Best songs of 1955: And the winners are!

April 9, 2012

1955 films

I am delighted to present a survey of the best songs of 1955 and invite the readers to an interactive discussion to choose the best songs, singers and music director. For this post I have to thank the readers AM and KR Vaishampayan who suggested while discussing the music of Mughal-e-Azam (which failed to win the Filmfare award for 1960 films!) that I do a year wise survey of music of films of 1953-45 in reverse order and place it for in-depth analysis, comments and suggestions by the readers. They suggested 1953 as the year because the first Filmfare awards were given in 1954.

Then why I am starting with 1955? The year of Filmfare awards relates to the films made in the previous calendar year. The 1954 awards should by that logic have been for films made in 1953. But as we all know the first award for the best music was given to Naushad for Baiju Bawra, which was made in 1952. I do not think the awards were meant for 1952-53 combined. Then both 1955 and 1956 year awards went for movies made in 1954 – SD Burman (Taxi Driver) and Hemant Kumar (Nagin) respectively. 1957 Awards onwards the calendar becomes regular. Which means there are gaps in 1955 and 1953.

Some more Filmfare Awards trivia. In the first two years the award for the best music was given for a particular song (Naushad for Tu Ganga ki mauj; SD Burman for Taxi Driver). Thereafter this category of award was given for the entire score in a film. Further, the awards for the best playback singer was started in 1959, which was combined till 1967. After 1968 onwards separate awards for male and female playback singers were given.

Since we have the advantage of hindsight and the internet, we might lay down the following ground rules:

· Year of Awards would refer to the films released in the same calendar year.

· Best music director award would be given to the complete score in a movie and not a specific song. It may be a good idea to discuss the entire work of a music director in that year to understand his impact.

· Separate awards would be given to male and female playback singers.

So here we go.

Musical landmarks

Urankhatola: Naushad

By this time Naushad was a superstar. Films were financed and sold in his name. He got as prominent billing as the stars in publicity material. He comes up with his typical class score in this fantasy film with great songs by Mohammad Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar.

Azaad: C Ramchandra

C Ramchandra was the antithesis of Naushad. It was said for C Ramchandra that he could create a score in a month what Naushad would take a year to do. CR proved this literally with Azaad. Regulars at this blog would by now be familiar with the story how Naushad rebuffed the offer of SHS Naidu, the producer from South, to compose music of the film in a month. They had just finished the Tamil version and they wanted to produce the Hindi version on the same set in a quick time. Naushad’s answer was that he was a music director and not an assembly-line factory. CR accepted the assignment, and true to his reputation he created a marvellous score containing a cornucopia of Lata Mangeshkar songs, including a duet with Lata in his own voice Kitna haseen hai mausam. Dilip Kumar wanted Talat to be his playback. But he was not available. CR assured Dilip Kumar he would sing in such perfect Talat style that no one would know the difference.

Shree 420: Shankar Jaikishan

Shree 420 was as much a Raj Kapoor masterpiece as Shankar Jaikishan’s with the team of Shailendra-Hasrat Jaipuri-Mukesh and Lata Mangeshkar. If a list of immortal iconic songs is made Mera joota hai Japani and Pyar hua iqrar hua would figure prominently in it.

Devdas: SD Burman

Just as it required daring on the part of Bimal Roy to recreate PC Barua – KL Saigal’s Devdas (1935), SD Burman had a tougher task to match up to Timir Baran- KL Saigal’s magic. For Saigal’s two duets – Balam aye baso more man me and Dukh ke ab din beetat naahi, SDB created two Talat solos Mitwa lagi re ye kaisi anbujh aag and Kisko khabar thi fitting wonderfully on the deeply tragic hero Dilip Kumar. (If you think about it, Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Ismail Durbar did not even try – there is no solo for Shahrukh Khan in their Devdas (2002). And I should say, rightly so – because their most memorable song is the peppy dancing duet between Paro and Chandramukhi Dola re dola re. Saratchandra must be squirming in his grave – in his story the two ladies do not meet). Another remarkable song is an outstanding mujra by then unknown singer Mubarak Begum Wo na ayenge palat ke unhe lakh hum bulayen, which gave her big fame as one of the best singers of mujras.

Mr & Mrs 55: OP Nayyar

OP Nayyar had created sensation a year earlier with Aar Paar. He continued his great success in this light hearted romantic comedy of Guru Dutt with Rafi and Geeta Dutt. Very early in his career OP Nayyar crossed swords with Lata Mangeshkar and sworn never to work with her. Geeta Dutt was his mainstay in his challenge to Lata Mangeshkar, as was also her challenge to her. OPN would later carry on this war with Shamshad Begum and Asha Bhosle as his main singers.

Jhanak jhank payal baje: Vasant Desai

If C Ramchandra was contrast to Naushad, Vasant Desai was a bigger contrast to OP Nayyar. So in the same year you have a musical masterpiece based on classical music and dance. Among rare songs sung by great classical singers is the title song of this movie by Ustad Amir Khan. You also have several Lata Mangeshkar songs, and an extremely melodious Hemant Kumar – Lata Mangeshkar duet Nain se nain nahi milao.

As per the rules set by AM and KR Vaishampayan I am not supposed to give any conclusion. My role is limited to presenting the facts, some overview and analysis, and leave it to the jury that is the wider reader community to decide the final winners. I think I would not be breaching the boundaries set forth for me, if I suggest that the best music director would be perhaps one of the above.

Other important musical compositions.

Besides the above big six there are several other films which are significant for their music or some songs, though they may not have been blockbusters. Main gharibon ka dil hun watan ki zuban by Hemant Kumar in Aab-e-Hayat composed by Sardar Malik is an eternal song for me. I have covered it in my post on Sardar Malik. Baradari composed by Nashad (not Naushad) has several iconic songs. Tasweer banata hun figures in my list of Talat Mahmood’s best and Bhula nahi dena jib hula nahi dena among the top 5 greatest Rafi- Lata duets. SD Burman had two more films with everlasting songs – House No 44 starring Dev Anand and Kalpna Kartik which had Hemant Kumar songs Teri duniya me jeene se and Chup hai dharti chup hain chand sitare, and Munimji starring Dev Anand and Nalini Jaiwant, which had Kishore Kumar’s Jeevan ke safar me rahi. Thus SD Burman shows tremendous range. Shankar Jaikishan had started foraying outside RK banner though to some annoyance to Raj Kapoor. In Nutan, Balraj Sahni starrer Seema they created a Manna Dey masterpiece Tu pyar ka sagar hai. Among the great composers who created memorable music in more than one film in the year is also C Ramchandra whose Vyjayantimala, Suraiya, Jayant starrer Yasmeen had unforgettable Talat classic Bechain nazar betaab jigar ye dil hai kisi ka deewana. A memorable niche song is Kavi Pradeep’s Tere dwar khada bhagwan bhagat bhar de from Vaman Avtar composed by Avinash Vyas. Another memorable song is Rafi’s Basti bast parvat parvat gata jaye banjara from Railway Platform composed by Madan Mohan. Incidentally this was the debut film of Sunil Dutt. But the song that takes the cake for immortal song from a completely unknown composer (Amarnath) is Preet kiye dukh hoye from Garam Coat. YouTube mentions that he was different from the famous Pandit Amarnath, the elder brother of Husnlal-Bhagatram. It seems this Amarnath gave music only for this film. If true, this is a most amazing personal discovery for me, because for some reason I always attributed this song to Madan Mohan.


Ravi had his first film as independent music director in this year – Vachan which had an iconic children song Chanda mama door ke. Ravi had been earlier assistant to Hemant Kumar. Ravi also gave music to another film in this year Albeli, which had a very pleasant Hemant Kumar-Lata Mngeshkar duet Muskurati hui chandni. Jaidev also debuted this year with Joru Ka Bhai which had a memorable Talat Mahmood song Teri zulfon se pyar kaun kare. N Dutta’s first film as music director Milap came this year, with some extremely popular songs such as Bachna zara ye zamana hai bura (Rafi, Geeta Dutt) and Jate ho to jao par jaoge kahan (Geeta Dutt). His association with Sahir Ludhiyanvi would later give many more memorable films such as Chandrakanta, Dhool Ka Phool, Lighthouse, Bhai Bahan etc. N Datta and Jaidev had been assistants to SD Burman. N Dutta had another film this year, Marine Drive with a memorable Rafi song Ab wo karam karen ki sitam main nashe mein hun.

Fact file and trivia

There was a film named Amar Sahgal in this year which was made from the clippings of KL Saigal’s films.  This film had his 19 film and non-film songs. Another film named on a film star was Dev Anand in Goa. IMDB indicates it was a film about freedom fighters, so was Dev Anand playing himself, and if so what was he doing?

Film Lagan music by Hemant Kumar had a song, Dekhi teri duniya wo duniya ke rakhwale sung by Rafi, which was apparently first recorded in the voice of Ravi (but perhaps not used in the film). We lost Ravi on March 7 this year, so here is this song in his voice as a tribute to one of the great composers of the Golden Era.

I always wondered what happened to the greats of the New Theatres. I find the name of RC Boral as the music director of a film titled Swami Vivekanand, whose songs obviously no one knows. It makes one somewhat sad at the end of a great era. RC Boral was the lynchpin of the New Theatres in Calcutta and defined the best in music with iconic songs by KL Saigal like Babul mora naihar, Tadpat beet din rain etc. RC Boral (as also others) migrating from Calcutta to Bombay and becoming inconspicuous by 50’s signified Bombay finally prevailing over Calcutta for better or worse.

This year had at least four pairs of twin songs of which two were unknown to me.  Ye baharon ka sama by Hemant Kumar/Lata Mangeshkar is an extremely melodious song. It may be my bias, but this song also proves my general theory about twin songs that the male version is almost invariably vastly superior to the female version. The other twin song which I did not know is quite unusual in that both versions are sung by males.  The song is Bast basti parvat parvat gata banjara by Rafi/Manmohan Krishna.  I have not been able to locate the Manmohan Krishna version, but I am sure it would land up on the YouTube some day.  After my expanded list I had thought I had covered all the well known twin songs, but it is amazing I keep on stumbling upon some outstanding twin songs.


Here is a list of memorable songs of 1955 film wise in alphabetical order to help readers make choices. The list is obviously not exhaustive, but seeks to include all noteworthy songs.

