Tennis, Pathakji and ‘Tere sadke balam’

March 22, 2015

Tere sadke balamThat I am an inveterate fan of Lata Mangeshkar is nothing exceptional. She was ‘the’ female playback voice of the Golden Era. Now the readers are aware I am fascinated even more by Naushad. Therefore, I took it for granted that I have already written on Lata Mangeshkar’s best songs by Naushad, as I have done on her songs with other composers. When I tried to recall the songs I had included in that post, I realised, to my surprise, that I have not written it at all. Had I done that, ‘Tere sadke balam’ would have come in for some special mention. A fellow blogger has written he could listen to this song a hundred times continuously without getting tired of it. I have done that, and more, because it was more than a song for me; it was a binding element, an anthem with which are associated my memories of some most fascinating people at the Patna Secretariat tennis courts, where I was a regular for about eight years, until I shifted to Delhi.

Anjani provided nourishment to the group from his canteen on the complex, which was apparently unauthorised. He also happened to be an upper division clerk in Bihar government, which, acting on an anonymous complaint about his canteen, transferred him to a remote block, Udwantnagar, about 60km from Patna, which meant that he could now go to the office only once a month – to collect his pay cheque. We did not probe any further about his job or his business, because the masala lemon tea he provided was out of this world, and on pay-days he would bring from Udwantnagar a very delicious local delicacy, belgrami, a mithai made of chhena. Bihar, and I am sure many other states, abound in such small places which have become synonymous for centuries with some local speciality – Gaya ka tilkut, Silaao ka khaja, Maner ke laddoo, Barh ki laayee, Ghodmara ka peda and so on. If we craved for belgrami in between, Anjani would not mind paying a visit to his office even on days other than pay-days.

Jayant (Dasgupta), of Bengali origin, was a naturalised Patnahiya for about three generations. A well read man, he spoke elegant English, but could put Lalu Prasad to shame if he decided to display his Bihari dialect. He would enter the courts shouting greetings to everyone; he shouted when he played a good shot – Dekhiye tennis aise khelate hain; Seekhiye kuchh aap log bhi. He also shouted at (or down) his opponent’s good shot – Kya kar rahe hain, theek se kheliye, yahi sab karne aaye hain? His shouts became deadlier than his shots.

There was Professor Akhauri, the Guruji – a big shot in Indian tennis. He was a member of the Executive Committee of the All India Lawn Tennis Association (probably for life, as is the norm with our sports bodies). He would regale us with stories of Vijay Amritraj, Ramesh Krishnan, his father Ramnathan Krishnan, his travels to England, Australia or Brazil as the Manager of the Indian team to the Davis Cup or the Olympics. When some of us shifted to Delhi, Guruji would favour us with VIP passes for major tournaments which, besides giving a ringside view of Leander Paes and Sania Mirza, would also provide access to some five-star food in the lounge of DLTA. Guruji was never wanting in extending such courtesies, only we were at times lazy in availing it.

Sanjeev, the Medical Representative, was the most spectacular player on the court. His forehand crosscourt smashes would remind you of Federer. But more often than not, he was like an out-of-form Goran Ivanisevic, hitting wide or long or into the net, and swearing, tearing his hear and throwing the racket in disgust. It was tragic to see the ‘best’ player on the court often losing to some rank novices.

KK Prasadji, a retired Chief Engineer of Bihar Electricity Board, had a stately game. Once he took a spot, he became rooted to it like the feet of Angad, as if glued with fevicol – someone must have been inspired by him to create the song चिपका दे सैंया फेविकोल से . He would not approach the ball, the ball had to approach him when he would deign to play it, otherwise it was his partner’s duty to cover the court.

But there was also the legendary retired Post Master General, Colonel Shiv Kumar, whose chasing the ball to all corners of the court at the age of 76 was the envy of many youngsters.

There were some more. The venerable Tiwariji, whose efforts with the Finance Department and sundry officials made the development of the courts possible. There was honest to God, honest to his job, and simple-hearted engineer Saroj. There was Babu Rajiv Singh, from the commercial taxes department, who had the old zamindari in his regal demeanour. The ever smiling, long-named Hyderabadi, ELSN Bala Prasade, who was gradually becoming an incorrigible Bihar-romantic. The Jack-of-all-trades Sunil, one of the most talented persons on the court. And 50-something bachelor Kedar, who had not yet given up hopes of getting married. One major task of the tennis group was to find a bride for him. Then there was technically the most knowledgeable player, Uday Kumawat, because he had coached himself from Google.

But above all was Pathakji, also a retired Chief Engineer from Electricity Board, but what a contrast from KK Prasadji! He had undergone two heart bye-pass surgeries, but he always played to win. Therefore, he always partnered the best player on the court. If a better player arrived when half way into a game, he would declare the ‘practice game’ closed, and start the ‘real game’ with the new partner. He fought for every point. If any of his line shots was given out, he would rush to the other side, disputing the call vigorously; on his side, before the ball landed, he would flay his arms wildly and shout a loud ‘out’. Ultimately, whenever Pathakji played, a neutral linesman was needed to maintain order on the court.

What made this group more fascinating was that though coming from disparate backgrounds, we hit it off like a house on fire, socially too. We started meeting over dinner at each other’s houses with families, where the common bond was no longer tennis, but music.

The statue KK Prasadji would suddenly come to life when he sang Beqaraar kar ke hamein yun na jaaiye, and would shake his body more than he had ever done on the tennis court. The erratic Sanjeev would give a flawless rendering of the high-flown Urdu dialogues of Mughal-e-Azam, which he had spent his lifetime in memorizing to heart in its entirety. It was commonly agreed that had he made half this effort for the UPSC, he would have been into civil services like his brothers and cousins. Jayant the Shouter was not musical himself, but his wife Dr Arundhati Dasgupta, who became our family physician as a matter of right, sang Hum to yun apni zindagi se miley, ajanabi jaise ajanabi se miley with a rare empathy and feeling for the ghazal. I have heard Jagjit Singh’s rendering too, but Arundhati’s is indelibly etched in my memory. Professor Akhauri’s wife, Dr Manjula Akhauri, besides being an eminent doctor, was a wonderful host and a wonderful singer. Sunil would chip in with his instant poetry or tabla beats on the table to accompany the singers.

And above all again was The Pathakji – the star of the evening, as much as he was the star of the morning at the courts. His capacity to hold his drink was zero, but his desire and determination to drink was unlimited. His wife’s helpless pleadings or our admonitions to stop were of no avail, until the glass and bottle were physically taken away from him.

It is said that alcohol makes a man honest. After one drink he was forthright in expressing what he thought of me – a most useless fellow with no hopes in future, as I was not only a vegetarian, but also a teetotaler. After two drinks he would snatch the harmonium from his wife, Mrs Sarojini Pathak, who would be halfway into a most melodious rendering of Jo dil ko jalaye sataye dukhaye/ Aisi mohabbat se hum baaj aaye (Lata Mangeshkar, Nirala, 1951, C Ramchandra), ignoring our protests to let her complete. Pathakji never accepted that his wife was a much better singer than him.

A dead drunk Pathakji on the harmonium was a familiar sight we had seen any number of times – in this state he had only two songs in his repertoire. One was Kah raha hai samaan gaye ja gaye ja/ Pyar ko jeet le zindagi haar ja. He always started from the antaraa. He probably meant Talat Mahmood’s Dil ki dhakan pe ga from Lakeerein (1954), because I could not find these lines in any other song. Pathakji slowed the tempo of the song, but it was melodious all the same.

Then came the Grand Finale, Pathakji sweeping his fingers on the harmonium with a flourish, and the house would burst into uproarious applause. This would herald the end of the evening, because there could not be anything after Pathakji’s Tere sadke balam. While he was completely sozzled and his speech became incoherent, his fingers on the harmonium were steady. This was the time when Pathakji would be favourably disposed towards me, because while others were busy in their chatter, I would be attentive to this beautiful Naushad composition. And Pathakji would shout at others, “You useless fellows, look at him, only he appreciates music.”

