OP Nayyar-Geeta Dutt: A peerless combination

July 20, 2017

A tribute to Geeta Dutt on her 45th death anniversary (23 November 1930 – 20 July 1972) by guest author Ravindra Kelkar

(A general grievance against SoY is that Geeta Dutt has not been given her due place on the blog. There has been one exclusive post on her best songs by SD Burman which, too, incidentally appeared on her death anniversary, four years ago. My post on SD Burman’s best duets for Rafi, too, contained some songs with her. Her songs have also appeared in some other contexts. However, I am aware this is not commensurate with her appeal among music lovers. I was waiting for a worthier person to do justice to her. My wish was granted when our OP Nayyar-expert, Ravindra Kelkar offered to write a series of articles on OPN. His first article giving an overview of three distinct phases of OPN’s career was highly acclaimed. Continuing his series, he comes up with another outstanding article, on OPN-Geeta Dutt combination, as a tribute to her on her 45th death anniversary. I am sure this would more than recompense for my omission. Thanks a lot Mr Kelkar. – AK)

OP Nayyar-Geeta DuttOP Nayyar-Geeta Dutt association started right from OP’s first film Aasman in 1952, in which Geeta Dutt sang 4 solos. It ended with Ragini in the year 1958. She sang in 22 of OP’s films for 62 songs, which included 35 solos, 22 male duets, all with Rafi, and 5 female duets, all with Asha Bhosle. During their association in Aasman, she was impressed with OP’s potential and recommended his name to his would-be husband Guru Dutt for his maiden venture Baaz (1953), and as everybody knows it was the success of Guru Dutt’s next film Aar Paar (1954) which launched OP’s career. So, he had a lot to be grateful to Geeta Dutt.

Similar was the case of Shamshad Begum. After the success of Aar Paar, no new film offers came to OP for 22 weeks. Due to this, OP was a worried man and was in great need of money, since he was living in an hotel. Then the first film OP got was Mehbooba, where OP replaced Roshan who had already composed 4 songs. This riled Lata Mangeshkar very much to see her pet MD Roshan being unjustly replaced by OP. Lata, along with Anil Biswas and Naushad went to meet OP and asked him to quit from scoring music for Mehbooba. OP replied, “No problem, I am in great need of money, so pay me the fees which I would receive for Mehbooba and I will quit”. That was that; Lata Mangeshkar, Anil Biswas and Naushad were stunned, they never imagined that a rookie music director like OP would have the courage to defy them. Nobody said anything and left quietly. This story was told by OP in his interview taken by Ameen Sayani. After that, it’s claimed that Lata ingeniously manipulated things to ensure that neither Geeta Dutt nor Asha Bhosle would record any songs of Mehbooba for OP. The only option left for OP was to go to Shamshad Begum and plead for help. Shamshad duly obliged by agreeing to help OP out. In due course of time, of course, Geeta and Asha saw through Lata’s game plan and came around. In my view, this is the main reason as to why OP never ever employed Lata to sing for him. He justifiably felt who was Lata to take such a moral stand, since it was an issue between music directors and had nothing to do with singers? He observed that all the MDs were literally groveling before her, which made him think, is there nobody who has the guts to prove his mettle without using her voice? If there is nobody who has the gumption, why not he himself show to the world that one can have a successful career without using Lata’s voice and that was it!! This was a very brave, bold and courageous as well as a risky decision. He quickly came to the conclusion that only Asha Bhosle had the true potential to match Lata. So, as soon as Naya Daur became a hit, he fully concentrated on grooming Asha Bhosle to her full vocal abilities. Even SD Burman also opted for Asha (using Geeta very sparingly), when he had a misunderstanding (though probably there were some ego issues as well) with Lata. This clearly indicates that SD also considered Asha as the next best option to counter Lata, rather than Geeta. It took SD four years to realize that it was too much of a struggle and took the easier option of reconciling with Lata as soon as an opportunity presented itself.

Now, one also must remember that due to her marriage problems, Geeta had become a bit unreliable, especially from 1959 onwards and, possibly, many MDs faced some issues about her ready availability. Add to this the fact that OP had got emotionally involved with Asha, with the result that all the female songs went to Asha from 1959 onwards. All this explains why Asha has 324 songs, inclusive of 167 solos in 60 films for OP, which is more than three times that of Geeta (62 songs) and Shamshad (39 songs) put together. If one listens carefully to Asha songs for OP up to the year 1958, one can easily list at least 10/20 songs which were ideal for Geeta, but went to Asha, since OP wanted to boost Asha’s level of confidence. Asha had an inferiority complex with both Geeta as well as Lata. Hence, OP first had to work on Asha extensively, to overcome her inferiority complex with Geeta, before grooming her to take on Lata.

OP has admitted many times that he was very unfair to both Geeta and Shamshad in spite of them helping him so much in his struggling years. In fact, Geeta, sometime in 1964, rang up OP and asked him ‘Why are you no longer asking me to sing your songs? What wrong have I done?’ OP was tongue-tied and just could not utter a single word. OP carried this regret forever for the rest of his life.

OP used to call Geeta Dutt a “Black Beauty”. She had dusky complexion and was easily the prettiest of our playback singers. There was a certain charm about her, a sort of a serene personality with a very calm and composed temperament. She had a lilting voice and her throw of words was matchless. This effortless throw of words was God’s gift to her and, in my view, this is where she was beyond the reach of both Lata and Asha. She also had a very sharp brain and picked the tips instantly. She was a picture of confidence in front of mike and her recordings invariably went very smoothly without any glitch. What did OP think of her? He wrote an article in Filmfare titled ‘My Favourite Singers’ sometime in 1956. This is the gist of what he wrote about Geeta Dutt. “Cultured, comely and well-read, Geeta could easily be a leading lady as she is a top playback singer. But she sincerely believes that she has found her niche in the realm of ghost-singing. And who will deny that there is a unique quality in her singing? Give her a blatantly westernized tune this moment and a complex classical composition the next, and she will do equal justice to both with an ease of expression which a singer can only be born with. She is especially very good for songs accompanying boisterous jamborees. With the tantalizing tilt and the fascinating curves she puts into her singing, she is the ideal choice if it is a seductive allure you want in the song. A linguist, sober and serious by nature and of a thoughtful disposition, Geeta is very considerate of others and punctilious to a fault. She is an asset to any music director.” Geeta Dutt also had the highest admiration for OP Nayyar as a composer. It was Geeta who told Guru Dutt that “OP composes feelings, not words”. OP had a very fair complexion, with rosy cheeks, which made Geeta wonder whether OP applied some cream to glow his face.

