and directed by Gyan Mukherjee for Bombay Talkies, it had music by C. Ramchandran. A popular song from the film was "Yaara Wai Wai, Yaara Wai Wai". The film as a box-office success commercially, earning a gross profit of ₹ 50 lakhs. In conclusion it can be said that 1950s began with black and white films. But performances of Ashok Kumar, Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor were per excellence. The directors like Kidar Sharma, AR Kardar, Mehboob Khan and others really made a fantastic impact. Naushad Ali, Hunslal Bhagatram, Shankar Jaikishan and C Ramchandran dominated music. Talat, Rafi, Mukesh dominated male singing while Suraiya, Shamshad Begum, Geeta Dutt and Lata dominated female playback songs. With passing of time new actors like Bharat Bhushan, Pradeep Kumar competed with Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Ghazal Ka Shehzada Madanmohan Kohli was remembered with his combination with Rafisahab.


The country remembers the death anniversary of legendary composer Madanmohan Kohli on 14th July, 2018. The legendary composer left us more than 38 years ago but left the country with innumerable treasure of ghazals. If any composer had utilised the ghazal andaz of Mohammad Rafi to the best of his potentiality it is Madanmohan whose name appears in the minds of the lovers of music across the nation. Madanmohan’s father Rai Bahadur chunnilal send his son to Dehradun to join the army. Instead he left the army and joined All India Radio in Lucknow. He came in contact with Ustad Faizz Khan, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan and carried on their legacy in the compositions he made for 30 years which can be classified as masterpieces. As Madanmohan was not associated with the Big Banners like RK or Navketan, he was not categorised with any star of bollywood during 50s, 60s, 70s. Further he never wanted to balance the popular test of music and excellent class of classical compositions he created. But the compositions were so rich in lyrics and tunes that the musical pandits had no way but to admire them. The golden age of bollywood music was categorised with the excellence of Mohammad Rafi and as such if any composer neglected Rafi and tried to reach the summit of popularity they have invited their own downfall. Madanmohan did not make such a mistake. He started his career with the film Ankhen in 1950. He also composed music for Raj Kapoor’s film Ashiana in 1952. His notable songs for Rafi in the film Railway Platform, 1956, include “basti basti parbat parbat”. In Gateway of India, 1957, Madanmohan used Mohammad Rafi for the song “do ghari woh jo pass aa baithe” picturised on Bharatbhushan. It was very successful and strengthened the everlasting bond of Rafi with Madanmohan. Rafi’s intoxicating appeal in the song “kabhi na khabhi kahin na kahin koi na koi toi ayega” in the film Sharabi, 1964, composed by Madanmohan can be classified one of the best songs in sombre mood. The most majestic ghazals of Rafi composed by Madanmohan include “kisiki yaad me apnako hai bhulaye huye” and “baad muddat ke yeh ghari ayi” from the film Jahan ara, 1964, picturised on Bharat Bhushan. Talat Mehmood’s song in the same film “phir wohi sham wohi gham wohi tanhai hai” was also based on ghazal andaz. The classic lyrics were written by Rajinder Kishan. The film titled Ghazal, in 1964, was based on ghazals and Rafi was outstanding by every standard in the song “rang aur noor ki baraat kise pesh karun.” In the same year Rafi’s patriotic flavour was bolstered in the song “kar chale hum fida jan-o-tan sathiyon” in the film Haqeeqat, where Rafi’s ghazal titled “hoke majboor usne bulaya hoga” shared with Bhupinder Singh, Manna Dey and Talat Mehmood was sensational. The majestic lyrics were written by Kaifi Azmi. In the film Neela Akash, 1965, picturised on Dharmender, Rafi’s song “akhri geet muhobbat ka sunayun to chalun” showed the tragic note of Madanmohan. In the film Need Hamari Khwab Tumkhari, all the songs were sung by Rafi including “husn ne jab isq se takraya tha”. Returning back to ghazals, Rafi’s song “aap ke pehlu me akar” in the film Mera Saya, 1966, was as outstanding as Lata’s title song “tu jahan jahan chalega mera saya saath hoga”. The lyrics were written by Raja Mehendi Ali Kahan. Raj Khosla’s crime thriller ended up becoming a musical blockbuster just like Woh Kaun Thi, in 1964, where Madanmohan’s composition “naina barse,” “lagja gale”, etc. for Lata Mangeshkar was probably the most immortal creation in the history of film music, with Sadhna giving life time performances in ghostly characters in both these films. The landmark ghazal “tumhari zulf ke saye me sham karlunga” in the film Naunihal, in 1967, is probably one of the five best ghazals Rafi did sing in his life. Experts in music realise that ages will pass, but no second singer can provide blood and flesh in the superlative ghazal of Madanmohan the way Rafi had done in this song. Kaifi Azmi has written sensational lyrics for the abovementioned song. People started thinking that Rafi and Madanmohan were made for each other. The belief was put to action in the next film Dulhan Ek raat ki, in 1967, picturised on Dharmender in the song “ek haseen sham ko dil mera kho gaya. In the film Chirag, 1969, “teri aakhon ke siwa duniya me rakkha kya hai” Madanmohan combined ghazal with light orchestration to try to inspire the common listeners in understanding these type of songs. In the film Heer Ranjha, 1971, picturised on Rajkumar, Rafi’s song “yeh duniya yeh mehfil” was well acclaimed by music lovers. Rafi was outstanding by every standard in the song “tum jo mil gaye ho” in the film Hanste Zakhm, 1973, where Madanmohan synchronised lightning with his own orchestration. Madanmohan also gave a tremendous break to Bhupinder Singh in the song “dil dhoonta hai, phir wohi, fursat ke raat din” written by Gulzar in Sanjeev Kumar’s Mausam in 1975. Rafi had the song “chari re chari kaise gale me pari.” Madanmohan’s last performance with Jaidev brought out Rafi’s Himalayan range in the film Laila Majnu in 1977. Rafi’s songs “tere dar pe aya hoon,” “barbad muhobat ka duya saath liye ja”, picturised on Rishi Kapoor showed his master spirit of adapting to tunes of middle east which was the geographical location where the story was based. Madanmohan died in 1975, without even seeing the success of Laila Majnu, it appeared like out of seven sur in every octave one sur had gone, because, the majestic combination of Madanmohan with Rafi cannot be forgotten through ages. Rafi’s archive should restore Madanmohan’s combination to let the next generation know about the high esteem with which Madanmohan addressed Mohammad Rafi during the golden age of film music.

