Raja Presents...Songs that lift up your mood

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Shalini
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Raja Presents...Songs that lift up your mood

Postby Shalini » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:38 am

A Geetmala has to come from the heart and the heart knows no schedule or roster. So please excuse me.

I have enjoyed everybody’s Geetmala so far – they have all been outstanding. For a geetmala of my own, various themes crossed my mind – nothing stuck. For one big reason.

I have a bit of a mental block at the moment, in terms of creativity. I do not know if anybody has noticed it here but in the last few weeks I have not exactly been very active or creative.

Much of it has to do with a lot of work pressure – I will not go into details. That is the reason I excused myself from presenting this weekend’s Geetmala. My mind has just not been “right”.

Finally today I decided to brush those cobwebs away. Brooding never helped anybody. Coming from work today, I decided that I am happiest when I don’t worry. I know this sounds obvious and an odd statement but some of you probably understand what I mean.

“Get on with it !” I hear some of you say. “This guy never comes straight to the point – I wonder whether he travels from Amsterdam to Dusseldorf via Munich”. :grin:

Well, I’ve never tried that route yet – maybe I will one day. In keeping with my style. :grin:

No, the reason why I have this whole, long prologue is that this is the background – and the theme of my Geetmala. Uplifting songs.

The last few days – when I have been feeling low – I have been listening to some songs / watching some videos on youtube. People behave differently when they feel low. Some take to drink, some listen to soothing music, some read, some eat a lot, some smoke. Some exercise. I do none of these things.

Instead (since following Indian cricket fortunes is no guarantee for improving one's mood :grin: ), I tend to just listen to some music. In the past, I would just listen to the music but now that video is available, I enjoy watching the video on youtube. Songs that lift my mood.

Now, there are many, many such songs. Here, in this version of Geetmala, I am going to select just a few. I plan to have more Geetmala editions on just this theme – there are many songs which deserve mention and should find their way in future editions.

My apologies to Mark, Loop and others who do not follow or know Hindi songs – this list contains only Hindi songs. Even for those who know Hindi, some songs here may be new, though I have tried to cover different generations. But the bottom line is that I have not tried here to present songs that others may know or like – just songs that I like to listen to when I want to pep up my mood a bit.

Note that these are not necessarily my favourite songs. Sure I like all of them but the important thing is that, for me, the picturisation, voice, lyrics and music together make a potent combination to pep me up.

I just realized – as I was shortlisting songs – that most of them (in fact, almost all) are outdoor songs. This is totally by chance – but just shows that nature, the outdoors, tends to have a fantastic uplifting effect. Makes me also realize that I do not spend as much time outdoors as I should. This summer…. :grin:

Most of these songs are catchy – if not, at the very least, they linger. Who can claim that “Tu is tarah” (any of its three versions) does not linger on the mind, well after it has finished playing. Or, for that matter, “Aaj mausam bada be-imaan hai”.

The picturisation in some songs seems silly – which, for me, may actually be a good thing. When one wants to be pepped up, one is not looking for conformity of any sort. One is just looking for some, often, old-fashioned fun. Some charm - difficult to describe what “charm” exactly means. Each person has his own definition of it, I suppose. For me, “Pankh hoti to ud aati re” fits right in this category as does “Badey miya deewaane”.

In my selection, I have covered every decade – from the 1950s to 1990s. Sorry, this millennium has completely passed me by so far. I can count on my fingers the number of songs I know of this entire decade.

Note that in my selection, I have not picked any religious or patriotic songs (except possibly for “Aa ab laut chalen” which does have a patriotic flavour) though there are many that pep me up. Each of the songs I have picked has something about it – a “movement” about it (now that is difficult to describe) that makes it lift you. Anyway, I think religious and patriotic songs may make their way in future editions, I give them the miss here.


So here goes…my first edition of Geetmala.

I start with the 1950s…paying homage to that most wonderful of music directors, O P Nayyar Saab. He had no formal background in music but has left us with some of the most lilting songs of all-time. From his vast treasure of songs, I pick just one for this edition – future editions will surely have more.

