Guest article by Ashok M Vaishnav
(In the tenth article in the series on Multiple Vesrsion Songs, which is the second part of Ashokji’s article on cross-pollination between Hindi and Gujarati songs, he looks at the influence of Gujarati light/folk sangeet on Hindi film music. Some of the examples are very well-known songs without our being aware of Gujarati folk influence on them. So, here is another voyage of discovery of the Hindi film songs influenced by Gujarati folk dance and songs. – AK)
We had had a peep into the versions Gujarati light (sugam) sangeet from Hindi film music in the first part of this article. In this second part we will take a reverse track and have a look at the influence of Gujarati light / folk sangeet on Hindi film music.
The most popular form of Gujarati (folk) sangeet that can be heard, in very high decibels, during Navaratri (The festival of nine nights) is Garba. So, as can be expected, Garba does occupy the lion’s share of this post.
Garba, in fact, has several other variants also, like (Dandiya) Raas or Garabi. This is one form of Gujarati light /folk sangeet, which is must-have for any Gujarati film, and which has also found sustained usage in Hindi films, either in its (relatively) pure form or as its improvised adaptations.
Let us first look at ‘Garba’ songs in Gujarati films, so that what is presented thereafter can be better appreciated in terms of comparing those tunes with the basic form:
Taaliyo na taale gori Garbe ghumati jay re – Mangal Fera (1949), Avinash Vyas – Geeta Roy (Dutt)
I have picked this one, to show the apparent comfort with which Geeta Dutt goes on sing this playful tune, with quite native diction and throw of words.
Mahendi te vavi malve ne eno rang gayo Gujaraat re – Mahendi Rang Lagyo (1960) – Avinash Vyas – Lata Mangeshkar, Pinakin Shah
One of the most popular Gujarati (Garba) songs, from a film which had Rajendra Kumar and Usha Kiron in the lead roles
Amare angane avsar – Ghar Sanasar (1981) – Salil Chaudhary – Asha Bhosle
What is to be noted about this quintessential ‘garba’ is that even as the singer and music directors are non-Gujarati, the end result is a flawless rendition of a traditional Gujarati folk form. Interestingly, Salil Chaudhary, who had great penchant for using the tunes across different languages, has not used ‘garba’ tune anywhere else.
(Note: By copying this link in the browser, the song can be heard on-line-streaming)
Next, we look at Hindi Films that have predominant Gujarati culture in the plot of the film, and therefore, necessarily, have at least one song on the ‘Garba’ format:
Main to bhool chali babul ka desh – Saraswatichandra (1968), Kalyanji Anandji – Lata Mangeshkar and Chorus
A song which has lyrics befitting ‘kanya vidayi’, but the composition of the song, and the dance on the screen, has true form of a ‘Garba’
Mero gaam – Manthan (1976) – Vanraj Bhatia – Preeti Sagar
‘Manthan’ is based on the legendary Verghese Kurien’s ‘white’ revolution saga, through the vehicle of cooperative milk production. The mainstay of his work was in and around Anand, a town in the central part of Gujarat. So, Vanraj Bhatia, who himself is a Gujarati, would certainly be expected to use Garba in the film.
AMUL, re-recorded the song in Sunidhi Chauhan’s voice for its advertising promotion, in slower rhythm for enabling the performance of the ‘Garba’ dance on that rhythm.
Ae dholi re bajav – Mirch Masala (1987) – Rajat Dholakia – Babubhai Ranpuri, Tejal Bharatri
Even though Ketan Mehta has principally addressed the subject of empowerment of women in culture of (rural) Bharat in this film, he has used the ecosystem of a Gujarati village for providing the background. Rajat Dholakia, son of late Shri Dilip Dholakia, a Gujarati music director, who also had had a long association with Hindi film industry, has retained all the true characteristics of ‘Garba’ as a traditional folk dance for all major social events in Gujarat.
Raja ki kahani puranee ho gayi, Godmother (1999), Vishal Bhardwaj, Usha Uthup, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Vishal and Rekha
This is a film based on the life of a (so called) ‘mafia queen’ of Porbandar, in western most part of Gujarat.
Or a male only ‘Raas’ form of ‘Garba’, from the same film:
Gunje gagan gunje lalakaren hum…Arjun bhi tum ho tum hi Shivam (Roop Kumar Rathod)
And, now look at the songs in Hindi films that have strong influence of ‘Garba’
Badal ki palki pe uhatke sawar, Chakradhari (1954), Avinash Vyas, Asha Bhosle and Hemant Kumar
Avinash Vyas himself has used deftly ‘garba’ tune for the song
And here is the song, belonging to the same year, inspired from ‘Garba’ tune:
Kanha bajaye bansuri – Nastik – C Ramachandra – Lata Mangeshkar
The dance is in the form of ‘Raas’ variant of ‘Garba’.
Some more examples of ‘Garba’ in Hindi Film Songs-
Na bole na bole Radha na ole re, Azad (1955), C Ramchandra, – Lata Mangeshkar
Mark the subtle use of ‘Garba’ as the base tune, as well as for Meena Kumari’s some of the dance steps on-screen
Adha hai chandrama raat aadhi, Navrang, C Ramachandra – The tune can be said to have been based on ‘Garba’ tune, but the composition has several improvisations added.
Chhod babaul ka ghar; Babul – Naushad – Shamshad Begum
Watch the ‘Raas’ style dance form of ‘Garba’, at its ‘classic’ flow in the way Nargis and her friends dance while singing the song.
Dholi taaro dhol baaje, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999) Ismail Darbar (who is also a Gujarati) – Vinod Rathod, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Karsan Sagathia – Here is a faster paced l ‘Raas’ form of ‘Garba’
Raadha kaise na jale, Lagan (2001) – A R Rehman – Udit Narayan, Asha Bhosle, Vaishali – Again a tune that has core of ‘garba’ in its base as well as on-screen dance.
And now let us take a look at how other Gujarati songs ‘inspired’ some other Hindi songs
The 1949 film, Gunsundari was filmed in Hindi as well Gujarati. Music for Gujarati version was composed by Avinash Vyas whereas for Hindi version music was composed by Bulo C Rani, Avinash Vyas and Hansraj Behl.
Here is the one song in Gujarti version – Aaj maari nanadi ye mahenu maaryun (My sister-in-law taunted me today) – by Geeta Dutt
(By copying this link in the browser, Raaga.com’s screen containing this song will open up).
Its counterpart in Hindi version, is the song – Nandiya maare, composed by Bulo C Rani – that is filmed on an identical situation, is not a replica of the Gujarati song in terms of the tune or composition, even though Geeta Dutt is one more common link. Even the lyrics do capture the mood very well, but can be said to be fairly original when compared to the lyrics of the Gujarati version.
And now, we take a look at (as direct as any) inspirations of some Gujarati songs into Hindi films:
Raakh na Ramakada mara Raame Ramatan Raakhyan re (My Ram has been playing with ash toys) – Mangalfera (1949) – Avinash Vyas – Geeta Dutt and A R Oza
And its inspired version: Tora manava kyun ghabaraye – Sadhana (1958) – N Dutta – Geeta Dutt
And here is a bonus, an additional version of this song in Mohammad Rafi’s voice
Recall the clip of Taaliyo Na Taale presented earlier in this article when we listened to – Dekh ke akeli mohe barkha sataye, from Baazi (1951), composed by S D Burman and rendered by Geeta Dutt
As put forward in the earlier articles by Shri Arun Kumar Deshmukh and by Shri N Venkataraman, we see that ‘inspirations’ have flown quite freely from one language to other enriching the film music on either side.
Our journey of Multiple Version songs continues. ….till we meet again…