The eminent ghazal singer Madhu Rani has written very perceptively about Geeta-OP musical association in the Vishwas Nerurkar’s book ‘The Legendary OP Nayyar’. She writes, “The combination of OP Nayyar and Geeta Dutt is an amazing one. Geeta was not a trained singer, neither did she possess a voice from which a composer could extract subtle inflexions. She had several limitations and her voice was nasal. But she was an expressive singer. I feel Nayyar Saab made Geeta a true playback singer. While hearing Geeta sing for Nayyar Saab, you get the impression that she was indeed trained and her rendering was smooth. Many singers sing with their minds. Others with their hearts. Very few use the mind to control the heart to give a balanced interpretation. This is not an easy task, for it needs a guru like Nayyar Saab to guide and Geeta was very fortunate in this matter, to have worked with him.”

Geeta was an outstanding musical singer and had an inimitable style of singing. We have seen many imitators of Lata, Asha, Rafi, Kishore, Mukesh, Hemant Kumar. But we have not had imitators of Geeta and Shamshad. This speaks a lot about the unique talents they possessed. By heartlessly sidelining both of them from his music after 1958, OP’s music most certainly became poorer. Using them judiciously throughout his career would have enriched his music even more. It’s my contention that arguably, Geeta and Shamshad gave more female solo hits than Asha under OP’s composing baton, in spite of having sung less than one third of the songs that Asha sang (50 solos by Geeta and Shamshad put together as against 167 solos by Asha).

It was very tragic the way Geeta Dutt lost a well-established and extremely flourishing singing career in the heartburn process of losing her husband to Waheeda Rehman after Pyasa. I am certain that otherwise, we would have had the pleasure listening to many more gems of Geeta Dutt. I suppose we should be grateful about what we have got, instead of what we have not.

All the songs included here belong to the phase two (except the Baaz song) of OP’s career. When asked about this phase, he used to tell us, “In this phase, I gave music mostly from my heart, whatever came to my mind. I was sure that it was my time to be successful in whatever I did and I was proved right; the public lapped up my music and I enjoyed immense popularity. Musically speaking, my quality of music was much better from Ek Musafir Ek Hasina onwards, I consciously made attempt to compose music with more emphasis on melody, I put more thought in my orchestration as well as I put extra focus on the poetry that I wanted.” You can definitely experience this for yourself. All these songs are easy to listen, with very simple and attractive tunes, which register in hour heart instantly. So let us hear some of the most beautiful songs of this great combination.

1. Zara saamne aa from Baaz (1953), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

This song has a significance of its own. For the first time we hear clarinet/flute combo with violins, dholak, castanets, double bass and full Punjabi rhythm in OP’s music. OP almost patented this style later and it served him very well for many years. The interlude music is played with a staccato or a cut-note effect, not in a legato pattern. This aspect of OP’s music was inspired by Master Ghulam Haider. Music director Sajjad Husain used to admire OP’s use of cut-notes effect. As is to be expected, it’s very well picturized.

2. Babuji dheere chalna from Aar Paar (1954), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

This song starts with an excellent accordion piece, played by Goody Seervai. The music for this song is almost exclusively accordion based. You don’t normally associate OP’s orchestration with accordion. As every music lover knows, accordion was an integral part of SJ’s orchestration. However, in a few of his earlier films, OP did make good use of accordion. For example, Mangu, Mehbooba, Hum Sub Chor Hain, Howrah Bridge, Quaidi, Hong Kong etc. Shakila lisps the song on the screen. This possibly was her debut film. Her sister Noor also debuted in this film as Johnny Walker’s heroine. Later, Johnny Walker married her.

3. Ban dhadkan kajaraare naina dole re from Miss Cocacola (1955), lyrics Majroh Sultanpuri

This picture was produced by Kuldeep Kaur under the banner Danny Films. Danny was the name of Kuldeep Kaur’s son. OP was living in the hotel Favel on Marine Drive where Kuldeep Kaur came with the offer to score music for Miss Coca Cola. Shammi Kapoor and Geeta Bali were the lead pair. Shammi and Geeta Bali fell in love with each other during this film. OP and Shammi Kapoor were good friends, OP used to pull Shammi’s leg by teasing him that ‘you got your wife as well as you made your career because of me, since I was the MD for Miss Coca Cola and Tumsa Nahin Dekha’. Not much is known about this film, since it’s not available on DVD. Interestingly, this movie has 3 solos each to Geeta Dutt and Asha Bhosle. One feels that all the Asha Bhosle solos should have gone to Geeta in normal circumstances, Asha was still not ready to challenge Geeta at this stage. One is forced to conclude that OP had already started the Asha grooming process keeping the larger picture in mind.

4. Thandi hawa kaali ghata aa hi gayi jhoom ke from Mr. and Mrs. 55 (1955), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

This was Guru Dutt’s next film after Aar Paar. This is a light comedy based on women liberation movement. This film remains a classic, worth watching till date. Lalita Pawar is Madhubala’s aunt and the leader of the women liberation movement. Madhubala’s father is Lalita Pawar’s brother. He puts a condition in the will that the estate will go to his daughter, 6 months after her successful marriage. Obviously, he had put this condition knowing very well the views of her sister regarding marriage. Mudhubala is in love with Ramesh, India’s no one tennis player. Mudhubala sings this song, after his father’s will had been read. She feels happy, thinking that, she will now get married to her love, without any objections being raised by her aunt. This is a happy, rhythmic song, where OP has captured the mood beautifully.

5. Dil de dala, de dala nazaraana from Musafirkhana (1955), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

This film was from M Sadiq Productions. The film had Shyama and Karan Dewan as leading pair, with Johnny Walker as side hero. This film was a success mainly due to OP’s music, which became hugely popular. This song is superbly sung by Geeta, and has a highly catchy tune. I feel, Geeta was at the peak of her singing prowess in this period, full of verve, confidence and alluring vocals. This song is enacted by Shyama. Like Madhubala, Shyama also acted as heroine in 6 OP films and OP considered her to be as beautiful as Madhubala.

6. Jab baadal lehraya from Chhoo Mantar (1956), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

This was another M Sadiq Productions film, with the same cast as that of Musafirkhana. This was even bigger musical success than Musafirkhana. This is a highly entertaining film. This song has a wonderful, breezy prelude piece. The orchestration almost entirely consists of clarinet, flute, violins and mandolin. But the effect is magical. In this phase of OP, the use of clarinet/flute/violin as a combination in the orchestration was almost given. In fact, Asha Bhosle, used to say jokingly that, once OP’s music became a rage, clarinet players started to move around in cars, since so much work and money they started to get.

