In this part of the series, let’s have a look at Burman Da’s career in 60s.
Burman da had overtired himself during 1960, eight of his films were released. Apna Haath Jagannath & Miya Biwi Razi were not hits, But a couple of songs from both the films were popular. For ‘Miya Biwi Razi’, Suman Kalyanpur was given a chance for two solos. ‘Chhodo Chhodo Mori Baiyan’ was popular and was indeed a difficult song. If you listen carefully, you can make out the twists and turns, not easy eh!
In 1960 itself, he wasn’t physically well, he suffered heart attack and needed rest. He was approaching sixty. During that period, R D Burman was also struggling for a good opportunity. Mehmood approached Burman da for the film, Chhote Nawab. He declined the offer & recommended R D’s name. A new era was about to begin, a composer, who later attained legendary status. R D also wanted Lata Mangeshkar to sing for him & Burman da himself approached Lata for the same. She was ready & the first song ‘Ghar Aaja Ghir Aaye’ was recorded in her heavenly voice. It also helped them to clear their differences. He went to Soviet Russia in 1961, as a member of Indian delegation.
He even gave opportunity to his assistant, Jaidev for Navketan’s next venture, ‘Hum Dono’. He had full faith in Jaidev & he was right. The songs from Hum Dono were major hits of that year. But none of Burman da’s films released in the year 1961.
In the year 1962, Three of his films were released, but none of those was a musical blockbuster. Actually Baat Ek Raat Ki & Dr Vidya had very good songs. It is always said that Lata Mangeshkar reunited with Burman Da for the movie, Bandini. But Dr Vidya was released in 1962 & Bandini in 1963. It’s possible that the later took time to complete and meanwhile, Dr Vidya was released.
Baat Ek Raat Ki was a suspense thriller, but in spite of spectacular success of both the versions of ‘Na Tum Humein Jano’, the film was not a commercial success. In this film again, Hemant Kumar sang for Dev Anand, but it was to be the last time. The other songs were sung by Rafi & Asha Bhosle. But for the female version of ‘Na Tum Humein Jano’, he approached Suman Kalyanpur & a memorable song was added to her song list. In future as well, he called for Suman for a few songs.
The songs of Dr Vidya were also successful, it’s mainly remembered for ‘Pawan Deewani’ & ‘Khanake Kangana’. The same year, he composed for Kishore Kumar starrer Naughty Boy, but the songs were average. In 1962, he visited Finland as a jury for International Youth Music Festival.
The year 1963, was a year of success. Burman da’s favourite film director, Bimal Roy again signed him, for Bandini. The film needed a different kind of music. Gulzar, at the age of 26, also debuted as a lyricist, with the song, ‘Mora Gora Ang Laile’. Burman da wanted a lyricist with bengali touch, and Gulzar was full of it. He wrote the song, as per the situation’s demand. The other songs were written by Shailendra. Lata was now again available for Burman da and Asha Bhosle again was the choice for ‘other’ songs. Still, he offered her a song, that was completely different from her usual style. She sang it with great perfection and the song further boosted her career. It proved that, she can very well sing the serious and philosophical songs too!
For ‘Meri Surat Teri Aankhen’, Burman da again chose Shailendra. The songs were wonderful, Especially Manna dey’s ‘Puchho Na Kaise Maine’ & Rafi’s ‘Nache Man Mora‘ were a rage. All were nearly certain of best singer award for Manna Dey. But to everyone’s disappointment, he didn’t get the award. Nevertheless, the song has achieved an iconic status and that’s well enough an award itself! I’m very fond of ‘Tere Bin Soone’, ‘Tere Khayalon Mein’ & ‘Yeh Kisne Geet Chheda‘ as well! Though the songs were superb, the acclaim wasn’t that great! I don’t know why this happened to someone like Burman da. Even after, delivering great melodies over the years, he didn’t get his due, in my opinion! It brings a feeling of being hurt.
The same year, Tere Ghar Ke Samne was released, that had altogether different mood from the above two serious kind of films. A cute love story it was, with an excellent song every few minutes. The full album was hit. Rafi’s solos achieved iconic status, so did the duets.Different and a bit advanced picturization of the title song, for that period, made it more enjoyable visually.
