Forgotten Composers, Unforgettable Melodies (3) – C Arjun

October 27, 2011

C ArjunI have not forgotten the Forgotten Composers, Unforgettable Melodies. It so happens that in a unique coincidence birth anniversaries of Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle, and death anniversaries of Mohammad Rafi, Mukesh and Kishore Kumar fall in a narrow band of two and a half months between July 31 to October 13. They are the biggest icons of playback singing in the Golden Era, and I did not want to miss these special occasions to offer my tributes. I am back with C Arjun, who should rank among the top in this series not only alphabetically but because of his timeless creations. It was characteristic of the period that in a crowded field of many highly talented composers, some were consigned to B or C grade films. C Arjun was one of them. But his music towers over his films. Only one song of his – Paas baitho tabiyat bahal jayegi sung by Rafi is enough to give him immortality. Many of this blog’s readers have mentioned his name and this song. Much later his C grade film Jai Santoshi Maa, released in the year of the mighty Sholay and Deewar, established itself as one of the highest grossing films ever on the strength of his music.

Originally a Sindhi, he was born on September 1, 1933.  After partition his family settled in Baroda. He inherited his musical talent from his father who was a singer. He became assistant to another Sindhi music director Bulo C Rani. He started his career with composing for a Sindhi film Abana. His first Hindi film was Road no 303 (1960). Off and on he got films under nondescript banners with B/C grade cast. That he created memorable music nevertheless did not do much to change his fortunes. His teaming with the lyricist Jaan Nisar Akhtar would rank at par with the best of Sahir Ludhiyanvi’s composed by SD Burman or Roshan. He also composed a number of non film songs. He died at a relatively young age of 59 of heart attack he suffered at a recording studio. (Biographical information based on Pankaj Raag’s ‘Dhunon Ki Yatra’).

Here are his all-time great songs, which every music lover knows though many may not be aware that they are C Arjun’s compositions.

1. Paas baitho tabiyat bahal jayegi by Rafi from Punrmilan (1964), lyrics Indivar

Any mention of C Arjun has to start with this song. It is easily among Rafi’s all time greats. KR Vaishampayan, a regular follower of this blog, in one of his comments, drew attention to an interesting story behind this song told to him by his friend Dr Satyavir Yadav, who heard it on Binaca Geetmala hosted by Ameen Sayani. Once C Arjun and and Indivar were returning home from studio by a BEST bus, when a pretty young girl boarded the bus and stood beside their seat. Indivar looked at her repeatedly and asked C Arjun to leave his seat to let her sit beside him, and thus this song was born. Incredibly this song is picturised on Jagdeep who was in the lead role opposite Ameeta, who had a brief period of glory with some super hit films in the late 50s and early 60s such as Tum Sa Nahi Dekha and Goonj Uthi Shenai.

2. Chaah karni thi chaah kar baithe by Asha Bhosle and Mubarak Begum from Punarmilan, lyrics Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

Paas baitho tabiyat bahal jayegi was not a flash in the pan. Punarmilan had several outstanding songs. C Arjun shows his prowess for composing ghazal in this beautiful poetry of Raja Mehdi Ali Khan. Asha Bhosle and Mubarak Begum have rendered it equally beautifully, so have Shashikala and Ameeta acted it on the screen.

3. In pyar ki rahon mein tera hi sahara hai by Rafi and Asha Bhosle from Punarmilan, lyrics Gulshan Bawra

Punarmilan had three lyricists. This one is a duet by Rafi and Asha penned by Gulshan Bawra. This duet would compare with the best Rafi – Asha Bhosle duets by OP Nayyar. Jagdeep and Ameeta do the dancing around trees like any mainstream stars.

4. Bhai re bhai, main to bawri bhai by Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshkar from Punarmilan, lyrics Gulhan Bawra

Now you have a totally different flavour in this rarely heard Manna Dey – Lata Mangeshkar duet. A beautiful Krishna – Radha dance song performed on stage by Jagdeep – Ameeta.

5. Gham ki andheri raat mein by Rafi and Talat Mahmood from Susheela (1966), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

Gham ki andheri raat mein must be one of the best male duets of two legends Rafi and Talat Mahmood. The beautiful poetry is again by Jaan Nisar Akhtar who seemed to have a very creative pairing with Jaan Nisar Akhtar. This song bears an uncanny similarity to Sahir Ludhiyanvi – Khayyam composition Wo subah kabhi to ayegi from Phir Subah Hogi.

6. Bemurravat bewafa begana-e-dil aap hain by Mubarak Begum from Susheela

If a composer creates an unforgettable song for a B/C grade movie he must be immensely talented. If he creates two such songs you bow your head to him. C Arjun creates one of the most unforgettable songs of Mubarak Begam, a beautiful ghazal.

