भारतीय फिल्मो ने मई २०१३ में १०० वर्ष पूरे कर लिए. ये एक लम्बी अवधि होती है किसी भी मीडियम के गुण दोष को परखने के लिए. हमारी फिल्मो ने कई मंजिलो को तय किया लेकिन फिर भी गुणवत्ता की दृष्टि से इसकी रफ्तार बहुत धीमी है. हमारी अधिकांश फिल्मे एक ढर्रे पे बनती है जिनमे प्रयोगवादी फिल्मकारों के लिए बहुत कम स्पेस बचता है कुछ नया करने के लिए. ऐसा नहीं कि उल्लेखनीय काम नहीं हुआ पर इनकी संख्या कम है. आज भी आप देखे कि सालाना लगभग 800-900 फिल्मे बालीवूड में बनती है पर उनमे से कितनी याद रख भर पाने के लायक होती है? इसी तरह फिल्मी संगीत भी खासकर वर्तमान समय में बेसुरें ताल में है कुछ एक अपवाद को छोड़कर. उस पर भी अगर विदेशी स्टैंडर्ड्स से गौर करे तो भारतीय फिल्मे अभी बहुत पीछे है. क्षेत्रीय भाषाओ जैसे बंगाली, मलयाली, इत्यादि में अच्छा काम हुआ लेकिन जिस तरह हिंदी फिल्मो में उतार आया वैसे इन भाषाओ की फिल्मो में भी गुणवत्ता के लिहाज सें गिरावट दर्ज की गयी. खैर इस लेख में मै आवारा और शोले इन दो फिल्मो का जिक्र करना चाहूँगा.
राजकपूर और गुरुदत्त मेरे पसंदीदा फिल्मकार रहे है. जिस संवेदनशीलता से इन्होने फिल्मे बनायीं उसकी मिसाल ढूंढ पाना मुश्किल है. राजकपूर जो कि ज्यादा पढ़ लिख नहीं पाए ने जब आवारा बनाने का निर्णय लिया तो वो एक बोल्ड निर्णय था. फ़िल्म की कहानी ख्वाजा अहमद अब्बास ने लिखी थी जो प्रोग्रेसिव लेखको की जमात से आते थें. फ़िल्म का शीर्षक ही विवादित था लेकिन जिद के पक्के राजकपूर ने शीर्षक बदलने से मना कर दिया. ये यकीन कर पाना मुश्किल है कि इस कम पढ़े शख्स ने भारतीय फ़िल्म इतिहास को उसकी सबसे भव्य फिल्मे दी, सबसे बेहतरीन फिल्मे दी. राजकपूर की ये विलक्षण निशानी थी कि फ़िल्म के हर पहलू चाहे वो गीत हो या संगीत हो या एडिटिंग हो सब पे पैनी निगाह रखते थे और जितने भी संशोधन वो करते थें वे सब फ़िल्म को नयी उंचाई दे जाते थे. आवारा भी इन्ही सब प्रयोगों से लैस थी.
इतनी कम उम्र में आवारा या आग जैसी फिल्मो का बनाना ये साबित कर देता है कि बुजुर्गो की तोहमत झेलते ये ” कल के लौंडे” ही अंत में अपवाद काम करके जाते है. ये किसी भारी भरकम इंस्टिट्यूट से नहीं निकलते बल्कि जिंदगी की पाठशाला में तप कर निकलते है और ये सिद्ध कर देते है कि “कुछ लोग जो ज्यादा जानते है वो इंसान को कम पहचानते है”. आवारा में नर्गिस के बोल्ड दृश्य थें लेकिन किसी को भी मना लेने का हुनर रखने वाले राजकपूर ने उस दृश्य को हकीकत में बदल दिया लेकिन इस प्रक्रिया में क्रिएटिविटी के उच्चतम शिखर पे हम राजकपूर को पाते है। आवारा में भारतीय फिल्मो का पहला ड्रीम सीक्वेंस भी है. जब इस पर कई लाख रुपये खर्च करने की बात आई तो सब ने राजकपूर को सनकी कहा क्योकि पूरी फ़िल्म का बजट एक तरफ और इस ड्रीम सीक्वेंस का खर्च एक तरफ रख दे तो इतना बजट काफी होता है एक अन्य फ़िल्म के निर्माण के लिए. लेकिन राजकपूर ने ड्रीम सीक्वेंस के बजट में कोई कटौती नहीं की. आज टाइम मैगज़ीन राजकपूर के आवारा में किये गए अभिनय को 10 सर्वश्रेष्ठ अभिनय कौशल जो फ़िल्म के सुनहरे परदे पे अवतरित हुई उनमे से एक मानती है और आवारा फ़िल्म इतिहास की सौ सर्वश्रेष्ठ फिल्मो में से एक है.
सन 1951 में रिलीज़ आवारा कायदे से देखा जाए तो पहली वो फ़िल्म मानी जायेगी जिसने असल अन्तराष्ट्रीय ख्याति प्राप्त की. चीन, सोवियत संघ, टर्की, रोमानिया, मिडिल ईस्ट और अन्य जगह ये ख़ासा लोकप्रिय रही. इसका गीत संगीत भी इतना लोकप्रिय हुआ कि “आवारा हूँ” गीत विदेशो के उन हिस्सों में भी बजता था जहा भारतीय फिल्मो की पहुच कुछ नहीं थी. आवारा मैंने पहले पहल 1988 में देखी जब दूरदर्शन ने एक विशेष प्रसारण के तहत इन फिल्मो को दिखाया। राजकपूर जो मशहूर कपूर खानदान से होते हुए भी ने फिल्मी सफ़र की शुरुआत क्लैप बॉय से किया उस ने दिखाया कि हुनर जन्मजात ही आता है. ये किसी स्कूल की देन नहीं होती. ये फ़िल्म चाहे शंकर जयकिशन का संगीत हो, राज-नर्गिस की रूमानी केमिस्ट्री हो, शैलेन्द्र-हसरत के हृदयस्पर्शी गीत हो या राधू कर्माकर का बेहतरीन छायांकन हो हर लिहाज़ से सर्वोत्तम थी. आवारा इस बात का प्रतीक है कि बदलाव युवा वर्ग ही लाता है अपनी सोच से और अपनी जिद से.