Aab-e-Hayat: Sardar Malik
1.  Main gharibon ka dil hun watan ti zuban  -  Hemant Kumar & others

Azaad:  C Ramchandra
2.   Radha na bole na bole na bole re  -  Lata Mangeshkar
3.    Aplam chaplam  -  Lata Mangeshkar and Usha Mangeshkar
4.   Dekhoji bahar ayee   -   Lata Mangeshkar
5.   Ja ri ja ri O kari badariya   -   Lata Mangeshkar
6.   Kitna haseen hai mausam   -   Chitalkar and Lata Mangeshkar
7.   Marna bhi mohabbat me kisi kaam na aya   -   Raghunath Jadav & others
8.   Pee ke daras ko taras gayi ankhiyan   -   Lata Mangeshkar
9.   Kitni jawan hai raat koi yaad aa gaya   -   Lata Mangeshkar

Adal-e-Jahangir:  Husnlal Bhagatram
10.  Ae meri zindagi tujhe dhoodun kahan  -   Talat Mahmood/Lata Mangeshkar (twin songs)

Albeli:  Ravi
11. Muskurati hui chandni   -   Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar

Baap Re Baap:  OP Nayyar
12.  Piya piya piya mera jiya pukare   -   Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle

Baradari:  Nashad
13.  Bhula nahi dena ji bhula nahi dena   -   Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar      
14.  Mohabbat ki bas itni dastan hai   -   Lata Mangeshkar
15.  Tasweer banata hun tasweer nahi banti   -   Talat Mahmood
16.  Kho diya maine pakar kisi ko aag lag jaye is zindagi ko   -   Lata Mangeshkar
17.  Dard bhara dil bhar bhar bhar jaye   -   Lata Mangeshkar

Devdas:  SD Burman
18.  Aan milo aan milo Shyam sanwre   -   Manna Dey and Geeta Dutt
19.  Sajan ki ho gayi gori   -   Geeta Dutt
20.  Ab aage teri marzi   -   Lata Mangeshkar
21.  O janewale ruk ja koi dum   -   Lata Mangeshkar
22.  Mitwa lagi re ye kaisi anbujh aag   -   Talat Mahmood
23.  Kisko khabar thi kisko yakeen tha   -   Talat Mahmood
24.  Jise tu qabool kar le   -   Lata Mangeshkar
25.  Wo na ayenge palat ke   -   Mubarak Begum

Garam Coat:  Amarnath
26.  Jogiya se preet kiye dukh hoye   -   Lata Mangeshkar

House No. 44:  SD Burman
27.  Teri duniya me jeene se behtar hai   -   Hemant Kumar
28   Chup hai dharti chup hai chand sitare   -   Hemant Kumar
29   Phaili hui hai sapnon ki baahen   -   Lata Mangeshkar

Insaniyat:   C Ramchandra
30.  Ayi jhoomti bahar   -   Talat Mahmood and Lata Mangeshkar

Jhanak jhank payal baje:  Vasant Desai
31.  Jhanak jhanak payal baje  -   Ustad Amir Khan
32.  Saiyan ja ja   -   Lata Mangeshkar
33.  Nain se nain nahi milao   -   Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
34.  Jo tum todo piya main nahi jodun re   -   Lata Mangeshkar
35.  Mere ae dil bata   -   Lata Mangeshkar

Joru Ka Bhai:  Jaidev
36.  Teri zulfon se pyar kaun kare   -   Talat Mahmood

Marine Drive:  N Dutta
37.  Ab wo karam Karen ki sitam main nashe mein hun   -   Rafi

Milap:  N Dutta
38.  Bachna zara ye zamana hai bura   -   Rafi and Geeta Dutt
39.  Ye baharon ka sama chand taron ka sama   -   Hemant Kumar/Lata Mangeshkar (twin songs)
40.  Jate ho to jao par jaoge kahan   -   Geeta Dutt

Mr & Mrs 55:  OP Nayyar
41.  Ae ji dil pe hua aisa jadoo   -   Rafi
42.  Thandi hawa kali ghata   -   Geeta Dutt
43.  Jane kahan mera jigar gaya ji   -   Rafi and Geeta Dutt
44.  Ab to ji hone laga kisi ki sorat ka samna   -   Shamshad Begum
45.  Chal diye bandanawaz chhod kar mere dil ka saaz   -   Rafi and Geeta Dutt
46.  Idhar tum haseen ho udhar dil jawan hai   -   Rafi and Geeta Dutt
47.  Preetam aan milo   -   Geeta Dutt

Munimji:  SD Burman
48.  Jeevan ke safar men rahi   -   Kishore Kumar/ Lata Mangeshkar (twin songs)
49.  Shivji bihane chale   -   Hemant Kumar
50.  Ghayal hiraniyan main ban ban dolun   -   Lata Mangeshkar

Naqab:  Govind Ram
51.  Tera khyal dil ko sataye to kya karen   -   Talat Mahmood
52.  Hum unki mast ankhon ke mastane hain   -   Talat Mahmood
53.  Majnu bana diya warna hum bhi aadmi the kaam ke   -   SD Batish, Balbir & others

Ratnaghar:  Sudhir Phadke
54.  Aise hain sukh sapan hamare  – Lata Mangeshkar

Railway Platform:  Madan Mohan
55.  Basti basti parbat parbat gata jaye banjara  -   Rafi/Manmohan Krishna (twin songs)
56.  Dekh tere bhagwan ki halat kya ho gayi insan   -   Rafi, SD Batish, Manmohan Krishna & others

Seema:  Shankar Jaikishan
57.  Suno chhoti si gudiya ki lambi kahani  -  Lata Mangeshkar
58.  Tu pyar ka sagar hai  -  Manna Dey
59.  Kahan ja raha hai tu ai janewale  -  Rafi
60.  Manmohna bade jhoothe  -  Lata Mangeshkar

Shri 420: Shankar Jaikishan
61.  Mera joota hai Japani  -  Mukesh
62.  Dil ka haal sune dilwala  -  Manna Dey & others
63.  Ichak dana bichak dana  -  Lata Mangeshkar & others
64.  Pyar hua iqrar hua  -  Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshakr
65.  Mud mud ke na dekh  -  Manna Dey, Asha Bhosle & others
66.  O janewale mud ke zara dekhte jana  -  Lata Mangeshkar
67.  Ramaiya vastavaiya  -  Rafi, Mukesh, Lata Mangeshkar & others

Tangewali:  Salil Chaudhary
68.  Halke halke chalo sanwre  -  Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar

Urankhatola:  Naushad
69.  Mera salam le ja  -  Lata Mangeshkar & others
70.  Mohabbat ki rahon men chalna sambhal ke  -  Rafi
71.  Na toofan se khelo  -  Rafi
72.  Hamare dil se na jana  -  Lata Mangeshkar
73.  Na ro ai dil kahin rone se taqdeeren badalti hain  -  Lata Mangeshkar
74.  More saiyan ji utarenge par ho  -  Lata Mangeshkar & others
75.  Sitaron ki mahfil saji tum na aye  -  Lata Mangeshkar
76.  O door ke musafir mujhko bhi sath le le  -  Rafi

Vachan:  Ravi
77.  Chanda mama door ke  -  Asha Bhosle
78.  Jab liya hath me hath  -  Asha Bhosle and Rafi

Waman Avtar:  Avinash Vyas
79.  Tere dwar khada bhagwan bhagat bhar de re jholi  -  Pradeep

Yasmin:  C Ramchandra
80.  Bechain nazar betab zigar  -  Talat Mahmood
81.  Mujhpe ilzam-e-bewafai hai  -  Lata Mangeshkar
82.  Tum apni yaad bhi dil se bhula dete to achcha tha  -  Talat Mahmood and Lata Mangeshkar
83.  Ankhon me sama jao dil me raha karna  -  Lata Mangeshkar
84.  Hans hans ke haseenon se nazar char kiye ja  -  Lata Mangeshkar

Some ‘special’ songs

Now I post some songs of 1955 which I consider ‘special’. They are not the best nor the most popular, nor are they likely to figure among nominations or winners. Some of these songs are relatively unknown, but extremely melodious and deserve to be known better. Some are quirky, breaking from the general mould, while some others have some interesting point about them. So enjoy these special songs of ‘1955’, while you think about the shortlist for various awards.

1. Aise hain sukh sapan hamare by Lata Mangeshkar from Ratnaghar, lyrics Narendra Sharma, music Sudhir Phadke

Sudhir Phadke-Narendra Sharma-Lata Mangeshkar combination’s classic Jyoti kalash chhalke from Bhabhi Ki Chudiyan is well known. No less melodious is the relatively unknown Aise hain sukh sapan hamare, with equally elegant lyrics by Narendra Sharma.

2. Muskurati hui chandni by Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar from Albeli, lyrics Ravi, music Ravi

What a fantastic gift by Ravi, who wrote the lyrics as well as composed the music, to his mentor Hemant Kumar. Ravi later became known for his ghazals for Rafi and Mahendra Kapoor, but in this early song and one of the rare songs he composed for Hemant Kumar, the latter’s influence is quite obvious.

3. Ye baharon ka sama by Hemant Kumar from Milap, lyrics Sahir Ludhiyanvi, music N Dutta

You have another forgotten Hemant Kumar masterpiece composed by another debutant. Sahir Ludhiyanvi, who later became known for his hard hitting rebellious poetry, writes a somewhat uncharacteristic soft romantic song, matching perfectly with the sonorous voice of Hemant Kumar. It is a twin song, the other version is sung by Lata Mangeshkar. My own preference is Hemant Kumar without doubt, but this video link has both the versions.

4. Shivji bihane chale by Hemant Kumar from Munimji, lyrics Shailendra, music SD Burman

I have to admit of Hemant Kumar-weakness. Here is a very different Hemant Kumar fun song about Shiv-Parvati cosmic marriage, presented as a stage song by a comic anchor Dev Anand disguised in heavy moustache. For good effect, in his introductory speech Dev Anand warns the ladies in the audience (read Nalini Jaiwant) not to look at persons in moustache with buri nazar, because hiding underneath may be their Lord Shiv (paramour).

5. Halke halke chalo sanwre by Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar from Tangewali, lyrics Prem Dhawan, msic Salil Chaudhary

There must be something about 1955 and Hemant Kumar, here is another ‘special’ song with him. We are all aware of tonga songs of OP Nayyar-Rafi-Asha Bhosle. Nothing could be more different from it than Salil Chaudhary-Hemant Kumar-Lata Mangeshkar. So you have this tonga song with a difference picturised on a pre-Rafi Shammi Kapoor and Nirupa Roy.

6. Tere dwar khada Bhagwan bhagat bhar de re jholi by Pradeep, lyrics Pradeep, music Avinash Vyas

Kavi Pradeep has a very special niche in film music. Essentially he was a lyricist of inspirational, devotional and patriotic songs. With his booming voice, whatever he sang became a landmark. This is one of the most memorable songs of Pradeep.

7. Dekh tere Bhgawan ki halat kya ho gayi insan by Rafi from Railway Platform, lyrics Sahir Ludhiyanvi, music Madan Mohan

Pradeep must have been hugely popular, because you have this parody of his famous Dekh tere insan ki halat which came a year earlier (Nastik, C Ramchandra). By overturning the phrase Sahir Ludhiyanvi laments at the state of affairs of God who does not have time for the deprived, but has chosen to reside in the abode of rich people.

8. Ab to ji hone laga kisi ki surat ka samna by Shamshad Begum from Mr & Mrs 55, lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri, music OP Nayyar

Mr & Mrs 55 is famous for Rafi and Geeta Dutt’s songs. But for Shamshad Begum lovers, this song is a treat. Guru Dutt-OP Nayyar had some fascination for creating situational songs on extras and unknown actors with the lead actors being onlookers. He would do the same thing with his iconic Le ke pahla pahla pyar in CID. Shamshad Begum was among the few prominent singers who stood for OP Nayyar in his spat with Lata Mangeshkar.