7. Jata kahan hai deewane from CID (1956), Majrooh Sultanpuri

This is a fantastic song. Superb prelude piece, sung beautifully by Geeta with just the right amount of sensuality in her voice. OP has said that “Guru Dutt taught me to compose a tune first and then insert the words into it. I was actually, strongly, opposed to it. My motto, was not to touch the harmonium till I get the full song in my hands. However, Guru Dutt was Guru Dutt. On top of that, he had a great affinity for inclusion of senseless words like ‘Kuchh tere dil mein phee phee, Kuchh mere dil mein phee phee’. I used to get amused by this. But Guru used to say ‘People like such songs and it ends there’. He was, of course, right; music of his films was always loved by the general public . This song was picturized on Waheeda Rahman wherein she forces Dev Anand to imbibe a drugged drink, so that he would not remember much about the meeting. It’s claimed that it was cut from the film, because censors took objection to the words ‘Phee Phee’ alluding to vulgar intentions. Such a pity!!

8. Neele aasmaanee from Mr. & Mrs. 55 (1955), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

Outstandingly sung by Geeta. It’s difficult to imagine anybody could have sung it better. High pitched flute catches your attention. Majrooh’s words are also wonderful. The song is enacted by Cuckoo. The song situation is that Madhubala feels let down when she comes to know that Guru Dutt is her hired husband and wants to put him in his place. That’s why she is dancing with someone else, just to displease Guru Dutt.

9. Aaj jo hum tum mil gaye from Mr. Lambu (1956), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

It was a Sheikh Mukhtar Productions film, and the only film of Suraiya for which OP scored music. Suraiya rated OP Nayyar very highly as a composer. Jaaiye aap kahan jaayenge, Ye hai reshami zulfon ka andhera and Deewana hua badal were among her favourite OP compositions. This is a typical song tailor made for Geeta Dutt; you can’t fail to take notice of the use of accordion in the inter loops. The electric guitar, another favourite of OP, is played by Hazara Singh. This movie is not available on DVD.

10. Meri zindagi ke humsafar from Shrimati 420 (1956), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

This a very melodious and soothing song. The feature of this song is superb orchestration. A perfect example of how he comingled the different musical pieces with the song in a wonderfully harmonious way. Geeta brings out the dulcet quality of her voice and embellishes the aural ambience so well. This film was produced by GP Sippy and presumably has Meena Shorey (of La ra lappa fame) and Johnny Walker as a leading pair. The film is not available on DVD. This film enjoyed a reasonable success at the box office, with OP’s music playing a no mean part. The lyrics are by Jaan Nisar Akhtar (father of Javed Akhtar). This tune was used by RD Burman for the song Ek main main aur ek tu in the film Khel Khel Mein.

11. Humko chhod ke kahan jaaoge from Shrimati 420 (1956), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

Another melodiously wonderful song from the same film, with excellent, soft orchestration. This song is influenced by New Theatre effect, here we don’t have Punjab effect. You feel the Bengal melody here. Musical inter loops are excellent. No percussion instruments are used by OP, which is a rarity in itself and Geeta has sung it with her tremulous and base tonality. The sudden and brief overtures of the flute catch your attention. Rafi sings in between, a couple of times, words like “Oh ho” or “Ah ha”. But I have treated this as a Geeta solo. To agree to sing for the song, where he had only a marginal part to sing, probably indicates how humble Rafi was and the sort of friendly relationship OP and Rafi had. Lyrics are again by Jaan Nisar Akhtar. Jaan Nisar Akhtar wrote 84 songs for OP in 14 films. He was one of OP’s favorite song writers in his earlier part of career and this pair produced many hit songs. The fact is, Jaan Nisar Akhtar is the third most prolific song writer for OP after SH Bihari and Majrooh Sultanpuri.

12. Kiya ye kya tune ishara from Duniya Rang Rangili (1957), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

This was again M Sadiq productions film. This film had Johny Walker and Shyama, along with Rajendra Kumar and Chand Usmani as main actors. This is the only Rajendra Kumar film having OP’s music. This too was a light comedy film as were Chhomantar and Musafirkhana. This song is one more example of the magic of OP-Geeta combo. A catchy tune, very effective orchestration (it’s a wonder how OP achieved such astonishing results with so few instruments), mukhda in western beats, antara in Indian beats, with seamless changeover from western beats to Indian beats and back. Electric guitar is played by Hazara Sing. A very rhythmic song. OP scored music for one more M Sadiq film, Mai Baap. A few months before this, due to OP’s wayward ways, his wife along with kids went back to her parents. This hit OP hard. However, M Sadiq went to Amritsar on his own initiative and brought his wife and kids back. So OP didn’t bargain about money while agreeing to score music for Mai Baap. However, when M Sadiq offered very less money for his next film Khota Paisa, OP refused by saying “OK, you helped me when I was in trouble, so I didn’t ask for my full fee for Mai Baap. But, should I do this for rest of my life, when you make so much money due to my music?”  As a result, Khota Paisa went to Madan Mohan, who tried his best to copy OP style, but the film flopped. M Sadiq held this against OP for the rest of his life. As a matter of fact, Guru Dutt wanted OP to score music for Chaudhavi Ka Chaand, he had sent feelers to OP through his writer Abrar Alvi, but M Sadiq, who was to direct the film did not allow it to materialize.

13. Chor lutere daaku from Ustad (1957), lyrics Jaan Nisar Akhtar

The star cast for this film included Ashok Kumar in double role, Anjali Devi, Bhagwan, Anita Guha and Kumkum. It had some wonderful songs. This particular song was extremely popular. Here Geeta Dutt is at her best, with all successful OP ingredients in proper place. Lyrics are by Jaan Nisar Akhtar. The film is not available on DVD, so we don’t know if any of the male songs were sung by Ashok Kumar in the movie. It’s a curious fact that, Ashok Kumar was hero in 6 OP films, but he lisped just two lines in a duet in the film Farishta (1958), that’s all! Quite astonishing indeed!! One must presume that he was very reluctant or uncomfortable to lisp a song in a film.

14. Kaisa jadoo balam tune dara from 12 O’Clock (1958), lyrics Majrooh Sultanpuri

The emphasis here is on melody, not rhythm. One of Geeta’s best OP songs, which is picturized on Waheeda. In this film Geeta had two more solos, one going on Shashikala and the other one going on Helen. Geeta had the calibre to sing for the heroine as well as vamp in the same film with equal felicity. Of course, in due course of time, Asha Bhosle did the same under OP’s baton for many more films.