शोले का भी जिक्र हो जाए. जहा आवारा बनते समय एक हलचल महसूस की गयी वही शोले के निर्माण के समय ऐसा कुछ नहीं था. बल्कि हैरान करने वाली बात ये है कि भारतीय फिल्मो के इतिहास में अनोखे आयाम जोड़ने वाली ये फ़िल्म जब प्रदर्शित हुई तो सब तरफ फीका फीका सा माहौल था. ये वो फ़िल्म थी जिसे आज विदेशी आलोचक भी मानते है कि निर्देशन, अभिनय और कैमरा वर्क के हिसाब से ये फ़िल्म बेजोड़ है. शोले की दहक को अजर अमर सरीखा बना देने वाले गब्बर सिंह का रोल पहले डैनी के हिस्से में आया था लेकिन उनके मना कर देने के बाद ये हलकी आवाज़ वाले अमजद खान के हिस्से आया. इससे बहुत से लोगो को इसके निर्माण के दौरान ये महसूस होने लगा कही ये एक वजह ना हो जाए इस फ़िल्म के ना चल पाने का . लेकिन अमजद खान ने जो संवाद अदायगी की वो इतनी बेजोड़ है कि उसके बारे में भारत का हर बच्चा भी जानता है.
आज लगभग 35 सालो बाद भी इस फ़िल्म के किरदारों का जिक्र होता है. रेडियो या टेलीविज़न खोल के देखे आपको जय-वीरू, बसंती और गब्बर के दर्शन होना तय है. मेरा रेडियो जब भी मुंह खोलता है मतलब “चालु” होता है तो गब्बर की आवाज़ की नक़ल में कोई शख्स जरूर थोड़ी देर में कहता है ” इस घंटे का पैसा कौन दिया है रें”. यहाँ तक कि एक भारतीय बैंक के विज्ञापन में भी “बसंती” ने ख़ासा योगदान दिया. मुझे याद आते है अपने कॉलेज के दिन. खाली वक्त में हमारे कालेज के कई प्रतिभाशाली कलाकारों से अगर कुछ परफार्म करने को कहा जाता था तो ये लगभग तय होता था कि उनमे से कोई शोले के डायलोग की मिमिक्री जरूर करेगा. इस फ़िल्म की विलक्षण बात ये है कि इस फ़िल्म के हर किरदार ने शानदार अभिनय किया और जिसका सीधा सम्बन्ध कहानी को नया मोड़ देने सा था. इसका नतीजा ये हुआ कि एक बहुत सामान्य सा दर्शक भी अच्छी तरह याद रखता है कि किस किरदार ने किस वक्त पे क्या संवाद बोला है. सो इस फ़िल्म के मशहूर चरित्र तो लोगो ने याद रखे ही रखे लेकिन इसके गौड़ चरित्र भी उतने ही यादगार साबित हुए. अब जैसे ए के हंगल का बोल हुआ ये संवाद भी लोग बड़ी गंभीरता से याद रखते है ” इतना सन्नाटा क्यों है भाई?”
महबूब खान दुबारा फिर ना कभी “मदर इंडिया” जैसी कोई फ़िल्म बना पाए और ना रमेश सिप्पी “शोले” जैसी कोई और यादगार फ़िल्म दे पाए. कही ना कही प्रकति में चीज़े अव्यक्त भाव से छुपी रहती है और वक्त आने पे कोई ना कोई उनका माध्यम बन जाता है उनको यथार्थ के धरातल पे लाने का. कम से कम “शोले” जैसी फिल्मे इसी रहस्यमय बात की साक्षी है. शोले चाहे अपने ट्रीटमेंट में विदेशी गुणों से ओतप्रोत रही हो, संगीत भी पाश्चात्य धुनों से प्रभावित था लेकिन ये अन्तत: भारतीय परंपरा के बुराई पर अच्छाई की जीत को दर्शाती है, पवित्र प्रेम को दर्शाती है और मित्रता के महत्व को प्रक्षेपित करती है.
Some souls are reflection of divinity. The great singer Kundal Lal Saigal was one such soul, who manifested divinity in a great way. In fact, true artists are never devoid of divine touch. Creativity cannot emerge from mental landscape not submerged in ocean of divinity. I belong to a generation, which believes in worshiping new icons of modernity. For them these legendary creative artists of yesteryear might not seem that appealing but anyone who have had glimpse of their creativity would certainly stand amazed.
The noticeable thing about K. L. Saigal was that he managed to sing straight from the heart. This phrase seems so commonplace but not many realize that how difficult it is to demonstrate it in practical terms. That’s because shades of ego block our ability to exhibit true colour of simplicity. The complex persona creates blockade. One reason why K. L. Saigal could stir the emotions was that deeper emotions were so naturally rendered by him without compromising with the raga and raginis.
It’s really surprising that at a time when Indian film music was still in its nascent stage of growth, it traced such a sensational singer, which set high standards in world of popular music, hard to emulate by future singers. The influence of his voice can be understood by the fact that even likes of Amitabh Bachchan came to praise him. The singers like Lata, Rafi and Kishore, all treated him like demigod. Mukesh, was, in fact, very sincere follower of his style of singing, who found it difficult to develop his own style. After mesmerizing everybody with his “Dil jalta hai to jalne de”, sung in Saigal style, Mukesh went on to develop his own style of singing.
His impact can also be felt in crude way in modern times when someone made caricature of his voice to sell a particular brand of toothpaste! Of late, I found one singer paying tribute to him in infamous movie Delhi Belly! Not many remember that Kishore Kumar treated K L Saigal as his Guru (The Master). He always practiced singing his songs and when he first met Saigal, he was asked by the legendary Saigal to sing a song. He sang one of his songs ” Man moorakh kyo deewana hai, aaj rahe kal jaana hai”. Saigal was very impressed by his singing but he suggested him that he should remove “Anga Dosha” (defects associated with body). Kishore used to sing with vigorous body movements also in action! Though Kishore Kumar did not strictly followed his advise but he managed to keep his body still while singing songs of Saigal in later days!