All good things come to an end. But the Patna tennis courts had a deeply tragic end, the least of which was some members moving out of Patna. Governments have insatiable appetite for office space. On one of my visits to Patna I found to my horror that the lovely Secretariat courts had been dug up to make way for some concrete and steel monstrosity to provide committee rooms. The chess players in Shatranj Ke Khiladi were chased from place to place. The tennis players too could find some place to play, but nothing could match the ambience of the Secretariat courts.

Pathakji’s next heart attack proved very nasty. After prolonged treatment at Patna and Delhi, his US-based children took him there. He himself was a Green Card holder, but quite clearly his soul was in Patna, and he used to go to the US only once in six months to comply with the legal requirement of residency. Now it seems he is lost forever to tennis and Patna.

Tere sadke balam was not among my top favourites when my romance with Naushad started in my college days, many years before the Patna tennis courts. My first obsession was Aaj mere man mein sakhi (Aan), then came Marna teri gali mein jeena teri gali mein (Shabab), then Amar’s two other songs – Jaanewale se mulaqaat na hone paayi and Na milta gham to barbaadi ke afsaane kahaan jaate, then some songs of Udankhatola and Mughal-e-Azam. These songs still remain as dear to me as ever. But Pathakji created a special pedestal for Tere sadke balam at par with my greatest Naushad-Lata favourites. I present this lovely song as a tribute to Naushad, continuing my series on him in this special Naushad year. This is also wishing Pathakji a long life, and that for once he is able to come back to Patna, along with Mrs Sarojini Pathak, for a grand get-together of the tennis friends, who are among the most fascinating people you can meet anywhere.

Tere sadke balam by Lata Mangeshkar from Amar (1954), lyric Shakeel Badayuni


I am back to Patna on some assignment, but off tennis because of injury concerns.  Pathakji is under the care of his family in New York.  Their reluctance to let him talk to us is understandable as he may get excited.  I was once able to say hello to him, but I was not sure if he could recognize me. Some old-timers are around, playing tennis too, but without Pathakji to sing the anthem ‘Tere sadke balam’ on his harmonium, it is impossible to recreate the good old days.

{ 84 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Anu Warrier March 22, 2015 at 4:34 am

(*Slightly confused – why is this showing a March 10th as the date of publishing? It only showed up on my sidebar today…)

I loved the reminiscences. 🙂 I’ll wait until you finally post a Lata for Naushad post to add my favourites.

2 mumbaikar8 March 22, 2015 at 5:56 am

For Lata and Naushad I shall come back later.
Today I can see an emotional AK, instead of regular rational AK.
Like it.
You seem to be very much impressed by the game of all the members of your group….
I do not see any description of your ability.
Is the speed of your blog reflecting the speed your service? (Posted on 10th appeared on 21st)

3 Subodh Agrawal March 22, 2015 at 8:08 am

As confused as Anu. I also didn’t see this one earlier. Whatever be the reason, I thoroughly enjoyed the post, and the song was the cherry on the cake. My regards to Pathakji and all other colleagues of AK who have been so wonderfully sketched here.

Modesty may prevent AK from truthfully answering mumbaikar’s question. I have no idea of his prowess in Tennis, but I have known him as an ace player of billiards and bridge, and a competent batsman.

4 AK March 22, 2015 at 10:57 am

About the mismatch of the date, I must have accidentally hit some unintended key. I had meant to publish it much later, March 10 must have been the date of the draft. It came as a surprise to me that it is up on the blog; I am forced to reconcile the date, and it would show published on March 22. I am happy you enjoyed it.

Now that I have noticed the omission, Naushad-Lata has to come in due course.

I am happy you liked it. If one likes music, one has to be emotional somewhere. About my abilities, I have already quoted Pathakji’s frank opinion. I have clarified the confusion about the dates.

Thanks a lot for your appreciation and kind words. If you were in the company of Pathakji, he would tell you your true worth. Where was the question of being modest?

5 Ashwin Bhandarkar March 22, 2015 at 2:24 pm

A very enjoyable read indeed! Thanks!

6 AK March 22, 2015 at 2:36 pm

Ashwin Bhandarkar,
Thanks a lot for your appreciation.

7 Lalitha Jairam March 22, 2015 at 6:20 pm

I have been a silent follower of your blog for some time now, but just hadn’t commented till today. I love reading through all the songs you post, even if I don’t know many of them, or the raag or the taal. Today’s post, though, struck a particular chord. You have mentioned a retired Postmaster General, Col. Shiv Kumar. Would this be Col. Shiv Nath, by any chance? It seems unlikely, because he was my father’s contemporary, but worth asking, because he and his wife were very good friends with my parents, and I have many memories of evenings spent in their home, across the maidan from my home. He would be in his early 90s now, if he is still alive.
I love the song, Tere sadke balam …, and am waiting to hear more from you about this song.

8 AK March 22, 2015 at 7:40 pm

Lalitha Jairam,
Welcome to SoY and thanks a lot for your appreciation.

The age matches. Was he posted in Patna as PMG? Even though he belonged to another state, he chose to settle in Patna. We knew him as Colonel Shiv Kumar.

9 N Venkataraman March 22, 2015 at 11:24 pm

A delighting journey down the memory lane. We find a you in a entirely different mood and light.
And it’s not just an indulgence to relive the old days, it is also helpful in many ways. I remember, earlier you had touched upon your Patna days in your post on Raag Durga. The short sketch about your associates was interesting. I enjoyed reading the post. We all love to relive our earlier days.

Just sharing my thoughts

The older I get what will I find?
More pleasant memories to fill my mind,
I can search my youth and find a smile,
Laughing at memories I have put on file,
But only the pleasant one I have put away,
To drag out and reminisce during my older day.
The older I get the more memories there are,
I can look back the trail and see I have come far.
What is nice about being old?
Memories that I can search and unfold.

I wish we have more of Pathakjis and Akjis in our lives. Thanks for the song too.

10 AK March 23, 2015 at 5:35 am

I believe you also have Patna association. In Raga Durga days Patna was Gandharva Lok. Those days were gone, when Pathakji happened. He made up for the loss. Your mention refreshed my memories. When I introduced him to Durga, he was as bowled over by it as I was. It replaced Bhimpalasi as his top favourite. And for this he would praise me sky high, but I liked his opinion of me when he was ‘honest’ – after a drink.

Everyone is charmed by his own Patna. My friends from other states who work here can’t think of settling down anywhere else.

Thanks for your appreciation, and the lovely poem. I know you too have similar fascination for places and people.

11 mumbaikar8 March 23, 2015 at 5:54 am

I wish we have more of Pathakjis, Akjis and Venkataramanjis too in our lives.
We missed you.

12 PRAVEEN March 23, 2015 at 12:15 pm

Delightful, sir. Never had the opportunity of spending time in such a setting – it was always a typical city/small town or a village life for me. But then the camaraderie amongst friends crosses over the settings, always.

And there is a lovely typical 50’s Naushad special as a bonus!!

13 Ravi March 23, 2015 at 3:46 pm

Lovely article….about tennis, about friends and about music. Enjoyed it thoroughly.

14 AK March 23, 2015 at 4:21 pm

But didn’t you have your own Pathakjis, in a different avatar? You meet interesting people everywhere.

You must have had a very rich life. I consider myself lucky that I had experienced the whole range from a remote village to small town to big town to metro, and everywhere you get interesting people and situations, unique to that place.

Thanks a lot for your appreciation.

15 Ravindra Sharma March 23, 2015 at 6:50 pm

Lalitha Jairam,
Col. Shivnath retired as Member P&T Board and settled in Delhi. He passed away in February 2014. His wife Lakshmi (a cousin of mine) had expired long back (sometimes during 1980’s).
I am also a silent follower of this blog and have great admiration for its contributors.
Ravindra Sharma

16 AK March 23, 2015 at 9:38 pm

Ravindra Sharma,
It is clear we are talking about two different persons.

Thanks a lot for your appreciation. It is very gratifying to know that there is a large body of silent admirers of SoY, besides those who are actively participating.

