Remembering Kishore Kumar On His 13th Death Anniversary
Just look, by contrast, at the clutch of songs that papa S D Burman devised for Kishore — with no such spool-tape facility. SUCH captive songs hugged to the heart by a whole earlier generation as Kusoor aap ka huzoor aap ka (from AVM’s Bahar: 1951); Kachchee pakkee sadkon pe meree tumtum (from Pyar); Ae […]
Just look, by contrast, at the clutch of songs that papa S D Burman devised for Kishore — with no such spool-tape facility.
SUCH captive songs hugged to the heart by a whole earlier generation as Kusoor aap ka huzoor aap ka (from AVM’s Bahar: 1951); Kachchee pakkee sadkon pe meree tumtum (from Pyar); Ae meree topee palat ke aa (from Funtoosh); Mere labon pe dekhon aaj bhee tarane hain (from Navketan’s Baazi: 1951); Chahe koi khush ho chahe gaaliyaan hazaar de/Mastram ban ke zindagee ke din guzaar de (from Taxi Driver); Maana janaab ne pukaraa naheen (from Paying Guest); Ek ladkee bheegee bhaagee see (from Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi); Dho le too aaj apne dil ke sab daag dho le (from Apna Haath Jagannath); and Pahli na doosree teesree pasand hai shaadee ka kar lo intezaar (from Madhbhare Nain).
What a shame the present generation cannot get a genuine first-hand feel of the above renditions by Kishore Kumar for S D Burman at a time when that composer alone — aside from C Ramchandra — fully believed in this singer!
No doubt, the above were songs done by S D Burman in times when it was technologically not possible to send any sort of tape to Kishore.
Yet those were more leisurely times, when SD could take Kishore to his Sion home — for this singer-actor to get the ‘histrionic’ flavour of the song before recording it.
But, once it was feasible for S D Burman to send across that tape from his aptly named The Jet bungalow, in the Linking Road sector of Bandra West, Bombay, the creative collaboration of Dada and Kishore became even more hummable.
JUST think of the very special vibrance that Kishore now brought to Dada Burman numbers like Yeh dil na hota bechara (the Jewel Thief solo rejected by Guru Dutt as the theme-tune of Baharen Phir Bhi Aayengi, before replacing S D Burman with O P Nayyar as the music director of that film); Phoolon ke rang se (from Prem Pujari); Duniya o duniya tera jawaab naheen (from Naya Zamana); Dil aaj shaair
hai (from Gambler); and O meree o meree o meree (Sharmilee).
Kishore Kumar, by this 1971 stage, suddenly, was so far ahead that even a brave rearguard effort by Mohammed Rafi to catch up with this neo numero uno succeeded only up to a point.
MIND you, Rafi loyalists never gave up on him; but Kishore votaries were among the young — and this was the age-group that made and unmade films by the seventies!
Kishore Kumar’s strength lay in the fact that he had, all along, been the voice of the evergreen Dev Anand (Teree duniya mein jeene se, in House No 44).
And, once Kishore Kumar emerged as the voice of Rajesh Khanna (the megastar who broke the stranglehold of two generations of heroes), there was no holding this singing star-turned-pure playback.
In fact, Kishore Kumar, as the new singing sensation, was witness to S D Burman peaking, afresh, even as son R D Burman, at last, discovered his own composing identity — at the turn of the seventies.
That Kishore held the vocal scale masterfully even, between father and son, is a performing measure of the man, whose vocals endure 13 years after he breathed his sonorous last — on October 13, 1987.
It is easy enough to demonstrate Kishore Kumar’s virtuosity — it will be argued — seeking the aid of S D Burman, on the one baton-hand, and R D Burman, on the other.
FAIR enough, so next time out, let us a attempt a piece on Kishore Kumar that will conceptualise only those songs of this actor-singer (or singer-actor) that he put over for music directors other than the Burmans!
Like, for instance, not Eena meena deeka from Aasha, but Haal tujhe apnee duniya ka nazar to aata hoga, from the same 1957 film, for the same C Ramchandra.
You will then be amazed at the range of Kishore’s repertoire — outside the euphonious fold of the Burmans.
But that is a theme song for another Kishore birthday.
A theme by which we examine, for instance, where possibly Kishore could have gone vocally wrong, in a rendition making such compulsive hearing as Savere ka sooraj tumhare liye hai (from Ek Baar Muskura Do), for O P Nayyar to have charged this singer with having “ruined my song”!