Coming to myself, I have nearly heard all his popular numbers. His songs instill deep peace within me. His amazing range and soulful rendering enabled me to get above the harsh episodes of life in effortless manner. His song sung during the fag end of his career, “Gham Diye Mustaqil” (Shahjahaan, 1946), always brings tears in the eyes. The superb rendering, which also reflected his own personal sufferings, makes one attain trance like state. Another song, which left an everlasting influence on me is from movie Tansen (1943): Kahe Guman Kare. Every time I hear it, the simplistic approach adopted by Saigal in this song makes me smile. After all, the singer is trying hard to convince a beautiful woman not to take pride in her beauty!
I still remember the day when I found a very rare album of Saigal in one lesser heard music shop of my city. That shop was not frequently visited by the buyers since the shopkeeper was not customer-friendly, who always had heated argument over the price of cassettes. The fight also started with me when he priced this cassette three times the original price on a pretext that it was a rare album. Though I had not sufficient money, I still managed to buy this album! After all, it had a soothing devotional song associated with Lord Krishna: Suno Suno Hey Krishan Kala ( Chandidas, 1934). One can notice in this song that Saigal has sung high notes in effortless manner, without compromising with the depth of the emotions.
It’s a peculiar phenomenon that souls, governed by divine instincts, often leave the earthly plane of existence in an young age. K L Saigal also proved to be no exception when he died at the age of 42. The lesser souls speak about his habit of heavy drinking but that’s the way how worldly people treat exceptional souls. For me and others, he shall always be remembered for making songs a mean to invoke divinity.
Well, for past few days, I was bit taken aback by some sad developments. I wanted to finish the English version of one of my well read posts in Hindi. However, lack of concentration on my part was delaying it. By dint of fortune, I came to participate in conversation on a prominent Radio Forum, Shrota Biradari,dominated by oldies, which was involved in making of document related with Hindi movie songs based on moon. Moon has always appealed to my senses. I am a night watcher since childhood and to gaze at stars and moon has been my favourite past time. Even now in my village, when I am all alone, surrounded by nothing but stillness of night, penetrated by chirping of cricket etc., I sit hours in open to gaze at the moon. Neil Armstrong had to visit moon to end up as philosophical human being but my passion for moon is deep enough that it does not require a trip to moon to admire its beauty.
Anyway, the forum involved in preparation of songs missed some of my favourite songs. I wanted to add these songs to the document but I thought let’s share the same songs for readers and friends, having taste for refined music, narrating my own personal connection with the songs. Don’t forget that popular numbers already got included in that document and these are the ones which are close to my heart, but, sadly, these did not appear in that document. The silver hairs got trapped in age which produced gems like “O Raat Ke Musafir” (Miss Mary), “NaYe Chand Hoga” ( Shart) and “Ye Raat Ye Chandni Phir Kaha( Jaal), to name a few. So let me include some of the songs they failed to take note of.
“I’ve tried the new moon tilted in the air
Above a hazy tree-and-farmhouse cluster
As you might try a jewel in your hair.
I’ve tried it fine with little breadth of luster,
Alone, or in one ornament combining
With one first-water start almost shining.
I put it shining anywhere I please.
By walking slowly on some evening later,
I’ve pulled it from a crate of crooked trees,
And brought it over glossy water, greater,
And dropped it in, and seen the image wallow,
The color run, all sorts of wonder follow.”
( The Freedom of the Moon by Robert Frost)
That’s a charming song from movie directed by Mahesh Bhatt’s “Phir Teri Kahani Yaad Aayi”. The best thing about Mahesh Bhatt is that no matter what’s the theme of his movies, he gives brilliant songs. The camera angles employed in his songs make the songs look so terrific. Just remember “Tumhe apana banane ki kasam khayi hai” from Sadak – a well picturized song which depicts the state of mind of woman trapped in world of prostitution, trying to come to terms with new-found freedom. Anyway, this song is also well shot. And like always, the movie involves doomed romance. For me, the songs brings back the memories of 90s and this movie’s almost all the numbers were simply too good. Lyricist Qateel Shifai and musician Annu Malik did a wonderful job. Interestingly, as a student, I had limited access to money, and thus, buying cassettes always meant sacrificing the last few notes found in my pocket. So I had to doubly assure whether or not all the songs were melodious in cassette. That meant taking “panga” (starting a fight) with the shopkeepers as they were often reluctant to make you listen all the numbers in bits and pieces. Anyway, these type of cassettes did full justice to few bucks (paisa vasool) which I managed to save those days.
Amazing song! No wonder R D Burman is hailed as a true genius. Look at the sound employed in the travel song with folk touch. Talking of this sound effect, he told to Gulzar that when he first played this instrument, flanger, it produced a very harsh noise. The people around him were bit skeptical about its effect in ensuring melody. It was not so easy to make use of it. But watch this superbly picturized train song and you would realize that how well R D Burman used this instrument to create rhythm effect produced by train as it travelled through the valley. Hey, the song talks about Dhanno but this Dhanno is totally different from Basanti’s Dhanno! Like always imagery employed by Gulzar mesmerizes us. The song is visual delight as well. Never before train song produced such a romantic appeal. Above all, it’s “Chand Ka Chumma” (Moon’s Kiss) which kills us!
Again R D Burman and Gulzar come together to produce this great number. I like the song because the moment it refers to stealing of moon and love birds spending time behind some building like church, it brings into my mind the great buildings of British period. Although, this song does not feature Church but images of majestic buildings from previous eras appear before the eyes. By the way, tell me how many times have you seen Church being used as a spot to promote romance? But anything was possible if two souls, always out of their minds, Gulzar and R D Burman sat together to compose songs. These two always hailed themselves as crazy souls. Oh yes, crazy souls alone made some sense in world turned into hell by intelligent souls!