17 Arunkumar Deshmukh March 23, 2015 at 9:45 pm

AK ji,

When someone talks of Patna,I remember my days spent in Patna and Ranchi during the period 1988 to 1998,as a part of my job. I used to visit Patna almost every month,Ranchi almost once in 3 months.
I too have some very interesting and touching memories of my Patna days. Ofcourse the context is entirely different-nothing to do with films or music at all.
Nevertheless,memories are memories and they do touch a tender chord in your heart somewhere.

Venkatraman ji,

I have liked your poem so much that I have put it on my Fb page with your name.


18 N Venkataraman March 23, 2015 at 9:59 pm

You are right. Old habits and memories die hard. Yaad na jaye beete dino ki……

I too missed you all. Thank you.

Arun ji,
Thank you

19 ksbhatia March 23, 2015 at 10:18 pm

AKji; A lovely remembrance of the past spend with friends . Why not, after all , the game start with Love all . You have beautifully woven emotional chord with every one thru your signature song ‘ Tere sadke balam ‘ . and your personality persona ‘ Jo bhi pyar se mila hum usi ke ho liye ‘ . Both from your fav MDs . They say the best time spent is always of the past and its a gift of the present ; no one knows what future holds for you . I , along with yourself and SOY family , wish Pathakji a very long Innings and pray to the god for early recovery . Regarding dates of your blog ; it is coincidence that 10 th march is my daughter ‘s birthday and 22 nd march is my wife ‘s birth day . AK ‘ji , nice to know your cricket abilities , would like to know your batting skills as well .

20 A.S.Velpanur March 24, 2015 at 12:10 am


Jabardast piece tha yeh. Thro’ this journey of our life we meet lot of people but you remember few who remain in your heart. You have written a nostalgic article packed with a lot of fond memories. Reminded me of that song from Uran Khatola. O Door ke musafir by Mohd Rafi.

A big bow to you Sir.

21 AK March 24, 2015 at 7:32 am

KS Bhatiaji,
Thanks a lot for your appreciation.

I think Subodh is mixing up; I did play billiards and bridge, but never cricket. Bridge I am still continuing, at a reasonably high level. There are stories everywhere, it has to fit into SoY.

Tere sadke balam also says: Din hain suhane phir kaun jaane aye na aye bahaar/ Gaata chala chal hansta chala chal jeevan ki nadiya ke paar.

What a telepathy that the two dates should coincide with the birth anniversaries of your daughter and wife. Here is wishing them Many Happy Returns of the Day again.

Pathakji would be very happy to know that he has a large number of admirers, even among people who have not met him. I would try to convey everyone’s best wishes to him by some means.

22 AK March 24, 2015 at 7:35 am

AS Velpanur,
Thanks a lot for your very generous words. I have been lucky to meet some fantastic people in my life.

23 AK March 24, 2015 at 7:39 am

Was it you who said you could listen to Tere sadke balam a hundred times without getting tired of it? I would like to complete the record by acknowledging you.

24 Lalitha Jairam March 24, 2015 at 8:08 am

I would like to thank Ravindra Sharmaji for letting me know about my father’s friend, Col. Shivnath. He and my father joined the P&T Dept. around the same time, and his son and I were born around the same time. I think they served in Nagpur around the same time, and then they were also posted to Delhi when we were there, and that was where they lived across the maidan from our home. Yes, I heard that his wife had passed away and he had written a very nice letter to my father when my mother passed away. I didn’t know that he too had passed away. AKji, I hope you don’t mind my using your blog to thank Ravindra Sharmaji. In fact, it would be better if you deleted this and just passed on the message to Ravindra Sharmaji. Thanks.

25 ASHOK M VAISHNAV March 24, 2015 at 9:23 am

There would many who have very strong association with a song.
But it takes AKji to make it a memory to be shared with all as if we lived all those moments ourselves.

26 Siddharth March 24, 2015 at 12:54 pm

Thanks for this fascinating trip down your memory lane. There are always great moments when one look back as Venkatramanji has brilliantly expressed. Certainly there are things which one never forgets but surely I have forgotten the songs I have grown up with (i.e. 80s) after I discovered the golden era. You were lucky in that respect :-).
Tere Sadke Balam is also my favourite Naushad song.

27 AK March 24, 2015 at 4:23 pm

I am happy that so many are able to relate to my memories which are personal.

28 AK March 24, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Thanks a lot for appreciation.

Yes, I did grow up in the radio era, which meant there were several programmes devoted to old music.

Tere sadke balam is an exceptional song. Pathakji added Sone pe suhaga.

29 AK March 24, 2015 at 7:02 pm

I missed your comment, as in a somewhat unsettled situation, I am managing with a mobile phone. This has severe limitations.

You, yourself, relive your old memories with great nostalgia. Now, I know a great deal about your Hyderabad days from your writings. I was also aware of your Patna connection, but it can’t be that you didn’t find much of interest to write about. May be, my piece would encourage you to jog your memories. Those days Patna was on the national calendar for its music soirees during three days in Durga Puja. That was the background of my piece on Raga Durga, which Venkataramanji has mentioned.

30 AK March 24, 2015 at 7:10 pm

Lalitha Jairam,
Ref your comment #24. I am so happy to know that you were able to reconnect with some link to your father’s friend. It has happened earlier, too, with my articles on forgotten composers Vinod, Shaillesh Mukherjee and C Arjun. It is always gratifying that, at times, this forum is bringing together long-lost connections.

31 Soumya Banerji March 25, 2015 at 2:36 am

Loved the post , AK. Somehow this reminded me of some of P.G. Wodehouse’s stories in the Drones Club series. Mr Pathak brought to mind one of my father’s drinking friends who, once he had imbibed a little too much of the alcoholic spirits, would launch into his off-key rendering of the Rabindrasangeet “Godhuli Gaganey Meghey”. Needless to say we had a hard time keeping a straight face. Wishing Mr Pathak a speedy recovery and many more renderings of ‘Tere Sadke Balam”.

32 AK March 25, 2015 at 7:41 am

Thanks for your appreciation. I do not know how much real PG Wodehouse characters were. In real life you get more interesting people than in fiction.

Pathakji never went off-key while singing, he might slow down the tempo a bit.

I am sure everyone’s good wishes must be reaching him.

33 Hans March 25, 2015 at 11:16 pm

I would call it a quality literary piece inspired by nostalgia. There are many references which brought back my memories. Venkatramanji has rightly put it in words through his poem. Since you are going on a new assignment it is natural you remember past incidents particularly those which are not likely to be repeated again. Tennis courts have vanished and Pathakji is beyond reach.

How ironical that the song ‘tere sadke balam’ is meant to cheer up a person in a pensive mood. It actually fits your situation. Nobody has talked about this song. It would be futile to talk about the quality of the song because Naushad in those days hardly put a wrong foot forward. But, its picturisation is wierd in my view. Shooting practice, both on horseback, in the park and then in a boat when Dilip is sad and Madhubala trying to cheer him up.

There have been a lot of such songs meant to cheer up the lover in different moods. In this song Madhubala presents a song in cheerful mode, but, the Aap Ki Parchhaiyan song ‘agar mujhse mohabbat hai’ is the opposite. In Shagoon Jagjit Kaur sang ‘tum apna ranjo gham’ which is considered by many as the best in this category and without doubt her best. This song is in a different mood and the singer in addition threatens the whole world. There is another song ‘zindagi ke rang kai re’ by Asha in which picturisation is quite strange. If you listen to the song without watching the film, you may get an impression that both are sitting side by side and the female is trying to cheer up her partner. But it is not so in the film.

I would request fellow readers to put forward such songs to cheer up AK.

34 AK March 26, 2015 at 6:04 am

Thanks for your appreciation and detailed comments. I think Tere sadke balam came in the film happened after Dilip Kumar’s cataclysmic event with Nimmi had already happened. Thereafter, guilt would be gnawing at him throughout the film, of which Madhubala had no clue, until towards the end of the film. If my memory is correct, I don’t find the picturisation of the song discordant.

Hindi film songs acquired a personality of their own outside their story settings. Without that, they would not have acquired such longevity.

