Asha sings for Salil Chowdhary

Today’s post is an attempt to bring together Asha Bhosle’s 87th birthday and Salil Choudhary’s 25th death anniversary (5th September 2020)

A couple of years back, on Asha’s birthday, I published twin posts covering Asha Bhosle’s musical association with Madan Mohan. This year, which has absolutely nothing good to offer, I thought of exploring Asha’s lesser talked about associations. The first composer that came to my mind was Salil Choudhary. I agree, the song list might not have popular or even well known songs. Many of the songs would be lesser known. But there is always a thrill and fun to explore the lesser known things. So here we go………

Their first film together appears to be Amaanat (1955), where Asha Bhosle had four songs to her credit, a couple of solos and duets each. Some of the YouTube videos even mention a 1954 dubbed film, Manohar, where Salil Choudhary composed a couple of songs on his own and one of the songs was sung by Asha Bhosle.
The number of songs is not big, in fact it’s very small. Not something to go for in depth analysis. Still it’s one of the aspects of Asha Bhosle’s career and can be explored. Let’s take a look at the songs. For the first film Amaanat, Asha Bhosle is the main singer. She sings for Chand Usmani. Geeta Dutt sings for Asha Mathur and Kammo. But Asha’s duets are not for the main lead, but one of the songs is picturised on beggars while the other on children. So as I said in the beginning, she could have been chosen for economic reasons.

Meri Wafaye Tumhari Jafayen – Amaanat (1955) / Lyrics – Shailendra
I think it’s a comparatively better known song. Picturised on Chand Usmani, Asha Mathur and Ashim Kumar, it’s a great melody and the first song Asha Bhosle sang for Salil Choudhary. The main attraction for me is the part, हाय रे हाय रे, जान क्यूँ ना जाए रे. It’s totally different than the other parts of the composition. It has a slight western touch to it, the style of singing, I mean.

Jab Tum Ne Mohabbat Chheen Lee – Amaanat (1955) / Lyrics – Shailendra
There are very few sad / emotional songs (maybe just a couple or three) that Asha Bhosle sang for Salil da. This is the best according to me. Excellent use of piano and heart touching rendition by Asha Bhosle.

Similarly in 1956, for Jagte Raho, she sang for the supporting character.

Thandi Thandi Pawan Ki Phuhar – Jagte Raho (1956) / Lyrics – Shailendra
Asha sings for Sumitra Devi, who plays Motilal’s wife. He wants her to sing something jazzy that would raise his spirits. But the poor lady only manages to convey her agony to her husband. The drunkard obviously doesn’t care for her. Asha Bhosle has sung with apt expressions, with a soft and slow rhythm supporting it well.

But in Parivaar, she sang for Sabita Chatterjee, who also received Lata’s playback for the other songs. Asha had a couple of songs, a solo and a duet. Let me present,

Bawali Bana Ke Chhoda – Parivaar (1956) / Lyrics – Shailendra
The film is known for excellent songs. Though Lata’s songs are more popular, Asha’s songs are good too. It’s a soft romantic song with a soothing voice. I hadn’t heard it before, though I was aware of the duet between Asha and Hemant Kumar.

In 1957 as well, she sang for three films, Apradhi Kaun?, Zamana and Ek Gaon Ki Kahani. Asha was mainly offered western style songs, club songs, and other dance numbers. But in Aparadhi Kaun she sang for Mala Sinha as well as the dancer.

Kana Kubda Langda Loola – Ek Gaon Ki Kahani (1957) / Lyrics – Shailendra
It was a pleasant surprise for me. I wasn’t aware of the song. Such a fun it was! I’ve never seen Mala Sinha in such a light mood, and she has done a fantastic job. Look at her energy and expressions. You should watch the video to enjoy the song fully. Please follow the link if the video doesn’t open on the page. Salil da was spot on to offer the song to Asha Bhosle. What great fun and delight! I’m now curious about the film. Let me see if I get time to watch it.

Baat Koi Matlab Ki Hai Zaroor – Apradhi Kaun (1957) / Lyrics – Majrooh
Asha Bhosle sang for the main lead, Mala Sinha as well as the club dancer. A couple of songs are picturised on the dancer. Songs are good, with apt expressions by Asha. But the dancer fails to portray the naughtiness in Asha’s expressions. Her dancing seems good, but acting is average. Both the club songs are otherwise good. Click here for the video of the song.
Koi Dekhe To Kahe Tujhko picturised on Mala Sinha is also good, though not great.