This song from movie “Rog” has two versions. One is sung by M M Kreem, the music director who composed this song. Another one is sung by Udit Narayan. However, Kreem’s version is close to my heart. I need to say few words about Kreem. This techie music composer, hugely underrated in Bollywood, is one of the few music composers, who know how to really compose a song using modern instruments, without copying anything from Western world, in name of inspiration. These are some of the hard working musicians who have kept the dignity of Bollywood music world intact. How sad, people talk about A R Rahman but they fail to take note of gems composed by such lesser heard names. I came to hear him first in my college days, when out of curiosity, I came to buy this cassette, seeing new names on the flap of the cassette as unheard names always fascinated me. Now lend ears to this moving number, which talks about pangs of falling in love with beloved belonging to someone else legally! That’s why the song says ” moon is dotted with rough spots yet one cannot resist its beauty”!
For movie version to notice the picturization one can visit this link.
The tragedy with Bollywood is that if movie bombs at the box office, the songs also fail to create impact. I am sure very few movie lovers would have heard the name of this movie released in the middle of the 90s. Mercifully, Jatin Lalit was at its peak in those days. This innovative duo managed to give some beautiful numbers, which managed to find the ears despite movie doing average business. Since this movie is by-product of Bhatt Camp, rest assured that song must be aesthetically shot! I love this song because it takes me to college days, wherein I realized that moon in youth leaves the sky and gets placed in some beautiful face!
Whenever Ghulam Ali came to sing for Indian movies, the song turned out to be defining moment in world of Indian movie music. Be it “Dil Ye Pagal Dil” or ” Chupke Chupke Raat Din”, the songs always managed to stay in the hearts and minds for forever. So it was not unexpected that this song became representative song for broken dreams. What stunning lines the verses have! Just listen to it and you would be bound to play it for more time. Anu Malik was not very popular in those days, but with such movies, he managed to build a position for himself. The bold sequences in the this song have the stamp of Mahesh Bhatt’s vision!
This song is departure from the songs I have mentioned in this post. It’s from a classic produced in 1950 “Bawre Nain”, featuring Raj Kapoor and Geetabali. The song would let you know that how simple and innocent gesture have given way to nothing left for imagination gestures of Sunny Leone. Anyway, this song has remarkable innocent gestures of Geetabali, who is trying to please her moon. I am happy that silver hairs failed to mention this good number, dedicated to moon, sung by Rajkumari, and allowed me to talk about this song..ha..ha..ha. This beautiful singer sang few songs but these few songs have become unforgettable numbers.
This song has a very pleasant tune and some excellent from verses from Maya Govind- a very talented female lyricist from Lucknow. How often we notice female lyricist in Bollywood or elsewhere? My friend Sagar Nahar, who is prominent song collector from Hyderabad, very rightly points out that this Bappi Lahiri’s composition sounds very similar to S D Burman’s composition in Abhiman ” Tere Mere Milan Ki Raina”. Interestingly, both the movies Jhoothi and Abhiman were directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee. And, above all, it’s picturized on stunningly beautiful Rekha! What else can eyes crave for!
For Rekha lovers, here is a clearer video, but unfortunately, the song is incomplete.
9. Kolaveri Di
Well, I need not to say anything about this song. I have already written a post on it, which you can read here. I have to mention this song for one more time because first it belongs to current period, making you all know the changes that have hit the Indian film music, and secondly, it talks about moon in hilarious way. A song meant for heart broken guys but the approach involved is refreshingly unique. Anyway, for me, it means a greater involvement with moon instead of nurturing hatred for distance moon.
The lovers of this singer, like always, would pay customary tribute to this multifaceted singer Kishore Kumar on his birth anniversary, which falls on August 4. It’s really strange that people ignored in their own life times or, for that matter, people who get subjected to humiliation of all sorts while they are alive, attain exalted position after death. It’s pretty hard to analyze the behaviour of worldly souls. Kishore Kumar, attained legendary status during his life time. Nothing strange, after all, he was actor, singer, producer and director par excellence. He did full justice to the various roles he came to play. Let me state that I am not much impressed by folks working in world of cinema but then how can I ignore some real good souls, who provided this fascinating medium a great height? Above all, I feel it’s need of the hour to resurrect the images of people grossly misunderstood in their own life times. That’s the most ideal way to pay tribute to these great souls.
Kishore Kumar was fully aware of nuisance created in his name. That’s why he openly confessed that “world hails me as mad but I feel that world has gone mad. I wish to make it clear that I am not that mad as assumed by some sections of the society.” He was really hurt by the gossip stories, shared by the pervert minds behind his back. He always wondered what made people enter in falsehood and cheap stories about a person whom they knew nothing much other than that he was a good singer? Anyway, I must say that such gossips and stories tell less about him but revealed lot about the mindset of persons involved in them. “When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.” (Wayne Dyer)
This theory that he was mad was circulated by one lady journalist, who had come to take his interview, living alone at that time. To prove his point that he was not all alone, Kishore introduced this lady journalist to trees and flowers, whom he treated as best friends. This lady presented this gesture in all wrong way suggesting that he spent long evenings with his arms entwined around them! One can imagine how simple facts get twisted to create bizarre stories about this very simple and honest person, trapped in the deceptive world of cinema. He always cursed himself that he became part of this medium, which survived on cosmetic gestures. It’s amazing that many know him as money crazy soul, forgetting the cruel gestures of producers who made him sing the song but never bothered to pay in time. When he introduced tough measures to ensure timely payment he was declared money crazy. That’s so nasty, isn’t it?
He was in many circles accused of not taking enough care of Madhubala. Well, very few knew that he was not only fully aware of her fatal disease when he came to marry Madhubala but also spent 9 long years with a bed ridden wife, taking her care in all the ways possible. All this he did amid many professional obligations, which in crazy world of movies, had to be fulfilled in time. Talking about cause of his separation with one of his wives, actor Shammi Kapoor, revealed that Kishore was not entirely wrong in divorcing his wife. After all, if the wife remained away all the time, on one pretext or another, is there any point in staying with that wife?