35 mumbaikar8 March 26, 2015 at 5:12 pm

As per Han’s request I put forward a cheer up song.
Being a cricket loving nation, we all need it today.
dookh aur sookh ke raaste from Humdono.

36 SSW March 26, 2015 at 10:55 pm

Bit late in on the party AK but Soumya took the words out of my mouth. Such an idiosyncratic sketch as you have provided does bring to mind people from the Drones club that Wodehouse wrote about. I really enjoyed your descriptions. About the tea supplying gentleman who got transferred… from your write up it seems he never went to his new office to work but got his pay cheque on time which he went to collected. This is real free market efficiency. A pox on all those who berate state institutions. I suppose regretfully for some of the others, the tea was only laced with lemon and masala, nothing stronger?

37 AK March 27, 2015 at 6:05 am

Thanks for your appreciation. Though late, you have added interesting thoughts. Anjani had to look after his canteen you know, and the government had posted him 60km away. What could a guy do in this situation? There can’t be any doubt in his getting his pay cheque regularly. I don’t know how it is in the US, but government here pride themselves in being a ‘model’ employer.

As you would have noticed, stronger addivities were reserved for the evening parties, people got it if anything was left after Pathakji.

Let me add another kudos to state institutions, which have inspired thousands of private enterprise. Our trains, public buses and other state assets carry a sign, ‘यह आपकी सम्पत्ति है’. We take it literally. Therefore, we have thousands of temples on public roads. You have to locate a peepal tree on the road, put vermillion on it, tie some triangular festoons, sit there with a chaadar, and with 20 rupees investment, you are on way to setting up a big enterprise. Our friend set up his canteen on the government land. And people talk of ‘free’ enterprise in the US!

38 SSW March 27, 2015 at 7:18 pm

Alas AK nothing is “free” in the US. If you set up shop on government land here you will be serving lemon masala tea to the FBI in two shakes of a duck’s tail and there will be a drone circling around taking photographs of you streaming it directly to Facebook. Possession may be nine tenths of the law but if it’s Uncle Sam then “workers of the world you have nothing to lose but your claims.”
Talking of private enterprise brings to mind a Salilda composition with the ancient poet Gulzar’s lyrics. 🙂 This may have gone down well in one of your evening revelries. “”Baashan pe ration nahin hai yahaan”

39 AK March 27, 2015 at 8:56 pm

Funny place, the US!

40 Anil Kane March 27, 2015 at 11:32 pm

AK ji,
I am a regular reader of SOY since more than a year. You might recollect my name as I have given my comments on some of earlier blogs. Of late, I am more of a silent reader. Just because whatever I feel like commenting is already covered in preceding posts.

Your post on Pathakji and Tere sadke balam has such an impact on me that I feel I have to let you know my appreciation.

And yes, Tere sadke balam is a favourite.

41 Hans March 27, 2015 at 11:42 pm

You have raised a good point about the Anjani episode. I wanted to share my thoughts about this but you picked it up earlier. I think all are concerned in such matters and AK is equally concerned though he is presenting it as sarcasm. This pattern is not restricted to Bihar and also this is not restricted to Govt. offices. I know such free pay packets syndrome is prevalent at least in Bihar, UP, Haryana, Panjab, Rajasthan and other surrounding states. I personally know more than a dozen persons benefitting from this in Haryana. And this has become a part of life nobody even asks questions about it. This is present in all departments. Recently it has crept into the Army and forces like BSF etc. Only those who had some daily ‘upar ki kamai’ are really interested in attending office.

When I was on my job in Delhi – in about 1980 – I used to visit Hisar (Haryana) quite frequently where my saali and sadhu lived. I would find invariably a neighbour of theirs in the morning at tea time, whatever be the season. After about two years of observing him, one day he declared that he would leave early, because he was to go to get his pay. I was surprised to hear this, because I had never imagined it as I never saw him go for his job. When I asked he blamed the govt. for transferring him to a far-off place. But, persons like him do nothing regardless of their situation. He did not care even for his children and both of his sons became loafers.

I saw even a doctor doing this once a month thing and sitting in a chemist shop for practice. This shop belonged to his brother. He also argued that he had not spent so much time and money for doing MBBS to waste his life in a remote village PHC. I did not have the intimacy to tell him why he accepted the govt. job. I think those who go daily to office are not much better. They hardly do any work. The same thing goes on in private companies. India is a big expert in producing kaamchors.

42 Hans March 28, 2015 at 3:01 am

In the Anjani episode, their is another matter about which I wanted to share my thoughts. You referred to local delicacies for which some places become famous. I was thinking whether such delicacies were popularised to make certain places well known so that people would remember their geographical location. There are some examples of these famed delicacies being found inferior to some local dishes. Mathura ka peda is very famous in Haryana, but I always find peda from Hansi and Hisar better. Similarly, milk-cake of Alwar is famous but I like milk-cake of a particular halwai in Charkhi Dadri.

But, I agree that some people acquire special ability. There was a halwai named Himmat in Charkhi Dadri, where our family lived for a long time. He acquired a special status in making Kalakand. People came from far-off places to buy his kalakand. He was a very principled person. In his shop he never prepared anything other than kalakand. He would take milk from selected persons only. He would prepare his special sweet only once in a day and opened his shop early in the morning at about 7 and whole of his stock would finish before 10 in the morning. He never booked his mithai for anybody and never charged extra for his fame. Everybody had to buy mithai from his shop in the morning. After selling his goods he would just either sit there or play cards. He could easily have sold tea and snacks either himself or through somebody else to enhance his income but he never did that. He said ‘meri dukan par chai nahin banegi’. Whenever he had to take tea – which he did quite a lot – he would get it from some chaiwala.
After his death one of his sons took over the business. But, soon he not only started making other mithais, but also tea and snacks.

Another reason for me believing in this theory of spreading fame of a place for making it well known is that one would find some places known for even habits of the inhabitants which on enquiry you would hardly find universal in application. Linking of such things with places does matter. Charkhi Dadri is a small town in Bhiwani. It was not well known in Delhi. But, in 1996 two planes collided in mid-air near that place. After that people started immediately linking Charkhi Dadri with that. Similarly my village Jharli is a small village and was not well known even in Haryana. Recently a thermal power plant was set up there and it has since become well known. Prior to that very few people in Haryana recognised it by mention of its name.

43 Anant Desai March 28, 2015 at 6:57 am

AK ji,
Since you are a Naushad Lata fan, let me share a couple of rare gems:
Chal Diye deke gam, Yeh na socha ke hum, Is jahan mein akele kidhar jaye get? From Son of India.
Surprisingly, Naushad almost took this melody from Gulam Mohammad. Listen to: Bhigi Palken utha, Meri jan gam na kar, Din judai ke ye bhi guzar jayenge. From a non discript film Do Gunde. I am sure you will like both.
Among the many Bhairavi songs of Naushad for Lata, here is an almost forgotten gem:
Tumhare sang main bhi chaloongi Piya, Jaise Patang pichhey dor.
The lyrics and composition try to out do each other in the most beautiful way. I hope you enjoy all three.

44 AK March 28, 2015 at 7:43 am

Anil Kane,
Yes, of course, I remember you. I hugely appreciate your kind words. The silent admirers of SoY are as valuable to me as the active ones.

45 AK March 28, 2015 at 8:03 am

In your earlier response to SSW, you have become very serious. I would not like to get into that, because as you have yourself noticed, I try to see funny side of many things.

But I liked your detailed comment about local delicacies. This is a very interesting subject for in-depth study. I entirely agree with you that some unknown place, or a local halwai might be making some mithai far superior to that from renowned places.

Some things become famous because they have become famous. This fame spawns its own quirky offsprings. In Deoghar, Kaali Saao’s peda used to be very famous. Now if you go to Deoghar, you would find the shops with screaming signboards, ‘असली’ काली साव का पेड़ा; or ‘सबसे पुरानी’ काली साव का पेड़ा, and so on. The same story repeats for Maner ke ladoo, and Silaao Ka khaja etc.