9. Marna bhi mohabbat mein kisi kaam na aya by Raghunath Jadav and others in Azaad, lyrics Rajendra Krishna, music C Ramchandra

There are qawwalis and qawwalis in films – you have some by usual playback singers like Rafi, Manna Dey and Balbir and some by professional qawwali singers like Ismail Azad (Humein to loot liya mil ke husn walon ne). It is the latter which give you the real flavor of qawwali. I had not heard the name of Raghunath Jadav before the internet era, but apparently he must be a professional qawwali singer. As per Sudhir Kapur’s article at Atul’s site this song is picturised on Baalam (in black achkan) and Master Nisar (in cap).

10. Preetam aan milo by Geeta Dutt from Mr & Mrs 55, lyrics Saroj Mohini Nayyar, music OP Nayyar

Preetam aan milo is the iconic song of CH Atma composed by OP Nayyar much before he entered films. The song is written by his wife Saroj Mohini Nayyar. He uses the same song in the voice of Geeta Dutt who was capable of singing for two entirely different situations – one deeply spiritual and the other racy night clubs or party dancing. OP Nayyar gives a glimpse of both Geeta Dutt’s in this film.


Having come to the end of my presentation, the question still remains who are the winners for 1955. I have refrained from giving my own nominees or winners, though I, like every music lover, do have my own preferences. So let me seek comments, views and opinions about nominees for each category (say five for each category). And if I am permitted to be a bit immodest, let us call them:

Songs of Yore Awards for 1955 for music category: Nominees for

Best music director

Best male playback singer

Best female playback singer

P. S. – On the suggestion of some readers I am also adding an Award for

Best duet

{ 72 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Subodh Agrawal April 9, 2012 at 5:24 pm

I think you need one more category of the best duet, because they would not fit into either best male or female song. My nominees, in order of preference are:

Best male singer:
1. Manna Dey – Tu pyaar ka sagar hai
2. Kishore Kumar – Jeevan ke safar mein rahi
3. Hemant Kumar – Chup hai dharti
4. Talat Mahmood – Bechain nazar betaab jigar
5. Talat Mahmood – Tasvir banata hoon

Best female singer:
1. Lata – Phaili hui hain sapnon ki bahein
2. Lata – Manmohana bade jhoote
3. Lata – Radha na bole na bole
4. Lata – Suno chhoti si gudiya ki
5. Lata – Mere ae dil bata

Best duet:
1. Nain so nain – Jhanak jhanak payal baje
2. Piya piya piya – Baap re baap
3. Kitna haseen hai mausam – Azad
4. Halke halke chalo – Tangewali
5. Jane kahan mera jigar gaya ji – Mr and Mrs 55

Best Music Director:
1. Shankar Jaikishan – Seema
2. S D Burman – House no 44
3. Vasant desai – Jhanak jhanak payal baaje
4. S D Burman – Devdas
5. Naushad – Uran Khatola

Parting thought: You have started something that is going to take up a lot of time and energy on part of lovers of songsofyore. Suits me fine, as I have moved to a less demanding assignment. My sympathies, however, for those who have to balance this with the demands of a career or household!

2 Arunkumar Deshmukh April 9, 2012 at 5:54 pm

AK ji,
The film which you have mentioned(as shown in IMDB),”Dev Ananad in Goa” had this name BEFORE it was completed.The name was later changed to “FARAAR”,on the insistence of Dev Anand himself.The film was presented to censors as Faraar and got passed in May 1955.It was a film of Unique Pictures,Bombay,directed by Phani Mujumdar.
Except IMDB,everywhere else it is referred to as Faraar only.
Info from IMDB is sometimes very casual,hence it has to be corroborated many times for correctness.
-Arunkumar Deshmukh

3 Arunkumar Deshmukh April 9, 2012 at 6:00 pm

AK ji,
Your post this time is Unique,but it is like giving a spread of the Best sweets and asking which is better.To each his own.
It is a Herculean task to come to any conclusion,so I feel,instead of trying to make any selection,it would be wiser on my part to enjoy the spread and read what others say !
Thanks for the Feast !!!

4 AK April 9, 2012 at 6:31 pm

@Subodh Agrawal
You have to have sympathies for me! But honestly it has been a task I took upon myself happily when some readers suggested this kind of string of posts. Obviously this series would not be too frequent, so each year’s review would give plenty of time to readers. I believe lovers of Songs of Yore would also find it interesting and worth their effort to spend some time on dicussions.

I also always thought that duets should be treated separately. So even if Filmfare does not have awards for duets (it seems they assign duets to one of the singers whom they consider to have made more impact), Songs of Yore Awards can have a category for best duets.

I understand your shortlist is in order of preference. I reserve my right to give my commets later.

5 AK April 9, 2012 at 6:58 pm

@Arunkumar Deshmukhji
Thanks for your compliments and your clarification about Dev Anand in Goa and Faraar. We can trust you to come up with information which is nowhere available.

Though this post required a lot of effort on my part, I did it obviously because I also enjoyed doing it. I have also been a gainer because I came across several wonderful songs I had not heard before, or had heard and came to know about other details.

I have already acknowledged that the idea for such a post came from two readers AM and KR Vaishampayan. I am looking forward to their reaction!

6 K R Vaishampayan April 9, 2012 at 8:39 pm

Dear AK,
Thanks for your acknowledgement to me as idea generator behind this post. Dear AK, although your compliment is flattering, the credit for this wonderfully researched post is entirely yours. And I mean every word of it. You have done a great justice to this subject. Hats off to you. However, I share the sentiments [absolutely correct ones] of Shri Arunkumar Deshmukh.
As for the choice of the awards, allow me to chew over the exhaustive list before I say something. Although, I must admit, that out of the exhaustive list of considered Greats and considered Not so great…I am tempted more towards the Dark Horses and their compositions.
More about it later. Until then, thanks once again for this wonderful post that will compel me to think over the list more with better attention.
Thanks and Regards – KRV

7 Personal Concerns April 10, 2012 at 10:58 am

This is a wonderful post. Being from the new generation, I was so glad to realise that I knew almost each song that is mentioned on the page. Felt a sense of strange pride and achievement at being aware of these monumental compositions.

Dekho ji Bahar Aayee from the page strikes me so much! and so does Shamshad Begum’s song from Mr and Mrs. 55.

Thanks for adding the precious comments and discussions!


8 Ashok Vaishnav April 10, 2012 at 11:00 am

This is result of an indeed a great effort and should go a long way in re-kindling a very intersting and intensive debate, which in turn can bring in good deal of information, too.
The least that can happen is that the readers can re-live those years and /or songs. To those who would re-live years, this could be a very nostalgia, whereas those who re-live the songs [ probably quite young generation] may throw up a very intersting pattern of the favourties.
Congratulations for a novel and painstaking effort.
Is there a time-limit to respond?

9 harvey April 10, 2012 at 3:24 pm

What a mammoth post and with a mammoth task for us readers and commentators.
How about giving us readers it in small pieces like a post each for male solo, female solo, duet, score. It would be better to chew on.
You have done a commendable job with your research and write-up! Hats off!

10 AK April 10, 2012 at 3:39 pm

@KR Vaishampayan, Personal Concerns, Ashok Vaishnav, harvey

Thanks a lot for your compliments. Yes, it has become mammoth. When I come to 1954 downwards which is not going to be anytime soon :), I would think about how to split into a number of posts. The only problem is it is also important to give an overview at one place.

You are right, one needs to chew over it at leisure. There is no time frame for giving comments. You have been very kind in giving your first very generous compliments. Let us now have your detailed opinions on:

Best music director

Best male solo (song/singer}

Best female solo (song/singer)

Best duet (song/singers)

11 Naresh P Mankad April 10, 2012 at 5:15 pm

A veritable feast for music-lovers. The decade of ’50s is remembered as golden period of Hindi film music -“When melody was queen” but your posting raises a feeling in the mind that may be 1955 was the best year of melodies?

Manna Dey said in a live programme I attended, it were not because of “us” the singers, but the great composers that such immortal songs were created in those years. Of course, we do believe that period had equal amount contribution from the talented singers.

12 AK April 10, 2012 at 8:18 pm

Early 50’s was the best of Golden Era. When we do similar overview of 1954, 1953, 1952 or 1951, we would feel the same way about that year that it was the best. I think I would take up on Harvey’s suggestion and after sufficient discussion on this, post separate articles on the best male solos, female solos and duets as offshoots from this post.

13 Samir April 11, 2012 at 7:01 am

This is an excellent effort, and I hope you continue.
I am usually among the least knowledgeable who comment, but here goes :-

(in no order)

Best Male Singer
1) Jeevan ke safar men rahi – Kishore Kumar
2) Tu pyar ka sagar hai – Manna Dey
3) Chup hai dharti chup hai chand sitare – Hemant Kumar
4) Mera joota hai Japani – Mukesh
5) Tasweer banata hun tasweer nahi banti – Talat Mahmood

Best Female Singer
1) Phaili hui hai sapnon ki baahen – Lata Mangeshkar
2) Radha na bole na bole na bole re – Lata Mangeshkar
3) Thandi hawa kali ghata – Geeta Dutt
4) Chanda mama door ke – Asha Bhosle
5) Preetam aan milo – Geeta Dutt

Best Duet
1) Kitna haseen hai mausam – Chitalkar and Lata Mangeshkar
2) Nain se nain nahi milao – Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
3) Jane kahan mera jigar gaya ji – Rafi and Geeta Dutt
4) Piya piya piya mera jiya pukare – Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle
5) Pyar hua iqrar hua – Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshakr

Best Music Director
1) Azaad: C Ramchandra
2) Shri 420: Shankar Jaikishan
3) House No. 44: SD Burman
4) Mr & Mrs 55: OP Nayyar
5) Urankhatola: Naushad
6) Jhanak jhank payal baje: Vasant Desai

The only thing I will definitively say is the songs of just 1955 probably beat most if not all songs of the 80’s, 90’s & 200’s.

14 AK April 11, 2012 at 10:26 am

I am aware you are a recognised expert on the songs of 70’s onwards, about which my knowledge is close to zero. That is as far as knowledge goes.

Now about the shortlist.

Best male singer
It is interesting four are common between you and Subodh Agrawal. My own would broadly overlap with this.

Best female singer
I can clearly see your Geeta Dutt/Asha Bhosle preference. Here I am more with Subodh Agrawal school which would put not only 1 to 5 but perhaps 1 to 10 to Lata Mangeshkar, though my shortlist would differ from his. In my case I can frankly admit I have a bias and I am not a great fan of Geeta Dutt/Asha Bhosle. In sheer numbers, in the 84 songs I have listed Lata Mangeshkar figures in over 40, Geeta Dutt in less than 10 and Asha Bhosle in less than 5.

Best duets
You and Subodh have 4 common, mine would also broadly overlap.

Best music director
Let us say Naushad (Urankhatola) and Vasant Desai (Jhanak Jahnk Payal Baje ) would be definitely there. Subodh includes SJ’s Seema, but leaves Shri 420. Many might find it ununsual. Subodh’s omission of C Ramchandra (Azaad) seems to be inadvertent, given that he has included songs from this film in duets and female solos. Coming to SD Burman, Subodh has included both Devdas and House No 44. House No. 44 is also in your list. I had put in my collage Devdas more because of Talat Mahmood’s two solos. Hemant Kumar is also my great favourite. Now I have to think between these two more closely.

