Lata Mangeshkar — the living legend — Part VI

In an instant, it became a street song. Any tutor of light music still teaches this song to their students as a starter. The movies ‘Parbat’ and ‘Poonam’ were released in 1952 but the movie ‘Aah’ by Nargis and Raj Kapoor was a musical hit with Raj portraying as a tuberculosis patient. It left a mark as far as its music was concerned. Its songs “Raja ki ayegi gi baraat” and “Yeh shaam ki tanhaniyan” by Lata Mangeshkar are still fresh in my memory. How can one then forget the ever lilting melody “Aa ja re ab mera dil pukara” by Mangeshakr and Mukesh? Then movies ‘Aas’, ‘Aurat’ and ‘Naya Ghar’ in 1953 were released. Omaiya Chakarverty’s ‘Patita’ used Usha Kiran, the side heroine of ‘Daagh’ as its heroine. Dev Anand played opposite her and the duet by Hemant Kumar and Mangeshkar “Yaad kiya dil nei kahan ho tum” and Mangeshkar’s solo “Kisi ne apna bana ke hum ko muskurana sikha diya” are lovely songs from this movie. The same year SJ used Mangeshkar and Mahmud for Dilip Kumar, Nalini Jewant movie ‘Shikast’. Mangeshkar’s number “Karey badra ja re ja” (a classical music based tune) is a memorable tune. A soothing effect is produced when one listens to Mangeshkar’s “Mein piya teri tu maney ya na maney” with Nimmi dancing on Bharat Bhushan’s flute in 1956 film ‘Basant Bahar’. The same year, SJ composed for musical hits ‘Chori Chori’ and ‘Halaku’ (Lata-Asha’s “Aji chaley aao” and Mangeshkar’s “Dil ka na karna aitbar koi”). In my opinion the best song from the movie ‘Chori Chori’ with an element of Raag Bhopali was Mangeshkar’s ‘Rasik Balma’ in which the range, the murkis and overall melody transmits an element of longing were fully exposed, Mangeshkar-Manna Dey’s duets “Yeh raat bheegi bheegi” and “Aja sanam madhur chandani mein hum” were fantastic numbers and finally Mangeshkar’s ‘Panchi banoo urti phiroon” left the mark of a person just freed from penitentiary. One of my all times favourite songs from the movie ‘Anari’ released in 1959’ is Mangeshkar’s “Tera jana dil ke armanon ka lut jana” picturised on Nutun.
With reference to my book Melody Makers, I shall talk about the music for “Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai’ first. The film stars were Raaj Kumar, Meena Kumari, Nadira, Tun Tun, Helen and Om Prakash. One of the famous songs in the film is “Ajeeb dastaan hai yeh” sung by Mangeshkar. The use of choir in this song is superb, a novelty at that time. Two songs of the movie were gems like “O! Basanti pawen pagal” (solo) and “Aa ab lot chalein” sung by Mangeshkar with Mukesh. Notable songs from the movie ‘Junglee’ like Lata/Rafi solos ‘Ehsan Tera Ho Ga Mujh Par’ was the salient feature of this movie’s music. Talat-Lata’s ‘Tu Roop Ki Rani Mein Choron Ka Raja’ with the same title of the movie was a very soft number but with catchy melody. From among 1962 movies, the most inspiring ones were ‘Dil Aik Mandir’ and ‘Haryali Aur Raasta’, the former memorable for Lata’s ‘Ruk Ja Raat Theher Ja Re Chanda Beete Na Milan Ki Bela’ and ‘Hum Terey Pyar Mein Sara Alam Kho Baithey Hein’. The second movie had Manoj Kumar and Mala Sinha as leading pair. The songs ‘Allah Jaane Kya Hoga Aage’ written by Hasrat Jaipuri, a Lata-Mukesh number and ‘Yei Haryali Aur Yei Raasta’ were the highlight of this movie. 
The other SJ-Lata combination was for the movie ‘Asli Naqli’ (the film was directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee and its stars were Dev Anand, Sadhana, Leela Chitnis, Anwar Hussain, Sandhya Roy and Keshto Mukherjee). I love its song ‘Tera Mera Pyar Amar’ by Lata and a catchy duet with Rafi ‘Tujhey Jeewen Ki Dor Sei Bandh Liya Hei’. Movie ‘Professor’ is remembered for the duet ‘Awaz Dei Kei Humain Tum Bulao’ by Lata and Rafi. This song sounds as fresh in its melody today as it sounded then. 1960s was a memorable decade for SJ. After ‘Aik Dil Sau Afsaney’ in 1963 (popular song with the same first line as that of title of the film), the next year 1964 was also memorable for SJ. Saira Bano, Rajender Kumar and Dharmender (in a negative role) appeared in movie ‘Aai Milan Ki Bela’ (Lata’s ‘Tumhain Aur Kaya Dun Mein Dil Kei Siwa’). It was a super hit. Movie ‘Raj Kumar’ is remembered for Lata’s ‘Aa Jaa Aai Bahar, Dil Hei Beqarar O! Mere Raj Kumar Tere Bin Raha Na Jaye’ with Sadhna singing it in the middle of a river on a flower bed and Shammi Kapoor watching her by poppimg in and out of the river. 
The other notable movie was ‘Sangam’. I saw the latter movie in Bombay in 1964 on my first visit to that city of film stars. Continued

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