46 AK March 28, 2015 at 8:11 am

Anant Desai,
Both songs are my great favourites. Talking of Bheegi palken utha, I rate it among the three greatest Rafi-Lata duets. In my post on the best 10 Rafi-Lata duets (taking not more than one from an MD), I put it above the best of Naushad’s. You would have guessed, between this and Chal diye de ke gham, I rate the former superior.

47 Jignesh Kotadia March 28, 2015 at 11:14 am

Superb Ace down the T !
I read this article just today ! subah subah rula diya aapne Akji. Achchha khasa mood tha… aurr mujhe khinch kar aap 1989 me le gaye…..
I was in 8th std in my native Gondal(saurashtra). Our sanskrit teacher Pandya sir used to call me at the end of his lecture ” jignesh,, aavi ja..chal ek mast geet sambhlavi de..” and last time i had sung “tanha mai akela toota tara koi, aasman mera meri zameen manzil khoi khoi” .. but it ended tragically..nature forced me to move to surat..thereafter no one farmaished me to sing with that passion.

yaade thi kitni haseen
roye aasman roye zameen
sahar ka hum kya kare
yaar apna saath nahin
saath mera chhodkar
saath mera chhodkar
chal diya tu kahan
dil mera todkar

a special song for our beloved Pathakji
kishoreda’s eternal voice

really emotionally moving post.

48 AK March 28, 2015 at 12:07 pm

It is so heartening to know that my recollections have touched a chord in so many people. Your song is very moving. I don’t think I have heard it, I would have to look for it.

Your memories reminded me of Surdas. The context is Krishna has left Braj, never to return. Yashoda sends a message to Devki, “I was the nursemaid of your son, does he ever remember me”. To this Krishna replies, “You are my mother, can a mother ever be a maid? जा दिन हम तुमसे बिछड़े काहू न कह्यो कन्हैया (Since the day I got separated from you, no one has called me ‘Kanhaiya’)”.

49 ksbhatia March 29, 2015 at 12:31 am

AK ji; Some of the readers ,like me ,are really enjoying the melody of sensitive and sad songs . So far nothing to beat Tere sadke balam , but there are a few more from Naushads songs with golden touch ,for instant …… 1. Mera bichda yaar mila de …2. Eid ke din milenge sab apne apne yaar se ….. both rafi/ lata duets from Sohni mahiwal . Yes there are two more from Madan mohan’s superb masterpiece ……. 3. Hum safar saath apna chhod challe rafi/ asha from akhari dao ……4 . Betaab dil ki tammana yahi hai Lataji from Hanste zakham. There is one by Ravi from Chaudvin ka chand …5 Badle badle mere sarkar nazar aatein hain . The crave for such songs is in active mode ; will follow later .

50 Hans March 29, 2015 at 9:32 pm

I also enjoy the funnier side as much as you. But, there is no harm in talking about the serious things if they are relevant. One main reason to write those things was to show that these things happen everywhere.

Your reference to ‘kaali saav peda’ shops in Deoghar points to a universal phenomenon in India and also suggests you also – like me – believe in looking at places from very close quarters. I was in Kolkata for about a week about 20 years ago and there in the New Market at Dharamtalla I found a food shop which prepared ‘chhole bhature’ of the best kind and also sold them very cheap. And you know ‘chhole bhature’ is a Panjabi dish. Similarly, when I was young I found the rasgullas made in Haryana to be better than those in Kolkata. May be this was due to better milk quality in Haryana. But, now the rasgulla standards have fallen in Haryana, but there are still some halwais who prepare quality rasgullas.

51 Hans March 29, 2015 at 10:13 pm

‘Jahan men aisa kaun hai’ is one of my favourites too. Thanks for reminding.

Anant Desai,
About ‘bheegi palken utha’ I want to add that this song was picturised on Jayshri Gadkar and Ajit. There is another song in Saaranga, ‘piya kaise milun tumse, also picturised on Jayshri Gadkar. Both these songs have a similar alaap by Lata for Jayshri. In ‘bheegi palken’ it says ‘preetam ye na janiyo’ and in ‘piya kaise’ it says ‘sajan ye na janiyo’. The second line of alaap in ‘bheegi palken’ says ‘geele ban ki laakdi sulgat hoon din rain’ and in the other song it says ‘jaise jal bin maachhli tadfat hoon din rain’. Also there is counter alaap by rafi in Saaranga but not in Do Gunde.

Is the song you sung before the Sanskrit teacher from Sachche ka Bolbala (1989). If it is so, you might have sung it better than the original to become a favourite of the teacher.

52 ksbhatia March 29, 2015 at 11:00 pm

Jignesh kotadia’ji ; Subhe subhe rula diya! Here are few of my fav ‘ rula diya ‘ songs ….1. Rula kar chal diye ek din …. 2. Katte hain dukh mein yeh din…..3. Tum kya jano tumahri yaad mein hum kitna roye….4. Roote roote guzar gai raat re yaad aai …..5. Koi kisi ka diwana na bane… there are many like trio songs of ‘ Dekh kabira roiya ‘ .

53 Jignesh Kotadia March 30, 2015 at 11:56 pm

thanx for ur kind words. Actually no any person can sing “tanha mai akela” like kishoreda. He was ajooba. yes, it is from “sachche ka bolbala”. feel the impact when kishoreda initiates ,”tanhaaaa…….” mmy god !! crushing !! nostalgic song for me. my forever favorite. big salute to bappida.
then, we used to bring VCP and video cassette on rent to see a movie. i heard this first time in this way.

my sanskrit teacher had appreciated my every singing efforts. he was very enthusiastic with my music love. he wished i could take classical vocal training and was keen to arrange such training for me…but before it can happen i left the scene. God placed me in surat, the commercial city. here i never met any person who has as much interest in ohfm (i am not talking about old surat city and it’s natives).

in between many miles the only man who is sticked faithfully and aggressively to OHFM is Jignesh Kotadia. Gaata bhi diwaana Sunta bhi diwaana.

54 Jignesh Kotadia March 30, 2015 at 11:59 pm

every piece here u have mentioned is a beauty ! kya baat hai .. shukriya.

55 Arunkumar Deshmukh March 31, 2015 at 10:08 am

Jignesh ji,

I thought you knew shri Harish Raghuwanshi ji from surat-the well known compiler,author and an authority on Old Hindi Film Music……..

56 Hans March 31, 2015 at 6:56 pm

Dont be so pessimistic. And as Arunji has mentioned you should feel proud that Raghuwanshi ji belongs to Surat. There is always another side to these DJ dancing people. They are those people who freely exhibit their talent. That does not mean they do not know anything about art. If you follow them closely you may find these same people gathered and singing folk songs of the highest quality.

I would not comment on the ‘sachche ka bolbala’ song, because everybody has his special songs which he/she likes over and above many better songs. I am also nostalgic about the twin Lata solos from Baiju Bawra ‘mohe bhool gaye’ and ‘bachpan ki muhabbat ko’ though she has sung hundreds of better songs. So enjoy your song.

You should have followed the advice of your Sanskrit teacher. I know most of the Sanskrit and Drawing teachers were more interested in promoting arts like story and chutkule telling and singing. When we were in school, there was our class fellow who sang (mostly Mukesh songs) songs beautifully and was the darling of the Sanskrit teacher and was in high demand in saturday cultural meetings.

57 jignesh kotadia April 1, 2015 at 12:04 am

I have told in my comment that i am not talking about the old surat city and it’s natives. Passionate ohfm lovers may be there in the core part of city. But surat has been expanded too much beyond it’s original perimeter. I am located at a peripheri from where these kind of people are out my reach. And you should attend our marriage functions to see the dancing baaratis on Dj. 🙂 i m inviting you.

58 M.B.Prakash April 1, 2015 at 2:41 pm

Yes, indeed I do not know how many times i have listened this song from Amar ‘Tere sadke balam” and I have seen this movie innumerable times, I can repeat most of the dialogue of the film. In fact, i translated some part of the movie into my mother tongue Kannada. I bet,you if any body writes the whole movie verbally it is always readable.If the readers have any chance please watch Tarana, Sangdil and finally this movie.The last scene of the movie is heart touching.