Thanks for your detailed comments.

15 Sasha April 11, 2012 at 11:22 am

Wow! This is an awesomely awesome detailed post on the songs of 1955. I stumbled over here from Anu’s blog, and this is amazing! 😀 Ever thought of doing it for 1957? I’m not too good with songs (mostly, I love Dev Anand’s OLD (read: Old. Not 70’s. -shudders-) films), so I don’t think I will give any nominations, but I love this post. Keep it up! :))

16 AK April 11, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Thanks for your compliments. As you would have noticed, the idea was to do yearwise review of pre-Filmfare Awards era. So there was no plan to do 1957. But theoretically there should be no problem in doing yearwise review of later films also.

17 Sasha April 12, 2012 at 8:15 am

Aww, well, it’s great that you pointed out the gaps for Filmfare, though. (I was a little confused with the 1955 Filmfare Awards!) But if you ever plan to do a 1957 one, then I’ll cast my vote for best duet as “Aankhon Mein Kya Jee” by Kishore and Asha from Nau Do Gyarah. (Sorry, couldn’t resist it!)

Now I’ll go and pray that the fans of Naya Daur don’t find me and shoot me. 😛

18 Ashok Vaishnav April 12, 2012 at 1:54 pm

After several intensive readings of the post, and equal number of pensive time-ins, I would take on the arduous task of selection. The readers who have also aged along with these vintages do need to have a very strong heart, since anything slightly less can not possibly bear the strain of this excitement.

Nominations:Best Music Director: All the movies which appear in this list would certainly have missed a few marks in their overall value, if the music score of each one would not have been what it was. Each one must have certainly tested the guts, nerve and creative genius of the music directors concerned, because the scores have done full justice to the spirit of the film first, and then put on the customary stamp of music director’s tell-tale identification. Each of the score is a masterpiece of the musical rainbow [where one sees some ultraviolet and some infra red as well!!]

1. S D Burman – Devdas [Over and above one of the greats ever of Talat solos, and an epochal Mubarak Begum ‘kotha’ number, SD has excelled in Lata in Ab aage teri marzi and Jise tu qabool kar le. Do observe the difference in the two pure ‘dance songs’ -Wo na ayenge palat ke and Ab aage teri marzi in terms of the mood each one has quintessentially created.]

2. Shankar Jaikishan – Seema [SJ probably could have easily entered this list only on the strength of any one of Tu pyar ka sagar hai – Manna Dey orKahan jar aha hai tu ai janewale – Rafi or Manmohna bade jhoothe – Lata Mangeshkar. But it would certainly belittle their effort if we do not take independent cognisance of their use of [The] Ustad Ali Akbar Kan Saheb for playing Sarod [ in fact of the fact they chose to use Sarod is in itself a big plus] for Suno chhoti si gudiya ki lambi kahani – Lata Mangeshkar and such pathos –genic Tumhare Hain Tum Se Daya Mangate Hai – Rafi and Chorus [as well as for retaining the typical instruments usually deployed by such singing teams in reality].

3. Shankar Jaikishan – Shree 420 [The musical score has not only lifted this Chaplenese parody on life to the height of RK’s Top Five and placed it on the Hindi Film Immortals, it has given Hindi Film Music some of the eternal Bests – Pyar hua iqrar hua – Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshakr, Mera joota hai Japani – Mukesh, Dil ka haal sune dilwala – Manna Dey & others and Ramaiya vastavaiya – Rafi, Mukesh, Lata Mangeshkar & others. SJ have used Manna Dey so masterfully, that but for Mera Juta Hai Japani, Mukesh’s monopoly as Raj Kapoor’s voice may have met child death!They were to repeat this in Chori Chori too. It is said that Mukesh was busy with his own productions in those days.]

4. Vasant Desai – Janak Janak Payal Baaje [If Shantaram started his trend of depending solely on his sets, dances, music, etc. for his mega-experiments, Vasant Desai matched in blending melody, classical raags, and mood for the high bench-mark for pure Musicals in Hindi Cinema..]

5. Yasmin – C Ramchandra [C Ramachandra is at his one of the melodious best here. Also, we find songs – Bechain nazar betab zigar – Talat Mahmood ,Mujhpe ilzam-e-bewafai hai – Lata Mangeshkar , Tum apni yaad bhi dil se bhula dete to achcha tha – Talat Mahmood and Lata Mangeshkar – that have found an irrevocable space in the Ever Best in the respective category.]

I am left with no heart for choosing one from these!!??
And I am still itching to vent my exploding emotions on the other categories……………….

19 AK April 12, 2012 at 5:36 pm

You have poured your heart out. I know one can be drained after this. So please take our time for other categories.

Now some observations on the best music director.

Vasant Desai (Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje) figures in all the comments so far, and rightly so.

You seem to prefer C Ramchandra’s Yasmeen over Azaad. I too regard Bechain nazar betaab jigar among Talat Mahmood’s all time greats, but Azaad also has a ‘sort’ of Talat Mahmood in Kitna haseen hai mausam, plus huge amount of Lata Mangshkar. So I would not preclude Azaad, at least not for Yasmeen. Subodh Agrawal leaves out CR altogether, which I preseume was inadvertent considering that he has included several of his songs in differnt categories. The fact that a stupendous hit like Azaad may not make it to some shortlists is making the discussion quite interesting.

Difficult to believe Naushad (Urankhatola) would not be in anyone’s shortlist. O door ke musafir is enough for me, Lata Mangeshkar’s songs are an added bonus.

SD Burman, whether Devdas or House No. 44 is in everyone’s list. My own preference is for Devdas, exactly for the reasons you have mentioned.

SJ should be there obviously. You have taken both Shri 420 and Seema. Subodh has taken Seema. I thought if one has to be taken, Shri 420 should come first.

Thanks a lot for your detalied comments, it adds so much to the value of the post. Looking forward to your vies on other categories.

20 Naresh P Mankad April 12, 2012 at 6:14 pm

Talking about Vasant Desai, like me, many might have observed that Meera bhajans in films have rarely had better composer than Vasant desai (Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baaje, Toofan aur Diya) except Roshan who gave Aeri main to prem diwani mera.. in Naubahar.

21 Sasha April 13, 2012 at 9:23 am

Hmm, actually, I think best music director should be S.D. Burman for either Munimji or House No. 44, and O.P. Nayyar for Mr and Mrs ’55. Of course, SJ for Shree 420 too, but since I haven’t listened to most of the songs, I will leave it at that.

22 Ashok Vaishnav April 13, 2012 at 11:25 am

Dear AKji,
Your very considerate view of my rather verbose observations has ceratinly emboldened me for presenting my further bubbling thoughts on the subject.

So here we go on to Best Male Playback Singer for the year 1955 for SongsOfYore Awards:

Choosing Best Male Playback singer also seems to be an arduous tasks of straining my grey cells [as it is not used so much of work] and machine-drying [my usual lack of] emotions. At the very bottom of my heart, I am no doubt a stout Rafi fan – particularly when a push comes to that eventual shove. But for that matter, I am [no perjury intended] equally strong follower of Manna Dey and Talat Mahmood. Of course, the Rafi songs in this 1955 list do not appear to be his unanimously Greats Ever, but they are by no means a disparaging competition here.
My Nominations for Best Male Playback Singer:

1. Talat Mahmood – Mitwa lagi re ye kaisi anbujh aag – The other solo form this film – Kisko khabar thi kisko yakeen tha – Talat Mahmood – is perhaps having only one mood – deep melancholy, almost a doused aag, whereas this song has, as musical score, succeeded in capturing the mood of pathos blended with a lurking anbujh aag of faint hope of possibility of seeing the beloved one, at least, once more, and that unfulfilled love of the lifetime. There can be no questions for SD to have chosen Talat for these numbers.

2. Manna Dey – Tu pyar ka sagar hai – Manna Dey is all sublime befitting the situation of the song – a prayer – and still touches the heights of soft ‘bulandi’ to be able to rouse the sunken human spirit of the targeted mentally unstable Seema. Even if we do allocate the due credits to SJ – for the composition and Shailendra – for so touching poetry, Manna Dey is still left with a huge credit to his own account as singer- the emotional listeners would find a sagar of emotions and the puritans can find gems of technical virtuosity in his measured ascendancy of scale.

3. Rafi – O door ke musafir mujhko bhi sath le le – This is best example of the type of songs which were possibly so composed because Rafi was to render it [and he would put in his extra special efforts, too]or the type of songs the composer preferred someone else to sing but had to ultimately invite Rafi, as only Rafi could to justice to his composition in totality. This is one of my personal favourites – among all songs as well as among Rafi songs.
[I have read somewhere that Hemantda originally had thought of singing Hum Laaye Hain Kasti Sambhal ke – Jaagriti himself, but had to ultimately fall back on the width of Rafi’s range of scale to enliven Utho Chhalang maar ke aakash ko chhoo lo.]

4. Rafi – Kahan ja raha hai tu ai janewale – If someone calls back me passionately, I would have turned back even before the first line was over and then would have raptly listened to the rest of song and would have simply wept till my heart would have emptied out.

5. Talat Mahmood – Teri zulfon se pyar kaun kare – Jaidev has composed this song that shade silkier in tone and a shade more pathetic in mood than the competing Tasweer banata hun tasweer nahi banti from Baradari. And possibly because of that extra, that Tasweer banata hun tasweer nahi banti enabled to be more popular, because one can sing it that little easily.

In order to finally choose one among these FIVE personally equal favourites, I would choose an exotic measure – Manna Dey , by that stoke of chance cause, appears only once in this list today.

So let crown be the company to the song Tu pyar ka sagar hai by Manna Dey..

23 AK April 13, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Ashok Vaishnavji,
I know many would agree with you on Manna Dey’s Tu pyar ka sagar hai. As for me, Rafi’s O door ke musafir humko bhi sath le le would rank very high. I have something about Naushad, and not so much Rafi, but this song is very very dear and special to me. But even higher than this would be Talat Mahmood’s two solos from Devadas and Tasweer banata hun from Baradari. But when I think about it Teri zulfon se pyar kaun kare is also too good, and I still have a great Talat song Bechain nazar betab jigar. Which means if someone puts Talat Mahmood as 1 to 5 it would not be too absurd. Can we say Talat Mahmood was Lata Mangeshkar of 1955? I would not go that far, because I have to make room for O door ke musafir, and one for Hemant Kumar on whom I seem to be in minority because I would include Main gharibon ka dil hun watan ki zubah from Aab-e-Hayat and not one from House No.44. But Oops! Where has Mukesh gone, another of my big favourites, in spite of his Mera joota hai Japani?

Now I am thoroughly confused! I have no intention to confuse others. It is just that 1955 was too varied for great male solos. Let us see how others feel.

24 Anu Warrier April 14, 2012 at 2:11 am

AK, wow! That’s some chore you have set us! I’ll sit this one out, I think, at least for now,a nd wait for the results to come in. (Feeling nauseous and dizzy from the after-effects of a mini surgery; brain cells are either non-existent or refuse to work.)

ps: I appreciated your advice.

