I was thinking of the fifth part as the last part of the series. But interestingly enough, I still have a list of composers. So I can’t call today’s part as the last part. But I’ll wait for a while and think about the next part later.
We are taking an overview of Lata’s journey with lesser known composers. Her career spanning over five decades obviously has a large number of lesser known composers. I’ve covered sixty six composers so far, including today’s part. There are a lot of composers, who worked only for a few films, over the period of few years, disappearing thereafter without any apparent reason. Their films were more or less successful, or some of them were one film wonders. A few of the composers had a promising start, but couldn’t sustain. I think, it won’t be fair to go into the reasons for the failure. It must have been very hard to sustain in an era of increasing competition. So before big banners approach them, they might have gone for any movie, they were offered, unfortunately remaining restricted to B grade or low budget films. Majority of the composers were working as an assistant to a stalwart and continued their independent ventures, while still assisting their mentors.
Without further ado, let’s go to the list of composers. As usual the names are in no particular order and today’s part has a total of twelve composers.
1. Ghulam Mohammad –
I have already written a post on his songs, where I have detailed his career. So I won’t repeat it here. But it was a post based on his rarely heard songs, so my favourites Lata Mangeshkar with him were not covered there.
So let me add the songs here, and I realize, it’s a very difficult task for me. I have always confessed that I’m very bad at shortlisting the songs for any post and many a times end up writing a series of posts than only a single post. But today I’ve chosen just a couple of my favourites,
Mausam Hai Ashiqana – Pakeezah (1972) / Ghulam Mohammad – Kamaal Amrohi
All the solos by Lata Mangeshkar from the movie are masterpieces. Recorded in mid 1960s, the trend of music was drastically changed when the movie was released in 1972. But good music never fails! It was a pity that Ghulam Mohammad couldn’t enjoy the success and popularity of the songs of Pakeezah.
A lady awaits her beloved, misses him badly on a wonderfully enjoyable day.
Shikayat Kya Karoon – Kundan (1955) / Ghulam Mohammad – Shakeel Badayuni
It may not be a well known song, but I like it. Nimmi gets yet another chance to shed tears and make sad faces. The tune is simple, but the pain in Lata’s voice conveys the confusion and helplessness of the character in a brilliant way.
2. Vasant Prabhu –
A well known name in Marathi films, he also composed for Hindi films. He was also a choreographer (a fact which wasn’t known to me till date) and choreographed for a few Marathi films.
He had some memorable and popular film and non film songs by Lata Mangeshkar. ‘शिकलेली बायको’ being my most favourite among the film songs. A number of ‘भावगीते’ composed by Vasant Prabhu, are still popular, with excellent rendition by Lata Mangeshkar.
For Hindi films, however I could find only one movie, Gharbaar (1953) along with a handful of non film songs.
And my choice for today’s post,
Main Nahi Makhan Khayo – Non film Bhajan / Vasant Prabhu – Surdas
I always go in trance, when I listen to it. What a soothing calming song! Lata’s expressions are superb, as if she’s really a small kid talking to her mother. The innocence in her voice feels so true that it feels like a child with a pure heart, singing it.
Maa Ki Mamta Pyar Pita Ka – Ghar Baar (1953) / Vasant Prabhu – Indeevar
A typical Vasant Prabhu composition, I think the people who have heard his Marathi songs would agree with me on this aspect. His tunes used to be sweet and melodious with a touch of his typical style.
A lady has committed herself to her husband, and her dedication is unshakable. Of course Lata Mangeshkar dedicates herself to the song to offer best expressions.
3. Ghanshyam –
Ghanshyam Sukhwal was Madan Mohan’s assistant for around two decades. It’s mentioned that he joined Madan Mohan in 1955, when the former was working for Railway Platform. He independently composed for the film, Kunwara Badan, which features the song, the only song Lata Mangeshkar sang for him.
Apni Khushi Se Apna Dil – Kunwara Badan (1973) / Ghanshyam – Rajendra Krishan
The tune and orchestration reminds us of Madan Mohan. For a person works with him for a long time, the effect is quite obvious. The violin piece in the end of mukhada and the interludes sound similar.
4. Moti Ram –
I could not get much information about him. He has also been mentioned as Pandit Motiram and that he was a classical singer. He composed for just a couple of Hindi films. Lachak (1951) is relatively well known, the other film Imaan was perhaps unreleased, but some sites mention it as a 1951 movie.