59 AK April 1, 2015 at 4:09 pm

No doubt about the song, but I doubt if it could be called a ‘great’ movie. Dilip Kumar’s guilt-ridden soul is very convincing, but Nimmi’s mannerisms before that ‘incident’ appear over the top. And the whole idea of protecting his honour at the cost of besmirching her honour is not very credible.

60 ksbhatia April 1, 2015 at 5:36 pm

AK ji; I will very well go with you . As far as music and songs are concerned they were superb ; but as a movie it was slightly lacking the touch or class stamp of Mehboob . The movie lacked a little bit of the narration factor . Yes with what we read in the news papers [ about the ‘ incidents’ ] now a days , the song ‘Umangon ko sakhi pee ki nagarriya kaise le jaon’ is relevent very much even today.

61 Jignesh Kotadia April 2, 2015 at 9:59 pm

Ksbhatiaji, Akji
I doubt whether ‘Amar’s music can be included in “superb” category or not. Not as superb as Naushad’s other biggies except 3 or 4 remarkable songs like “tere sadke balam”,”umango ko sakhi”,”insaaf ka mandir hai”.. The reason why ‘Amar’s music floated constantly on upper surface of our memories throughout 60 yrs is the 3 big names attached with it : Dilip kumar, Naushad and Mehboob khan. Without these names it could have been gone in dark easily like other unfortunate quality music of that era. Perhaps Amar is not better than some of indistinctly heard quality albums of 1954 like Sardar Malik’s “chor bazar”,, Anilda’s “maan” or Dhaniram’s “dak babu”.
The two lata solos are exceptional. “Tere sadke balam” and “umango ko sakhi”. “Umango ko sakhi” is really all time relevant writing as Bhatiaji mentioned.

Dagar me roop ke lobhi, nagar me man ke maile hai
Yahan paapi najariyo ke hazaaro jaal phaile hai
Bhare bazaar me bali umariya kaise le jaaun..

Mohe duniya se dar laage, yahan lakho hai matwaale
Na jaane koi albela mohe kis rang me rang daale
Rangeelo me bhala kori chunariya kaise le jaaun..
(Wah wah wah … Extremely good)

On Atul’s blog Atulji avoided “pee ki nagariya” possibly becoz of some different meaning !! He instead spelled “PEA ki nagariya”!?! ☺☺ it creates more fun,, sounds like “sakhi, matar khanewalo ki nagri me mung to le jaaun, par lega kaun??” 🙂

62 AK April 2, 2015 at 10:16 pm

Matar khanewle ki nagri is a good one. Coming back to Amar‘s music, you are not mentioning the two other superb Lata songs: Jaanewale se mulaqaat na hone payi and Na milta gham to barbaadi ke afsane kahan jaate. And two more – Na shiqwa hai koi na koi gila hai and Khamosh hai khewanhaar mera naiya meri doobi jaati hai – are also excellent songs. We still have Udi udi chhai ghata jiya lahraaye. I would rate Amar‘s music among Naushad’s memorable ones. I would request you to listen to the songs again, and if you still hold on to your views, we would have to agree to disagree.

63 ksbhatia April 2, 2015 at 11:20 pm

Jignesh kotadia; Thanks for bringing out lyrics of ‘ Umangon ko sakhi ‘ which I think should be eye opener for some of the today’s youth who mindlessly follows the songs whose lyrics are so bad that heads you nowhere . As far as ‘ Amar’ songs ; I think all the songs; as mentioned by AK’ji; were beautifully written as per demand of the situation in the movie. Naushad came up with excellent compositions / orchestration and what a beautiful rendering by Lata’ji and Rafi sahib. A perfect 10 for all of them . Amar is a popular collector’s item and should find a place in every one’s shelf .

64 Jignesh Kotadia April 2, 2015 at 11:39 pm

I mentioned those two lata songs as ‘exceptional’ because perhaps i liked them very much among all the songs. It does not mean other lata solos are not good. I like them all and equally that asha solo ‘ek baat kahu mere piya sun le agar tu’. But as a whole the album doesnt give me that feel of completeness that easily comes from ‘udan khatola’, ‘mela’, ‘anmol ghadi’, ‘ratan’, ‘dulari’, ‘baiju bawra’, ‘mother india’, ‘mughal e azam’,’anokhi ada’, ‘andaaz’. I maybe wrong but thats my scalp my feel.

65 Jignesh Kotadia April 3, 2015 at 12:26 am

Take two albums from 1954. ‘Amar’ and ‘Maan’. Both have excellent lata solos…i know there is no quality difference between their music sides…suppose if ‘maan’ was a poor movie,, ‘amar’ was also not treated enough as you said in #60. Then why Amar’s music survived and ‘maan’s became obscure..can you explain me?? Does collector only chooses popular items ?? Then he isnt a collector,, he is a media follower.

66 Hans April 6, 2015 at 1:34 am

You have flooded Bhatiaji with a number of questions, though he has not contested any of the points you made. Bhatiaji and AK have both only commented on the imperfections in the story and that does not mean the film is bad overall. Indian films have never looked for perfections and lot of formulae have been used. Music is one of those. I also agree with them that there is some defect in narration of the story. As per me the theme of the film was to show the superiority of morality in the battle between law and morality. The problem arose because the film people tried to build a story around the theme (making it look like an artificial story), instead of fitting the theme in some well constructed story.

That was about the story. About the music, it is you who appear to be confused. In comment 61 you said Amar’s music is not better than ‘chor bazar’ ‘maan’ or ‘dak babu’. Then after AK’s comment you praised it a bit and said it does not compare with other Naushad films. Then in 65 you again came back to ‘no quality difference between ‘maan’ and ‘amar”. I agree with you that the phenomenon of remembering films of famous people is a reality. But, there are reasons for them becoming famous. And that fact should not be used as an argument to bring down their achievement.

I will try to answer your questions. Your claim that Amar remained alive in our minds because of the famous people or media is not justified. The only thing which kept its music afloat is its quality. Lovers of its music hardly care for the film’s quality. And media cannot sustain a film for 60 years. Its music is really of high quality. Actually Lata’s fame was built around films like Anarkali, Nagin and Amar where most of the songs were sung by her. Even for Naushad, if we leave Mughal-e-azam alone, she sang best for Shabaab and Amar. In Dulari and Udan Khatola also she had multiple solos, but very few are remembered. So it is not always that big names sustain the fame of music of a film. There have been plenty of examples of music with insignificant names becoming famous. So far as Maan is concerned Anil Biswas is a big name and he has the biggest propaganda machinery of the old MDs. Only RDB has matched (or may be exceeded) him in propaganda. If you want to compare the music of the two films, make a playlist of each and try to listen it in one go. I bet you would not be able to listen 3 songs of Maan in a row. That is the reason Amar survived and Maan did not.

67 Jignesh Kotadia April 7, 2015 at 12:44 am

Thanx very much for your apt reply. I enjoyed and grasped your detailed explanation. I am taking back my statements where i doubted whether Amar included in Superb category or not,, and also that ”it floated with 3 big names”. I uttered that May be because now a days i have been heavily involved in rare gems exploration.
I think there was no confusion in my comments. I told that both films’ music have no quality difference( i still persist on that) and so Amar isnt better than Maan in music section. Remember, i never told that Amar’s music was a weak one, but i felt that it’s not upto Naushad’s other Ace musicals like Ratan, Anmol ghadi, Mela,Baiju bawra etc in which each song is iconic. Maybe here also i m wrong.
But i humbly disagree with your opinion on Maan’s music. I have 7 songs of Maan and all are mellifluous gems heard several times in last year. Not only these but i have countless such rare gems in my collection which i can hear on the trot tirelessly. After repeated hearing of such lost gems i felt that there is no issue with their quality. I got that a song cant survive with its quality factor only. After exploring several almost-dead quality songs on YT music lovers would agree with me on this fact.
Songs of Maan
1. Allah bhi hai mallah bhi hai, kashti hai ke doobi jaati hai – lata
2. Keh do ke muhabbat se na takraye zamana, aasan nahin pyar ke deepak ko bujhana – lata
3. Mere pyar me tujhe kya mila, mere devta mujhe bhul ja – lata
4. Guzra hua ulfat ka zamana yaad karke royenge – lata
5. Phaili hai khabar aaj yeh phoolo ki jabaani, aai hai jawani sakhi aai hai jawani – lata
6. Mai kya karu rukti nahi ashko ki rawani, kab aayenge woh tu hi bata raat suhani – meena kapoor
And above all
7. Dam bhar ka tha daur khushi ka jisko muqaddar loot gaya – mukesh