7. Main abhi gair hun mujhko abhi apna na kaho by Mukesh and Asha Bhosle from Main Aur Mera Bhai (1961), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

Mukesh and Asha Bhosle have sung some heavenly duets, and Main abhi gair hun mujhko abhi apna na kaho should easily rank among their best.

Main abhi gir hun

8. Peenwale meri ankhon se piya karte hain by Asha Bhosle from Mangu Dada (1970), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

C Arjun displayed amazing variety in whatever limited assignment he got. Here is a lovely mujra by Asha Bhosle in another C-grade film which has actors like Sheikh Mukhtar, Faryal etc in the cast.

9. Jitni haseen ho tum utni hi bewafa ho by Rafi from Mangu Dada, lyrics by Jaan Nisaar Akhtar

Here is an amazing Rafi solo. If you close your eyes you would imagine it must have been picturised on a top star like Rajendra Kumar and composed by a top music director like Shankar Jaikishan. Besides being highly talented composer, C Arjun must have been a very sincere person to create this gem for Sujit Kumar romancing Faryal.

10. Main to aarti utarun re by Usha Mngeshkar from Jai Santoshi Ma (1975)

The pinnacle of C Arjun’s work was Jai Santoshi Ma, a low budget film which came in the year of Sholay and Deewar and soon became a surprise super duper hit ranking among all-time highest grossers, obviously riding on the wave of his amazingly lilting compositions. Those were the days of radios at paan-shop and loudspeakers at every neighbourhood corner, blaring songs incessantly. You could not spend half an hour without listening to one or the other song of Jai Santoshi Ma. Here is an iconic aarti which really started the cult of Santoshi Mata. Before this film Santoshi Ma was hardly among the well-known deities.

{ 72 comments… read them below or add one }

1 dustedoff October 27, 2011 at 12:40 pm

Thank you for this post, AK. I had heard some of the songs – Paas baitho, the title song from Jai Santoshi Maa (my God! How popular that used to be in all the temples when I was growing up, before people like Narendra Chanchal came around). But I really liked discovering some of the other songs that C Arjun composed. I especially loved Gham ki andheri raat mein – fabulous, and with a sort of joyful hope about it. I prefer Woh subah kabhi toh aayegi because of its almost haunting nature, but this one’s a lovely tune too.

2 Ashok Vaishnav October 27, 2011 at 3:41 pm

Each of C Arjun’s song presented in this collection is indisputable gem.

Thia post is indeed a very fitting tribute to the Great Music Director.

3 Kashinath R Vaishampayan [alias - KRV] November 20, 2011 at 6:17 pm

Hello AK,
I am on to your blog after a long time to find this Goldmine. What touching words AK…I am sure, C.Arjun deserved more than that. Just one PUNARMILAN was enough to get him more work in better films. But alas! Music lovers like u can only despair… and listen to his lilting scores as and when possible. Thanks again for such a touching tribute to this great musical soul who must resting in Heaven. KRV

4 AK November 21, 2011 at 9:43 am

@KR Vaishampayan
I did notice you had taken a long vacation from this blog! Welcome back. You were one of the persons who fondly mentioned C Arjun and Paas baitho tabiyat bahal jayegi, which also happened to be one of my top Rafi favourites.

5 Rajprakash Ratnam November 21, 2011 at 12:50 pm

Dear Sir

How can we forget a Rafi solo..Murakh Hai Insaan BHagwan…from
the film Main Aur Mera Bhai.

6 AK November 23, 2011 at 9:58 am

@Rajprakash Ratnam
Heard it for the first time. It is an excellent song. Thanks for introducing it to me.

Murakh hai insaan Bhagwan by Rafi from Main Aur Mera Bhai

7 Rajprakash Ratnam November 23, 2011 at 4:21 pm

Dear AK

Thanks for the prompt upload.How did you manage this?

8 AK November 24, 2011 at 3:40 am

@Rajprakash Ratnam
No great magic in this. It seems there is nothing which is not on YouTube.

9 Dr. Satyavir Yadav. December 2, 2011 at 9:43 am

Hello AK Sahab !!
Thanks for my reference in the gem “paas baitho tabiyat behal jaayegi”. What an exceelent write up,review & tributes to the greatest legend ‘C. Arjun’. Maza aur anand dono aa gaye !!