As far as today’s topic is concerned, Lata Mangeshkar sang only for Lachak (1951).
So the song to add here is,
Tootate Hi Dil – Lachak (1951) / Moti Ram – Shakeel Badayuni
A soulful song! A heartbroken lady songs with a deep sorrow.
5. Krishna Dayal –
Same is the case here, as it is with Moti Ram. His best known film is, Raj Kapoor, Nimmi starrer, Bawra (1950). His other films are, Lekh (1949), Malika Saloni (1953), Zanjeer (1947), Vijay Garh (1954).
I think, Lekh is also a known film. A duet by Suraiya & Mukesh is very popular.
As far as today’s theme goes, let me put,
Shama Jalti Hai To Parwane Chale Aate Hai – Bawra (1950) / Krishna Dayal – Ghafil Harnalvi
An enjoyable song, maintaining the flavour of the vintage era. The tune is quite catchy.
6. Bhola Shreshtha –
I could not get much information about him either. When I asked Arunkumar Deshmukh ji, he gave me the details. Thanks Arunji for the help.
Bhola Shreshtha was born in Kolkata in 1926. His grandparents actually hailed from Nepal. As a child, he was very fond of playing Tabla. His another hobby was reading books. He came to Mumbai in the early 1940s, with K C Dey and offered Bhola to assist him for the movie, Tamanna. Later Khemchand Prakash got him as assistant and up to the movie Mahal, Bhola assisted him. For the movie, Muqaddar (1950), he arranged for Khemchand Prakash. Later he joined Bulo C Rani as an assistant. His first independent film was Nazariya (1952).
His notable films include,
Aabshar (1953) – with Ghulam Haider & Mohammad Shafi
Naulakha Haar (1953)
Lakhon Mein ek (1955)
Yeh Basti Yeh Log (1960, ? Unreleased)
He had three children, the youngest daughter, Sushma Shreshtha became a popular playback singer and she of course has sung as a child artist too. So the musical legacy continued.
He wasn’t much successful in Hindi films, though his tunes were good and melodious. But luck wasn’t with him. He died of a heart attack in 1971, when Sushma was hardly 11.
Coming to today’s theme, I’ve chosen a couple of songs that I liked.
Mujhko Hai Tujh Se Pyar – Aabshar (1953) / Bhola Shreshtha – Sarshar Sailani
He composed with Master Ghulam Haider for the movie. A cute song, a shy girl puzzled about her beloved. Why does she love him? She thinks over it. Of course she’s not searching for an answer.
Dil Jalega To Zamane Mein Ujala Hoga – Yeh Basti Yeh Log (1960, ? Unreleased) / Bhola Shreshtha – Prem Warbartani
Certainly a good song, can feature on Lata’s best soulful songs. There’s a confusion about the release of the film. While some sites mention it as an unreleased film, a few sites show it as a 1960 movie.
7. Sapan Jagmohan –
Sapan Sengupta and Jagmohan Bakshi (who sang, ‘Dekho Mane Nahi Roothi Haseena’ for S D Burman in Taxi Driver) came together to form a team. They were interested in music and used to sing in chorus, whenever opportunity struck. Jagmohan worked as an assistant to Burman da for some time. They formed a team that had an interesting mixture of Punjabi rhythm (from Jagmohan) and Sweetness of Bengali tunes (from Sapan Sengupta). They indeed started with a Punjabi film, before they got a break in Hindi films. Later they composed for Punjabi, Bengali, and Bhojpuri films too, in addition to Hindi films. Sapan Sengupta was strongly influenced by Pankaj Mullick, who was his idol. Jagmohan also tried as a playback singer in the beginning of his career. Though their career remained restricted to B grade films, they did compose memorable songs. They had their own style and as the years passed by, they gained confidence and composed songs of all genres. The influence of their mentor, R D Burman is also evident in some of their songs. I think, the duo also deserves a dedicated post.
And for today’s theme, Lata Mangeshkar sang for the duo, in Begana (1963), Call Girl (1974), Ganga Dham (1980) etc.
Bulati Hai Bahar – Begana (1963) / Sapan Jagmohan – Shailendra
The duo was fortunate enough to work with Shailendra in their first film. This is a delightful song, full of joy and happiness. The interludes with romantic saxophone and playful accordion make is more enjoyable.