15. Mera naam chin chin choo from Howrah Bridge (1958), lyrics Qamar Jalalabadi

This is the last Geeta solo for OP. How and why this happened we have no way of knowing, beyond the obvious fact that OP got musically as well as emotionally involved with Asha Bhosle over a course of time after the success of Naya Daur’s music. The end result was that both OP and Geeta were the losers. This is the most popular Geeta Dutt song composed by OP, still extremely popular and very well known to the current generation also. OP had planned that Aaiye meherban should be the best song of this film, which he recorded in Asha Bhosle’s voice, and since it was to be picturized on Madhubala, OP genuinely expected that this song would be highlight of the movie. It’s actually a much better tune, no doubt about it. Mera naam chin chin choo was to go on Helen, so OP didn’t expect that it would overshadow Aaiye meherban. But this is what happened and this once again proves how difficult it is to gauge the pulse of public. The intro music is fabulous, and Geeta has sung it with such a gusto that it’s beyond compare. The face-off with Aaiyen meherban again underlines the fact that all the classical grooming of Asha Bhosle was no match when it came to be pitted against the natural talent and vocal abilities of Geeta Dutt. This film had two Asha solos, two Asha-Rafi duets, a Geeta solo, a Shamshad-Rafi duet and a Rafi solo. Still this song over shadowed all other excellent songs from the film. Possibly, due to this, Asha started insisting that without exception, she would sing all the female songs henceforth in OP’s films.

The above list has some less heard songs; I hope you like them. One can rest assured that, without exception, all of them were quite popular in that period.

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Gaddeswarup July 20, 2017 at 10:40 am

Another one I remember despite the more famous version by C.H. Atma. Sung in snatches https://youtu.be/-suGY8WyF3k

2 Pushpendra Kumar July 20, 2017 at 11:43 am

What a detailed and beautifully crafted article. Agreed to most things here, Geeta never got her due despite being immensely talented and expressive. But I do not think Nayyar’s music became poorer after Shamshad and Geeta. As much as OP and Geeta created magic, OP and Asha was an emotion, not just a musical combination. Perhaps the best MD-Singer combination besides Naushad-Rafi. The music of OP post Geeta/Shamshad is a delight and the numbers as well as quality is way higher as well. Doesn’t take away anything from OP-Geeta brilliance though.

Personal Choices maybe!

3 KB July 20, 2017 at 12:31 pm

A much awaited topic! Indeed Geeta dutt and OP combination came out with excellent results and songs are remembered even today. In fact OP did also bring out some of the best from Shamshad begum also. Pl have a write up on that also. Congrats again.

4 Sateesh Paknikar July 20, 2017 at 6:23 pm

A well observed and well written article on OP’s ‘Black Beauty’!
Congratulations!!
With the included comments to each song one can enjoy the golden era and the magic of ‘OP- Geeta’ ….viewing the videos ( Links ) given. Enjoyed….

5 Ravindra Kelkar July 20, 2017 at 10:27 pm

Gaddeswarp#1,
You are right. Preetam Aan Milo song sung by Geeta was included in the Guru Dutt’s film Mr & Mrs 55. It’s said that hero of the film was named Preetam (played by Guru Dutt), so that this song could come in thee climax of the film where Madubala yearns for meeting her Preetam.

6 Anu Warrier July 20, 2017 at 10:32 pm

Nice article, Ravindra. Love Geeta Dutt’s voice for the emotions it evokes in me. Some of her plaintive tunes are really heart-rending. Yes, it is sad that OP did not give Geeta her due, but as he admitted in an interview, he was besotted with Asha and gave in to her demands.

Thanks for the interesting read, and the songs that I shall listen to when I have a bit more time on my hands.

7 Ravindra Kelkar July 20, 2017 at 10:33 pm

Pushendra Kumar #2,
Thanks for the compliments. You make a valid point about the high quality of songs of OP-Asha combo from 1960 onwards. However, Geeta and Shamshad had certain unique qualities and OP had the ability to utilize them to the hilt. In my view, this would have provided more variety in OP’s music.

8 Ravindra Kelkar July 20, 2017 at 10:36 pm

KB #3,
I am pleased that you enjoyed the article. About OP-Shamshad combination AKji has already done a post!!!

9 Ravindra Kelkar July 20, 2017 at 10:39 pm

Sateesh #4,
Thanks for the praise. I am happy that you enjoyed it.

10 Ravindra Kelkar July 20, 2017 at 10:43 pm

Anu ji #6,
Thanks for the appreciation. Geeta’s voice and the expressions she puts in her songs directly touch my heart also.
I hope you will enjoy the songs.

11 Vaidehi July 21, 2017 at 9:22 am

A very well written article. The author no doubt has experienced all songs for himself and written the emotions he felt. Not much is written about Geeta Dutt as compared to Asha or Lata and Geeta does not come first to our minds when we think about female playback singers. However she has contributed a great quality if not quantity to Hindi film music. This article gives justice to that.

12 Prabhakar July 21, 2017 at 12:50 pm

Superbly written article. Songs selected truly demonstrate the range and potential of the versatile singer. A pleasant journey down the memory lane,sprinkled with interesting anecdotes. Thanks.

13 Milind July 21, 2017 at 4:00 pm

Article is written with great study and understanding of Indian Film Music of that era. OP and Geeta Dutt were legends of year 1954 to 1960. This article shows deep study of lyric and music of every song.

14 AK July 21, 2017 at 5:55 pm

Milind,
Welcome to SoY.

15 Subodh Agrawal July 21, 2017 at 6:20 pm

Thank you Mr Kelkar for this beautifully written article on my favourite singer. Mention has been made of her limitation as a singer, but what she lacked in technique she more than made up in feeling and expressiveness.

It may be instructive to rank singers on two dimensions of technical perfection and expressiveness or soulfulness. Lata and Rafi scored high on both, and no wonder they would rank at the top in any poll large enough to even out individual preferences. I tend to tilt more towards expressiveness than technique. Geeta tops my list of female singers; while Hemant, Mukesh and Talat rank above Rafi and Kishore in my list. We had discussed Manna Dey’s failure to make it to the top despite his enormous talent. My guess is that in his case technical perfection came at the cost of expressiveness.

Geeta’s voice and singing style is ideally suited to OPN’s music. Half of the songs in your list are from my all time favourites, while the other half are new to me. Thank you for unearthing these forgotten gems. OPN has made excellent use of one of her strengths – playfulness; leaving it to SDB to draw the best from her other strength – pathos.

It is a pity that both Geeta Dutt and OPN faded out long before death took them away. Geeta Dutt had a few wonderful swan songs in Anubhav, thanks to Kanu Roy who was probably related to her. OPN remained out of favour, although Tushar Bhatia revived the memory of his style in ‘Ello ji sanam ham aa gaye’ in ‘Andaz Apna Apna.’