Anilda had composed a few songs for a Dilipkumar-Madhubala starrer movie launched by the same Tarana team but unfortunately it shelved. Anilda later used them in Maan. Had the music used in the same Dilipkumar movie, it would have been still popular today like Tarana.
There are many factors work apart from quality in the survival and obscurity of a song.
1. Availability
Popular songs or albums have been readily available in a cassette parlour or any collectors shelf. So it passes on gen to gen easily with a good audio quality. Neglected songs or albums never get this privilege and gradually vanish.
2. Affordability of time
It allows a few elite songs to reach at listener’s eardrums despite he has countless songs in his collection. Popular and hyped songs reach first.
3. Affordability of money
It allows a few albums, mostly popular , to reach at the collection of collector.
4. Poor audio quality
Poor audio quality albums dont make a proper impact on ears and become less attended. Later when it uploaded on YT , suffer the same problem.
5. Big names
Maybe not each time but it often affects. If RajKapoor or Mehboob khan making a film, if Dilip or Dev in film.. It will definitely create an excitement to buy the audio.
6. Success of film
This factor esp works where film’s music is below par and music is unable to run on other factors.
7. Supportive songs
Many weaker songs survived with support of mighty co-songs in album.
8. Media, Radio, Tv, Magazines , Newspapers, Reviewers can give boost to music.
And lastly above all
9. Fortune
Every song bears with a Kundali which decides its fate.
Hansji, Akji, Ksbhatiaji
I may be 99% wrong again in my analysis and evaluation but not 100%. 🙂

68 AK April 7, 2015 at 7:59 am

Someone gave me a transcript of Yaksha-Jignesh Samvaad, which he claims he recorded in a sting operation.

Yaksha-Jignesh Samvaad

Yaksha: Stop! I won’t let you take water from this AQUAGUARD RO until you have answered my questions. Here is my first question. Name the leading actors of:
1. Malhaar
2. Hamari Yaad Ayegi
3. Nai Umar Ki Nai Fasal
4. Jai Santoshi Ma
5. Saaranga

Jignesh: Sir, most humbly I would like to submit they were nondescript actors. I obviously don’t know their names, and I believe hardly anyone would know their names.

Yaksha: Young man, I am impressed by your sincerity and honest answer. In that case I should not trip you by asking about the nondescript songs from these movies.

Jignesh: With great respect Sir, you are wrong here. These movies have some all-time great music. Even an average follower of old film songs like me knows their songs and their music directors.

Yaksha: You have me confused young man, because I thought nondescript films with unknown actors under a small banner would have vague music. But let me come to my second question. Tick the correct answer from the following choices. Jahan Ara was a
Golden Jubilee
Diamond Jubilee
Platinum Jubilee

Jignesh: Sir, with due respect, there seems to be some mistake in your question. The answer is none of the above, because the movie was a resounding flop, and it didn’t last even for a week.

Yaksha: In that case, I should not ask anything about its music, which must have been a resounding flop, too.

Jignesh: Sir, Oh no, you can ask me anything about its music, because each of its songs is a masterpiece. It would be highly presumptuous on my part to tell you, who are omniscient, that the quality and success of a music is often independent of the success of its film.

Yaksh: Young man, what you are telling me is so much against the conventional wisdom that I would have to go back and brush up my knowledge. Since you are so knowledgeable you can tell me the great songs of Beimaan composed by Shankar Jaikishan.

Jignesh: Sir, I have to apologise here, because I don’t know any of its songs, nor do I know anyone who ever remembered any of its songs.

Yaksha: Ha ha, here I have caught you. Don’t you know it won the great Filmfare Award over some nondescript music of a vague film called Pakeezah?

Jignesh: I remember everything about that episode, which I dare say was one of the greatest scams in the history of Filmfare Awards. S-J were mighty and moneyed, and they could procure such awards. This was not their only rip-off. They had earlier won over great music of Guide and Mughal-e-Azam with some very average scores. But the verdict in the court of music lovers is unambiguous. You can buy awards, but you cannot buy acclaim. Great music stands by itself, without the crutches of a big banner, big stars, big money. These may help to an extent, but the intrinsic quality of the music has to be good. You have mentioned only a few cases, but if you visit Songs of Yore, which is a blog in the modern era, you would find examples galore of what I am saying.

Yaksha: My head is reeling. In Dwaapar, I could test even Yudhishthir, but in this Era young man, you seem to know much more than me. I bow to you and take your leave. God bless you.

Disclaimer: Jignesh, I can’t vouchsafe for the authenticity of the above conversation. If you say the above is a complete fake, and you do not subscribe to the views that have been put in your mouth in this doctored CD, I would publish your retraction with equal prominence.

69 Jignesh Kotadia April 7, 2015 at 8:07 am

Sorry, i also disagree where u said “in Dulari and Udan khatola she had multiple solos, but very few are remembered”. Both films have wonderful lata solos still fresh and very well remembered. I would pick lata Solos of Dulari and Udan khatola over lata solos of Shabab and Amar.

70 ksbhatia April 7, 2015 at 11:41 pm

Jignesh Kotadia ‘ji ; After going thru all the comments , I really can appreciate that we all are fans of Naushad sahib’s music or any other MDs who have given their best ; irrespective of weather the movie was hit or not . As far as Amar ; as a movie and its music & songs are concerned ; I stand by my views as stated in #60 &63 . I did quote ” Umngon ko sakhi ” song as relevence to what is happening now a days . As a correction factor ; I think the song we all would like to hear is ….” Sunree sakhi mohe sajna bulaiye mohe jana hai pieke nagariya ” .

71 Jignesh Kotadia April 8, 2015 at 1:10 am

Mr. Ak
Songsofyore is a YT based blog, completely depended on YT, and remember YT is one of the MEDIA. Most songs here cited are neither its admin nor its any regular member’s preservations. They are just explorers of those rare quality songs which were almost-dead before 2005. The rare quality songs were preserved carefully like egyptian mummies by a few passionate music lovers in their preservoires and were not in majority music fans’ stocks.
It was the platform of YT through which these songs came out of coffins to compete the already popular reigning songs. ( e.g. OPN’s album “love and murder” was almost dead for 50 yrs despite of having high quality music but now it revived thru YT and shows it presence. How can one say that it survived on its own strength ?? More examples Vinod’s “Wafa”, K.Dutta’s “Daaman”, Manohar’s “Chingari”, B.S.Kalla’s “Do dulhe” and countless more…) Had YT not happen to exist , those obscure quality songs would have never reached to millions music fans. We are now able to hear thosr all precious songs bcz all are available free of cost. MEDIA work in such a way.
Yes, The films you have mentioned remained alive on its music quality. It can happen most times but not every time..above examples are strong proofs.

The issue of Beimaan
Beimaan should have been totally forgotten. But it didnt. It is still a point of our discussion. Why ?? Bcz of that ff award behind it. Beimaan will be explored time to time by next gens(even in 2115 if hindi language stays alive) seeing it in ff award winners list. Definitely they will discard it but atleast once they will listen it and sing “jay bolo beimaan ki”. This is how it’s benefitted by ff booster.

The issue of quality
If,, as you believe,, quality is the sole criterion of survival. Then those two quadrants designed by you..
1. Quality but not popular
2. No Quality but Popular
Should have remained empty forever.

You dont see a quality in “baharo phool barsaao” but it is a throughout popular song till date.without quality how it survived ??

Dear Akji,
I was not to comment any more in this post after yesterday’s comment but you sent me on backfoot and forced me to defend more. I have already took back my poor views abt Amar,, it was a desrespect to the Great Naushad. Sorry to the great soul.