Ulfat Mein Zamane Ki – Call Girl (1974) / Sapan Jagmohan – Naqsh Lyallpuri
Kishore Kumar’s version is more popular and Lata’s version is more or less neglected. I got a good opportunity to present it, which for me equally good. More intense than the male version.
8. Shyamal Mitra –
He was chosen by a number of Bengali film directors, when they thought of directing a Hindi film. Basu Chatterjee, Shakti Samanta, Phani Majumdar were the directors, who offered him films in the late 1970s.
Anand Ashram (1977)
Safed Jhooth (1977)
They all had faith in his abilities to compose for their films, when the films had Bengali background or references. Amanush (1975) should be taken as his most popular Hindi film. He worked as a playback singer and composer in a number of Bengali films, and he was one of the pillars of the Golden era of Bengali films. He sang for his Hindi films too. I mistook his voice for Manna Dey in the credits song of Anand Ashram.
It seems, he was more comfortable with Kishore Kumar and Asha Bhosle, whom he offered the majority of his songs.
Lata Mangeshkar sang just a handful of songs.
Jab Chaho Chali Aaoongi – Anand Ashram (1977) / Shyamal Mitra – Indeevar
Lata Mangeshkar has sung a song picturised on Prema Narayan, whereas the songs for the main lead were offered to other singers. A scenario very rare to observe. But Lata sings even a Nautanki song with equally good expressions.
Hum Gham Se Na Harenge – Mamta (1977) / Shyamal Mitra – Yogesh
A song picturised in a radio recording studio. I wasn’t aware of the song, when I did a post based on such songs. Otherwise the song would have appeared on the list for sure. A song full of optimism and dreams of a bright future. Though can’t be called a great song, you will definitely remember it.
9. Shyam Babu Pathak –
He was a well known composer, who started his career in late thirties. But as happened with a number of composers, his contribution was limited to B or grade action-stunt films.
Born in 1908 in Gwalior, he took music lessons from the age of seven years. With proper training in Indian classical music, he soon became an excellent singer. He was called for musical recitations in Royal Courts across India and he was exposed to the folk music of many states. This enriched his musical senses and soon he joined Hindi films.
His first musical venture, ‘Royal Commander’ was a costume drama and was released in 1938. He went on to compose for 20 odd films, but was typecast for B- C grade movies. He also got opportunities for socials, but wasn’t helpful to shape up his career. In 1949, he composed 4 songs for Dev anand – Suraiya Starrer, Jeet. He shared it with Anil Biswas and today, we remember it for the latter’s songs. In the 1950s, he got very few opportunities, only 2-3 films in that decade. His last film, mehbooba was released in 1965.
I haven’t heard much of his compositions, but for the post, I got to hear his songs from Hamari Duniya (1952) which has a few good songs by Lata Mangeshkar. It seems, it was her only film with Shyam Babu.
Zindagi Usi Ki Jo Zindagi Se Khele – Hamari Duniya (1952) / Shyam Babu – Indeevar
The tune is somewhat similar to ‘For he’s a jolly good fellow’.
Maybe it’s inspired by that time. I haven’t heard much of Shyambabu’s songs. If possible, I’ll write about his career later.
10. Basu – Manohari –
Though a forgotten composer duo, their songs were quite popular in their times. Manohari Singh and Basudev Chakraborty formed a team and worked as a composer, while they continued assisting R D Burman.
Manohari Singh was Nepali by origin and he used to play for a band in Kolkata, when Salil Choudhari spotted him. He invited young Manohari to join Hindi films in Mumbai. He started with Burman da’s ‘Sitaron Se Aage’ as a saxophone player. He was a master at playing saxophone, clarinet, mandolin and western flute. He was with Burman da, and his magical saxophone in the interludes of various songs from Guide (1965) are so popular that we actually hum it along with the songs. He went on to join Pancham da, after Burman da’s death and was with him till Pancham da’s death. And in the late 1970s, he along with Basu Chakraborty composed for a few films. Basu da was also working as an arranger for Pancham da. Both of them formed strong pillars of R D Burman’s musical journey.
Sab Se Bada Rupaiya (1976), Bin Baap Ka Beta (1977), Kanhaiya (1981), Jeena Hai Pyar Mein (1983), Chatpati (1983) etc. Bin Baap Ka Beta is also mentioned as an unreleased film, on a few sites.