16 Ravindra Kelkar July 21, 2017 at 10:54 pm

Vaidehee #11,
Thanks for the appreciation. You are right, when we think of female singers, Lata & Asha come to our minds by default. However, there are quite a few other female singers who had their glorious innings in the Golden Era. Geeta was certainly one of them. She was no 2 to Lata, in the period from 1951 to 1958. Asha overtook her only after that. One of the main reasons was most certainly Geeta’s trouble marriage.

17 Ravindra Kelkar July 21, 2017 at 10:56 pm

Prabhakar #12,
Thanks for the compliments.

Milind #13,
I am pleased that you liked the post. Thanks.

18 Ravindra Kelkar July 21, 2017 at 11:03 pm

Subodh ji #15,
Thanks for the appreciation. Geeta’s innate ability of expressiveness was truly phenomenal…

About OP being shunned by Hindi Music Industry from 1974 onwards can be explained by OP’s personality traits in his on words – ‘Self respect and individuality are expensive commodities. Everybody can’t afford it. You have to pay a price for it and I did”.

19 Ashok Kumar Tyagi July 21, 2017 at 11:13 pm

Ravindra Kelkar ji,
Thanks for a wonderful post.
People like me are unable to fathom the quality of beautiful orchestration of OPN songs because our mind gets engrossed in his lovely rhythm and joyful tunes. You have explained the masterly use of instruments by OPN very well. As emphasized in the comments above, Geeta presented the mood of songs in a highly expressive manner.

In the Ministry of Defence, New Delhi, there is a music room where music lovers come during lunch recess. Some officials sing film songs while some others give support playing harmonium/guitar, tabla, dholak, congo etc. Over a period of four years I made a study and analysed that maximum number of songs presented there were compositions of OPN, followed thereafter by those of SJ, Naushad and SD Burman. This gave an indication of Hugh popularity of OPN songs though the songs were of period when many of those officials of Ministry of Defence were not even born.
Thanks

20 Ravindra Kelkar July 22, 2017 at 12:15 am

Ashok Kumar Tyagi ji,
Thanks for the appreciation.
Your observation that maximum number of OP songs are still sung , makes an OP fan like me extremely happy. To be honest, I am pleasantly surprised.

21 ksbhatia July 22, 2017 at 12:53 am

Ravindra Kelkar ji ;

Fantastic article on the music that OPN carried away differently with each and every female singers of the golden times . Yes ; Geeta Dutt was truly a great quick learner and would catch the mood of the song and the composition , expressing it with perfection . Hun abhi mein jawan….and ….ja ja ja o bewafa ……are some of the examples where I , at least , can’t think of any other singer that would have done better than Geeta Dutt. Same holds for composition of OPN …..simply supreb ! Use of simple orchestra and accordion as highlighter is a great sense that prevails when composing it . The second song is again an emotions dipped in honey ; you crave for more and more of such songs.

Hun abhi main jawan…..Aar Paar

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CoESiBRIvok

Ja ja ja o bewafa……Aar Paar

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2KuE2G043w

Rightly you brought the use of accordion by SJ …..as they were sort of habitual melody moulder using accordion . OPN did used this instrument extensively but some how got beaten by the use of sarangi , clarenet , guitar etc.for which OPN ‘s composition could easily spotted. In fact in his very first movie OPN made beautiful use of Accordion in the Geeta Dutt song ……Pom Pom pom ….from Aasman and the interlude of this song was used as a signature tune of Binaca Geet Mala of the early/mid 50s . Here is the song…..

Pom Pom Pom baaja bole…..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PovD-ZkFr7c

Another duet song of geeta and asha , which is my fav. as well, is from Johnny Walker , where again , accordion is masterly played enhancing the melody to sweep the feets for waltz .

Thandi Thandi hawa…..Geeta Asha duet

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypO3mWV_cHM

Many more songs are there which are tightly labelled as …..this is…..Cowboy Creation….which I usually refer to while discussing OPN among friends [ OPN being tall and handsome and carried his designer hat beautifully in his hey years of life .]

22 SN Simha July 22, 2017 at 8:00 am

A great website that takes you back to the times of Pure music…Some of the songs of OP here just have a faintly audible tabla…focus being the symphony..
Mr Kelkar you are doing a wonderful job..I look forward to more..

Simha
Bangalore

23 AK July 22, 2017 at 8:03 am

SN Simha,
Welcome to SoY and thanks a lot for your appreciation.

24 Hemant Paknikar July 22, 2017 at 10:42 am

Dear Ravi Kelkar,
Thanks for taking song-lovers to the beautiful world of OPN & GEETA DUTT.
Separately ,both were gifted with individuality & originality, and when they came together ,result was sheer joy and unforgettable music !

Just like a Nayyar song, in opening piece itself, where first few notes of any instrument (Sarangee/Sitar/Mandolin /Santoor /Flute/Guitar ) captures essence of the song ,your selection of words “Peerless Combination” in the title is very apt and “evidence” follows !!

OP-Asha , OP –Geeta and OP-Shamshad are three shades of female voice in Nayyar style ,and you rightly pointed out that OP-Geeta ,OP –Shamshad shades disappeared after 1960.[There was drastic fall in number of songs given to Geeta and Shamshad after 1960 by all composers but grievance of the both singers was only against Nayyar. I think both relied on the Nayyar’s judgment of using and selecting complete potential of singer for a given song. To make my point across ,consider only single no.”Mera naam chin chin” from Hawda Bridge by Geeta ,”Chal aakela “ by Mukesh In Sambandh or “kajra Mohabattwala “ by Shamshad in Kismat(1968) .Does anybody remembers among other 40 songs Shamshad sang after 1960 decade ? ]

Expecting more musicals treats from you !!!

25 AK July 22, 2017 at 10:48 am

Hemant,
Welcome to SoY.

26 Ravindra Kelkar July 22, 2017 at 10:00 pm

KSBhatiya ji, #21,
Thanks for your compliments. You have rightly alluded to some more gems. “Cowboy creation”…wonderful imagination on your part.

SM Simha ji, #22,
Thanks for your kind words. Yes, SOY is a wonderful site that keeps the light burning brightly on the Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

27 Ravindra Kelkar July 22, 2017 at 10:08 pm

Hemant Paknikar #24,
I was sure you will like what I have written, being a hard core OP fan.
You make a valid observation that from 1960 onwards, Geeta & Shamshad faded away, hence it was not only OP who shunned them. I suppose the grievance towards OP has a solid basis, because OP was not using Lata at all, so they expected that at least OP will continue to use their voice…

28 ASHOK M VAISHNAV July 23, 2017 at 1:41 pm

OPN and Geeta Dutt deserve such strong emotionally worded treatises, severally and collectively.

Indeed, the songs do reflect the raw spontaneity of both the artists.

In fact, in the fitness of things, it would be a good idea to bring out all other (42 and odd songs) and put them across in some structured form !