I had commented on one of the Youtube uploads of this song sometimes back, about the story behind creation of this number but could not narrate the whole story there due to limitation of space.
Here is the complete story which I listened to on radio Ceylon in Binaca Geetmala by Aameen Sayani, way way back …

I still remember the interview of C.Arjun by Ameen Sayani on radio in Binaca Geetmala prog. , a long time ago about the story behind as to how how this song was written by Indivar and how it was tuned.
C. Arjun said ….””one day we (both me and Indivar) were travelling in a BEST bus while returning home in the evening, from the recording studio. Both of us were sitting on the same seat and the bus was packed full with passengers. After 2 or 3 stations Indivar saw that a young and very beautiful girl boarded the bus and she came near our seat standing in the middle amongst other standing passengers. Indivar was repeatedly looking at her time and again. After 4 or 5 minutes, Indivar asked me to leave my seat and offer it to the pretty girl standing besides us.
After a bit hesitation I agreed and gave my seat to her.To my surprise, Indivar didn’t talk to her even once while she was sitting beside him for about 20 -25 minutes before she deboarded the bus at one of the stops in our way. When I asked Indivar why he didn’t talk to her ?. He replied today he shall deboard the bus with me at my residence bus stop & answer me when we shall reach my home. We deboarded the bus at my residence stoppage. On reaching home Indivar said “my dear Arjun thank you so much for offering your seat to her and letting her sit beside me and I have imagined and thought of some lines while she was standing and then sitting besides me”. Indivar there and then spoke those lines to me and they were “PAAS BAITHO TABIYAT BAHAL JAYEGI….MAUT BHI AA GAYI HO TO TAL JAYEGI”.
And then Indivar wrote this whole song there and then in about one hour and asked me to compose its tune the same night. We sat together after our dinner and composed its tune before we went to our beds late night. Indivar stayed with me that night and left for his home next day morning….””

That was the example of the spirit, the circumstances, the inspiration & the passion behind most of the songs created and tuned during that golden era of hindi film music.
My SALAAM to all those composers and writers …. &
Thanks to the generation that produced such gems.
Long live their memories ….

10 AK December 2, 2011 at 6:34 pm

@Dr Satyavir Yadav
The full story is itself equally lyrical. Once you hear this song, it takes a long time to come out of its spell.

11 a c tuli December 18, 2011 at 2:14 pm

Most of the contributors to this blog have talked about C Arjun as the music director who composed some most memorable ditties. Of course, there is no denying that he was a music director of calibre, but he never got the opportunity to compose for films made by big banners.
But I am contributing my piece for an entirely different reason. I think very few people know that C Arjun started his career in Bollywood as actor, and he was the hero of his very first film entitled ‘Malhar’ released in 1950. His leading lady in this film was Shammi. The music of this film, composed by Roshan, was its specialty. Every song was a gem. But after ‘Malhar’, C Arjun could not make much headway as actor. Soon he turned his attention to mastering the basic of music composition for films. And he succeeded. Of course, he was never in the top league, but those who love soft, sweet music shall always find his creations worth listening to.

12 Kashinath R Vaishampayan [alias - KRV] December 18, 2011 at 6:39 pm

Dear Mr. A C Tuli,
Thanks a million for your information. Nice to know this facet of C Arjun’s personality. But for your comment, fans like me would have thought of him only as a Great Composer. Now that you have mentioned MALHAR…I shall make it a point to watch its songs on You Tube with renewed vigor. Thanks again sir. Regards – KRV

13 AK December 19, 2011 at 11:26 am

@a c tuli
This is absolutely a fantastic information. All the songs of Malhar are my great favourites, and one of the best Roshan creations. But I could have never imagined the hero was C Arjun. Surprisingly no source mentions this fact.

14 a c tuli December 19, 2011 at 4:49 pm

One thing more about C Arjun. In the film ‘Malhar’ his name appeared as Arjun, not C Arjun. Besides, in the biographical sketch of C Arjun that appears in the beginning of this blog, it has been said that he was born on September 1, 1933. This is incorrect. ‘Malhar’ came in 1951. C Arjun was then not 18 years old, but approaching 28. Therefore, his correct date of birth is September 1, 1923.

15 AK December 21, 2011 at 8:14 pm

@a c tuli
Just a small observation. As I have mentioned in my article the biographical information is based on Pankaj Raag’s Dhunon Ki Yatra, which I believe he has written after a great deal of research. It is also not a typo, as he has mentioned his death at the age of 59 in the early 90’s. Now coming to Arjun’s appearance in Malhar, 18 is not such an impossible age for someone to be an actor. After all, Dilip Kumar or Raj Kapoor debuted at 21/22, not very far off. Then you have Sachin in some films where he was very youngish as a hero, or Rishi Kapoor in Bobby or Kumar Gaurav in Love Story.