Let’s acknowledge his singing abilities. He was so humble could be gauged from the fact that he had no shame in accepting that he knew nothing about singing and thing like classical singing was beyond his singing ability! Contrast this remark with remark of R D Burman who said that “Kishore’s voice was the best voice for songs having classical touch”. When he was asked to sing “Mere Naina Sawan Bhado” he had refused to sing it, stating that it was a very tough song not on par with his vocal chords. Anyway, he made Lata to sing it first and then came to sing it just the way sung by Lata after rehearsing her version for many days. The famous Ghazal Singer Pankaj Udhas, throwing light on Kishore’s sense and sensibility, said,” We know Kishore as man capable of singing fun-filled songs in great style. However, Kishore also sang some very serious numbers. That’s ample proof of the fact that inside his child like heart, there were traces of deep seated sadness.” The celebrated Bhajan singer Anoop Jalota feels that such a great singer appear once every 500 years. According to him, a singer should be a good actor to do full justice to any movie song. That’s the reason why Kishore not only sang well songs picturized on him but also sang to such perfection songs picturized on other actors that it appeared as if actor himself was singing the song. The unusual range of his vocal chords could be known from the very fact that on one hand, he sang “Ek Chatur Naar“; on the other hand, we find him singing “Koi humdum na raha” with such sadness that it fills our heart with deep pain.
In the end, it would not be out of tune to say that let’s stop judging the worth of creative souls via our limited perceptions. These creative souls are often very sensitive souls, who reside on higher plane of thoughts. Our limited understanding of them and their works often leaves such soul in great pain. Instead of highlighting our ignorance, it’s better we truly honour them by taking care of their great works in a genuine way. I can hear Kishor Da singing “Hum Laut Aaayenge Tum Yun Hi Bulate Rahana” (I would surely return..Just keep on calling me back). So do you hear my calls, Kishore Da?
The passing away of Rajesh Khanna makes all sensitive souls very sad. He should have lived for some more years on this planet. In India, they say people used to live for more than 100 years in ancient times. The people are dying at a very young age nowadays. We have been witnessing the passing away of creative souls at frequent intervals since last year- Jagjit Singh, Shahryar, Ravi, Shri Lal Shukla, Shammi Kapoor, Hanuman of modern times Dara Singh and now Rajesh Khanna. It appears that heaven badly needs creative artists to entertain its own residents, and thus, be it a singer, writer or actor, all are slowly getting placed in heaven one by one. Anyway, the death of Rajesh Khanna makes me realize that death is really the great leveler. It leaves none. It cares a damn for stature.
Rajesh Khanna provided death a new meaning in his timeless classic movie “Anand”. The movie highlighted the theme that death is an insignificant drama. However, today when he has passed away, it’s pretty hard to keep emotions in check. The Hindi movie landscape’s first superstar has now become a sweet memory as the presence now gets limited to magazines, books and movies. I really don’t know what are the elements involved in the making of a superstar but I am aware of the fact that his charishma in 70s left both young and old spellbound. Male newborns got named Rajesh, a new hair style came into existence and the frenziness found in every woman’s heart attained new height. The arrival of angry young man Amitabh Bachchan soon eclipsed the magic of Rajesh Khanna, but by then Rajesh Khanna image has attained some sort of immortality.
The early phase of all great actors had been a roller coaster ride. Rajesh Khanna proved to be no exception. The leading actresses of those days refused to work with him and well known directors failed to take note of him. His early movies did not create a desired effect. When Shakti Samanta narrated him the story of Aradhana, he noticed that Rajesh Khanna did not seem to be much impressed. After all, it was a female oriented movie, in which the hero died during the middle of the movie. It was no less a herculean task for Shakit Da to make Rajesh Khanna see light at the end of the tunnel. However, very few can predict the course of destiny. The movie, which in eyes of Rajesh Khanna, offered no better prospects not only proved to be a milestone in history of Indian movies but also gave Hindi movie world its first superstar. That’s the only logic which governs Bollywood- success appears like appearance of cascade in barren land. It defies all established rules. A female oriented movie gave Indian movie landscape its first male superstar!
Interestingly, the other dominant trend which defines Bollywood is that superstars rarely know real acting or, for that matter, are rarely offered roles that involve some real shades of acting. That’s so evident if one has witnessed acting skills of present “Khan Brigade”. They develop some lovable styles but they rarely come to act. The only superstar that can act a bit, Amitabh Bachchan, too feels that he never got an opportunity to reveal interesting shades of acting. All the time he remained engaged in “dhishum dhishum” (fight scenes)! Anyway, destiny smiled on Rajesh Khanna once again when he got opportunity to show his acting skills in some movies having substantial plots. It’s really curious coincidence that it was Hrishikesh Mukherjee, known for his simplistic take on serious issues, who came to provide both Rajesh Khanna and Amitabh Bachchan some good opportunities to strike a bonhomie with various shades of acting. In fact, they both came to work together under his direction in Anand and Namak Haraam. Anand turned out to be a huge success. In fact, the character played by Amitabh, Babu Moshay, became a household name. The plot of Anand revolved around the philosophy found in the Upanishads that there is no such thing as death. Death is not an end but a new beginning. In other words, it taught the art of living, reminding us that laughter is the best medicine. After all, we rarely come to live life in a proper way. The movie made it clear that death is final drama, which paves the way for soul’s fresh journey with new set of cloth in form of a new body! Rajesh Khanna depicted this art of living in an unforgettable way.