29 Shalan Lal July 26, 2017 at 3:41 pm

A Renegade’s Turncoat

AK has praised Mr Ravindra Kelkar as an authority on O.P.Nayyar and his rich music at the introduction to this post and when one reads this post one finds at many places AK’s praise is very true!

But somehow I felt notwithstanding the above apt praise of the author of this post that I should find courage and be a renegade’s turncoat and express my rebellious thoughts as in the following words, not as spite but as for showing that there are other views about parts of this post, as we see, the blog is for free expression of views and ideas without malice and hurts.

Mr Kelkar has made numerous statement and they are I feel “Kababmein Huddi” just to quote a couple here:

“In due course of time, of course, Geeta and Asha saw through Lata’s game plan and came around”

“So as soon as Naya Daur became hit, he fully concentrated on grooming Asha to her full vocal abilities”

Mr Kelkar seemed to have forgotten that on a TV show just a few months before his death OP made an atrocious claim that he made Asha what she is or to that effect and not only wounded Asha but all the Mangeshkar family and proud Maharastrians about their prized and prestigious heritage of Marathi Musical Stage and Dinanath Mangeshkar being the god of that stage equal only to Bal Gandaharva.

About Lata’s “Game” Mr Kelkar seemed to have an opinion that Lata is wicked inside out and she played sinister and insidious games when she was not singing.

If she has played any game then she has done that to C.Ramchandra and done him well and not in general as Mr Kelkar’s statement presumed. Her game of ruining C.Ramchandra has controversial points. I am fond of C.ramchandra but I strongly believe that he has done either in stupor or male chauvinistic wave a deep hurt to Lata that even today Lata finds it difficult to forgive him. But that is only one off and not as her pattern of behaviour. Lata has done plenty of charity work both in India and abroad as well. She is not a a malicious lady.

Another appalling statement Mr Kelkar made is as following:
“Asha had an inferiority complex with both Geeta as well as Lata. Hence, OP first had to work on Asha extensively, to overcome her inferiority complex with Geeta, before grooming her to take on Lata.”
Well before the rise of OP, Asha was a good singer and asset to many MDs and had a comparatively good life and had a flat next door to Lata’s on the Pedder Road, a very posh area of Bombay.

Long before Nayyar came on the horizon of Bombay Movie-musicals as his name Nayyar means bright morning star, Geeta was an established singer “Do Bhai 1947”MD-SD with Mera Sundar Sapana.. Almost all songs became popular “Har Har Mahadev 1950” MD-Avinash Vyas and same effect in Jogan 1950 MD-Bulo C Rani. She was also popular singer in Bengali songs and some Marathi songs as well.
Her contribution is very rich in the Hindi films with many MDs.

In her wilderness days she rang many MDs for the work not just OP but by then the Musical period was near to the end.

She certainly deserves a separate treatment on SoY with her singing with many MDs and evaluated separately away from the MDs and not as a trailer of car to them.

My memories of her are at the Durga Pujas every year at Shivaji Park by the Dadar Chaupati. She was very young girlish and enjoyed her filmy glamour. She was the star singer of the Durga Puja hugely attended by hundreds of Bengalis and other including filmy celebrities.

She lived in a flat in the Hindu Colony on the other side of the Tilak Bridge of Dadar Railway station. She was very pretty looking girl with either side of her forehead tufts prettily exhibited; in Hindi Cinema the style was called “Ghungarwale Baal!”

Another demeaning statement the author made is as following:
“OP used to call Geeta Dutt a “Black Beauty”

This is a very harsh and wanton description of any woman! But then in India there is something desirable about “Fair Complexion!” without understanding the sensibilities, work mostly against women. All fair-minded people should avoid this kind of looking at the women. For film buffs of the film “Black Beauty” should know that it is the famous children’s “Horse story” many times filmed by the English and American film companies from 1921 onwards.

There are many wanton statements in this present post but others should point them. As for Gita the other Music directors and rare directors of music got out very “mind musing” work out from her for example “Ye Dil Ki Duniya” in Gumashta 1951 MD Dutta Koregonkar famous for Nurjahan songs in the film “Badi Maa 1945” like “Diya Jalakar Aap Bujhaye” before the Anmol Ghadi of 1946.

I think the author Mr Ravindra Kelkar though a good authority and had lot of collected and collated information and with a style in writing, got lost in the gossipy nature of the small talk of the filmy world.

About twenty years back a sister of Guru Dutt came to London to exhibit her artwork. After the inauguration of the artwork she went on to talk about “Guru Dutt” from the pulpit. She emphatically told the audience that her brother Guru Dutt had no affair with Wahida Rehaman. The Padukone family believed that it was accident of taking an overdose of the pain killer pills.

Much later Wahida Rehman also visited London with her Charity “Pratham” and answered the usual question as that she was not in love with Guru Dutt nor was he in love with her. Theirs was a good professional relationship and it worked well. His lost was a great loss for the Indian films.

Such is the state! So, the serious argumentation should not depend on it.

Shalan

30 AK July 26, 2017 at 7:49 pm

Shalan,
I don’t hold a brief for Mr Kelkar. I don’t have to. He would obviously post his reply. But I am coming as how an average reader would react on reading his post. Let me join issue with you – in the sprit of free and fair exchange – as I do not agree with some of your observations and inferences.

Let me take your last statement first: “Another demeaning statement the author made is the following:” The offending statement you are referring to has been made by OPN about Geeta Dutt. OPN might have meant it as a compliment. But that apart, Mr Kelkar has ascribed it to OPN. Therefore, your averment that he made a demeaning statement is clearly misplaced.

Another “appalling” statement you have mentioned is: “Asha had an inferiority complex..,before grooming her to take on Lata.” As a general listener, one can clearly see Asha Bhosle imitating Lata-style in the early 50s, and, later, Geeta Dutt before she really came into her own. In this context, I don’t find the statement ‘appalling’. That she had an apartment and lived well is not germane to the issue.

You also seem to have objection to “So as soon as Naya Daur became hit, he fully concentrated on grooming Asha to her full vocal abilities”. Naya Daur was a turning point in the career of Asha Bhosle. Though most of my top favourite songs of Asha Bhosle are by SD Birman, it is commonly accepted that OPN played the most important role in her career, followed, later, by RD Burman. Even after reading your strong strictures, this statement appears to me as innocuous as saying that after Aradhana, Kishore Kumar’s career zoomed in a higher orbit.