16 Arunkumar Deshmukh December 21, 2011 at 9:57 pm

AK ji,

In my opinion,Malhar Arjun is entirely a different person than C.Arjun.
This (Malhar) Arjun first debuted in Naujawan-1951,in the role of Premnath’s friend.His second film was Malhar,as a Hero.He later acted in Daku ki Ladki-1954 as a second Hero with Shaikh Mukhtar.After a hiatus of few years,he appeared in Jungle ki Beti and Maut ki Ghati in 1987,with Rajani as his Co-star.Further he acted in Kanwarlal-1988 also.
It seems unlikely that between 1954 and 1987,he gave music as C.Arjun,before expiring in 1992.
-Arunkumar Deshmukh

17 AK December 22, 2011 at 9:54 am

@Arunkumar Deshmukh
I also had my doubts. His first Hindi film as music director was in 1960. Then what was he doing for 9 years after Malhar?

18 a c tuli December 22, 2011 at 6:20 pm

I am indeed pained to know that some bloggers have doubted my word about C Arjun. I am a film critic of long standing and I have written hundreds of articles on films. It was indeed C Arjun who debuted in ‘Malhar’ as hero opposite Shammi, who is nowadays seen in the role of grandma in TV serials and films. If you look at C Arjun in Malhar (in Malhar he was simply Arjun) you will find that he is indeed the C Arjun who later became music director. And if you closely look at his face in the song, ‘Bade armano se rakha hai balam teri kasam…’, you will find that he is not an adolescent of 18 years ago, but a full grown young man in his late twenties.
As regards Premnath’s friend in ‘Naujawan’, he was certainly not C Arjun. He was Ram Avtar, who later appeared in many Hindi films as minor comedian.

19 Arunkumar Deshmukh December 23, 2011 at 2:23 pm

May be,he was not Premnath’s friend,but ARJUN and NOT C.Arjun did act in Naujawan-51. The film credits show his name too.
Considering that C and Plain Arjun are one and the same,still,it is a mystery why in no article or in the interview of C.Arjun taken on Radio Ceylon by Ameen Sayani,has anybody ever nentioned about his acting career,Even he himself has not mentioned it. This interview transcript is available for reading to anybody.
It is not a question of doubting or non acceptance,nor is it to insinuate
disrespect to anyone’s knowledge,but it is a simple query which needs to be attended to.
We are all trying to unearth the hidden facts,so that we are well informed.Thats all.No more no less.Nothing personal either.

20 Arunkumar Deshmukh December 23, 2011 at 5:26 pm

Here is the link for the transcript of C.Arjun’s interview by Ameen Sayani,on Vividh Bharati(and NOT on Radio Ceylon,sorry for the lapse)-

21 Arunkumar Deshmukh January 8, 2012 at 5:58 pm

AK ji,

Recently I read one book “RAHE NA RAHE HAM” written by Shantaram Mankikar.The book is in Marathi and it was first published in December 2006.In this book the writer has given some info about C.ARJUN,which I thought all of us would like to know.I will quote only what is NOT mentioned so far.
His full name was ARJUN PARMANAND CHANDNANI and he was born in Karachi on 1-9-1933.His first Hindi film was Road no.303 in 1960.He gave music to 17 Hindi films,besides films in Gujarati,Sindhi and Haryanvi languages.Some of his films were,Main aur Mera Bhai,Punarmilan,Ek saal pehle,Jai santoshi Maa,Raksha Bandhan,Karwa Chauth,Aankh ka Taara,Lambu in Hong kong,Ustad Pedro,Mangu Dada,Gunahon ka Mandir,Nawab Sahib,Kanoon aur Mujrim,Hamari Kahani,O Mere Jaane Jigar etc..
His film Susheela-1966,which was incomplete,was completed and releasd as Subah zaroor Aayegi in 1977 in which ‘bemurawwat bewafa’ song sung by Mubarak Begum and ‘gham ki andheri raat mein’sung by Talat and Rafi became very popular.
He died on 30-4-1992,due to a massive Heart attack when he was recording a non-filmi sindhi song in the Sterling Studios,Mumbai.
A point to note is that even in this book,there is NO mention of his acting in any film in his life anytime !
-Arunkumar Deshmukh

22 AK January 9, 2012 at 7:33 pm

@Arunkumar Deshmukh
Thanks again.

23 a c tuli January 25, 2012 at 3:44 pm

Mr Arunkumar Deshmukh, I am sure you know it well that Raju Bharatan, who once wrote copiously on cricket, was also a discerning film critic. His knowledge of old films was simply amazing. It was in one of his articles that he wrote about how C Arjun, who had started as the hero of ‘Malhar’ but had in later years switched to music composition. Like you, I too doubted the veracity of this information. But now that I have seen C Arjun’s face on the internet so many times and have also compared it with the face of the man who sings, along with Shammi, ‘Bade armaan se rakha balam teri kasam’, I find that they are one and the same person. The only difference being that the C Arjun of ‘Malhar’ was a young man and the C Arjun, whose photograph is given in this blog, is the same man in his middle age.
Besides, it also stands to reason that C Arjun who acted as hero in ‘Malhar’, which was released in 1951, could not have accepted a small and insignificant role as Premnath’s friend in ‘Naujawan’, which was also released in 1951.