In 1964, Bimal Roy again engaged him for composing songs for his muslim social, Benzir. He wasn’t the director himself, but he insisted on Burman da. The responsibility of writing songs was handed over to Shakeel Badayuni, as he was an expert in these genre of films. Here again, in spite of some good songs, the film wasn’t commercially successful. The song, I like the most, ‘Alvida Jane Wafa’, wasn’t even a part of the film. Other songs, ‘Mil Ja Mil Ja’ & ‘Husna Ki bahaern Liye’ were very good. Though, Burman da wasn’t considered a good choice for muslim socials, he had a deep knowledge of various traditional & folk songs of the genre and he did his job well.
For Pramod Chakravorty’s film, Ziddi, he had a great team of singers and offered some of his best songs. Lata Mangeshkar & Rafi had wonderful solos, and the duets were given to Asha Bhosle. For Mehmood, Burman da was now very comfortable with Manna Dey. His past experience with Manna Dey, for a funny song for Mehmood was very satisfying. He composed the song in ‘Darbari Kanda’ and the film is actually more remembered for Manna dey’s songs.
‘Kaise Kahoon‘ was a story of a singer & Rafi was his choice for all the songs. The film had very good songs, but again it was not a commercially successful film. For the song ‘Manmohan Man Mein’, Burman da received Swami Haridas Award. He also received, Award from सूर सिंगार संसद for best incorporation of classical music to Hindi film.
This year he also faced major health issues, he got operated for cataract and suffered heart attack. During this phase, Guru Dutt, who had signed him for ‘Baharen Phir Bhi Aayengi’ broke his alliance and offered the film to O P Nayyar. He wasn’t in a mood to wait for his favourite composer. Burman da was very hurt by this incidence. He even told Dev Anand, who had just began working on Guide, to replace him. But Dev Anand stood by him and wished him speedy recovery. He was not ready to replace Burman da at any cost. Such supporters boosted Burman da’s confidence. He took rest for some months to rejoin the film industry. Now he had only one project, Guide!
The movie Guide could be a post in itself!! It has a number of told or untold stories and trivia. Each of its song has a story & we tend to believe those stories, because the songs are very close to our heart. But I won’t go into a details. Shailendra penned the lyrics, Burman da had no songs by Kishore Kumar for Dev anand for a long time. He got a duet recorded for Guide, It’s possible that he chose Kishore Kumar, because at that time, Lata wasn’t recording songs with Rafi. Both had excellent solos in Guide. The duet resumed KK’s playback for Dev Anand. Burman da continued the same thread & made him sing a few songs for ‘Teen Deviyan’ too! But Rafi had two soulful songs, ‘Kahin Bekhayal Hokar’ & ‘Aise To Na Dekho’ (which for me are the best songs from the album!), whereas Kishore Kumar had his usual peppy, fast tracks (Three duets & a solo). The songs are still popular, especially, ‘Khwab Ho Tum Ya’ is till date ‘a must song’ for a piano song list, or Kishore Kumar’s best songs list. He received award for best music direction from Bengal Film Journalists Association, for Teen Deviyan in 1965. He received the same award, the following year, 1966, for Guide too. This time, it was a double delight, the award was for music direction & playback singing for the song ‘Wahan Kaun Hai Tera’.
An interesting thing about Guide song! (Enthusiasm got better of myself and some stories made their way to the write up) Burman da was told about the back to back songs situation, where Rosy had now no faith in Raju & it was to be shown in a dance song. It was immediately be followed by a song with deep anguish by Raju. Burman da composed ‘Mose Chhal Kiye Jaye’ in Raag Jhinjhoti, but he was confused about the other song. The back to back songs should also have separate existence, yet the song should also match each other. He composed the song in same Raag, the tune is also the same. But the tempo is different. It was such a brilliant idea! If we listen to two songs separately, we can’t identify them having the same tune. A Master stroke by Burman da!
It was a big disappointment to the entire team of Guide, not to get best music director award. Burman da was hurt, but he continued to work as usual. He was already 60, his opponents were much younger than him. But he remained young at heart, even in 1970s.
No films were released in 1966. He was busy working for Navketan’s next venture, Jewel Thief. It was a prestigious project for him. He again proved himself, the songs declared his evergreen youth! There were rumours already about the songs being originally set by R D Burman and Burman da was just for name sake. But he used to ignore such scarp. The interesting thing about the movie, is that it worked as a catalyst to reunite the separated voices of Lata & Rafi. He recorded their duet ‘Dil Pukare Aare Aare‘ and was said to be their first duet after resolving the conflict.