25 AM April 14, 2012 at 8:05 am

My Dear & Respected AK,


First of all please accept my heartfelt apology for dropping off the radar after making a suggestion for a post like this, i.e. SoY awards for Hindi films in the period 1953-45.

After mooting this idea, I went on to do a bit of research of my own which was mainly focused on extracting a list of all the movies that were released in the year 1953, and afterwards compile a short-list of probable candidates as nominees. The full list contained some really obscure mythological types & B-/C- listers which probably no one (including hard-core music fans) has ever heard of .

I was going to submit this list to you, thinking this will help make things slightly easier and cut out the workload just a tad bit, realising how much time, effort and dedication would be required to create a post like this. (Now that I see the actual post in its full glory, the scale of the task becomes even more apparent – truly a monumental exercise).
When that list began taking some shape, it struck me that Baiju Bawra had already bagged the first Filmfare award but it was a 1952 movie! And we initially intended to dissect 1953 as our first target year. The anomaly compounded further, as you have mentioned, with Taxi Driver and Nagin. So the very same reasons you started this series with the year 1955 were puzzling me too.
I must say the way you found a solution for this enigma – by starting with ’55 and laying some ground rules – has made things a lot simpler and, in my opinion, this could not have been sorted out better than this.
Just as the Academy Awards are better known as Oscars, we may call our awards SOYA (sounds a bit funny) – acronym for Songs Of Yore Awards.

Now coming to the 84-strong list of memorable songs of the year, I have a further 27 to add to this.

1. apna hi ghar lutaane deewana ja raha hai (Adal-e-Jahangir)
2. o balliye o balliye chal chaliye (Azaad)
3. dil hum se woh lagaaye jo hans ke teer khaaye (Baradari)
4. abke baras bada zulm hua (Baradari)
5. piya ho piya aayi bairan bahaar (Baradari)
6. chhodo chhodo ji baiyyan mori main naajuk chhori (Baradari)
7. sandook mein bandook hai bandook mein goli (Hoor-e-Arab)
8. chup chup chup hone laga kuchh (Insaaniyat)
9. meri duniya lut rahi thi aur main khamosh tha (Mr. & Mrs. 55)
10. neele aasmani neele aasmani boojho to yeh naina (Mr. & Mrs. 55)
11. dil ki umangen hain jawan (Munimji)
12. daulat ke jhoote nashe mein (Oonchi Haveli)
13. jiya kho gaya o tera ho gaya main kahun to (Railway Platform)
14. chaand madham hai aasman chup hai neend ki (Railway Platform)
15. baat baat mein rutho na apne aap ko (Seema)
16. hamen bhi de do sahara (Seema)
17. shaam gayi raat aayi ke balam aaja (Shree 420)
18. jhimjhim jhimjhim badarwa barse naina more tarse (Taangewali)
19. ghar aaya mehmaan koyi jaan na pehchaan bane baalma (Udan Khatola)
20. dooba taara ummeedon ka sahara chhoot gaya (Udan Khatola)
21. haal-e-dil main kya kahoon mushkil hai mere (Udan Khatola)
22. zara seekh lo akhiyo sharmaana (Vachan)
23. bhar bhar ke jaam pila de saaqi (Yasmin)
24. ab woh raaten kahan ab woh baaten kahan (Yasmin)
25. dil unko dhoondta hai hum dil ko dhoondte hain (Yasmin)
26. bechain karne wale tu bhi na chain paaye (Yasmin)
27. muhabbat mein pehla qadam rakhne walo (Yasmin)

From here, I think the next logical step would be to have a pre-nomination shortlist, where whole albums are to be critically viewed for their potential to make into the final five nominees.

In 1955, a list of this kind will by default include any work from Naushad, Shankar Jaikishan & C. Ramchandra. O. P. Nayyar, S. D. Burman, Vasant Desai, Madan Mohan and Naashad also fared very strongly with some remarkable music. So here goes the pre-nominees:

– Azaad
– Baradari
– Devdas
– House No. 44
– Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje
– Milap
– Mr. & Mrs. 55
– Munimji
– Railway Platform
– Seema
– Shree 420
– Taangewali
– Udan Khatola
– Vachan
– Yasmin

The final five nominees, well – give me some time to mull it over. It is not going to be an easy straightforward decision, such was the quality of songs in this year. And I’m positive I will be saying the same thing over and over during the course of this series when we move on to another year. Not for nothing everyone calls it the Golden Era of Hindi film music.

26 AK April 14, 2012 at 11:09 am

Anu Warrier,
Not fair, you can’t be a free rider :). With your deep knowledge we would like to have your views. Pl take your time and do come back with your detailed comments.

27 Ashok Vaishnav April 14, 2012 at 11:34 am

Dear AKji and the enlightened fellow participants on this blog,
With your kind permission, I would straight away present my choices of top 5 female songs for 1955:

It seems that by 1955 Lata Mangeshkar was enshrined as THE [female] singer of the Hind Cinema, as I screen though the list of songs listed out in this post.SDB is no doubt one my preferred music directors, but that has no bearing on number of his songs appearing in this list today. Trust me, each of the song is here on its own merit. Having clarified [objective lack of] presence of any predispositions, may I present my top 5 female songs, which translates into only 2 playbacksingers:

1. Lata Mangeshkar – Jise tu qabool kar le – Well, I am no way suited to comment why a composer has chosen the way the composition is composed, SD’s choice of somewhat faster pace of this song may have caused its own predicaments for the Director for creating the RIGHT situation and the heroine to express emotions while performing such a dance. But, every aspect of the song is just RIGHT. Another noteworthy feature of [both] Lata songs in the film is that they stand up to two of the great solos of Talat in the movie, in a movie which has essentially a male-character dominant theme.

2. Lata Mangeshkar – Jogiya se preet kiye dukh hoye – Even if the music director Amarnath would have composed many more songs, this one would have retained its unique charm – that of subdued wailing of deep hurt of a lady feeling betrayed by that love which fails to penetrate the ascetic veneer of her counterpart. Lata’s voice quality and her standard throw of words suit like a T to the mood of the song. In fact, this quality was soon to become her indelible signature over Hindi Film Music.

3. Lata Mangeshkar – Phaili hui hai sapnon ki baahen OR Ghayal hiraniyan main ban ban dolun – Almost a formula song! The movies with a very light plot, hero and heroine sing a romantic solo each before declaration of mutual love, then at least one romantic duet; villain would spoil the game leading to a sad solo each from hero and heroine. SD and Lata easily paired up a long list of such sad solos.

4. Geeta Dutt – Preetam aan milo – OP, literally, conjures up C H Atma’s natural masculine pathos in Geeta’s ethereal voice. The original post has so well presented the nuances of this song.

5. Lata Mangeshkar – Manmohna bade jhoothe – Perhaps one of the quite underrated, whether in terms of technical virtuosity or in terms of bringing out the best of Lata’s vocal cords, this song is in a way much unlike that of SJ. There are not many of SJ’s compositions where the duo have successfully resisted fairly large orchestra to support an otherwise an excellent tune.

Since I have exhausted the limit of 5 choices for the consideration, I will have to rest contended by listing Ab to ji hone laga kisi ki surat ka samna by Shamshad Begum and Wo na ayenge palat ke by Mubarak Begum as “Best Also Run’. Use of Mubarak Beguam by SDB is simply captivating. The original post has done full justice to the song, hence I may only add that Salil Chaudhary must also have been inspired from this one (!) to come up with an equally stunning ‘hum haal e dil sunaye ge – mubarak begum – film madhumati 1958 [ ].

If you don’t ask me to justify my choice, I would propose rendering of Jogiya se preet kiye dukh hoye by Lata Mangeshkar to be the song that would crown her the Best Female playback singer for the year 1955 for SongsofYore awards.

28 AK April 14, 2012 at 11:34 am

Your research for 1953 would come handy, because next in line would be that year as fortuitously it happens to be a gap year.

About your list of 27 more songs, I realised at least 5 out of them I could have included in my shortlist. But they were on the outer periphery of my radar screen. But more than half of your list I do not recall. I would have to go back to YouTube to refresh my memory. Thanks for adding so many ‘new’ songs.

Thanks for your compliments, and aslo giving the idea for such an enriching exercise.

29 arvind April 14, 2012 at 1:08 pm

my pick:
best female singer: lata for …o jaane wale mud ke zara dekhte jaana…little known back to back song to …mud mud ke na dekh….
best male singer:rafi for …..basti basti parbat parbat…..from railway platform.a sahir gem.
best duet:jab liya haath mein haath…from vachan…
best music director:sdb for devdas.

30 AK April 14, 2012 at 1:54 pm

@Ashok Vaishnavji,
Jogiya se preet kiye dukh hoye – you have said what is in my heart. Meerabai’s bhajans were straight out of heart. Whoever sang it in whatever genre, the song became eternal. We have a long list of singers in films, Geeta Dutt (Jogan), MS Subbalaxmi (Meera) who got fame becuse of Meera Bai bhajans. All clasical doyens DV Paluskar, Pt Omkarnath Thakur, Kumar Gandharv etc have given their best for Meera Bhajans which have achieved stupendous popularity. One does not have to give a reason why something is beautiful.

I may include a few more in the shortlist, they would be probably all Lata Mangeshkar. I think I should embed Jogiya se for the benefit of readers:

Jogiya se preet kiye dukh hoye from Garam Coat

31 AK April 14, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Lata Mangeshkar, yes. Songs may differ as you can see from my comments above.

Rafi I can, but for O door ke musafir. But the house seems to be for Talat Mahmood, Manna Dey or Hemant Kumar.

Duet, I have a different view, so does the house. I would come back to it later.

SDB seems to be a huge favourite all round.

As usual you are telegraphic :). This perhaps calls for something in English language!

32 AK April 14, 2012 at 11:55 pm

I went over your list of 27 songs carefully. As I had mentioned I would have included five songs from this list with a little more careful look. The others are either unknown or too off the radar screen to make any difference. To make up for my omission I think I would like to post them with my comments:

1. Dil humse wo lagaye jo hans ke teer khaye by Lata Mangeshkar and Mubarak Begum from Baradari

Would we call this a qawwali or a mujra duet? A fantastic song and looks to me a precursor to the qawwali duet in Mughal-e-Azam, Teri mehfil me qismat azma kar hum bhi dekhenge. I have remarked elsewhere that with such huge talent Nashad did not have to change his name ( his real name was Shaukat Ali Dehlvi) to one sounding like Naushad.

2. Chhayi re badariya aa ja re sanwariya by Lata Mangeshkar from Baradari

A terrific folk based song ‘sung’ by Nimmi with gay abandon. One of the rare songs where she is seen not whinig but exuberant. Now I am seriously inclined to include Nashad in the shortlist of 5 or 6 in place of some big names whom I had included as automatic.

3. Dil ki umange hain jawan by Hemant Kumar, Geeta Dutt and Thakur (Pran) from Munimji

A fun song, Pran being one of the singer actors is a treat to watch. Another example of SD Burman’s multi faceted talent. No wonder he is turning out to be everyone’s choice.