24 Arunkumar Deshmukh January 27, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Tuli ji,
With all due respect-
1) in my letter in this blog dated 21st Dec 2011, I had said that Arjun debuted in Naujawan,his second film was Malhar as a Hero and later he was a second Hero etc.
2) I dont want to sound anything else,but can I get further info about Raju’s THIS artcle ? Pl do not misunderstand anyway,but this is only to once for all clarify my doubt so that I will not propogate wrong info .
I do hope you will take it in the right spirit,please,please.

25 Arunkumar Deshmukh January 28, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Tuli ji,
After my last post here,I raised this issue in our RMIM forum,whose members are well known researchers,lovers and scholars of Hindi films and Music,like Dr.Surjit Singh ji,Naniwadekar ji,Dhall ji etc.
In response to my query,one honourable member has informed us that the Hero of Malhar-ARJUN,was running a Music store in Canada and that he had met himin 2003.(C.Arjun died in 1992 itself.).
I am providing the link for your verification-
I hope this matter is decisively sorted out now.

26 a c tuli January 29, 2012 at 8:46 am

Arunkumar Deshmukhji,
Thanks for the information.

27 AK January 29, 2012 at 9:39 pm

ac tuli, Arunkumar Deshmukhji,
I should thank both of you for this enlightening exchange. One of my knowledgeable friends also mentioned C Arjun being in Canada, but neither he nor I wanted to enter into the debate without independent confirmation.

28 Arunkumar Deshmukh January 30, 2012 at 8:25 am

AK ji,
You mean ARJUN was in Canada.
C.ARJUNwas already in Heaven !

29 AK January 30, 2012 at 4:36 pm

Arunkumar Deshmukhji,
I was so mixed up between the two! Of course, I meant Arjun.

30 Sham Chandnani February 14, 2012 at 1:44 am

AK ji wonderful write-up about my uncle C.Arjun.Amazing choice of songs.Those are my favourites too. C in C.Arjun stands for Chandnani.
As the surname suggests he was Sindhi.
I was over whelmed with joy when I read the article & thought I should contibute to the truths,as I have spent my childhood with him.
I am Sham Chandnani Civil Engineer from IIT Powai.
Dubai is my second home.
Music was uncle’s passion.V.V. original. Never copied anyone like today’s generation.
Uncle never acted in any movie. Never went to Canada although he visited Dubai.
Settled in Mumbai after migrating from Karachi due to partition.
Two of his brothers(one was my father) stayed in Mumbai.
His parents & other siblings settled in Baroda.
I have vivid memories of going to the studios with uncle especially for recording with Mohd Rafi a legend himself.


31 AK February 14, 2012 at 7:03 pm

@Sham Chandnani
It is wonderful to have a family member of the celebrity visiting this site. Thanks for finally settling several doubts. I do not know from where the Canada thing came about, but we can let it pass. If you have some family photographs or other information I would be very happy to post it here.

32 Arunkumar Deshmukh February 15, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Sham ji and AK ji,
The Canada point came up in respect of the other Arjun(Hero of Malhar) and NOT about C.Arjun.
Atleast now the point is clear that he never acted in any film.
I hope Mr.Tuli reads this.
-Arunkumar Deshmukh

33 a c tuli February 18, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Dear Mr AK,
Even after so many clarifications – and one of them coming from C Arjun’s nephew, there still remains this mystery – Where is Arjun of ‘Malhar’? Can anyone throw light on this little mystery? If Arjun was in his twenties in 1951 when ‘Malhar’ was released, then today, if he is alive, he must be an old man in his 80.

34 AK February 19, 2012 at 10:05 am

@a c tuli
I think we have to wait for ‘Malhar’ Arjun’s family to turn up on this site and clarify!

35 Arunkumar Deshmukh June 11, 2012 at 10:20 am

AK ji,
Apropos the above intersting discussion of the identity of the Hero of MALHAR-1951, ARJUN,
I am glad to inform all that this mystery seems to have been solved satisfactorily.
Recently,irrefutable proof has come up in Cinegems and Cineplot that the Hero of Malhar was none other that ARJUN BAKSHI-father of the actress(of ‘Bullet’,with Dev Anand) JYOTI BAKSHI.
Arjun Bakshi who had acted in some other films(as mentioned by me in my comments above),including ‘Daku ki Ladki’,was later on a screen play writer in hindi films.
Jyoti and her father separated later and jyoti had a very pathetic and sad demise,few years back.
So,once for all it is clear,once again,that C.Arjun the composer and Arjun the actor were two different persons.
-Arunkumar Deshmukh

36 AK June 25, 2012 at 9:40 am

Arunkumar Deshmukhji,
Trust you to settle the doubts finally. I hope one of his family members turns up on this site to endorse. Could you please give the link of Cinegem and Cineplot relevant articles.