The film had a number of great songs. But now, Lata was his main singer and Asha bhosle was again placed on second position, singing the songs for supporting characters, dance numbers etc.He should have balanced the thing, because Asha must have got hurt by this attitude. Coming back to the topic, he offered Asha, one of her best song,and it was not a routine song, it needed a different kind of singing. The song was picturised on Tanuja and was a major attraction! Similarly, he was to compose a song for the climax and he used around 60-70 musicians for it. He was well known for using a small orchestra. But if the situation demanded, he never compromised with the final result! The song was a smash hit. The other songs, ‘Yeh Dil Na Hota Bechara‘ & ‘Aasman Ke Neeche’ were also popular.
He also released Bengali songs for Durga Pooja, in 1965 & 1967. A couple of songs each year. In 1968, he had no releases in Hindi films. But he recorded a number of songs in Bengali. This time, none other than, Meera Burman penned the songs for him. She was well aware of his qualities and his style of singing. So in a way, she complimented him. Then onwards, till 1973, she consistently had her songs , sung by Burman da for Durga Pooja.
Due to the gap of one year, and his age approaching 65, rumours again spread about his ill health, about he now being too old to compose songs, no creativity left etc! As usual Burman da took these thing with a pinch of salt. No one knew what was about to come next.
The year 1969, brought a turning point in the careers of three celebrities. Burman da himself proved everyone wrong & presented Aradhana. The music & the
film were blockbusters. The film was a milestone in Rajesh Khanna’s career & reintroduced Kishore Kumar as a playback singer with a punch. KK was anyway facing a bad time as an actor and it was a boon for him as a singer. Rajesh Khanna became a superstar, his fading career got a tremendous boost. Indirectly Burman da was responsible for the magic. For the film, the lyrics were penned by Anand Bakshi, who was working for the first time with Burman da. The film started their successful association, that continued till his last release,Tyaag in 1977.
The solos by Kishore Kumar and the duet ‘Kora Kagaz Tha Yeh Man’ were superhits of the year. His own song ‘Kahe Ko Roye’ also saw heights of popularity.
Now everyone wanted Kishore Kumar to sing for them. He suddenly became a go to singer, Burman da himself started engaging him for the songs. He later had his playback even for Dilip Kumar (in Sagina).
There were rumours and still some people believe about the R D Burman’s contribution to the tunes of Aradhana. But now, after clarification from the musicians, it’s clear that Burman da himself set the tunes and recorded them too! (Ref: Burman da’s biography by H Q Choudhary)
The same year, he had two more releases, Jyoti (starring Sanjeev Kumar & Nivedita) which wasn’t much talked about and had no memorable songs expect for a couple of good songs. O P Ralhan’s much hyped Talash, was also released that year and had nothing good, except Burman da’s excellent songs. Right from ‘Tere Naina Talash Karen’ to ‘Kar Le Pyar Kar Le’ the songs were good. Lata’s two excellent solos, ‘Kitni Akeli Kitani Tanha si’ & ‘Khayi Hai Re Hum Ne Qasam‘ with the sweet duet ‘Palkon Ke Peeche se’ were supremely melodious. But the film was a disastrous at the Box office. In all, the year made him a busy composer again. Of course now, he was not going to sign numerous films. He chose to work as his health and age permitted. But he was young at heart and even later, he composed ‘young’ generations music too! He was awarded पद्मश्री in 1969 and also received National Award for best singer for ‘Kahe Ko Roye’.
After a phenomenal year, Burman da was all set to begin a new innings. The year 1970 opened with the film, ‘Prem Pujari’. The directorial debut of Dev Anand was a big box office failure. But the film opened a door for lyricist Neeraj. Burman da gave approval to his lyrics after he satisfactorily penned a song for the movie. Burman da narrated the situation and the tune to him and he wrote a perfect song. He later wrote for Burman da in a good number of films. He penned all the songs of Prem Pujari and were hugely popular. Especially, Kishore’s solo ‘Phoolon Ke Rang Se’ picturised on a train abroad was an attraction for the viewers. It had long opening lines and it’s a perfect example of romantic song of remembrance.
Even after success of Aradhana, Burman da offered the songs of ‘Ishq Par Zor Nahi’ to Rafi. Again this highlights he did not depend on a certain singer. He followed his gut. The one that suits the song the best. Lata was offered four solos and a duet with Rafi. Wasn’t a great success, but for the song, ‘Yeh Dil Deewana Hai’ was a hit. In 1970, he again received Bengal Film Journalists Association’s Award for best music for the film, Aradhana.