Badal Jaye Duniya – Zamana (1957) / Lyrics – Prem Dhawan
While Asha Bhosle sang dance numbers and romantic songs so far, she was chosen by Salil da for a philosophical song as well. She has excellently maintained the dignity of the song.
She has also sung a beautiful Mujra song for the movie.

In the 1960s again, she was offered mainly the dance numbers, her contribution remaining limited to just four films, with just six songs. But one of the songs has made it to all time superhit.

For the film, Chand Aur Suraj (1965), she has a solo for Tanuja which is counted among the greatest songs by Asha Bhosle. Let’s hear it,

Baag Mein Kali Khili – Chand Aur Suraj (1965) / Lyrics – Shailendra
The song is surely one of her career bests. See how deeply involved Asha is! She is totally into the character. Such a brilliant portrayal of a shy, young girl, who experiences the magic of youth for the first time and is excited about her prince-charming. She wonders about her feelings, how different and exciting they are!
Salil da has arranged the song fantastically, great orchestration in Jazz style. I think guitar plays a major role in the song, in the prelude and the interludes. The overall experience is that of a pleasant cheerful yet dreamy song. I can surely call it my most favourite on today’s list.

Jhoom Le Ae Matwale Dil – Pinjare Ke Panchhi (1966) / Lyrics – Shailendra
A similar Jazz styled orchestration. Saili da uses the chorus that adds a volume to the song. A good composition, but the expressionless face of the main dancer puts me off. Otherwise very energetic and jazzy to listen to.

The film Poonam Ki Raat is remembered mainly for songs by Lata Mangeshkar and Rafi. But Asha has a couple of solos picturised on Bela Bose. Let me select one of the songs,

Ta Deem Tana Deem – Poonam Ki Raat (1965) with Chorus / Lyrics – Shailendra
A good picnic song.Very unusual composition. While the tune sounds Indian, the orchestration and the aalaps sound western. Chorus singers, males and females singing separately in different octaves add another dimension to the song. Asha Bhosle sings it with vibrant energy and Bela Bose carries herself well in western outfit and her facial expressions are good. The overall effect is impressive.
The other song, Bhole Piya Jane Kya Tune Kiya, picturised on Bela Bose is a typical one.

Jadu Dale Hai Kiski Ada – Maaya (1961) with Chorus / Lyrics – Majrooh
Famous dancer, Rani is dancing with others for the film, Maaya. Though it seems she is singing about herself the song actually is about the budding romance between Dev Anand and Mala Sinha. The song isn’t very popular, but it’s good. The tune is good and the rhythm is catchy. It sounds like a fusion of Punjabi folk and qawwali. Asha sings it with usual finesse. The catchy rhythm of the words, ‘मेरा दिल यही कहीं, यही कहीं खो गया’ is captivating. At the end, I remembered the song just for the rhythm of the mentioned sentence and the way it is sung.

Salil Choudhary continued his journey well into the 70s – 80s. He was one of the old world composers who survived well in the modern era. And he not only survived, but managed to deliver hits with consistently good quality tunes. Asha Bhosle, who used to call Salil da, a Chamatkar, was always ready to sing for him. Though only a few songs could achieve popularity, some of the lesser heard ones are good too. I’ve presented some of the songs,

Janeman Janeman Tere Do Nayan – Chhoti Si Baat (1976) with Yesudas / Lyrics – Yogesh
The song needs no introduction. It’s very much popular. For such naughty and bubbly songs, Asha Bhosle was the only option. It gives a marching song effect, it’s very fast paced. Still Asha Bhosle has managed it very well. And the tune is Salil da’s typically sweet one.

Dheere Dheere Haule Se – Minoo with Antara Choudhary (1977) / Lyrics – Yogesh
Salil Choudhary’s daughter Antara made her singing debut with the film Minoo, when she was just seven years old. She has sung very well for her age. Asha Bhosle singing a lullaby with her was a pleasure to listen to. I came across the song for the first time. Asha has really sung songs of all the genres for Salil Choudhary. It’s just a fine lullaby.

Pyar Hai Pyar Aur Kuchh Bhi Nahi – Agni Pariksha (1981) / Lyrics – Yogesh
I heard the song for the first time during the research for the post. It’s a beautiful song, good lyrics and attractive orchestration. If you are really wondering what is love all about?, you should listen to it.

Aisa Lage Koi Door Se – Trishagni (1989) / Lyrics – Yogesh
I’m delightful to find the gem to end today’s list. It’s a complex song, with a different rhythm and a touch of Arabian music to it. It’s a completely mesmerizing rendition by Asha Bhosle. The lyrics are good too, with the use of pure Hindi words. I was put in trans when I heard it. It immediately grows on you. If you haven’t heard it before, please do.