37 Arunkumar Deshmukh June 25, 2012 at 9:57 am

AK ji,

Here is cinegems link-


38 Arunkumar Deshmukh June 25, 2012 at 10:09 am
39 K R Vaishampayan June 25, 2012 at 10:31 am

Hello AK,

Extremely sorry for an unduly long holiday from Songs-Of-Yore. But I was tied up into so many things and only now have a breather. By end of June [30 Th] my website shall be up. I request you to check the the URL
Thanks a million for wealth of information on C Arjun. I shall check the links provided by avid fans of Arjun.
Thanks again and again for this wonderfully informative blog of yours. Regards – KRV

40 AK June 25, 2012 at 8:37 pm

@Arunkumar Deshmukhji
Thanks a lot for the links.

Welcome back. I am afraid you have to do a lot of catching up on this blog. Hope you get time go through all that has been put up. I am also egerly waiting for your blog. Knowing your range of interests I know it is going to be very exciting.

41 arvind November 19, 2012 at 1:17 pm

sharing c arjun composition “…..tum agar aa sako to aa jao…” from ” …ek saal pehle…” sung by suman kalyanpur.

42 AK November 19, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Arvind, kya baat hai! Terrific song. Thanks for sharing.

43 arvind habbu April 20, 2013 at 6:26 pm


Thanks for memorising such great forgotton music director c arjun Pl show vid songs of film Ek sal Pahale which are very melodious.

44 AK April 22, 2013 at 12:51 pm

If you meant the video of the songs from Ek Saal Pahle, I don’t think YT has video links. Arvind has already posted above a beautiful song from this movie by Suaman Kalyanpur, Tum agar aa sako to aa jao. Another excellent song from this movie is a Talat Mahmood-Asha Bhosle duet Nazar utha ke ye rangeen saman rahe na rahe which I have carried in my post on Best duets of Talat Mahmood and Asha Bhosle. In this the uploader has let his imagination soar and create a video of Raj Kapoor and Nargis, whereas the lead actors in this movie were Sujit Kumar and Saeeda Khan.

45 Canasya May 6, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Phew, “The case of identity” finally solved! Although the whole saga unfolded over a period of more than six months, for a late comer like me this blog has been no less racy and gripping than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s original mystery. And Arunkumar Deshmukhji’s prowess in HFM lore and his resourcefulness in accessing a network of likeminded scholars is comparable to the encyclopedic knowledge of the Master (that is, Holmes) himself and his use of Baker Street Irregulars. Here are two songs from C Arjun’s Kanoon Aur Mujrim (1981):

Shaam rangeen hui hai (Suresh Wadkar & Usha Mangeshkar)

Balamwa ab to nazar nahin aate (Shobha Gurtu)!/songs/balamion-ab-to

46 Mohan Lal July 6, 2013 at 5:23 pm

New Delhi, 6th July, 2013.

AK Ji,

The long six month blog discussion (which I have read with great attention) is extremely informative and interesting and it has ultimately clarified that C. Arjun and Arjun of Malhar were two different persons.

Can you please or any enthusiast of this bloc clarify about two music directors: one Shyam Sunder (of the Indian film music of golden era in 1940s to 50s) and Sham Ji Ghansham Ji of 1970s (in fact, to my knowledge, there was no Ghanshamji as such, it was just for the sake of a trend prevalent in film music industry to give a feeling of a team).

I personally knew Sham Ji for sometime during 1969 and 1970-71 (of Sham Ji Ghanshamji team famous for the song Apni Ankhon mein Bitha ker koi ikrar karoon jee mein aata hai ké ji bhar ké thujhé pyaar karoon from the film Thokar) whose real name is Sham Sunder Bhatia, who is no more and expired sometimes after 1978.

The question is whether Shyam Sunder of the golden era and Shamji of 1970s is the same person or two different individuals? Can some knowledgeable soul throw some light particularly on Sham Ji (of Sham Ji Ghanshamji team). I would be grateful for this information / clarification.

Mohan Lal.