72 AK April 8, 2015 at 5:56 am

All is well that ends well.

73 Jignesh Kotadia April 8, 2015 at 9:00 am

Either i want to argue, to agree , to disagree, to quarrel, to appaud or to opine in ohfmusic.. I have only one way…that is….i will never leave you Mr. yAKsha 🙂

74 Siddharth April 8, 2015 at 9:26 am

Akji, Jigneshji,
Thanks for the entertainment even though it was at the expense of my favourite SJ.
They have been at the receiving end most of the times. Some say they just polished RK tunes, even Awara title song was not appreciated for various reasons. Baharon phool barsao may not fulfill the experts criteria but it still is popular even though there is no PR machinery working for them unlike some of the other MDs.
It is also an art to make a song that reaches millions and make money for the for the people behind it.
I hope SJ are not remembered as ‘Beimaan’ having no ‘Pehchan’.
(I am not a fan of either of these 2 movies.)
Also, why go for filmfare when we have SoY awards.
I am also not leaving Mr. yAKsha 🙂

75 AK April 9, 2015 at 7:15 am

Jignesh, Siddarth,
yAKsha khush hua. 🙂

76 Jignesh Kotadia April 22, 2015 at 1:19 am

Akji, Hansji, KSBhatiaji & co..
You all would be familiar with a name on YT : respected Mr. JITENDER SIWACH , a well known uploader of OHFM.
I have a conversation with him in comment section of the song ” MUHABBAT KA CHHOTA SA EK ASHIYANA” of Kishoreda in “PYAR” 1950, uploaded by himself.

I asked him : I have a debate with my music friends about quality and survival. They say that if a song has quality it will survive solely on its quality and i say that quality may be a big factor but is not a sole criterion of survival of a song. It is affected by many factors. Kishoreda’s this song is a strong example of this. This quality song was almost dead for 50 or 60 yrs until YT and you people have revived it. A REVIVAL IS NOT A PURE SURVIVAL. Now give me my answer ” Is quality a sole criterion of a song’s survival ? Or other factors affect ? ”
Why Rajkumari’s ” Sun bairi balam sach bol ” (baawre nain) survived and other supreme quality song of her from “Bahadur”, “Kagwa re jaa” is gone in dark ?
Take your time and plz explain me.

He replied me after taking his time
Suniye JITENDERji ki hi zabaani

Sorry Jignesh i did not understand your question first but now i can understand. You are asking why some songs are not popular although they were very good. During uploading songs on YT i feel somethings about the quality of the songs. I feel that this song is very good but people are not hearing because this song is not sung by a famous singer. Mera matlab hai ki yahi geet kisi famous gayak ya gayika dwara hota to ye lambe samay tak survive karta. Apki baat bilkul sahi hai ki geet ka survival uske available hone par nirbhar karta hai. Youtube par aane se pahle golden era ke lagbhag sabhi rare geet jyadatar logo ki pahuch se bahar the. Ab agar koi gana logo ki nazar mein hi nahin hoga to wo to survive hi nahin karega. You are right Revival Is Not A Pure Survival. Agar aaj youtube band ho jaye to ye quality song phir se dead ho jayenge.
Aap Rajkumariji ke song ke bare mein kah rahe ho to iska jawab ye hai ki Baawre Nain ka geet aasani se available tha jabki film Bahadur ka naam bhi logo ne nahi suna gana to kahan sunenge, ab yadi koi gana available hi nahin hai to famous kahan se hoga chahe uski quality kitni hi acchi kyun na ho. Ye to youtube ki meharbani hai ki ab ye geet available ho gaye hai. Vaise to bahot kuch logo ki pasand par bhi depend karta hai ab agar koi geet kisi ko pasand hi nahin aayega to geet ki quality kya karegi. Jaise aaj ke geet koi bhi quality na hote hue bhi purane geeton se jyada sune ja rahe hai.

Jitenderji eventually said the same what i tried to say in my comments.
But instead of understanding my point of view with a neutral brain and accepting the true part of my thoughts, you started to deliver some egoistic untidy reactions !! Perhaps it is the age gap that plays a big role here !

Listen this absolute gem and see the comments under it

77 AK April 22, 2015 at 9:52 am

The truth always lies somewhere in the middle. Can we say both sides were right on this point?

78 Jignesh Kotadia April 26, 2015 at 3:27 am

I accept the truth lies more towards your side. And i pray May god keep the truth part closer to your side forever bcz you’re going to be an iconic and inspiring figure for millions of ohfm lovers across the world, within a few years.

79 AK April 26, 2015 at 10:29 am

Of late I am finding many readers, including new visitors to SoY, going so overboard in praising me that I am feeling embarrassed. It is not false modesty when I say SoY’s asset is its readers who are contributing much more than me. And you would have realised I enjoy a lot when readers like you, Mumbaikar8 or Hans criticise me and argue and differ with me.

80 Jignesh Kotadia April 26, 2015 at 10:03 pm

Here is a “Muaavza” for you 🙂 🙂
on 28th death anniversary (26 april 1987) of the legendary SHANKAR

SJ are not only yours but also one of my favourite MDs,, but it doesnt mean that i would clap for their mistimed shots too. I have told somewhere on SoY earlier that this Duo deserved at least 10 ff awards but not for “Beimaan” or “Pehchan”. These films should not be their Pehchaan.

Here’s Shankar’s wonderful song with Lataji from Garam Khoon (1980)

Akji, Arunji
can you ppl plz tell who is lyricist of this song ?
in comment section some say that it is written by SHARDA ! and Myswar mentions a name ‘Singhar’ !

81 Hans April 30, 2015 at 12:02 am

There is a lot of respect for you. Your comment 67 is a proof of your deep thinking. What AK wanted to say is that there is no rule in such things and I also agree with him. There is no relevance of age difference where we are discussing very old songs. There may be a difference when you talk about songs of recent years, just like the 1980 Lata song you just mentioned.

Regarding views of Mr. Siwach, he cannot be the final authority nor any of us are. In the old times there were a number of different ways of remembering songs. Good songs were always remembered. Records were very costly and people purchased them after watching films and they selected songs from the film and then purchased those they liked. People also remembered more songs than nowadays, because then there was no other way of storing songs. People made notes. I and those from my times have filled up notebook after notebook noting lyrics of the songs we listened. Besides that booklets of songs of the films were sold outside cinema halls and on various places like bus stops and railway stations at very cheap rates, as also books of songs of various singers with lyrics.

Mr. Siwach may not know this if he is not from those times. The aim of most of the uploaders is to upload rare songs. It is not necessary that they like all of the songs or listen them again and again. Even we discover rare songs on youtube and then forget them. So dont take anything personally and also try to look at both sides of the coin.

Regarding Garam Khoon song. HFGK credits Singhar as lyricist.

82 Hans April 30, 2015 at 12:21 am

Sidharth (comment 74)
I am with you regarding SJ and also ‘baharo phool barsao’. They have been facing negative publicity ever since they reduced songs for Lata and increased those of Rafi to reach the top. The Lata brigade who had taken them for granted that they would always use her were disappointed and started spreading irrelevant things. Actually, PR machinery is working mostly in favour of Bengali MDs, because they are best at propaganda.

83 Antara June 23, 2015 at 1:37 pm

Hello AK

I enjoyed reading this post through and through. Its got a visual appeal, you can picturise the entire scene. Its more like watching than reading. 🙂

Had been to DLTA so many times, to watch the Davis Cup tournaments. Once we ended up travelling in the same Shatabdi compartment as Leander Paes and Jaideep Mukherji when we were going to watch the Davis Cup in Chandigarh. The official reception for the Davis Cup teams were held in the UT Guest House where we were staying… Hence, for us wide-eyed young tennis fans, this was no less than a boon!

Your article brought back all those memories. Also, the vivid description of Pathak ji with his harmonium is brilliant. Enjoyed the song, the journey and the recollections!

84 AK June 23, 2015 at 3:21 pm

Welcome to SoY and thanks a lot for your appreciation.

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