Let’s move on to the song list. This time too, the list has twenty songs. For a few movies, I was inclined to choose a couple of songs to give full justice to the singers and the composer as well! So again, the list has lengthened. Here we go in chronological order……….
- Na Tum Humein Jano – Baat Ek Raat Ki (1962) Hemant Kumar & Suman Kalyanpur / Lyrics – Majrooh
Perhaps it’s better known as a Hemant Kumar solo, rather than a duet. This is his last song for Dev Anand. Again hats off to Burman da for choosing Hemant Kumar, for rather a serious situation in the movie. Dev Anand plays a lawyer who’s trying to make Waheeda Rehman remember her past memories.
- Pawan Diwani Na Mane – Dr Vidya (1962) Lata Mangeshkar / Lyrics – Majrooh
It was a remake of his Bengali song, now tuned as a dance number. Burman da’s classical based songs are a bit difficult, you can’t easily understand the beauty of it. Vaijayanti Mala’s excellent dance makes it a visual feast too.
- Sa Sa Sa Sa Re – Naughty Boy (1962) Asha Bhosle & Kishore Kumar / Lyrics – Shailendra
The film has no memorable songs, yet this sargam based song is remembered for its funny situation and picturisation. Kishore Kumar teasing Kalpana in front of her uncle (Mamaji), and she alerts him to be aware of him and leave her alone. A fun to watch definitely.
- Puchho Na Kaise Maine – Meri Surat Teri Aankhen (1963) Manna Dey / Lyrics – Shailendra
For such hard core classical songs, Manna Dey was his choice. It is said that the song was recorded in a single take and everyone acclaimed it. Unfortunately Manna Dey couldn’t get best singer award for it. Dismay expressed in his rendition is heart touching. Definitely one of his best songs.
- Dil Ka Bhanwar Kare Pukar – Tere Ghar Ke Samne (1963) Rafi / Lyrics – Hasrat Jaipuri
A romantic song from the movie, picturised inside Qutub Minar. But for me, it looks like a set. But the concept of picturising it on such a staircase like structure is amazing. Director, Vijay Anand also appears in a cameo. The interlude music on Santoor is one of my favourites. It was very difficult to choose only a song from the movie. I was torn between this one and ‘Tu Kahan Ye Bata’, the latter lost.
- Ab Ke Baras Bhej Bhaiya Ko – Bandini (1963) Asha Bhosle / Lyrics – Shailendra
A heart touching poem, woven in a sweet, soft, soothing melody. It represents the emotions of all the women, in the jail, including Kalyani (Nutan). Though Lata was again singing for Burman da, at least in this film, Asha Bhosle was offered meaningful songs. It was a pleasant surprise for all to hear Asha’s touching rendition.
- Jogi Jab Se Tu Aaya – Bandini (1963) Lata Mangeshkar / Lyrics – Shailendra
I always feel that Lata has sung the song in typical Asha Bhosle style. Burman da was used to Asha’s voice for nearly five years and may be that left an influence on him. So he made her sing like Asha Bhosle. Let’s see how many of you agree with me! An excellent composition, describing emotions of a young lady experiencing love for the first time. She always remains lost in his thoughts, and imagines colorful changes in surroundings.
- Manmohan Man Mein Ho – Kaise Kahoon (1964) Rafi, Suman Kalyanpur & S D Batish / Lyrics – Shakeel Badayuni
The song was offered to Sumanji, may be because Lata was not singing with him. But she proved herself in this difficult classical song as well. A riyaz is going on in the song. The song also won few awards as well.
- Pyar Ki Aag Mein Tan Badan – Ziddi (1964) Manna Dey / Lyrics – Hasrat Jaipuri
After the success of Hato Kahe Ko Jhooti Banao from Manzil, Burman da again called Manna Dey for this song, picturised on Mehmood. It’s framed in Raag Darbari Kanada, not used commonly for funny songs. But the song was such a rage that even today the film is remembered for the song.
- Dil Mein Ek Jaane Tamanna Ne – Benazir (1964) Rafi / Lyrics – Shakeel Badayuni
It’s perhaps the only Muslim social, he composed for. In spite of offering wonderful Lata solos with Meena Kumari and Tanuja as leading cast, it was a failure at the box office. The only solo Rafi sings for the film. A sweet romantic song, Shashi Kapoor lip syncs to.
