The old hindi film song stands like a monument on the shore weathered by the winds of time and the gentle caresses of the waves, to be admired across generations. And there are many such monuments along an endless musical shoreline built by a legion of architects, engineers and craftsmen who valiantly worked with their age old tools creating priceless works of art each unique in shape, form and style to create a rich heritage of that golden era of the music.
Rattan (Hindi: रतन), released in 1944 was a landmark movie in more than one way. It brought in a new phase of film music where rhythmic beats of Indian folk percussion instruments like Dholak were introduced for the first time. Rattan also catapulted music director Naushad to dizzy heights of fame. In my earlier post on Rattan (1944), I could but just post four of its songs. Here are some of the remaining.
Manju – Angdai Teri Hai Bahana :
Manju – Jhoothe Hain Sab Sapne Suhane :
Amirbai Karnataki – Milke Bichhad Gai Ankhiyan :
Zohrabai Ambalawali – Aai Diwali Aai Diwali :
Zohrabai Ambalawali – Pardesi Balma :
Zohrabai Ambalawali & Karan Dewan – Sawan Ke Badalo :
Gemini Studio of Madras released Chandralekha in 1948. It was the first Tamil movie, in which more than 30 lakhs of rupees were spent and Gemini became the first Indian studio to attempt a nationwide distribution. S S Vasan did the direction, and the music was by S Rajeswara Rao. The production of this movie took a very long time. The film was released in 600 theatres worldwide. The movie is still remembered as a cultural extravaganza for its array of costumes and its famous drum–dance sequence and long sword–fight sequence.
The circus used extensively in the film’s plot became famous as the Gemini Circus and is in existence till today. The movie was a huge success throughout India. This movie was released in Hindi too. It was released in foreign countries with English sub-titles. Presented here are songs from the Hindi version. At the time of the release of this film, Uma Devi (aka Tun Tun) was at the peak of her singing career.
Uma Devi – Maai Re Main To Madhuban Mein :
Uma Devi – Man Bhavan Sawan Aaya :
Uma Devi – O Chand Mere :
Uma Devi – Sajana Re Aaja Re :
Uma Devi & T A Moti – Sanjh Ki Bela :
Zohrabai Ambalawali & T A Moti – Mera Husn Lootne Aaya :
Anmol Ghadi was a 1946 Hindi film directed by the legendary Mehboob Khan, starring Surendra, Suraiya and Noor Jehan. The film, with 12 songs, was a musical hit and is still remembered for its music by Naushad. The film became the highest grossing film at the Indian box office in 1946. Today’s younger generation of movie buffs may not know that Noor Jehan was a huge star as a singer-actress in pre-independence India, until she moved on and settled in Pakistan. She even starred with the then rising star Dilip Kumar in Jugnu (1947).
Noor Jehan – Aaja Meri Mohabbat Ke Sahare :
Noor Jehan & Surendra – Awaj De Kahan Hai :
Noor Jehan – Jawan Hai Mohabbat :
Noor Jehan – Mere Bachpan Ke Saathi :
Suraiya – Socha Tha Kya, Kya Ho Gaya :
Shamshad Begum & Zohrabai Ambalawali – Uran Khatole Pe :
Those were pre-Mangeshkar days of playback singing. Female singers like Parul Ghosh, Khursheed, Rajkumari, Shamshad Begum, Uma Devi (who later became famous as comedienne Tun Tun), Suraiya, Noor Jehan (until she left India and settled in Pakistan), Zohrabai Ambalawali and Amirbai Karnataki ruled the roost. The advent of the Mangeshkar sisters, however, changed the playback singing scenario altogether. Here in this series of brief posts I take up some of these marvellous singers, both male and female, of that bygone era. These are randomly picked songs and are not presented in a particular order.
Amirbai Karnataki – Maar Katari Mar Jana (Shehnai 1943) :
Amirbai Karnataki – Mora Dheere Se Ghoonghat (Bhartruhari 1945) :
Zohrabai Ambalawali – More Saiyanji Ne Bheji (Pahele Aap 1944) :
Zohrabai Ambalawali – Mori Bali Umariya (Nateeja 1948) :