However, let’s not forget the role which Kishore Kumar, Mukesh, R D Burman, Salil Choudhary, Majrooh Sultanpuri, Anand Bakshi, Laxmikant Pyarelaal, Hemant Kumar, Sahir and Khaiyyam played in shaping the course of success for Rajesh Khanna. It’s an undisputed fact that Kishore Kumar played the most significant role in making Rajesh Khanna and Amitabh Bachchan careers attain starry heights. It’s also a proven fact that both of them lost their star appeal, when Kishore Kumar stopped singing for them in last stage of his singing career, due to health reasons. The romanticism demonstrated by Rajesh Khanna and machoism exhibited by Amitabh were heavily dependent on voice of Kishore Kumar! His voice acted as most suitable medium for them, which earlier provided new heights to Dev Anand. I am sure had Kishore been missing, Rajesh Khann would have failed to locate “Mere sapno ki Rani“. Tanuja would have maintained safe distance from Rajesh Khanna had Kishore not turned out to be “Dil ke Chain“. This song “Ye Jo Public Hai Ye Sab Jaanti Hai” became the most popular idiom to make a remark on the shady affairs in the world of politics and business. Another song from the same movie Roti “Gore Range Pe Na Itna Gumaan Kar” transcended generations to influence the fate of every fair skinned Indian girl.
May his soul rest in peace. The people who have moved ahead in this eternal journey, never travel backwards. They simply live inside our heart and minds as sweet memories. This line which forms the part of song picturized on him expresses this sentiment so well: “Kuch Log Jo Ek Roj Bichud Jaate Hai Wo Hazaro Ke Aane Se Milte Nahi“. Anand never dies. He always manages to be back on earth’s playground to play the game of life with a new face.That realization is bound to make one smile even as the eyes remained moist with tears. It makes reunion with Rajesh Khanna-a good soul-a great possibility. By the way, let’s not forget Rajesh Khanna’s words said to Pushpa In Amar Prem: ” Pushpa, I hate tears”.
1. Mere Naina Saawan Bhado ( Mehbooba )
2. Kuch To Log Kahenge (Amar Prem)
3. Zindagi Pyar Ka Geet Hai (Souten)
4. Hazaar Rahe Mud Ke Dekhi (Thodi Se Bewafai)
5. Vada Tera Vada (Dushman)
6.Sajna Saath Nibhana (Doli)
7. Pyaar Deewana Hota Hai (Kati Patang)
8. Ye Reshmi Zulfein (Do Raastein)
9. Jeevan Se Bhari Teri Aankhein (Safar)
10. Zubaan Pe Dard Bhari Daastan( Maryaada)
11. Wo Shaam Kuch Ajeeb Thi (Khamoshi)
12. Yun Hi Tum Mujhse Baat Karti Ho (Sachha Jhootha)
13. Mere Dil Me Aaaj Kya Hai (Daag)
14. Kahin Door Jab Din Dhal Jaayein (Anand)
15. Zindagi Ek Safar Hai Suhana (Andaaz)
A lot depends on how the song is picturized. I love this song not only for beautiful verses by Majrooh Sultanpuri, excellent composition by R D Burman, terrific singing by Kishore Kumar, but also for its mesmeric picturization. Absolutely stunning romantic song picturized in a perfect setting. A meaningful one as well. The verses are not only talking about romance in some absurd way like “Tum mujhko chand laake do” (get the moon for me) but they are having a take on it in a balanced way. The movie was full of typical Bollywood elements ( and that’s why I don’t like this movie) but the songs stand apart.
राजेश खन्ना का यूँ ही अचानक क्षितिज के उस पार चले जाना दुखी करता है. अभी उनकी उम्र ही क्या हुई थी लेकिन कलाकारों की मौत का जो सिलसिला पिछले साल से शुरू हुआ है वो अब तक बना हुआ है. जगजीत सिंह, शहरयार, मशहूर संगीतकार रविजी, हिंदी के लेखक श्रीलाल शुक्ल, शम्मी कपूर, फिर हमारे चहेते हनुमान दारा सिंह और अब राजेश खन्ना. ऐसा लगता है कि देवलोक का माहौल बहुत ग़मगीन हो गया है तभी पृथ्वी के सभी बड़े कलाकार एक के बाद ऊपर के लोको में चले जा रहे है. खैर राजेश खन्ना की मौत के बाद ये एहसास मुझे हो चला है कि मौत भी कोई चीज़ होती है जो “आनंद” को भी शोक में परिवर्तित कर सकता है. हिंदी फ़िल्म जगत को पहला सुपरस्टार देने वाला अब यादो का हिस्सा बन गया है. ये सुपरस्टार क्या चीज़ होती है मुझे ज्यादा नहीं पता पर राजेश खन्ना का जादू सत्तर के दशक में यूँ चढ़ा कि माएं अपने बच्चो का नाम राजेश रखने लगी, युवतियों के अन्दर का पागलपन थोडा और बढ़ चला और नाई के दुकान पे एक और हेयर स्टाइल का उदय हो गया. बुरा हो एंग्री यंगमैन अमिताभ के अवतार का जिसने राजेश की आभा को ग्रहण लगा दिया बहुत जल्द ही पर तब तक राजेश का जादू एक अमरता को प्राप्त कर चला था.
जैसा सब अच्छे कलाकारों के साथ होता है राजेश को भी आरंभिक दिनों में सब ने नकार दिया. चोटी की अभिनेत्रियों ने काम करने से मना कर दिया. शुरुआती फिल्मे पिट गयी बाक्स ऑफिस पे. फिर जाके आराधना मिली जिसको लेके राजेश खन्ना खुद ही सशंकित थे क्योकि नायिका प्रधान फ़िल्म में इनके लिए कुछ ख़ास नहीं था. पर जब सफलता मिलनी होती है तो मिल के रहती है यूँ ही जैसे रेगिस्तान में झरने का फूट पड़ना. कम से कम बालीवुड में सफलता का सिलसिला ऐसे ही शुरू हो जाता है सब तर्कों को धता बता के. तो एक नायिका प्रधान फ़िल्म ने भारतीय रजत पटल को उसका पहला सुपरस्टार दिया.