To add songs,
An interesting situation! Lata Mangeshkar sang for the duo, just in a couple of films. But as my post is restricted to solos, there’s only one song that qualifies! So here it is!
Ta Na Na Re Tana Tum – Bin Baap Ka Beta (1977) / Basu Manohari – Majrooh
The song has clear imprints of R D Burman, the tune and the arrangement of instruments sounds very similar. And why not? After all, they both used to arrange for R D Burman and were close to him for a long period.
After considering these composers, let’s take a look at playback singers, who also contributed as music directors to the Hindi cinema. In today’s part, I’ll deal with only a couple of playback singers. I’m not sure if any other playback singer composed for Lata Mangeshkar for a Hindi movie.
11. Mukesh –
Mukesh was a renowned playback singer. But he came to Mumbai to be a singer – actor and actually debuted in 1941, in the film, Nirdosh, opposite Nalini Jaywant. The film wasn’t a success. After trying a couple of films, he concentrated on playback singing. Still in 1953, he acted in the film, ‘Mashooqa’ and in 1956, his film ‘Anurag’ was released. In both the films he was a hero. He also produced the film, Malhar (1951) which is still remembered for its melodious songs composed by Roshan.
But interestingly he also composed for the movie, Anurag. I think, he never again tried composing for films. For Anurag, he sang for himself and offered female solos to Lata Mangeshkar.
So the most popular songs from the movie will appear on the list,
Nazar Milake Nazar Churana – Anurag (1956) / Mukesh – Kaif Irfani
Lata has four solos in the film. This one’s the most popular and it’s a nice composition. The other songs from the movie, appear to have an influence of Shankar Jaikishan. At least, I felt so.
12. Manna Dey –
Manna Dey needs no introduction as a playback singer. But in the 1950s, he also composed for Hindi films. In contrast to Mukesh, who composed only for a movie, Manna dey surprisingly composed for a number of films. A few films as a solo composer and a few with associate composers. He composed for social as well as mythological movies. We can’t call him a successful composer, though he was a very successful playback singer.
Starting his playback career in 1942, he also used to assist other composers in the late 1940s. Some of the films are credited to him along with Hari Prasanna Das (H P Das). The films include, Sati Toral (1947), Veerangana (1947) and Hum Bhi Insan Hai (1948). Similarly in the early 1950s, he jointly composed with Khemchand Prakash and the opening credits also mention him as a composer with Khemchand Prakash. These films include, Jan Pehchan (1950), Shri Ganesh Janma (1951) and Tamasha (1952).
In all I was able to find his name as a composer in fifteen films, including the already mentioned six films. His other films include, Chamakee (1952), Shuk Rambha (1953), Naina (1953), Shiv Kanya (1954), Maha Pooja (1954), Jai Mahadev (1955), Gouri Pooja (1956), Nag Champa (1958), and Sonal (1973).
I wonder, why he must have accepted the offers of the mythological films, when his playback was going on. Once you compose for these films, it’s difficult to get offers from big banners. Of course, it could be just for financial reasons. I don’t think, he wanted to establish himself as a composer as well in the Hindi film industry. Once well settled in playback, he has not composed after 1958, till 1973.
And, focusing today’s theme, we have Lata Mangeshkar singing for Manna Dey for six films. She sang for him even in mythological films. If we consider his films, majority are religious or mythological. And though he composed for socials as well, the songs couldn’t attain much popularity.
Let’s go the songs,
Nahin Maloom Kyun Piya – Chamkee (1952) / Manna Dey – Pradeep
Like Mukesh’s song, mentioned above, this song also has SJ like orchestration style. May be the arrangers were the same. The interludes are full of enthusiasm and joy, I felt like listening to ‘Jo Main Janati Unke Liye’. But an enjoyable song. The available song is of average quality.
Main Dekhu Tohe Din Rati – Naina (1953) / Manna Dey – P L Santoshi
A heart warming, soothing devotional song, to end the list. It can be said to be a bhajan. A blind lady praising and worshiping the almighty God. There’s no pessimistic thought or self pity at all.
Mehfil Mein Meri, claims no credit for any image, screenshots or songs 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 shared from YouTube, only for the listening convenience of music lovers. The copyright of these songs rests with the respective owners, producers and music companies.