And I finish the post at this point. I hope even if it wasn’t a popular association, I succeeded in highlighting some of their bests. You are welcome to add songs, if I’ve missed your favourites.

Disclaimer –
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.

18 Replies to “Asha sings for Salil Chowdhary”

  1. Some really lovely songs! And I’m so glad you added Ek loola-langda from Ek Gaon ki Kahaani. Mala Sinha’s reaction when she discovers what the ‘loola-langda’ doctor she’s been disparaging actually looks like, is priceless. 😉


  2. Anup ji,

    Congratulations on a special theme well presented. Good selection of songs. You have done full justice to the topic.

    A small factual correction.
    Antara Chowdhury debuted with the Kannada movie CHINNA NINNA MUDDADUVE ( ಚಿನ್ನಾ ನಿನ್ನಾ ಮುದ್ದಾಡುವೆ ). Released in August, 1977, it was remade into MINOO later.

    The original, with an impressive star cast of Vishnuvardhan, Jayanthi , Baby Indira ( a popular child artiste of South India (and Ambareesh did fairly well and it’s songs by Salil Da were hugely popular.

    Jo jo laalee naa haaduve
    Chinna ninna muddaduve..
    Antara with S Janaki.

    Counterpart of the song presented by you. A really beautiful melody. Antara, at that tender age , matches the seasoned veteran Janaki Amma note to note.

    * The song has a brilliant solo version by K J Jesudas.

    Dehake usire sadaa bhaara..
    Antara with SPB.

    Counterpart of Teri galiyon mein hum aaye by Antara and Manna Dey.


    1. Thank you Dr Shetty for the appreciation.
      And thanks for the correction. I wasn’t aware of the Kannada film. I will try to listen to the songs mentioned by you.
      Antara Choudhary really sounded very good at such a tender age.


  3. Anup,
    I have heard only three songs from the above list:
    1. ‘Thadhi tandhi saawan ki phuhar re’
    2. ‘Bagh mein kali khili’
    3. ‘Janeman janeman tere do nayan’

    That is enough indication that Lata Mangeshkar was the female playback singer for Salil Chowdhury. But thanks to your post, now I know this combination had given a good number of songs.


    1. Yes,
      I agree completely,
      Lata Mangeshkar was THE female playback singer for Salil Choudhary.
      But Asha – Salil combo has also given a good number of good songs, if not great.
      I agree the songs are not popular, but popularity is a different matter. Isn’t it?


  4. So many unknown and beautiful songs. Great post.
    And about Antara Chaudhary. Her songs used to come on DD, the non-film ones made for TV. One of them is a favourite- “Maane na maane na bandhan ab mear deewana ye man”. It is fast, catchy and has a great tune. It may be Salil Choudhary’s, I don’t know really. But many of these non-film songs that used to be fillers on TV were composed by him. And these songs especially the chorus one’s were used in school functions. “Woh din hai kitna door” is most notable.


    1. Thanks for the Appreciation Aditiji!
      I don’t know much about Antara Choudhary. But Thanks to you for introducing me to the beautiful song by Antara. I don’t remember listening to these songs on TV.
      Mane Na Mane Na Bandhan is composed by Salil Choudhary

      Who was the composer of the second song? I heard it for the first time, at least it wasn’t much taught in schools in Maharashtra back then. Let me add the song too,

      Looking forward to your comments on Female dance duets in particular.

      what about the post on Poirot’s stories on your blog? You have disappeared completely, do come back soon.



      1. “Woh din hai kitna door” is composed by Salil da. If you remember back then DD used to telecast fillers. They had chorus songs. I guess these were mostly composed by him. And many of them were taught and used in our school functions. I can’t remember the other sings right now though.
        And about the Poirot post. I want to come back. But you know things are little busy till Sep end. The MCA has given relaxations for companies to file old information till Sep end. Besides I am trying to give a new look to my site to make it more fast and attractive. That is a tedious process to since we do everything by ourselves in WordPress.
        But I will come back for sure and when my Poirot post is complete I will inform in advance.


  5. Anupji, A lovely post on the Asha-Salil Da association. Many of the songs were new to me. But the best thing about old songs is that you enjoy them even if you have not heard them because of their profundity and the meaningful lyrics. The song from Jaagte Raho (Thandi Thandi Saawan ki Phuhaar) in particular is lovely; Based on Raag Desh – the same raag on which Vande Mataram is based – it has a lot of depth and shows how great a singer Asha was to carry it off with such ease.

    Jaagte Raho also shows the wide range of songs that Salil Da could compose – the classical Raag based song (above) or the Punjabi folk music based song Main Jhoot Boliya, Koi Na.