That leaves “..saw through Lata’s game plan…” I wear my Lata-love on my sleeve. But the most I can say is that Mr Kelkar could have used more appropriate words. However, excessive political correctness, at times, impedes the flow of writing. He was writing in the context of OPN-Geeta Dutt-Asha Bhosle. They had reason to have gripe against Lata Mangeshkar. Popular writings are replete with references that she was ruthless, vengeful, and used her might to block competition. No one knows the truth. She might be very generous in giving for charities, she might be as pure as her music. Mr Kelkar could have qualified his statement with expressions like ‘said to be’ or ‘alleged to have’ etc. But in the flow of the article, I wouldn’t hang him for his choice of words.

31 Ravindra Kelkar July 27, 2017 at 2:43 am

Shalan ji,#29
You most surely have a unique view of looking at things.
Still, some of your points are worth countering.
1) The facts certainly point to the shift in OP’s career towards Asha Bhosale after Naya Daur. The statistics prove it. So nothing more need to be said.
2) Geeta Dutt was far ahead of Asha till 1958-59. There are quite a few songs till that period where Asha is singing in the style of Geeta but still falling short. I can list around 10 to 20 songs composed by OP which were ideal for Geeta , but went to Asha with the sole purpose of grooming Asha. It was from Mittie Mein Sona (1960) onwards that finally Asha got into her own and from there onwards there was no looking back. So it took nearly 5 years for her to finally overcome her inferiority complex.
3) OP used to call Geeta Dutt “Black Beauty” which again is a fact, but it was a generous compliment expressing admiration. The world was far simpler in 1950-60, in today’s environment I suppose OP could have got PIL against him…..
4) About “Lata’s game plan”, as AK ji, has suggested in above comment, I could have been more diplomatic. Still, I see no reason to change my perception, since it was Lata who led Anil Biswas & Nuashad to ask OP to forget about scoring music for Mehbooba by replacing Roshan.
5) Geeta Dutt, Guru Dutt and Waheeda Rehman triangle. I certainly believe that Geeta & Guru Dutt’s marriage went on the rocks because of Waheeda Rehman. Generally everybody believes the story. Numerous books and article have been written on it.
I am reminded of the news a few years ago, that Vaijayantimala categorically denied that she had an affair with Raj Kapoor during the making of Sanagam. This was countered vehemently by Raj Kapoor’s sons because they suffered a lot during that period (it was rumoured that Raj Kapoor’s marriage with Krishna Kapoor was in the danger of breaking).
6) Geeta was a great singer and she has sung many memorable songs for other MDs. This article is bout the uniqueness of OP-Geeta combination, and it ends there.
Lastly, my write-ups about OP relate to his musical genius, not about his other characteristics and as I have written in my first article, OP lived a controversial life and many people tend to ignore his musical achievements because of that. I have no intention of glorifying OP as a person. But I most certainly believe that his musical contribution is not given its due and it’s my humble attempt to correct it.

32 Shalan Lal July 30, 2017 at 5:50 pm

AK @ 30 & Ravindra Kelkar @ 31

The question about “Black Beauty”! AK’s defence of the author Mr Kelkar is “The offending statement you are referring to has been made by OPN about Geeta Dutt. OPN might have meant it as a compliment. But that apart, Mr Kelkar has ascribed it to OPN. Therefore, your averment that he made a demeaning statement is clearly misplaced.”

The statement about Geeta comes as the beginning of the paragraph number 5 of Mr Ravindra Kelkar’s main post:-
“OP used to call Geeta Dutt a “Black Beauty”. She had dusky complexion and was easily the prettiest of our playback singers. There was certain homeliness about her, a sort of a serene personality with a very calm and composed temperament. She had a lilting voice and her throw of words was matchless. This effortless throw of words was God’s gift to her and, in my view, this is where she was beyond the reach of both Lata and Asha. She also had a very sharp brain and picked the tips instantly. She was a picture of confidence in front of mike and her recordings invariably went very smoothly without any glitch.”

The paragraph four tells about OP’s unfairness etc. The rest of the paragraph five describes her homeliness and easiness and her special ability of singing etc…

Many of the lines in the above paragraph could be controversial and Kelkar’s own affected opinions and not the universally measured remarks came not from the Musical professor critiques as now in India there are many musically trained people are writing about the film music including the first Professor at the University of Bombay Aka Mumbai in Musical Department..

The question is “What is the purpose of telling the readers, “OP used to call Geeta Dutt a “Black Beauty”? Why bring it unless we the readers should look at Geeta from the eyes of O.P.?

AK says it is a compliment and it is reinforced by Mr Kelkar in his comment as well and further on Mr Kelkar says “The world was far simpler in 1950-60, in today’s environment I suppose OP could have got PIL against him…..” Does Mr Kelkar go along the world of fifties he mentioned?

Does Mr Kekar mean that the world was simpler in 1950-60 for anyone to make wanton and uncalled for statements? When the word “Black” in India and other European civilizations was and presently also means very negative as in the following illustrations for example:

वो सुबह कभी तो आयेगी, वो सुबह कभी तो आयेगी
इन काली सदियों के सर से, जब रात का आंचल ढलकेगा

And this verse from Satyam Shivam Sundaram
यशोमती मय्या से बोले नंदलाला
राधा क्यों गोरी मैं क्यों काला -२
बोली मुस्काती मय्या ललन को बताया
कारी अंधियरी आधी रात में तू आया
लाडला कंहय्या मेरा होऽ
लाडला कंहय्या मेरा काली कमली वाला
इसीलिए काला
यशोमती मय्या से बोले नंदलाला
राधा क्यों गोरी मैं क्यों काला -२
बोली मुस्काती मय्या सुन मेरे प्यारे -२
गोरी-गोरी राधिका के नैन कजरारे
काले नैनों वाली ने होऽ
काले नैनों वाली ने ऐसा जादू डाला
इसीलिए काला

Even in Pandit Narendra Sharma and perhaps Surdas as well, though have written in the children’s songs style the “Black is BLACK comes out clearly Something to do about the subconscious of the Northern Indian’s problem area even though there is a lot of re-education is done.

AK further absolves Mr Kelkar by saying that the author of the statement about Black Beauty is OPN and not Mr Kelkar. But Mr Kelkar has used it in his article and in the information about Geeta Dutt. He has not made any conscious efforts to dilute or used the after thought about it by telling the readers that he disapproves the chauvinism that means stark bigotry, sexism etc of OP.

It looks somehow Political Correctness started very late and people are absolved from making atrocious statements before the political correctness because the Political Correctness as good and gracious way of talking.

Is the” Black Beauty” saying means how much liberty OP has taken with a lady who probably under the obligation of OP for throwing some work at her like a rich Zamindar used to do Khairat in the past and she was not in the position to react? Or he wanted to compliment her for her physical beauty but at the same time high lighten her “blackness”?

Is blackness in woman in India “a beautiful compliment or is it an adverse term” in pan Indo European civilization?