Happy birthday to Mumtaz.


Happy birthday to Mumtaz. The viewers of bollywood films wish happy birthday to brilliant dancer and actress Mumtaz on 31st July, 2018. Mumtaz stormed the silver screen with her dancing capabilities in the bollywood films of 60s. Mumtaz initially acted in small budget films like Boxer, Tarzan, Kingkong, etc. She acted in many of the films opposite he-man Dara Singh. She impressed the viewers with her item number in the film Brahmchari, opposite Shammi Kapoor, titled “aaj kal tere mere pyar ke charche”, where SJs rock and roll composition was given adequate expression by Mumtaz. She acted very well opposite Dilip Kumar in Ram Aur Shyam. She acted as a village girl who did not recognise the difference when Ram came to the village, who had identical get up as Shyam the person she loved. Her role of vamp in Biswajeet’s film Mere Sanam impressed everyone. She gave able lips in Asha Bhoshle’s song “yeh hai reshmi zulfon ka andhera”. She did well opposite Manoj Kumar in the film Patthar Ke Sanam. Mumtaz matched Jeetender in the film Jeegri Dost. She was very polite and submissive in the film and gave good lips in the songs “raat suhani jag rahi hai” sung by Lata and Rafi and composed by Laxmikant Pyarelal. All her films opposite Jeetender became super hit including Ek Nari Ek Brahmchari, Khilouna, Katputli, Roop Tera Mastana, etc. She had been very successful in the films opposite Rajesh Khanna most of which everlasting hits like Do Raaste, Aap Ki Kasam, Roti, etc. Her excellent lips in successful songs opposite Rajesh Khanna namely “gore rang pehna itna gumah kar”, “jai jai shivshankar” attracted the attention of the viewers. In Aap Ki Kasam, she was thrown out of the house by Rajesh Khanna due to misunderstanding, who repented for the cruel act throughout his life. He returned back when Mumtaz had solemnized the marriage of her child at the end of the film. She also did well in Pyar Kiye Jaa, opposite Mehmood. It was a comedy film where Mehmood wanted to be a director but never got a producer who invested money in his film. He was duped by Shashi Kapoor and Kishore Kumar who posed to be rich men, and when he could not direct any film he ultimately married Mumtaz. Mumtaz showed her rock and roll dancing style in the song “o mere maina”, sung by Asha and Manna Dey and composed by Laxmikant Pyarelal. Mumtaz also acted in a number of films opposite Firoz Khan, including films like Apradh, Jadu Tona, etc. She received filmfare award for the best actress for her performance in the film Khilouna. She left films in the late 70s and did not appear even in character roles after that. Viewers still feel that she had acting talent in her and if she wanted she could have acted in modern films. She received filmfare lifetime achievement award too. Still she is remembered by the viewers and whenever her films like Loafer, opposite Dharmender, or Patthar ke sanam, opposite Manoj Kumar is shown in TV Channels, viewers refresh their old memories about her sweet performances in these films.