    Here let me also add that Salil Da composed the title tracks of many old DD serials ( which are a pleasure to listen to even to this day- be it Mujrim Haazir or Charitraheen and many more. However, not sure if Asha Bhonsle sang any of them.


    1. Thanks Anita ji for the appreciation.
      And, I agree. We can enjoy old songs even if we haven’t heard them before. The tunes are good, lyrics meaningful and great voices! What else do we need?
      I know Salil Choudhary has composed a lot of title tracks for TV serials and the songs within the serials too.
      I’m too not sure if any of those songs are sung by Asha Bhosle. But here’s a song from Charitraheen. I do remember the series though I’ve forgotten the story altogether.

      Salil da composed songs across all genres, even if the songs with Asha Bhosle are just 30, the variety is obvious. Not only compositions based on classical raag, but club songs, and western songs.


  6. Dr. Anup,

    A nice article in celebration of Asha Bhosle’s birthday and a tribute to Salil Chowdhary..
    You have come out with an interesting post, considering the fact that Asha-Salilda combo is not so well-known. ITs too obvious that Lata was always his favorite singer.
    I agree with you that Asha has sung some great numbers for him which have showcased her ever-known versatility and range,
    It is indeed surprising that Salilda offered her only around 30 or songs throughout his career.
    Your list has beautiful songs, some known and unknown.
    I was glad to revisit some songs after a long time, specially the ones from Maya, Agni Pariksha and Trishagni. I had seen these movies a long time back but, somehow, these songs had not registered that time. Maya, of course, has many more well-known and popular songs and for Agni Pariksha, I always remembered the Lata solo – O re man gun gun jhoomke gaa re koi geet .

    And I agree, the Trishagni song is really nice!!

    Here’s one more song from Chand aur Suraj, besides the simply superb all-time favorite one listed by you.
    This is also a nice lavni song, which I had come across while searching for songs on Bombay – Meri aur unki preet purani

    Asha had also sung a song with Sabita Chowdhury and Ghulam Mohammad for Madhumati. However, this song is not in the film
    – Kancha le kanchi lai lajo

    Salil Chowdhary had composed the music for Marathi movie – Sunbai in 1962.
    It had 5 songs and both Lata and Asha have been listed as singers.
    I couldn’t find information as to which song was song by whom.

    One of the last songs by the duo, written by his favorite lyricist Yogesh for an obscure film called Aakhri Badla 1990
    -.Jaane kaisa jaadu ye chal gaya

    A typical Mithun film, long in the making, had some good songs by Lata & Kishore too..


    1. Dr Rajesh,
      Thanks for the appreciation.
      I came across all the songs you mentioned in your comment. But to limit the number, I had to drop the songs.
      I liked the one picturised on dancer, Madhumati. The lawni.
      Here’s a slightly better audio for Kacha Le Kanchi le

      Thanks for visiting and commenting. I knew it isn’t a popular combination and very few known songs will be there.



  7. Anup ji,
    Sorry for the late arrival.
    Congratulations for the post on Asha Bhose on her 87th Birthday. Though belated, let me join you in paying my tributes to her on the occasion. Loved the selection of songs too. If my count is correct you have posted 13 solos and 2 duets. And 5 more songs from Hindi films and some from TV serials too have appeared in the comments section.

    As far as I know Asha Bhosle has rendered 33 songs in 30 Hindi films for Salil Chowdhury. She rendered a Basic Song in Hindi composed by Salil Choudhury.

    For the Records, out of these 33 songs 27 songs were solos, 3 Male-Female duets ( 1 with Yesudas and 2 with Manna Dey), 2 Female-female duets ( one each with Usha Mangeshkar and Antara Chowdhury respectively) and one triad with Sabita Banerjee and Ghulam Mohammad). She also rendered 5 songs for 4 Bengali films, and a song for a Marathi film and 2 songs for a Gujarati film. That makes it 42 songs all together. Besides she also rendered two Bengali Basic Songs penned by Salil Chowdhury and composed by Hridaynath Mangeshkar.

    Posting the Hindi NFS rendered by Asha Bhosle

    There is also Malayalam and Bengali version of the song.


    1. Venkataramanji,
      Thanks for the appreciation.
      And thanks for updating the records. I could find only 30 songs, but you are always perfect with the stats. So I take it as the last word.
      It was comparatively easier to choose from such a less number of songs.
      I was aware of Bengali and Marathi songs, but I didn’t know about Gujarati songs.
      Thanks for adding a wonderful song by the duo.

      P S-
      The second part of female dance duets is published today. I hope you’ll like it.



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