47 AK July 7, 2013 at 8:50 am

Mohan Lal,
As you have yourself pointed out Shyam Sundar and Shyamji Ghanshyamji belong to different eras, separated by at least 30 years, having no overlap either in time or musical style. Shyam Syundar was one of the doyens of the ‘Punjab School’ of music which took the music world by storm in the early 40s. He is credited to have discovered Rafi and given him a break in a Punjabi film Gul Baloch (1943). Noorjehan’s songs Baithi hun teri yaad ka lekar ke sahara and Kis tarah bhulega dil unka khayal aya hua are landmarks of her career. Then Lata Mangeshkar’s best songs can not be complete without Sajan ki galiyan chhod chaley and Baharein phir bhi ayengi magar hum tum juda honge composed by him. In short he is a significant personality in the history of film music. Pankaj Rag’s Dhunon Ki Yatra mentions that his alcoholism led to his downfall, and he died during the shooting of Alif Laila (1953).

You are right Shyamji Ghanshyam ji is one person. Probably he changed his name to sound as a pair hoping that this would increase his chances to get a break. His first film was Dhunye Ki Lakeer (1974), and was active till 80s. One of his songs I especially like is this:

Main dhhondta hun jinko raaton ko khayalon mein by Mukesh from Thokar (1974)

48 Mohan Lal July 8, 2013 at 3:21 pm

New Delhi, 8th July 2013.

Thank you AK Ji for providing in-depth information on the songs of yesteryears: gazab ki yadein tazaa ker di aapné by referring to various songs by Rafi Saheb and Lata ji, while clarifying about Shyam Sunder and Sham Sunder Bhatia (Shamji Ghanshamji).

Thanks once again and regards,
Mohan Lal.

49 AK July 8, 2013 at 3:31 pm

You are most welcome.

50 Shikha Vohra September 19, 2013 at 10:21 pm

With all the faith in Raju Bharatan’s competence as a music historian, I would really not take all his statements as gospel truth.
That apart, this is a fantastic blog site.

51 AK September 20, 2013 at 12:22 am

Thanks Shikhaji for your good words. Hope you are able to catch up with more of Songs of Yore. This site has achieved its standing more because of its knowledgeable readers.

52 ksbhatia January 28, 2014 at 12:34 am

AK ji, Since my youthdays I have been fan of C Arjun simply for the reason that the melody he created for each film he did was at par with great music directors of that era. C Arjun was superb in Punarmilan, specially the songs …ishq hum kham khan kar bahthe……and ….in pyar ki rahon mein….His use of instruments and orcastraisation is superb and almost matches Shanker Jaikishan. Where were the big banners at that time ? AK ji, We must give credits to all the music directors who have given music to unheard films also like……Tarzon comes to india ,Flight to assam,Magic ring, Pedro, Rail ka dibba, Prisoner of golkunda,Tarzon ki beti , Hunterwali……etc.

53 Nirmal Tolani March 25, 2014 at 10:00 am

I was amazed with the collection you have put together. I am a friend of Sham Chandnani from IIT Powai. I had an opportunity to accompany him for one of Mr. C.Arjun’s recording. I was dumfounded to see how much energy and talent he had. One of my favourite song is “Ghum ki andheri raat …..” When ever I am down and need inpiration I sing that. I am settled in USA for over 40 years. I would like to get in touch with my old fiend Sham Chandnani to reminisce old times . Can you help me and send me his e-mail address.

54 AK March 25, 2014 at 5:42 pm

Nirmal Tolani,
I have sent you a mail. I would be very happy if my blog helps you connect with your old friend.

55 BHARAT PATWALA May 27, 2014 at 8:27 pm

It was very pleasant & nostalgic journey listening to all master pieces of MD, C Arjun. Bhai re bhai, I heard for first time liked instantly and added to my stock.
Thanks lot for uploading such songs for listeners like us.

56 AK May 27, 2014 at 11:25 pm

Bharat Patwala,
Welcome to SoY and thanks for your appreciation.

57 Waheed Riasat Bhatti August 2, 2014 at 1:32 pm

Mujhe Yaqeen Aata Ke Itne Khubsoorat Khayalaat Parhne Ka Mauqah Mile Ga, Main OLD HINDI MUSIC Ka Student Hun Aur Mujhe C.Arjun Ke Hawale Se Information Chaeye Thi, Bohot Talash-o-Justuju Ke Bahad Aap Ki Site Mili, Maza Aa Gaya C.Arjun Ke Hawale Se Jaan Kar, Aap Se Aik Question Hai Ke Waqeyahi “Lata Ji” Ne C.Arjun Ke Music Main Only “ONE” Song Record Karaya Tha Film “PUNAR MILAN-1964” Main, Zuroor Meri Information Main Izafa Kijiye Ga, Thanx =Waheed=+923005127131.

58 AK August 2, 2014 at 5:47 pm

Bhatti Saheb,
You are right, with Lata Mangeshkar C Arjun recorded only one song in Punarmilan (1964), a duet with Manna Dey, which I have included as song #4. If your question is this was the only song ever with her, probably you are right too, because I could not get any other of her song in his known filmography.