The film Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya was a trendsetter.


The film Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya was a trend setter. The film Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya was another brilliant venture of David Dhawan. It was a multi-starrer film produced by Sohail Khan. Three sets of pairs were experimented with in the year 2005, and from that time onwards it has become a trend setter. The actors and actresses who performed in the film included Salman Khan, Katrina kaif , Sushmita Sen ,Sohail Khan, Arshad Warsi , Isha Koppikar, Rajpal Yadav and others. Salman Khan was an orthopedic surgeon in the film. He had an affair with Katrina Kaif, who was a model. To stop the female patients from flirting with him, Salman told everyone that he was married. Katrina also believed in the fact. She asked Salman Khan to introduce her with his wife. He convinced Sushmita Sen, his nurse, to pretend as his wife. Sushmita met Katrina with two children of her relative and spoke about her relationship with Salman. Katrina thought the children were Salman’s children and wanted to meet them. When the children were introduced Katrina came to know that her previous wife had a boy friend. Then she wanted to meet him and for that matter Salman Khan had to ask Arshad Warsi to act with Sushmita Sen. Then came the artificial divorce scene, where Salman Khan’s mother stepped in from Punjab and accepted Sushmita Sen as the wife of Salman Khan. At the end of the film Sushmita Sen went to Karina Kaif and told the truth. Katrina asked Salman Khan to marry Sushmita Sen who agreed to pretend as his wife. Katrina Kaif married Sohail Khan who was struggling actor in the film. The entire story was depicted with comedy sequences. Himmesh Reshamiya’s music composition was very impressive. All the songs in the film became super hits including “just chill chill”, “saajan, tumse pyar ki larayi me”, “teri meri love story ka angle”, etc. Sonu Nigam, Udit Narayan and other singers contributed well in the film. The performance of Rajpal Yadav in the role of soldier who lost his legs in Cargill War requires special mention. Rajpal Yadav’s legs were normal, yet he used to come to Salman Khan’s clinic only to meet Sushmita Sen. He helped Salman Khan to reach the airport to stop Sushmita Sen to leave the country at the end of the film. Arshad Warsi’s acting as lawyer in the divorce scene was phenomenal. Isha Koppikar did not get proper scope of dialogue throwing in the film but her dance performance in the song “saajan, tujhse pyar ki ladayi me” was very impressive. The performance of Salman Khan’s mother by the actress who was also an Officer in the Ministry of Tourism, Rajasthan was extraordinary. Katrina Kaif and Sushmita Sen looked the beautiful in the film if compared with any other film in their career. Sohail Khan spend most of his career in production and direction of films, but in respect of his performance probably he did his best in the comedy role which was as important as Salman’s role. Day by day Salman Khan also has matured as a good comedian, because these days producers and directors rank him after Anil Kapoor and Govinda, whenever they think about comedy films. David Dhawan should continue with brilliant ventures like Maine Pyar Kyun Kiya in future also.

Greatest actor Chabi Biswas was remembered on birth anniversary.