4. Rimjhim jhimjhim jhim badarwa barse by Lata Mangeshkar from Tangewali

A precursor to the more famous Hemant Kumar-Lata Mangeshkar duet which Salil Choudhary would compose a year later for the film Parivar, based on the prelude music of this song. The uploader of this song has added some unonnected pictures, but I am not complaining.

5. Ghar aya mehman na jaan na pehchan by Lata Mangeshkar from Urankhatola

Naushad by this time was so competent that perhaps he could compose such pleasant tunes in his sleep. I do not know why he made such a big deal of doing only one film a year. A restrained happy Nimmi – you can see the contrast with Baradari‘s exuberant Nimmi.

33 harvey April 15, 2012 at 2:04 am

So here are my nominations

Best solo female
Kitni jawan hai raat koi yaad aa gaya – Lata Mangeshkar
Jise tu qabool kar le – Lata Mangeshkar
Phaili hui hai sapnon ki baahen – Lata Mangeshkar
Preetam aan milo – Geeta Dutt
Ghayal hiraniyan main ban ban dolun – Lata Mangeshkar
Manmohna bade jhoothe – Lata Mangeshkar
chand madham hai aasman chhup hai – Railway Platform – Lata Mangeshkar (I hope I can nominate this although you haven’t mentioned it or maybe I overlooked it)

Best solo male
Teri duniya me jeene se behtar hai – Hemant Kumar
Shivji bihane chale – Hemant Kumar
Tu pyar ka sagar hai – Manna Dey
O door ke musafir mujhko bhi sath le le – Rafi
Dil ka haal sune dilwala – Manna Dey & others

Best Duet
Bhula nahi dena ji bhula nahi dena – Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar
Piya piya piya mera jiya pukare – Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle
Aan milo aan milo Shyam sanwre – Manna Dey and Geeta Dutt
Nain se nain nahi milao – Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
Jane kahan mera jigar gaya ji – Rafi and Geeta Dutt

Best score
Azaad – C Ramchandra
Munimji – S. D. Burman
Mr. & Mrs. 55 – O. P. Nayyar
Uran Khatola – Naushad
Shri 420 – Shankar-Jaikishan

Since you had this question about Faraar/Dev Anand in Goa. Here is a link to the whole movie on You Tube.
Thank you Arunji for the info on the title.

I hope there is time for the nominations for the lyrics. That sure is going to be a tough task.
BTW have I understood it right that these are polls and the song with the most nominations will win?

34 Ashok Vaishnav April 15, 2012 at 8:43 am

Shri AKji,
You have enriched the already worthy-to-preserved – treasure original post, by adding-on these five clips.
The description attached to the video clip of Rimjhim jhimjhim jhim badarwa barse by Lata Mangeshkar from Tangewali has remebered the original benagali version of the song – “Zir ZIr borosai ” of the flim “pasar bari” , which I could not locate. Listening to the original bengali versions of some of the great hindi songs by SDB, Salil Chaudhary and Hement Kumar has always been a bonus.

And now, my own views on Best Duet of 1955 for SongsOfYore Awards:

The number of duets and quality of each one, from amongst the duets available in 1955, which I have selected in this list of Top 5 Duets has a couple of pre-meditated filters applied. The first one is that I have eliminated tonga songs. One reason is that there are as many as 3; all rendered by a different duo and by different music director. Second reason is that in this manner I can create somewhat of a comfort of possibly making the selection somewhat easier. The second filter that I have chosen to apply is to pick up only one duet from a film, if it has more than one.
That would enable me to pick up following 5 as my Top Favorites:

1. Kitna haseen hai mausam – Chitalkar and Lata Mangeshkar
2. Muskurati hui chandni – Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
3. Bhula nahi dena ji bhula nahi dena – Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar
4. Nain se nain nahi milao – Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
5. Idhar tum haseen ho udhar dil jawan hai – Rafi and Geeta Dutt
6. Pyar hua iqrar hua – Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshakr

Oh no, even then I have landed up with SIX. So let me apply a third filter of choosing only one song per pair. Well, I am indeed pained to drop off Muskurati hui chandni in favor of Nain se nain nahi milao, both rendered by Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar. I think Nain se nain nahi milao was relatively more popular then and has more following even now.
By the same standard, Pyar hua iqrar hua by Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshakar seems to be more eligible to take on the crown of Best Duet of 1955 for SongsOfYore Awards. I do visualize as huge disagreements and as strong agreements, but isn’t it better that we have choicest of choices then and even now.

And here are those three tonga songs – to enjoy the spirited rides so romantically:
Piya piya piya mera jiya pukare – Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle
Halke halke chalo sanwre – Hemant Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar
Rafi & Asha – Jab Liya Haath Mein Haath – Vachan [1955]

Incidentally, Salil Chaudhary has given us two equally melodious Hemant- Lata duets: one is again a song while riding, this time, a bicycle – Sanware salone aaye din bahar ke from Ek Hi Rasta whereas the other one – Jhir jhir jhir jhir badariya barse from Parivar – a class in itself among not only all times duets but also among all time rain songs, also so tellingly presented by Shri AKji in his bonus add-on.

Yes, you unanimously guessed it right – my personal favourites.

BTW, I would gravitate to choosing Vasant Desai for his Janak Janak Payal Baje score to be coronated as Best Music Director. The reason being that all things being equal, the music lent that edge to the movie !

35 Rajiv Yadav April 15, 2012 at 1:23 pm

I am basing my choice on popularity of music for after all Hindi Film Music has flourished due to its simplicity and large following which classical music has not been able to do despite initial state patronage via AIR .

1. Best Music Director-
(i) Shanker Jaikishan – Shri 420
(ii) S.D. Burman – Munimji
(iii) O.P.Nayyar – Mr &Mrs 55
(iv) Naushad – Uran Khatola
(v)C.Ramchandra- Azaad

2. Best Male Singer-
(i) Manna Dey – Tu pyar ka sagar hai
(ii) Manna Dey – Dil ka haal sune dilwalaa
(iii) Hemant kumar – Teri duniya mein jeene se
(iv) Rafi- O door ke musafir
(v)Kishore Kumar- Jeewan ke safar mein raahi

3. Best Female Singer–
(i) Asha Bhonsle -Chanda mama door ke
(ii) Geeta Dutt- Preetam aan milo
(iii)Geeta Dutt- Thandi hawaa , kaali ghataa
(iv)Lat Mangeshkar-Manmohana bade jhoothe
(v) Lata Mangeshkar- Radha na bole naa bole

4. Best Duet–
(i) Jaane mera jigar kidhar gyaaa ji– Rafi and Geeta Dutt( for the great fun element in it )
(ii) Pyaar hua iqraar hua-Manna Dey &Lata
(iii) Aplam chaplam — Lata& Usha
(iv)Mud mud ke naa dekh– Manna Dey & Asha Bhonsle
(v) Rammaiyaa Vastaavaiyaa– Rafi, Mukesh and Lata

36 AK April 15, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Thanks a lot for giving the link for the full film Dev Anand in Goa/Faraar. While I may not be excited enough to watch this film, I could find links to several other films I would be keen to watch.

Your nominations are very helpful. Chand madham hai asman chup hai was missing from my list of 84. Even when AM mentioned it in his additional list of 27 songs, I could not be persuaded strongly enough to include it. Now that you also include it in your shortlist, it is only fair that I link it here. Now on careful listening I can see its beauty, which is coming from shades of Bhimpalasi (experts may please confirm). Thanks for mentioning this song, I have been careless in ignoring it.

Chand madham hai asman chup hai by Lata Mangeshkar from Railway Platform, lyrics Sahir Ludhiyanvi, music Madan Mohan

About the methodology, I do not see this exercise as a first past the post election. We know its flaws. For example, Akhilesh Yadav’s ‘massive’ win is on 30% of the votes. Mayawati’s ‘resouding’ defeat is just 5% short, whih means if just 2.6% of Akhilesh’s voters switch to her the tables are turned. Aggregating individual choices to determine social choice has been a problematic area for over a century in social sciences, formalised in a pathbreaking paper in the 1950s as Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem. I can improve upon it by devising an index by prescribing weights for ranks. But I do not want to reduce the exercise to numbers. What I plan to do, and I owe this idea to you, is to post short pieces on each category summarising the ‘sense of the house’ as faithfully as possible. If I have any biases I would frankly mention that as I have been doing it in this post as well as my comments.

I am already having a fairly good idea of the sense of the house.

I had not included Best lyrics as a category. This was my personal bias. I associate a song primarily with the singer and the music director. There are indeed songs whose beauty lies in their lyrics, but unlike singers or music directors whom you recognise, there are no clear markers for lyricists except some like Sahir etc. The other difficulty is that some trite lyrics turn into fantastic songs, and some outstanding lyrics may languish in anonymity.

37 AK April 15, 2012 at 7:24 pm

Ashok Vaishnavji,
Here is the link to the original Bengali song of Jhimjhim jhimjhim jhim badarwa barse. You are right, the original Bengali version (which is also true of other SDB, Salil Chaudhary songs which you have mentioned) are far superior. Thanks for bringing it to our notice.

Jhir jhir baroshey by Dhananjay Bhattacharya from Pasher Bari, music Salil Chaudhary

I can see your great deliberation in preparing the shortlists. Your comments are a valuable contribution to this exercise, and in fact, you are making my exercise of summarising easier.

Just a small factual thing. I think Sanwle salone aye din bahaar ke from Ek Hi Rasta is composed by Hemant Kumar and not Salil Chaudhary.

38 AK April 15, 2012 at 7:29 pm

@Rajiv Yadav
I can see your preference for Geeta Dutt and Asha Bhosle. Sense of the house may be somewhat different. On other categories you are spot on with others.

39 Ashok Vaishnav April 15, 2012 at 10:22 pm

Shri AKji,
My mistake.
Sanware Salone.. is Hemant Kumar id the music director.
And many thanks for the link of the original bengali version of Rimjhim jhimjhim jhim badarwa barse.
And finally, thanks for your kind complements. I feel so honoured that I would take them home, knowing fully well that I hardly really deserve them in that measure.
We look forward to your own views and wrap up……..

40 harvey April 16, 2012 at 1:37 pm

That is a good idea not to post the winners as such but just to post the summary of the present situation. I like it!
I agree completely with your idea .
Somehow I am sad that there would be no category for best lyrics, but on the other hand I am glad as well, because the nominations would have taken long time. I agree with your opinion on that.

41 harvey April 16, 2012 at 1:38 pm

I forgot to write that I am touched by your gesture to include chand madham hai. 🙂

42 K R Vaishampayan April 16, 2012 at 2:21 pm

Dear AK,
My sincere apologies for not responding to the task st by you [so to say…on my instigation] No, I am not running away. Sadly, I am tightly gripped by certain professional and personal priorities, hence over occupied and unable to focus.
But in spite of this logjam [as above] biggest hurdle is to Eliminate the Songs as unwanted and thereby Eliminating – Singers, Films and Music Composers.
Honestly, this ‘eliminating’ is a painful process. Because, I won’t be able to select BETTER between – Devdas, Shree 420, Seema, Mr. & Mrs 55, Yasmeen or Azad. All of these movies, had every song that can qualify to be a winner in a different category.
However, let me be free by this weekend…when I shall venture choosing my list.
But this apology post shall be incomplete without thanking You and contributers like: Subodh Agarawal; Ashok Vaishnav or Harvey and many others.
Thanks and regards – KRV

43 AK April 16, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Chand madham hai – I should thank you and AM for making me listen to the song carefully, it is a beautiful song. You do not notice the song easily, it takes time to grow on you.