59 Ratnam Raj Prakash August 3, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Dear A K

Can we get some songs from Ek Saal Pehle (1966) apart from two songs which is available in YT. There were 5 songs.

60 AK August 3, 2014 at 4:42 pm

Ratnam Raj Prakash,
Welcome to SoY. My source for linking songs is YT, so I won’t be able to put anything which is not there. The two songs you obviously mean are: Tum agar aa sako to aa jaao, phir na kahna (Suman Kalyanpur), and Nazar utha ke ye rangeen sama rahe na rahe (Talat and Asha Bhosle). Both are fantastic songs and have appeared on SoY on other posts.

Incidentally, the year of Ek Saal Pahle Was 1965.

61 N Venkataraman August 4, 2014 at 12:58 am

Ratnam Raj Prakash Ji,
I think you are one of those early visitors to SoY. If my memory serves me right, you had posted a comment in the very first post of SoY. Welcome back.

62 Ratnam Raj Prakash August 4, 2014 at 4:11 pm

Thank You very much Mr.Venkataraman for welcoming me back to SoY. Also thank A.K for his prompt response. My hobby is to collect all songs from 1940s to the end of 1970s and put it in CDs so anybody interested can have a copy of any song any time they want or they may wish to have. Needless to say it will be a pleasure serve people like you at FREE OF COST. (It is social responsibility). Recently I had the fortune to get all the 4 songs from 1962 release ‘PYAR KA JEET’ Music by Sudhir Phadke.
I searched for these songs for nearly a decade. My Mobile No. is 09243222203.

63 Neeru November 7, 2014 at 12:04 pm

I landed here because of the song ” tum agar aa sako to aa jao” . I must say I learned a lot more about C.Arjun than I was hoping for. Very nice write up indeed.

64 AK November 7, 2014 at 7:57 pm

Thanks a lot for your appreciation.

65 Nilima January 24, 2015 at 11:21 am

I landed here searching for songs of Malhar & got fascinated with all the information/discussion.

Thanks for introducing such a nice music composer

66 Mahesh April 30, 2015 at 1:05 pm

An article on “Malhar”. The second last para throws some light on actor “Arjun”.

67 AK May 1, 2015 at 1:53 pm

Thanks a lot for the link. Nice article.

68 Ram.S.Chandran. June 8, 2015 at 11:44 pm

Thanks a lot for the info about C.Arjun..His music for Susheela is one of the best.

69 D P Rangan September 14, 2015 at 6:04 am

It is a fundamental axiom of nature that not all are created equals. Some are stronger while others are weaker. This can be extended to other fields, i.e. films. There are bound to be films par excellence, good films, below average films and bad films which would have made producers bankrupt. Back in those years, music was a bedrock on which producers banked to get back their investment. Front line music directors would have scorned such films. So it fell to the lot of others very talented but not so fortunate to fill in the void. But what is refreshing is to find that these music directors have produced outstanding music which could have been easily fitted into those so called A grade films. The late C Arjunji belonged to this tribe.

70 Anil goyle July 19, 2016 at 3:08 pm

I visited site for the first time. Gum ki Andheri Raat mein is the best inspirational song. Talats despair and Rafis positiveness is so mesmerising.
Keep it up.

71 AK July 19, 2016 at 3:27 pm

Mr Anil Goyle,
Welcome to SoY and thanks a lot for your appreciation.

72 Mishra June 10, 2017 at 6:21 pm

I am producing an excerpts from a brilliant article by Raju Bharatan on songs sung by Rafi of lesser known composers, mention of C. Arjun goes like this.
‘It was Shivkumar Saroj, the sensitive Radio Ceylon announcer, who drew our attention first to the tuning artistry of another modest composer: C Arjun. When I met C Arjun much later, he told me that he felt very proud that he had at least created a ghazal that could come somewhere near a Madan Mohan composition. I wanted special attention to this my coveted ghazal from my singer but all good singers available were bigger than the film for which I had composed it! revealed Arjun. It was with great hesitation, therefore, that I approached Rafi Saab to render my ghazal, so feelingly written by Indivar. And Rafi Saab, without bothering about the small payment we were in a position to make, said it was one of the best ghazals that had fallen to his lot and he would give it everything that he had.

Rafi certainly gave that C Arjun ghazal everything he had, that is how it came over to us Paas baitho tabiyat behal jaayegi maut bhi aa gayi to hal jaayegi in Punarmilan. This ghazal proves, if proof is needed, that no composer was too small for Rafi as long as the composition was great. After all, who were Lala-Asad-Sattar but three instrumentalists who had turned music directors. Yet for even such a stunt trio trying to combine as a music director team, Rafi proved a salvation with such a surpassingly lovely solo in Sangram as Main to tere haseen khayalon mein kho gaya.’

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