Remembering legendary actor Chabi Biswas on his birth anniversary. The nation remembers legendary actor Chabi Biswas on his birth anniversary
on 12th July, 2017. His superlative class of performance had been acknowledged by brilliant directors like Satyajit Ray, Hrithik Ghatak, Raj Kapoor, Tapan Sinha, but he had remained unsung, unhonoured, unlamented. Ray had a very serious personality and hardly required any improvisation as his innovative scripts had almost everything embedded in them. But Chabi Biswas brought out his own dimensions in the role of Feudal Lord in the film Jalsaghar released in 1958. He combined the aristocracy and the dignity of the feudal lord in the colonial period and at times astonished Ray himself with his dynamic performances. He even sold his wife’s ornaments to organize a musical program in his banquet room to maintain his dominance as a feudal lord. Singers from renowned classical gharana came and performed in the show and the entire village was invited to witness it. With the loss in revenue and poverty during British regime, he committed suicide by dying on horseback. He was sublime in the film Debi released in 1960, where he visualized Goddess Kali in the human form in Sharmila Tagore, his daughter –in –law. The entire concept was related to his belief and his son Soumitra took exception about the thing but was helpless. Sharmila Tagore became sick as it was awkward on her part to see his father-in-law touching her feet as she was believed to be Debi, the human form of Goddess. Chabi Biswas was majestic in his classic role in the film Kanchenjungha released in 1962. Ray experimented with a remote subject where the greatness of the Himalayas freed the mental blockade of middle-class bengalies. Arun Mukherjee, one of the unemployed youth even did not accept the job offered by big industrialist played by Chabi Biswas. At the end of the film Chabi Biswas realized the greatness of the great mountain range and surrendered before it. The film could not be understood by mass audience as it dealt with the concept of realization although the colourful photography of Ray in Darjeeling was well appreciated. But critics had acclaimed Chabi Biswas and said that he was the last name for the depiction of aristocracy in any form. His dignified performance in the films of legendary directors like Ajoy Kar, Tapan Sinha, Prabhat Mukherjee, Agragami, Agradoot had not been forgotten by the mass. He had remained sublime in Prabhat Mukherjee’s Bicharak (1958) in the role of a charishmatic advocate, Tapan Sinha’s Kabuliwala (1957) in the role of an Afghan father, Ajoy Kar’s Suno Baranari (1960) in the role of a wealthy Barrister, Agragami’s Headmaster (1959) in the role of an old headmaster, Bijoli Baran Sen’s film Manik, where he played the role of a handicapped grandfather, Sudhir Mukherjee’s Dadathakur (1962) where he played the role of Sharat Pandit, Premendro Mitra’s film Chupi Chupi Ase (1960) where he played the role of a detective in a crime thriller film, to name a few. He died in a tragic accident in 1962 and Indian celluloid lost one of its greatest actors ever. His films should be preserved for projection of dynamism, class, dignity, aristocracy and majestic demeanour.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Remembering Sri Devi on birth anniverary.


Happy birth anniversary to gorgeous icon Sri Devi. The viewers of bollywood films wish happy birth anniversary to gorgeous icon and evergreen actress Sri Devi on 13th August, 2017. She unfortunately died in 2018 and made everyone sad. She was the most dominating figure in bollywood films in the 80s. Her excellent dancing skills gave her an edge over other actresses of that period. In 2013 her film English Vinglish received awards in IIFA awards in Macao. Her director received best debutant director award. This year she has acted in the film Mom. She was brilliant in the film Himmatwala opposite Jeetender. The film was a South Indian production which was released in the early 1980s and the dancing skills of both Sri Devi and Jeetender mesmerized the viewers. The music of the film was also very popular. Sri Devi got a landmark role in Feroz Khan’s film Jaanbaaz. She played the role of the wife of Jeetender who was given drugs forcefully by Shakti Kapoor, Raza Murad and their men. She died due to consumption of the drugs. Feroz Khan along with Anil Kapoor took revenge against her brutal killing. Sri Devi’s combination with Anil Kapoor was appreciated by the viewers of the 80s. Their film Mr. India, directed by Shekhar Kapoor became everlasting hit. Sri Devi displayed her comedy skills as against the innocent performance of Anil Kapoor in the film. Anil Kapoor’s device for becoming invisible amazed the viewers. Amrish Puri was matchless in his performance in the role of Mogambo. Sri Devi’s dance number opposite Anil Kapoor in a blue dress during a rainy day haunted many youngstars of the 80s. Big B acted in many films opposite Sri Devi including Inquilab, Akhree Rasta and others. Most of those films ended up being blockbusters. In Akhree Raasta she had show her mettle opposite another South Indian beauty Jaya Prada. Her performance was as good as Jaya Prada, and both the actresses justified their selection opposite Megastar Big B. Sri Devi gave many hits opposite Rishi Kapoor including Yash Rash film Chandni. In Chandi, Sri Devi looked gorgeous. Rishi Kapoor was considered to be most romantic actor of the 80s. Sri Devi had the challenge of matching him in a Yash Raj film, where shooting is done in Switzerland and costly dresses are used for the stars. Sri Devi rose up to the occasion and got the viewers flabbergasted with her performance. Even then viewers considered Anil Kapoor the best combination opposite Sri Devi. Their superhit films included Laadla, Lamhe, Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja, and others. Sri Devi had a fantastic career in South Indian films as well. Her performance in films opposite Rajnikant and Kamal Hassan became super hit in the 8os. She acted in hit bollywood films opposite Rajnikant like Chaalbaaz where she played a double role. She was excellent in the film Sadma opposite Kamal Hassan. Her abnormal acting which was required in the role and later on a different behavior really made the viewers spellbound. The music composed by Illaiyaraja was exceptional, with the song “surmaiy ankhyonme” becoming smash hit. With the domination of Madhuri Dixit in bollywood films in the 90s, Sri Devi faded away from the film arena. Besides she added weight after marrying Boney Kapoor and giving birth to her daughter. . She died in 2018 making everyone sad. Her films require restoration.