In the arranged marriage system is the blackness of a woman an asset or a drawback?

Let us not cheat ourselves with a faulty argumentation. “Black is black and this is a white truth!”

This argumentation is enough about the Black Beauty and I am disgusted with it.

AK has second defence of Mr Kelkar about my hostile statement, “Another appalling statement Mr Kelkar made is as following: “Asha had an inferiority complex with both Geeta as well as Lata. Hence, OP first had to work on Asha extensively, to overcome her inferiority complex with Geeta, before grooming her to take on Lata.”
AK’s defence is that Asha copied Lata at the beginning. To this I shall say when a family elder starts something successfully the sibling would naturally follow that. Not only Asha, Meena and Usha and Radha the daughter of Pandit Hirdaynath in the Mangeshkar family followed Lata and other Maharastriyan and singers from all India and Pakistan and Bangala Desh etc too followed Lata and we have got a very challenging successful singer “Suman Kalyanpur” created an inimitable copy of Lata and that is not “grooming”. So the defence has not much water in it. Most of the Khansaabs teach their children in the imitative styles and there is no harm apart from the taught ones finds their own style. Further on people in general expect that they should sing in the established style. Sometimes, they ruin themselves as happened in the case of the son of Mukesh.

My objection is to the word the words like “inferiority complex”. Where did Mr Kelkar find this information demeaning Asha? Also what is this business of “Grooming”? Had O.P. run a hair grooming, hair beauty salon? I think the word “Grooming” is absolutely incompetent choice.

When Lata sang “Uthaye Jaa Unke Sitam” in Andaz many people said it was in the style of Nurjehan. And Lata was fan of the celebrated singer. But Naushad did not groom Lata either in Nurjehan’s style or in his own. Lata became what Lata sang.

Granted, that O.P. gave Asha some different direction but that only for his songs! Nor other MDs picked up that style nor Asha stuck up with it.

MDs come and MDs go but Lata, Asha, Gita, Samshad Rafi Mukesh, Kishore Hemant K, Manna Dey etc remained where they found their niches in the singing of filmy or other kinds of genre of songs.

Here I would like to quote Anu Warrier’s profound statement in the comment with reference to the post “Hundred Years of Devadas” comment number 58. Anu Warrier says

“ To admire ANR or Sivaji Ganesan, one doesn’t need to put down Raj Kapoor or Dev Anand. Dev may have been a ‘poor man’s Gregory Peck’ but which poor man’s? To Indians who didn’t know or care who Gregory Peck was, Dev was their hero, and they only recognised him as ‘Dev Anand’.
p.s. And what on earth does Raj Kapoor’s ‘irritating mannerisms’ have to do with his looks? You seem to be conflating one with the other.
Surely we have all come to the point where we can actually admire someone’s beauty or talent without having to put down someone else’s looks and talent?”

So what was lacking in the post is not the demeaning of the singers but showing the talent brought by OP to the Hindi film songs and enriched the golden era of the Hindi film songs. Incidentally the last lines of Mr Kelkar in his comment says “I have no intention of glorifying OP as a person. But I most certainly believe that his musical contribution is not given its due and it’s my humble attempt to correct it.”

I think Mr Kekar has every right to glorify OP as I considerately believe that he was one of the pillars of the golden era of the film music and gave many memorable songs and enriched the filmy songs genre of that period and Mr Kelkar does not have to be humble about it. If he likes his contribution and he has taken the task and wrote an article to highlight the contribution of Omkar Prasad Nayyar then there is nothing wrong and he should boldly go. But the way he has done not in the style of what wise Ms Anu Warrier says, I repeat it here:
“Surely we have all come to the point where we can actually admire someone’s beauty or talent without having to put down someone else’s looks and talent?”

P.S. AK has brushed away my mention of Lata’s charity work in his defence of Mr Kelkar’s position. But when I wrote it I meant the following verse from the Bhagvad Gita Chapter 18
18.05
Yăjdñyădānătăpăḥkărămă nă tyājyăṃ kāryămèvă tăt
Yăjdñyo dānăṃ tăpăśchaivă pāvănānĭ mănīṣhĭṇām 18.05

The routines like the worship, gifting and penance should not be given up
As they purify the minds of those who control their minds. 18.05

My reference in my argumentation is as following:
“Lata has done plenty of charity work both in India and abroad as well. She is not a malicious lady.”

AK’s argumentation is as following:
“That leaves “..saw through Lata’s game plan…” I wear my Lata-love on my sleeve. But the most I can say is that Mr Kelkar could have used more appropriate words. However, excessive political correctness, at times, impedes the flow of writing. He was writing in the context of OPN-Geeta Dutt-Asha Bhosle. They had reason to have gripe against Lata Mangeshkar. Popular writings are replete with references that she was ruthless, vengeful, and used her might to block competition. No one knows the truth. She might be very generous in giving for charities, she might be as pure as her music. Mr Kelkar could have qualified his statement with expressions like ‘said to be’ or ‘alleged to have’ etc. But in the flow of the article, I wouldn’t hang him for his choice of words”
QED
Shalan

33 Anil Kane August 5, 2017 at 12:41 am

Ravindra Kelkar ji,

A very good write up on my favourite combination of Geeta Dutt and O.P.Nayyar.

Except the ones from Mr Lambu and Duniya Rang Rangili, I have heard all other songs. I am happy at your selection, particularly ‘Neele aasmani’ and ‘chore lootere daku’.

I would have liked the inclusion of ‘ae dil ae diwane’ (Baaz) and ‘ye lo main haari piya’ (Aar Paar).

My all time favourite song of Geeta ji is, however a SDB composition ‘aaj sajan mohe ang laga lo’ (Pyasa).

Anil Kane

34 Ravindra Kelkar August 5, 2017 at 11:13 pm

Anil Kane ji,
Thanks for your kind words. ‘Ye Lo Main Hari Piya’ was included in my write up on “Three Phases of OP Nayyar”.
‘Ae Dile Ae Diwane’ is a wonderful song. I also had to exclude ‘Ja Ja Ja Ja Bewafa’, ‘Hoon Abhi Main Jawan’ which are equally good. In my estimation, about 28-30 solos of Geeta (out of 35) are of superb quality, so I had to exclude many wonderful songs.

35 Hari Misra September 5, 2017 at 12:21 am

I do not claim to be knowledgeable about OPN, Lata. Asha and Geeta. However, I find the objections of Shalan Lal unwarranted and expressed in an unpleasant style.

Both AK and Ravindra Kelkar deserve praise for their restraint and the use of controlled language.

Debate, Mr Lal, is to exchange views, not brickbats.

36 AK September 5, 2017 at 9:40 am

Hari Mishra,
Welcome to SoY.

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