The third consecutive day of songs in this series.
I have been giving you Raaga Based Songs of the Day (eg, ‘Raaga Based Song Of The Day #81‘) for the last nearly three months now. Many of you, who know your music well, have many a times pointed out that a particular song, though ostensibly close to one raaga has traces of other raagas or has deviated substantially from the chosen raaga. I have readily admitted that, pointing out that it is not the job of the film songs composers to stick to the purity of any raaga. Their job is to produce tunes that would be popular and would tug at the emotions of the listeners.
With that in mind, I started a new series two days ago to give you songs that tug at your emotions even when they are not based on any raagas.
These are the songs that stay in the creases of your mind long after you last heard them, somewhat like the strains of the song of The Solitary Reaper by William Wordsworth.
I also feel that these are the songs that make you wonder whether the lyrics influenced you more or the composition or is it the composition that made you look at the beauty of the lyrics?
The first of these was put together by lyricist Shailendra and composer Salil Chowdhury and singer Talat Mahmood for the 1957 Dulal Guha movie Ek Gaon Ki Kahani starring Talat Mahmood, Mala Sinha and Abhi Bhattacharya: Raat ne kyaa kyaa khwaab dikhaaye (‘Songs That Tug At Your Emotions – Song #1‘).
Our last one, that is the second one was put together by lyricist Prem Dhawan, composer Salil Chowdhury and singer Manna Dey for the 1961 Bimal Roy production and Hemen Gupta directed movie Kabuliwala starring Balraj Sahni in the title role: Aye mere pyaare watan, aye mere bichhade chaman, tujhpe dil qurbaan (‘Songs That Tug At Your Emotions – Song #2‘).
Today’s song is another special one.
At the height of Amitabh Bachchan’s popularity, he was covered by Time magazine in a feature, the crux of which was that the Big B was an industry by himself. However, one artiste who actually fitted the description of an industry was not AB but Kishore Kumar. Look at his versatility: he was a playback singer, actor, lyricist, composer, music director, screen and story writer, producer and director, all rolled into one.
Let’s just look at his singing and musical acumen. On one hand he sang comical songs such as those of Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi (Paanch rupaiya barha aana, for example). On the other hand, he sang for Vinod Khanna (whose first birth anniversary after we lost him on 27th of April this year), the Mere Apne song, a serious song: Koi hota jisako apna, ham apna keh lete yaaro.
When it came to producing and directing, Kishore Kumar opted for making movies like Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein and Door Ka Rahi that satisfied his inner urge rather than with an eye on commercial success.
Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein was released in 1964 and starred his son Amit Kumar and Supriya Choudhury together with Kishore da himself. The movie’s story was based on American film The Proud Rebel, of 1958. Kishore da played Shankar, a retired army man, who returned home to find his family had died in a fire leaving his son Ramu who had become a mute since the fire. Shankar faced intense difficulties in trying to seek treatment for his son as also to lead a normal life. That included personal assault on him, something that I too faced, even when I had not yet retired.
The movie did poorly at box office, which was the fate of almost all movies that tried to get out of the mould of ‘formula films’. Shailendra’s Teesri Kasam is a fine illustrative example.
The movie’s songs, however, became very popular. There were eight penned by Shailendra and composed by Kishore da himself. These included Jin raaton ki bhor nahin, Koi lauta de mere beete huye din, and Rahi tu mat ruk jaana.
The last one, sung by Hemant Kumar, is how I would like to remember Kishore Kumar, a Rahi in search of a Utopian world.
None of these songs, however, became as popular as the only one in the movie penned by Kishore Kumar. It was sung by him on his own composition, in a movie that was written, produced and directed by him, and that starred he and his son Amit Kumar.
You have to admit that the song stays with you long after you have finished listening to it and hence it eminently meets the requirements of the present series.
Please enjoy: Aa chal ke tujhe main le ke chalun….
आ चल के तुझे, मैं ले के चलूं
इक ऐसे गगन के तले
जहाँ ग़म भी न हो, आँसू भी न हो
बस प्यार ही प्यार पले
इक ऐसे गगन के तले
सूरज की पहली किरण से, आशा का सवेरा जागे (२)
चंदा की किरण से धुल कर, घनघोर अंधेरा भागे (२)
कभी धूप खिले कभी छाँव मिले
लम्बी सी डगर न खले
जहाँ ग़म भी नो हो, आँसू भी न हो …
जहाँ दूर नज़र दौड़ आए, आज़ाद गगन लहराए
जहाँ रंग बिरंगे पंछी, आशा का संदेसा लाएं (२)
सपनो मे पली हँसती हो कली
जहाँ शाम सुहानी ढले
जहाँ ग़म भी न हो, आँसू भी न हो …
आ चल के तुझे मैं ले के चलूं …
As motivational songs go, this song is in a class by itself. Despite all the difficulties faced by Kishore Kumar he still dreams of a Utopian world. The first part of the video where his son chooses a flute over a toy-gun is also very symbolic. This is one of the few songs that I know of wherein no matter what mood you are in, you feel like singing along, somewhat similar to Neil Diamond’s Song Sung Blue.
I hope you enjoyed it too.
Please await tomorrow’s song.
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