Mukeshji's voice still haunts listeners.


Remembering Mukesh on his death anniversary. Great singer Mukesh is remembered both on his birth anniversary on 22nd July, 2016 and death anniversary on 27th August, 2016. The viewers of bollywood films remember legendary singer Mukesh on his death anniversary on 27th August, 2014. He was born on 22nd July, 1923 and died on 27th August, 1976 and people all over the world remember his great works. Mukesh was probably the most popular singer of the 50s, 60s and 70s after Mohammad Rafi. His nazal tune had huge amount of sensitiveness and he gave expression to brilliant composers of the golden age with the romantic voice. His combination with Showman Raj Kapoor was considered one of the golden combinations of the 40s, 50s, 60s. His notable songs for Raj Kapoor included “awara hoon” from film Awara, composed by Shankar Jaikishan, “aaja re” from film Aah, composed by Shankar Jaikishan, “ramaiya vasta maiya” and “mera joota hai japani” from film Shree 420 composed by Shankar Jaikishan, “sab kuch sikha humne”, “dil ki nazar se” and “kisiki muskurahaton pe ho nisar” from film Anari, “ai sanama jish ne tujhe chand sa surat di hai” from film Diwana, “sajanwa bairi ho gaye hamar”, from film Teesri Kasam, composed by SJ, etc. The list can go on. Shankar Jaikishan stormed bollywood films with their everlasting tunes for more than 25 years, and wherever they were associated with Raj Kapoor, Mukesh sang the songs of his lifetime. The combination gave everlasting hits in films like Barsaat, Jis Desh Me Ganga Behti Hai, Sangam, Ek Dil Sau Afsana, Around the World, Diwana, Teesri Kasam, Mera Naam Joker, to name a few. In non-Raj Kapoor films also Mukesh did a superlative job. His performance in Dilip Kumar’s Madhumati, composed by Salil Choudhury, Manoj Kumar’s Hariyali Aur Raasta composed by Shankar Jaikishan, Rajender Kumar’s Saathi composed by Naushad Ali, Manoj Kumar’s Pathar Ke Sanam composed by LP, require special mention. Some of the notable songs of Mukesh which had remained immortal in those films included “dil tarap tarap ke kehrahahe aabhi ja” in Madhumati, “ifteda-e-ishq me” in Hariyali Aur Raasta, “mera pyar bhi tuhe” in Saathi, “tauba yeh matwali chal” in Patthar Ke Sanam, etc. He died in 1976, and ended the era relating to soft romantic songs. His journay from the film Nirdosh in 1941 to Amar Akbar Anthony in 1977, remained unblemish. In 1974, he received national award for best singer for the song “kai baar yun hi dekha hai” from the film Rajnigandha, composed by Salil Choudhury. He deserved many more national awards, as he had sung from his soul bringing tears in the listener’s eyes. Besides he received filmfare awards for his best performance in films like Anari, Pehchan, Beimaan, Kabhi Kabhi. Even in the 70s, when slow music gradually lost its predominance, Mukesh’s songs in somber mood like “mai pal do pal ka shayar hoon” and “kabhi kabhi mere dil me” in the film Kabhi Kabhi composed by Khayyam and written by Sahir Ludhiyanvi created a permanent place in the hearts of millions of musiclovers. Articles after articles can be devoted on the successful combination of Mukesh with Shankar Jaikishan, Salil Choudhury, Naushad, Roshan, and others. His films and songs should be preserved.