@KR Vaishampayan
Please do not be under any time pressure. I am in no hurry to close the discussion.

44 AM April 18, 2012 at 2:08 am


I was curious to find out which were those 5 tunes (out of 27) that you’d consider to include in your memorable list. These five songs were eventually disclosed and I had hoped that Chaand Madham Hai from Railway Platform would be amongst them. It wasn’t in the beginning but added as the sixth song later on. Many thanks for recognising and rating the song. It, indeed, grows on you after a few listenings.

Before I discuss my nominations, why not lay down the basic criterion which was employed to arrive at the decision.

Foremost is the number or percentage of songs in the score which became mega-hits. Hits in the sense that an average listener would relate to, recall and relish the songs. Giving an example, I would refer to Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje songs. No doubt these songs are of high technical merit and are truly appreciated by someone who understands the nuances of classical music and the associated ragas, but for a layman (the average Joe) these songs have very limited appeal and will perhaps seem too hard to digest. Maybe which is why when asked to recall any songs from JJPB, general public will struggle to name more than one or two. Funnily, there are many people around who think Manna Dey’s Jhanak Jhanak Tori Baje Payaliya (Mere Huzoor) is actually from this movie!

Among other criteria is how the song sounds, i.e. the auditory impact and how much of an attention-grabber its tune is. Is it captivating enough to make it hard to stop the song mid-way, compelling one to listen to it all the way till the finish?

Any new trick or usage employed? Something different, something unconventional. Was any new trend set?


Coming to the point, my five nominees for the Best Music Director category SoY award are going to be:

1) C. Ramchandra for Azaad:

This is one score where every single song was a landmark hit and went down well with the general public too. I consider Azaad as the epic score in C Ramchandra’s entire career. He did have some other memorable scores where almost all (more than 75%) songs were hits, such as Patanga, Parchhayin, Nastik, Anarkali, Albela, Yasmin, Paigham etc.

CR could compose an album in a month compared to Naushad taking a whole year but I think the comparison ends there. If you actually take Naushad’s lifelong work and put it aside CR’s, the number of mega-hits that Naushad gave and the movies where more than 75% songs were very well-known (I tend to call such films ‘mega-movies’), Naushad outdoes CR by a whopping margin. All credit to Naushad who kept a very high standard for almost all of his songs in almost all of his movies till the demise of the golden era.

With Azaad, CR did a Naushad! Tremendous music, superb melodies and a very balanced score. Pee Ke Daras Ko Taras is magnificently composed, while O balliye chal chaliye by Lata-Usha is particularly delightful.

2) Naashad for Baaradari:

A cornucopia of mellow, dulcet songs with a rich variety, I think this work is the acme of Naashad’s musical career in India. (He also composed some memorable songs in Zindagi Ya Toofan and Naghma, but Baaradari is a creation par excellence). From ever-popular Bhula Nahi Dena to Talat’s soft Tasveer Banata Hoon to the sombre Muhabbat Ki Bas Itni Daastan to the sensual Chhodo Chhodo Ji Baiyan Mori, this score never ceases to amaze me. Unfortunately, we never again saw such creativity from Naashad.

3) Shankar-Jaikishan for Shri 420:

In the 50’s and 60’s, it was unthinkable that a S-J movie wouldn’t be there amongst the nominations. On the contrary, multiple nominations in a year were not unheard of. A similar situation was faced by me as I found myself torn between Seema and Shri 420 to pick one for the nomination but was tempted to include both. Both of them present very strong persuasive credentials and it is a nightmare to pick one over the other.

Seema has this unique different touch to it with songs that have a social/moral/ethical message to them plus that bhakti number Tu Pyar Ka Sagar Hai. While Shri 420’s is a more populist & seemingly commercially-oriented score. But then there is the difference between the on-screen persona of Balraj Sahni and Raj Kapoor, which effectively gets reflected on to the types of music we find in those two movies.

Shri 420 is laden with iconic numbers such as Mera Joota Hai, Ramaiya Vastavaiya & Pyar Hua Iqraar Hua. The three comical-ish songs (Ichak Dana, Dil Ka Haal Sune & Mud Mud Ke) take it slightly away from Shri 420 and tilt the balance towards Seema for me, but on the same hand Seema had a multiple version multi-part song (Suno Chhoti Si) which in my opinion limits the diversity of the score. Be in no doubt, it is a wonderful song but if instead of having multiple parts of it, we could have had three different songs enriching the soundtrack.

Usually a SJ score in the 50’s rode heavily on Lata solos but surprisingly Shri 420 only had a single Lata solo – that too was abridged – O Janewale Wale Mud Ke Zara.

In contrast, Seema had Manmohana Bade, Baat Baat Mein Rootho Na & the multi-part Suno Chhoti Si Gudiya.

The clout of the RK studios, combined with Raj Kapoor’s greater box-office appeal over Balraj Sahni perhaps paved way for Shri 420 ending up a better-known, mass-appealing musical blockbuster.

Therefore, my SJ nomination will be Shri 420. Trust me Seema is only very slightly behind and trailing really hot on the heels of Shri 420. On another day, with a different frame of mind, I could easily have gone for Seema.

4) Naushad for Udan Khatola:

By the year 1955, Naushad’s stature was that of a colossal super-star. It was for his music alone that cinema-goers would swarm to the theatres. His powerful music many a time pulled off mediocre productions or weak storylines and rescued films afflicted with any such technical hiccups.

The already high standards which Naushad had set for himself were stretched even further with Udan Khatola. The experimental humming choral interludes of More Saiyan Ji Utrenge with minimal instrumentation is a mark of Naushad’s absolute command – and for the listener a glorious treat to savour.
This song alone is enough to stake a claim for Udan Khatola. But there is more. Much more, in fact.

Lata’s lamenting solo Na Ro Ae Dil is excellent so are the three Rafi solos, viz. Muhabbat Ki Raahon Mein, Na Toofan Se Khelo & O Door Ke Musafir.
Add to it Mere Salaam Le Ja & Ghar Aaya Mehmaan. Even after all this, there is still room for Dooba Tara Umeedon Ka Sahaara & Hamare Dil Se Na Jana. A glut of mega-hits.

This ability to have almost all songs of a film mega-hits was, in my opinion, consistently possessed only by Naushad and SJ. (Not talking about one-or-a-few-movie wonders but a steady, relentless churning out of mega-movies).

The great SDB missed out on a few Filmfare awards, perhaps because of a lack of this quality. In later part of his career (Guide, Aradhana, Jewel Thief, Talash, Abhimaan, etc.), he gave us scores where almost every song was a major hit and he got himself a second Filmfare for Abhimaan. (But sadly the golden era had been confined to the annals of history by that time).

5) C. Ramchandra for Yasmin:

This may seem a surprise to many but after careful deliberation, I have chosen this as the fifth nominee. This soundtrack had all the qualities to be a run-away hit but maybe Akashwani didn’t play the songs often enough for them to receive due acclaim from public at large. It is a fascinating score, where every song is a glittering jewel. The iconic Lata-Talat duet, Tum Apni Yaad Bhi is complemented by Talat solo Bechain Nazar Betaab Jigar (which probably is the best known song from this movie as far as the average Joe is concerned).

This film is replete with remarkable Lata solos. CR has been known to be at his creative best when composing for Lata and this film can be quoted as an example to this effect.

• Mujh Pe Ilzaam-e-Bewafaayi
• Dil Unko Dhoondta Hai
• Muhabbat Mein Pehla Qadam
• Bechain Karne Wale Tu Bhi
• Hans Hans Ke Haseenon Se
• Ab Woh Raaten Kahan
• Aankhon Mein Sama Jaao

Superb indeed. Couldn’t praise it enough.

P.S. If I had the liberty to nominate one more movie, it would have to be Seema.


a) O. P. Nayyar for Mr. & Mrs. 55:
All-in-all a great soundtrack with pulsating rhythms and a rich variety of voices & singing styles. Here we can feel OPN preening his wings for bigger flights in the years to come.
Some lovely Geeta-Rafi duets, plus Preetam Aan Milo which is touching yet alluring. While Neele Aasmani is well aasmani, i.e., celestial.

b) Madan Mohan for Railway Platform:
Chand Madham Hai spearheads the claim to nomination for this movie. A mesmerising haunting Lata solo. A forgotten gem, waiting to be stumbled upon, dusted off and cherished forever.
Basti Basti (rendered by Rafi with his usual flair) and Dekh Tere Bhagwaan, making a statement, are the other two well-known numbers. Add to this soundtrack the pleasant Lata song – Jiya Kho Gaya – and we have a contender worthy enough to be considered for nomination. Sadly, the remainder of this album is too obscure to make any significant waves.

c) Sachin Dev Burman for House No. 44:

SDB had three movies this year, out of which I have chosen House No. 44 as my also-ran. The three songs listed by AK in the 84 Memorable Songs are indeed widely known landmark songs, esp. Phaili Hui Hain Sapnon Ki is an instance of a perfect song in all respects.

This concludes my nomination saga. Sorry to have rambled on so much. I hope this stimulates further debate.

45 Ashok Vaishnav April 18, 2012 at 10:48 am

Shri AM has lent a class to the popularity.They normally pull in opposite directions.
Filfare awards themselves got embroiled in the huge controversay by benchmarking poulairty as guiding criterion. As it is there was nothing wrong for a film magazine, which was trying to ride its own brnad on the back of film songs. alike BINACA Hits. This led to even alleged manipulations in so far as readers’ opinion polls, ushering in Jury Awards fro even such popularity categories.
Songs Of Yore has a distinct perspective at the film music of yore. Therfore, one would, normally, expect different yardsticks.
However, such discussions of popularity does add the flavor to the otherwise gourmet fare of Songs of Yore.

46 AK April 18, 2012 at 1:19 pm

Your detailed observations has indeed added class to the discussions. Now I am geeting so many varied perspectives that my wrapping up is going to be quite challenging! I do hope that you realise there are thre more categories for which you have to give nominations: Best male playback, Best female playback and Best duet.

@Ashok Vaishnav
I remember Beimaan also got Filmfare awards. I do not think any one remembers any song from that film. One can be sure SoY Awards would maintain this site’s class.

47 AM April 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Beimaan neither had popularity nor class. It was just a case of a major miscarriage of justice. As opposed to it, Pakeezah had both, popularity and class.
My guiding principle for the nominations had been a) popularity, b) class, and c) innovation.
This explains why Baradari and Yasmin are amongst the nominees but Mr & Mrs 55 is not.
Had popularity been the sole criterion, Mr & Mrs 55 would be amongst the final five shortlisted films.
Looking generally at the Filmfare awards through the years, none of the winners were unpopular. And all the winners had class (to some extent anyway).
Azaad oozed class. Shri 420 was popular but with elegance. Uran Khatola had tons of class and was very well received by the masses too, with some innovation thrown in for good measure.