बालीवुड में वैसे सुपरस्टार को कुछ ख़ास एक्टिंग नहीं करनी पड़ती. कम से कम आज कल के तथाकथित “खान” सुपरस्टारों को देख तो यही समझ में आता है. अमिताभ का भी यही दुखड़ा रहा है कि उनसे किसी ने ढंग की एक्टिंग नहीं करवाई सिवाय ढिशुम ढिशुम के. खैर राजेश खन्ना के हाथ कुछ अच्छी फिल्मे आई जिनमे उन्हें एक्टिंग के अपने कुछ ख़ास शेड्स दिखाने का मौका मिला. ये एक महज सयोंग ही है कि ऋषिकेश मुखर्जी ने ही राजेश खन्ना और अमिताभ दोनों को कुछ फिल्मे प्रदान कि जिनमे उन्हें वास्तविक अभिनय से दो चार होना पड़ा. ये भी क्या अद्भुत संयोग है कि इन दो फिल्मो “आनंद” और “नमक हराम” में दोनों ने साथ काम किया. आनंद एक कालजयी फ़िल्म बन के उभरी. आनंद तो अमर हुआ ही पर बाबु मोशाय भी कभी ना मरने वाली लोकप्रियता को प्राप्त हो चला. आनंद उपनिषद् के इस सत्य को प्रतिपादित करता था कि इंसान कभी नहीं मरता है. मौत एक तमाशा है जिसमे आत्मा को नए कपडे लत्ते मिल जाते है. इस भाव को राजेश खन्ना ने अद्भुत तरीके से परदे पे प्रस्तुत किया.
राजेश खन्ना के एक्टिंग में एक ख़ास तरीकें की नाटकीयता थी मगर जब कभी सधा हुआ अभिनय करने का मौका मिला उन्होंने कर दिखाया. शुरुआती दौर में नंदा के साथ आई यश चोपड़ा की “इत्तेफाक” इस बात की पुष्टि करती है. खैर अमर प्रेम, कटी पतंग, कुदरत, सौतन, थोड़ी सी बेवफाई, अवतार, डोली, रोटी और आन मिलो सजना इनकी कुछ उल्लेखनीय फिल्मे है. इनकी सफलता के बारे में बात करना और किशोर कुमार, आर डी बर्मन, मजरूह, आनंद बक्षी, एस डी बर्मन, लक्ष्मीकांत प्यारेलाल, कल्यानजी आनंदजी, हेमंत कुमार और खैय्याम इत्यादि का जिक्र ना करना मतलब दाल में से नमक का गायब कर देना है. किशोर कुमार ने ही रूमानियत के सुपरस्टार राजेश खन्ना और यंग्री यंग मैन अमिताभ को वो दर्जा दिलवाया जो किसी के लिए दुर्लभ होता है. किशोर कुमार के चले जाने के बाद ये दोनों धडाम से नीचे आ गिरे. सोचिये अगर किशोर ना होते तो “मेरे सपनो की रानी” कहा से आती इस शानदार तरीके सें ? सोचिये अगर “ओ मेरे दिल के चैन” के चैन किशोर ना होते तो क्या राजेश तनूजा को इम्प्रेस कभी कर पाते! और रोटी में गाया ये गीत “ये जो पब्लिक है ये सब जानती है” तो एक कालजयी मुहावरा ही बन गया. और इस फ़िल्म में किशोर कुमार का गोरे रंग पे कटाक्ष ” गोरे रंग पे ना इतना गुमान कर” सिर्फ मुमताज़ पर ही नहीं सिमट के रह गया वरन इस गीत के बाद भारत में पैदा हुई हर गोरी लड़की के व्यक्तित्व को बेधता चला गया.
खैर ईश्वर इनकी आत्मा को शांति प्रदान करे. कहते है जाने वाले कभी लौट के नहीं आते. सिर्फ इनकी याद रह जाती है. सही बात है ” कुछ लोग जो बिछुड़ जाते है वो हजारो के आने से मिलते नहीं“. पर “आनंद” कभी मरते नहीं बस इसी रंगमंच पर रूप बदल के आ जाते है और ये बोध इस दुःख में एक मुस्कान की लहर तो पैदा ही कर देता है. पुनर्मिलन की उम्मीद तो बंधा ही देता है.
मेरे कुछ पसंदीदा गीत राजेश खन्ना पे फिल्माए हुए:
१. मेरे नैना सावन भादो ( मेहबूबा)
२. कुछ तो लोग कहेंगे (अमर प्रेम)
३. जिंदगी प्यार का गीत है (सौतन)
४. हज़ार राहे मुड़ के देखी (थोड़ी से बेवफाई)
५. वादा तेरा वादा (दुश्मन)
६. सजना साथ निभाना (डोली)
७. प्यार दीवाना होता है ( कटी पतंग)
८. ये रेशमी जुल्फे ( दो रास्ते)
९. जीवन से भरी तेरी आँखें (सफ़र)
१०. जुबान पे दर्द भरी दास्ताँ( मर्यादा)
११. वो शाम कुछ अजीब थी (खामोशी)
१२. यूँ ही तुम मुझसे बात करती हो (सच्चा झूठा)
१३. मेरे दिल में आज क्या है (दाग)
१४. कही दूर जब दिन ढल जाए (आनंद)
१५. जिंदगी एक सफ़र है सुहाना (अंदाज़)
It’s never an easy task to find appropriate words that come to honor the greatness of some people. I always face the shortage of expressions whenever I wish to say something about Kishore Kumar as earthly words, in my eyes, come to limit the achievements. However, the dilemma to miss the opportunity to say few things whenever time allows you to do that always haunts me and I am but just compelled to deal with unique aspects related with this man. This man was not just a mere entertainer -the nachaiyya gavaiyya soul ( mere singer and dancer).
He was a Gandharva in human form or a saint with a musical heart who lived with us to help us release our pains and frustrations and turn into better human beings with the help of notes of music.On his birth anniversary, I wish to take note of unheard aspects related with his life via him! I mean with the help of few recordings that captured him live in conversation with equally legendary figures. I think it would be the best way to shatter many myths associated with this great man.