Remembering Hemant Kumar on his birth anniversary.


Remembering Hemant Kumar on his birth anniversary. The viewers of bollywood and Bengali films pay their homage to evergreen singer Hemant Kumar on his birthday on 16th June, 2018. He had died more than 17 years back, but had left lot of memories which are cherished by the following generations. He composed music in many bollywood films in the 50s and 60s and carried forward the legacy of Rabindra Sangeet beyond the Bengal border and made it popular all across India. He composed music in the film Nagin and got the filmfare award for the best composer in 1955. His tune “man dole” sung by Lata for Vaijayantimala became extremely popular in the mid -50s. He sang a number of songs for Dev Anand including “yeh raat yeh chandni” in the film Jaal, “yeh apna dil” in Solwa Saal composed by SD Burman, songs in Patita composed by Shankar Jaikishan, etc. He also sang the legendary song “jane yeh kaise” for Guru Dutt in the film Pyaasa. His composition in Biswajeet’s films Bees Saal Baad and Kohra, became super hit. Successful songs included “yeh nayan dhali dhali”, “zara nazron se kahdo ji”, etc. In fact Hemant Kumar produced the film Bees Saal Baad, which was the sequel of Bengali crime thriller Jighansha, directed by Ajoy Kar. Hemant Kumar’s composition in the other films included Biswajeet’s Do Dil, Dilip Kumar’s Paigam, Dharmender’s Khamoshi, Guru Dutt’s Sahe Bibi Aur Ghulam, to name a few. Some of the hit songs sung by Hemant Kumar in those films included “tum pukarke”, and others. Besides he had given many hit songs to Lata, Asha and Geeta Dutt in those films. Hemant Kumar had sung majority of playback songs for Bengali superstar Uttam Kumar in the 50s. His songs included “surer akashe tumi je go shuktara” from the film Shapmochon in 1955, “tare bole diyo” from the film Dui Bhai in 1961, “nir choto khoti nei” from the film Indrani in 1958, “ei poth Jodi na shesh hoi” from the film Saptapadi in 1961, “jai chole jai” from the film Kal Tumi Aleya in 1965, “sapno jagano raat” from the film Shudhu Ekti Bachar in 1966, “mou bane aaj” from the film Bondhu in 1958, to name a few. Besides most of the Rabindra Sangeet sung by Hemant Kumar in Bengali films became hits, including “tumi robe nirobe” in Biswajeet’s Kuheli, “ami pothbhola ek pathik” in Uttam Kumar’s Mon Niye, “jokhon porbe na mor” in Uttam Kumar’s film Bibhas, “purano shei diner kotha” in Uttam Kumar’s Agnisshar, etc. Hemant Kumar had composed songs in more than 50 bengali films like Shap Mochon, Harano Sur, Saptapadi, Deep Jele Jai, Sathihara, Palatak, Phuleshwari, Dadar Kirti, Dui Bhai, Surjotoron, etc., most of which became dashing hits. Hemant Kumar had sung more than 1000 bengali modern songs under different composers. He had sung trend-setting songs composed by Salil Choudhury like “runner”, “kono ek gayer bodhu”, “patha harabo bole ebar”, “palki chole”. Nochiketa Ghosh composed landmark song for Hemant Kumar titled “amar ganer shorolipi lekha robe”. He had sung many ranbindra sangeet and showed his own skill aside other giants like Pankaj Mallick, Subinoy Ray, Dijen Mukherjee, Debrata Biswas and others. Hemant Kumar’s contribution in Bengali modern songs and film songs is so huge that articles after articles can be devoted for the melody king of Bengal. The viewers pay their respect for the departed soul of legendary singer Hemant Kumar on his birthday.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Meena Kumari's films are still relevant today.