48 AM May 1, 2012 at 7:20 pm

Best Playback Singer (Male):

Mohammad Rafi – O Door Ke Musafir (Udan Khatola)
Manna Dey – Tu Pyaar Ka Saagar Hai (Seema)
Mohammad Rafi – Basti Basti Parbat Parbat Gata (Railway Platform)
Mukesh – Mera Joota Hai Japani (Shree 420)
Hemant Kumar – Chup Hai Dharti Chup Hain Chand Sitaare (House No 44)

Best Playback Singer (Female):

Lata Mangeshkar – Jise Tu Qubool Kar Le Woh Ada (Devdas)
Lata Mangeshkar – Chaand Madham Hai Aasman Chup Hai (Railway Platform)
Geeta Dutt – Neele Aasmani Neele Aasmani Boojho To Yeh (Mr & Mrs 55)
Shamshad Begum – Ab To Ji Hone Laga Kisi Ki (Mr & Mrs 55)
Lata Mangeshkar – Suno Chhoti Si Gudiya Ki (Seema)

Best Duet:

Mohammad Rafi & Asha Bhosle – Jab Liya Haath Mein Haath (Vachan)
Hemant Kumar & Lata Mangeshkar – Halke Halke Chalo Sanwre (Tangewali)
Manna Dey & Lata Mangeshkar – Pyaar Hua Iqraar Hua (Shri 420)
Hemant Kumar & Lata Mangeshkar – Nain So Nain Nahi Milao (Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje)
Chitalkar & Lata Mangeshkar – Kitna Haseen Hai Mausam (Azaad)

49 AK May 2, 2012 at 1:13 pm

There is some surprise here! I sensed from your earlier comment that you view Talat’s soongs in Baradari and Yasmin very highly. Are you sure you want to omit him altogether? Then I also thought you are greatly fond of Rafi-Lata duet Bhula nahi dena ji bhula nahi dena.

50 AM May 3, 2012 at 3:34 am

Yes AK, you are absolutely right. I wanted to included Talat’s Tasweer Banata Hoon Tasweer Nahin Banti (Baradari), but only had five slots and so many fantastic songs to choose from. At the end, I opted for Hemant Kumar’s Chup Hai Dharti Chup Hain, succumbing to the flair and elegance with which Hemant has sung it. Especially in the 50s, Hemant’s voice had this certain resonant timbre about it which I am very fond of.

As the individual male & female playback singers had been accounted for in their respective categories, for the duets I largely focussed on lyrics, plus how the singers blended together as a team.

Kitna Haseen Hai Mausam is such a song where listening to Chitalkar and Lata gives the impression as if they are the lead actors, not playback singers, of the movie. Their vocal chemistry can be felt through and through. Amazing teamwork.

Tum Apni Yaad Bhi Dil Se Bhula (Yasmin) almost made it to my duets list. I must admit, the aspect of this song which I like the most is its music & the lovely tune it carries. This reflects in Yasmin’s choice for the Best Music category. Same rings true for Bhula Nahin Dena.

51 A May 10, 2012 at 11:04 am

Have been following your blog for a while now…for all the trivia on Hindi music, especially old ones…

Mukul Roy’s songs in Detective (1958) were melodious! Geeta-Hemant in Mujhko Tum Jo Mile…amazing amazing! Recently recorded that song:

52 Rohit Mehta May 10, 2012 at 3:30 pm

Dear AK,
I wish you please come out with a blog where in favorite musical instrument used by composer while recording popular songs during golder era. following are the tips as per my knowledge.

Sitar/Jaltarang ……. Naushad
Sarangi…. OP Naiyar.
Acodian/Violin … Shankar Jaikishan
Folk Musical instruments … SD Burman/ Salil Chaudhary
Electric Gitar…RD Burman.
Piano…… Ravi
Saxofone.. ?
Clay violin…. Kalyanji Virji Shah
Trumpet…. C.Ramchandra
??? …… Madan Mohan
???………..Hemant Kumar
Tabla/Dholak/Naal ….. Laxmikant Pyarelal
Santoor…. ?
Shahenai…. Ravi? or Vasant Desai?
I would be very happy to read your blog on above subject.

53 AK May 11, 2012 at 7:12 am

Good idea for a blog Let us see how it works out.

54 roshan May 17, 2012 at 2:17 am

Song 2 was originally composed in Tamil with the opening lines “Vennila jOthiyai VeesuthE”.

55 AK May 17, 2012 at 9:34 am

That is interesting. Are there some other songs of Azaad which have their Tamil version? Was C Ramchnadra the music director of Tamil version as well? We would appreciate if you have these info, and provide link to the songs, if possible.

56 Roshan May 24, 2012 at 4:30 am

The song I mentioned is on the following link.
However, i may have been wrong about which came first. It seems Manamagan ThEvai was released in 1957.

57 Roshan May 24, 2012 at 4:51 am

I will check the Azaad songs. Sorry I missed out reading your response.

58 Roshan May 27, 2012 at 1:15 am

Azad was turned into Tamil as ‘Malaikallan’ but CR did not provide the music for this movie. SM Subbaiah Naidu was the MD. The melodies are different and the songs were not chart toppers at the time.

Anarkali for which CR composed the tunes has its Tamil version and its songs are still remembered. The MD was Adi Narayana Rao, who did both Telugu and Tamil movies. The songs are by Jikki and Ghantasala. See for example

59 Suresh Maloo June 6, 2012 at 3:01 pm

I am thrilled to have visited your site, late though. There is a lot to know and appreciate. I am a music lover and very profound listener of the old songs of Lata Dee, Rafi Saheb, and all others.
I knew about many very melodious songs, which did not get publicity and popularity for unknown reasons. I am not ready with any list of such songs, since I visited this site accidentally. I feel very fortunate, therefor.
I wish to place very humbly that there is hardly any song mentioned here that I have not heard or known. But, I feel many beautiful songs deserve attention of music lovers.

60 Prabhakar Cuckemane August 15, 2012 at 2:29 pm

It is amazing. How could I miss this site all these years? Kudos to you!!!

61 AK August 15, 2012 at 2:53 pm

Thanks a lot. Hope you spend more time here, you have a lot to catch up!

62 Anand Shankar October 31, 2012 at 2:02 pm

Though Naushad gave many memorable songs for Udankhatola, the best music director of 1955 should be Shankar Jaikishan for the songs of Sri420.

Rafi sahab sang comparatively less songs in 1955. Still his ‘O dur ke musafir’ from Udan Khatola and ‘kahan ja raha hai’ from Sima is among the greatest songs of 1955. Kishore Da’s ‘jivan ke safar me Rahi’ is also a top class song. But according to me, the best male singer of 1955 would be Talat Mehmood for the song ‘bechain nazar betab zigar’ from the film Yasmin.

In my opinion the best female singer of 1955 is Lata ji for the song ‘manmohna bade…’ from the film Sima.

63 n.venkataraman October 31, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Ak ji
Very soon you will be coming up with the final wrap-up on the Best Music Director for 1955.
Here are my choices in order of preference.
1. S D Burman – Devdas
2. Shankar Jaikishan – Seema
3. S D Nashad – Bara Dari
4. Vasant Desai – Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baje
5. C Ramchand – Azad
It was very difficult to decide between Seema and Devdas for the 1st and and 2nd position. Ultimately I decided in favour of Devdas. It was a very close verdict. Bara Dari with three excellent songs is my choice for the 3rd slot. It was difficult to keep Shree 420 and Udan Khatola out of the first five. But after much deliberation I could come to the above conclusion.
In course of my deliberations, I realized how much effort and labour you should have put up to bring out these Wrap-ups. The eloquent explanations and comments provided by you and others, especially by Ashok Vaishnavji and AMji, were excellent.
Few interesting trivia;
In the film Insaniyat, there was a duet sung by Md Rafi and Chitalkar. I could not find this song in the youtube. – ‘Bol Jamhure Tera Naam Kabhi Raam Kabhi Lakshman’
Here is a link to a song sung by Shaukat Dehlvi Nashad from the film Bara Dari.
Here is the song ‘Kisko Khabar thi Kisko yakeen tha’ from the film Devdas rendered by Dilip Kumar.

Will be eagerly waiting for the final wrap up for 1955.

Thanks once again.

64 AK November 1, 2012 at 9:10 am

Thanks a lot. Final wrap up should come in December. I also respect Nashad very highly. I would like to put his picture in the thumbnail. Can you get hold of his picture on any site?

65 N Venkataraman November 1, 2012 at 11:35 am
Music Director Shaukat Dehalvi Nashad, seen here conducting the orchestra.

66 N Venkataraman November 1, 2012 at 11:41 am
67 Goel November 1, 2012 at 12:20 pm

A small corrections.
Jab Liya Hath Mein Hath from Vachan is Rafi Asha duet.

68 AK November 2, 2012 at 8:09 pm

Thanks a lot for the correction. Generally in a duet the male voice dominates, but in this one Asha Bholse’s impact lingers more and I associated it in my mind as her solo. Therefore, I have corected it as Asha Bhosle and Rafi duet, rather than the more natural other way round!

69 N Venkataraman November 9, 2012 at 7:28 pm

A few interesting and beautiful songs from the movie Jagadguru Shankaracharya(1955), Music director – Avinash Vyas
1.Om Namah Shivaya – Md. Rafi
2.Meri Gaagar mein Saagar roop ka – Geeta Dutt
I could not find a better recording of this song.
3.Aaj Kaise yeh Suraj Chamka re
4.He Natwar Nagar Muralidhar – Geeta Dutt & Pinaki Shah
Part I
Part II
Thanks to the collection shared by Dr Surjit Singh ji , Girdharilal Vishwakamram ji and Narsingh Agnish ji.

70 ASHOK M VAISHNAV November 10, 2012 at 10:43 am

Avinash Vyas did not quite succeed commercially in Hindi Films, but he did continue very actively in Gujarati – film and non-film categories.
In fact, his indefatigable creative activism proved to be a major catalyst in popularizing non-film songs in Gujarati and gave a substantive platform to many Gujarati singers.
His stellar role, combined with a major contribution by AIR in those days went a long way in bringing many excellent poetry by a wide diaspora of poets on the lips of a whole generation ( in 60s and 70s).
He himself has written Gujarati songs.
Many thanks to Shri Venkatraman for opening up an altogether new direction – contributions to Hindi Film Songs by prominent regional language music directors – to the active esteemed researchers on Internet space in so far as Hindi Film Music is concerned.

71 N Venkataraman November 10, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Thanks for your informative comments. Avinash Vyas had given Music Direction for the movie Waman Avatar (1955). Ak ji had included the song “Tere Dwar Khada Bhagawan” in his list of Special Songs (No.6), sung and written by Kavi Pradeep.

72 s p sinha May 6, 2017 at 3:30 pm

my favourite 1955 movie songs are from Munimji. sachin karta’s compositions for lata and her rendition of songs like ek nazar bas ek nazar, ghayal hiraniya and above all ankh khultehi tum were simply peerless. i must mention the contributions of sahir and shailendra here.

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