Like in this rare video wherein I find Shammi Kapoor talking about Kishore Kumar. Though Kishore Kumar does not figure live in this video but Shammi Kapoor was one of the contemporaries who loved him lot. He was quite frustrated on not having any song to his credit in voice of Kishore. He got so identified with voice of Rafi that in his long career he didn’t get a single chance when Kishore could sing for him even as they walked together for decades. And that made Shammi restless as he loved this wonderful person very much. Remembering Kishore’s love for Madhubala he was bit sad. Shammi calls it a tragic affair but he came to shatter the falsehood that Kishore was bit casual towards Madhubala when she was seriously ill.
Shammi tells that this man did all what was humanly possible despite having tight singing schedules. Anyway, Shammi was the happiest person on earth when Kishore finally sang for him. The song turned out to be one of the biggest hits of its times and also one of the most notorious songs in history of Hindi movie songs. Remember “Saat Saheliya Khadi Khadi” from Vidhaata! Yes, this was the first song picturized on Shammi Kapoor in voice of Kishore and what a song it turned out to be!
Can you imagine Kishore in a long conversation with Lata? Yes, that’s true. These two legendary figures entered in a long conversation all in the name of interview. Kishore was so unhappy with media persons that he said if now ever he gave interview it would only be a possibility if Lata approaches him. A generosity on part of Lata made it possible for future generations to see two great people in a very intimate conversation.It was supposed to be an interview but it turned out to be more than an interview. After all, taking interviews was not Lata’s cup of tea! These two souls in name of interview revealed so many touching episodes as they laughed and smiled together. No wonder Lata went into stage of huge depression after death of Kishore Kumar.
In this so-called interview, Kishore remembers how he came to meet her for the first time in a very hilarious way when Lata misunderstood him for a man chasing him! They both went to a same studio in the same train together for two different purposes. Later the confusion got removed when it became clear that Kishore actually had an appointment with Khemchand Prakash and so he was in the studio to meet him. He held Khemchand Prakash in high esteem as this was the man who shaped his music career. Though K L Saigal was source of inspiration for both Lata and Kishore, Kishore finds the contribution of Khemchand Prakash a defining one.It was he who assured Ashok Kumar that this man had great singing talent. Ashok Kumar was bit apprehensive about the singing ability of Kishore in front of Khemchand Prakash telling him that he lacked the art of voice modulation!
In another part of this interview one finds him making candid confession before Lata that he lacked formal training in music and Lata in that regards stood miles ahead of him. One can notice the sense of embarrassment which grips Lata on this disclosure. Anyway, both felt that music has changed its face lot and singing is now no longer that beautiful affair but a strenuous affair. Kishore was really depressed over the badmouthing that portrayed a false image of his in eyes of his well wishers. Kishore made Lata uncomfortable once again when he asked her why do people enter in such loose talk? Though Lata dismissed such rumours associated with Kishore outrightly stating this was all bullshit but logical explanation came from the side of Kishore himself. Hitting the detractors below the belt with he stated that world belongs to mad people devoid of ethics of any sorts! Kishore says that people hail him as a person not in his senses but he feels that world has gone to the dogs!
True, many people accuse him of money oriented but I am pretty confused as the man who had to do so many charity shows to get rid of income tax burdens could never be a money conscious soul. In fact, look at the way he suggests Lata to stop singing and do stage shows for charity’s sake. Can this ever come out from heart of money conscious soul? At least, it’s impossible in my eyes. Anyway, let me discuss his association with a towering figure in the world of Hindi film music S D Burman. A person who played a monumental role in life of Kishore. Kishore reciprocated the kind gestures of this great man by hailing him as mentor and father figure. Nobody saw tears in eyes of lively Kishore lost in laughs all the times but the day S D Burman passed away many noticed tears in his eyes. Recalling the same experience live he says that it appeared to him as he sat near his dead body that this man would just wake up and ask him to sing! One is really touched the way Kishore unfolds his association with S D Burman.
This was the man who was conscious of Kishore the way a father is conscious of a pretty naughty child. In fact, SD Burman was himself a child hearted figure. So both enjoyed a great chemistry.Kishore remembering S D Burman says that he became hugely upset with him when he started doing so many concerts, fearing that it would deteriorate the quality of his vocal chords. He warned Kishore that if he did not stop doing concerts it would be impossible for him to give him singing assignments.
Revealing the innocence of S D Burman he tells us that when he refused to participate in practice sessions, S D Burman invited him to share food with him at his home. After enjoying great food as he was about to leave, S D Burman locked the doors and get him involved in the rigorous practice sessions. S D Burman at odd hours of night used to give rings to Kishore mainly to ensure that all is well with his vocal chords! Once as he was about to leave for important recording, he noticed S D Burman coming towards him and taking him to a long drive to an open area full of greenery. S D Burman asking him to run in open fields along with him made Kishore sing some songs for him at the end of running session!! No wonder he was in tears when S D Burman became part of the stars.
Ending this article with prophetic words he said to Lata. This man did not live for long after he said that. I notice that this great man like all exceptional soul was eager to merge in supreme consciousness. He told Lata that it’s now time to bid adieu to this temporary home as it’s good for artists that they should quit the world once they have achieved all. It’s not good that they should leave the world, when the world starts treating them with disdain! This man I find left the world after this disclosure. However, he lives in our memories in an eternal way. Such people never die.
Some of the popular songs of Kishore Kumara are here: Kishore Kumar Songs
2. Kishore Kumar Talks About S D Burman (Part One)
3. Kishore Kumar Talks About S D Burman (Part Two)
4. Kishore Kumar Talks About S D Burman (Part Three)
5. Shammi Kapoor Remembers Kishore Kumar
6. Kishore Kumar Live ( Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas)
7. Kishore Kumar Live ( Zindagi Ek Safar Hai Suhana)
Some Popular Kishore Songs Are Here: Popular Songs Of Kishore Kumar