Remembering Tragedy Queen Meena Kumari on her birth
anniversary. The viewers of bollywood films remembered Tragedy Queen Meena Kumari both on her birth anniversary on 1st August, 2016 on her death anniversary on 31st March, 2017. Meena Kumari can be considered as the greatest actress of Bollywood during the golden age who had portrayed images and characters showing complexity of the mind of the Indian women and the social ostentations that they had faced during different periods of time. Meena Kumari, born on 1st August, 1932, known as Mahjabeen Bano, stormed into the Indian silver screen in 1952, with the sublime performance in Baiju Bawra. Although the film had been renowned for everlasting composition of Hindustani ragas by Naushad and supreme performance of Mohammad Rafi, with songs like “man tarpata”, “woh duniya ke rakhwale”, etc., Meena Kumari’s performance opposite Bharat Bhushan showed the filmlovers that she had come to conquer Bollywood with her soft style of acting. In the 50s Meena Kumari’s performance in films like Parineeta, 1953, Footpath, 1954, Yahudi, 1958, etc. were appreciated by critics, but she had created her image of martyr in the film Sharda, 1957, where even after having an affair with Raj Kapoor, in the film she had to sarcrifice her affection to marry Raj Mehra, his father, who was much older than her. In Dil Ek Mandir, 1963, Meena Kumari after having affair with Rajender Kumar in her youth had to marry Raj Kumar, due to social pressure. But from the time she had married Raj Kumar, she fulfilled all the duties of a middle class Hindu woman, and brought her sick husband to the hospital at the mercy of Rajender Kumar. She prayed to God, for the recovery of Raj Kumar. Rajender Kumar sacrificed his life to treat her husband and died at the end of the film. The songs composed by Shankar Jaikishan and sung by Rafi and Lata, had not lost their significance even today. In 1962, Meena Kumari, performed the role of choti bahu, in Guru Dutt’s Saheb Bibi aur Ghulam, the film showing the zamindari raj (dominance of Feudal lords) existing in the British capital in India, that is Kolkata. She was married to the youngest son in a family of zamindars who used to attend mujras in Jaan bazaar, in Kolkata, where performers from Lucknow, Benaras used to come and exhibit their skills of singing classical songs. She tried to retain her husband Rehman at home, and through her conversation, Guru Dutt, the observer came to know about the history of the family. Meena Kumar’s performance opposite Pradeep Kumar, used to create a different dimension, as her pardanashin image had matched with royal style of acting of Pradeep Kumar. After the success of Aarti, 1962; Meena Kumari, acted in the blockbusters Bheegi Raat, 1965, and Bahu Begum, 1967, opposite Pradeep Kumar and Ashok Kumar. In Bheegi Raat, she loved Pradeep Kumar, yet due to an accident which made her legs paralysed she could not attend the engagement and worked in the house of Ashok Kumar as governess. When society boycotted Ashok Kumar, she agreed to marry her, but presence of Pradeep Kumar at the end of the film in the song “dil jo na keh saka” compelled Ashok Kumar to sacrifice his affair and go back to London. It was a film where, Rafi, Lata, Roshan and the actors all had provided their best performance possible. Meena Kumar’s other film with Pradeep Kumar titled Chitralekha was also successful. Meena Kumari had become immortal with her classic performance in the film Pakeeza, 1971, opposite Raj Kumar, which took around 10 years to be completed. It was created on a subject related to women brought up in kotha and exhibited the class of women who could not give the recognition to their next generation as their father’s are not known. The music composed by Ghulam Mohammad, Lata and Rafi’s songs, Kamal Humrohi’s direction (the husband of Meena Kumari) all complemented each other, and the film became historical piece of document. The greatest hallmark of Meena Kumari lied in her ability to depict the helplessness of Indian women existing specially in the 50s and 60s, when the patriarchal society dominated them and they had no independent income to live separately against the pressure of society. In her performances, beauty, aristrocracy, tragedy, personality all blended into one. Whenever we think about cine-classics like Dil Apna aur Preet Parayi, 1960, or Ghazal, 1965, Meena Kumari’s image automatically comes in our mind. She died in 1972, only at an age of 41. Meena Kumari’s films should be restored in an archive for future generations to learn the art of understanding the characters from the core of the heart the way Meena Kumari had done during the golden age of Indian cinema.