- Aaj Phir Jeene Ki Tamanna Hai – Guide (1965) Lata Mangeshkar / Lyrics – Shailendra
A different experiment, where the song started with Antara, and mukhda followed later. Rosy (Waheeda Rehman) finally decides to set herself free of all the restrictions. She has now nothing to lose. So two oppugnant emotions spring in her mind. Burman da captured the exact mood in his composition, that easily mixed the conflicts. Befitting picturisation was Vijay Anand’s forte, that he highlighted in the song.
- Tere Mere Sapne Ab Ek Rang Hai – Guide (1965) Rafi / Lyrics – Shailendra
This is my the favourite from the movie. I like everything from the tune, the picturisation, Rafi’s auspices voice, to the amazing chemistry of the couple. The interludes of the song were set by Burman da himself, Manohari Singh, and R D, respectively. The song has three stanzas. This information fits perfectly at least for the father son duo if we listen carefully the style of tune.
- Likha Hai Teri Aankhon Mein – Teen Deviyan (1965) Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar / Lyrics – Majrooh
A cute romantic song. Nanda and Dev Anand enjoying each others company. The song also supports Dev anand’s character in the film. थोड़ा सा हसीनों का सहारा ले के चलना, हैं मेरी आदत रोज़ाना
- Hothon Pe Aisi Baat – Jewel Thief (1967) Lata Mangeshkar, Bhupendra & Chorus / Lyrics – Majrooh
One of the best climax songs, Hindi films ever had! For the grand song, Burman da arranged a sizable orchestra of around 70 musicians. He used Bangla Dhol, Brahmadeshi Dhol, and Tabla Tarang, along with other instruments. He fused Tibetan folk music as well to get the exact impact. It was a beginning for young Bhupendra Singh, who sang just a couple of words for Dev Anand. The song leaves a dramatic impact on the listeners even without the video. The song aptly portrays Vaijayanti Mala’s excellence in dancing.
- Raat Akeli Hai – Jewel Thief (1967) Asha Bhosle / Lyrics – Majrooh
Tanuja tries to seduce Dev Anand by singing sensuous song. Burman da appropriately offered the song to Asha Bhosle and she made it an epitome of seduction. The song opens with a soft whisper, at a very low pitch and suddenly becomes a shriek at the end of the sentence. The orchestration adds to the sensuous romantic feel. Tanuja without any vulgar expressions, at times looking very innocent, carries the song perfectly well.
- Roop Tera Mastana – Aradhana (1969) Kishore Kumar / Lyrics – Anand Bakshi
A very bold song for the era. Drenched romance was shown symbolically before, But this background song portrays sexual tension like never before. It was picturised in a single shot. Burman da used the orchestration very cleverly, to impart the romance in the air.
- Palkon Ke Peechhe Se – Talash (1969) Lata Mangeshkar & Rafi / Lyrics – Majrooh
A eternally romantic song, with typical Burman da style orchestration. Picturised in green valleys, beautiful flowers and snowy mountains, it’s a visual treat. Talash had some very good songs, and the choice was very difficult task.
18. Soch Ke Yeh Gagan Jhoome – Jyoti (1969) Lata Mangeshkar & Manna Dey / Lyrics – Anand Bakshi
This is a hidden gem (It’s quite well known now) from an obscure film. The film is not much talked about. The song is a simplified version of one of Burman da’s Bengali songs. The optimism in the song is quite impressive.
- Mehboob Teri Tasveer Kis Tarah – Ishq Par Zor Nahin (1970) Rafi / Lyrics – Anand Bakshi
A romantic song, that you may not like at all, at first. Day by day, you understand the creative inputs of the composer and it turns your favourite. It grows on you. The rhythm of the song is quite different, you couldn’t guess it easily and hum it. I think ‘Teri Bindiya Re’ from Abhimaan is a simplified version of this song.
- Rangeela Re Tere Rang Mein – Prem Pujari (1970) Lata Mangeshkar / Lyrics – Neeraj
This was the first song, that Neeraj wrote for the film, based on the situation and the tune given by Burman da. The latter was much impressed by the song and the rest is history. An emotionally hurt, drunk woman sings for her failed love.
Mehfil Mein Meri, claims no credit for any image posted on this site. Images on this blog are posted to make the text interesting. The images and screenshots are the copyright of their original owners. The song links are from YouTube and have been used here only for the music lovers. The copyright of these songs rests with the respective owners, producers and music companies.