Ude Jab Jab Zulfen Teri – Naya Daur (1957)
Punjabi folk, OP Nayyar tune to Sahir Ludhianvi’s lyrics, Vyjantimala and Dilip Kumar in a village dance scene...it does not get much better than this.

BR Chopra’s totally unexpected super-hit film, this is just one of a whole lot of very, very good songs in the film.



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Akhiyan Bhool Gayi Hain Sona – Goonj Uthi Shehnai (1959)
Starring Rajendra Kumar and Ameeta, this is a Vasant Desai classic. I cannot help feel he is one of the most under-rated music directors of Hindi cinema. This movie – and Do Aankhen Barah Haath – should be enough to shut up any critic.

This film has many good songs – I like all of them, Some are, predictably, based on the shehnai.
This particular song is very catchy, excellently picturised….gives you a typical village feeling of the 1950s. I love the lyrics of Bharat Vyas too. Very earthy.

(I do not expect many of you to have heard this – but listen to it…once, twice…watch the video…and I think you will see what I mean. The beauty of music in the 1950s was that the music director could achieve so much with the most basic of instruments and with virtually no technology / computers / mixing).



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Aa Ab Laut Chalein – Jis Desh Mein Ganga Behti Hai (1960) (Raj Kapoor, Padmini).
Composed by Shankar Jaikishen, this is the only Mukesh song in this edition. I find this song uplifting (lines like “apna ghar phir apna ghar hai” have got to be – typical Shailendra stuff).



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Main Chali Main Chali – Professor (1962) (Shammi Kapoor, Kalpana Kartik)
The other MCMC song from Padosan is also very breezy, definitely excellent material, but has to give way in this edition to this MCMC.
I just love this song. Shankar Jaikishen again, this time with Hasrat Jaipuri. (You cannot have one song of Shailendra’s without Hasrat immediately coming up with one of his own). Its picturisation has to be among the most uplifting ever (I am sorry to keep using this word “uplifting” but I cannot think of another word – and anyway this is THE theme of my Geetmala).

In my effort to “spread” the Geetmala across generations, across heroes and heroines, I am allowing only this one song to Shammi Kapoor here. If I had not imposed this restriction on myself, Shammi could well have had the entire Geetmala to himself. His walk, his dancing, Rafi’s voice for him and the lilting music that invariably supported his songs all combine to make a very potent uplift brew. Just look at approx 2.25 here. But Shammi saab, aaj ki mulaqat bas itni. More in next.



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Pankh Hoti To Ud Aati Re – Sehra (1963).
Directed by the legendary V. Shantaram, this movie had his love Sandhya in the lead. This song, Lata in flow, has always impressed me, way before I saw the picturisation.

Hasrat continues, this time teaming up with Ramlal (Ramlal who ?). Yes, Ramlal was hardly a known music director – and, looking at this composition – and work in movies like Geet Gaaya Pattharone (another Shantaram movie) and his support shehnai work for Ustad Bismillah Khan in Goonj Uthi Shehnai, I wonder why he did not get more chances. Sehra has other fantastic songs (“Tum ko pyar ho sajni” and “Taqdeer ka fasaana”) but Ramlal never made it.

For me, he will forever be associated with Sehra.

Seen with current-day eyes, this song has got to have one of the most ridiculous picturisations on any heroine. (I cannot imagine a current-day heroine acting this out). But what is ridiculous and what is charming is in the eyes of the beholder. I consider this song and its picturisation very charming. Can’t put a finger on it but it just holds me. Maybe it is the energy that Sandhya shows. It has just got to get to you. She “lives” the song.



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Bade Miya Deewaane – Shagird (1967)
Laxmikant-Pyarelal enter my edition with one of the most “fun” songs of its time. I consider this uplifting if only because it is such fun. Joy Mukherjee trying to teach IS Johar the tricks of the trade, namely, what it takes to attract the opposite sex. Very funny, well picturised. Nice to see a bit of Saira Banu at the end – I used to like her a lot.

The lyrics are by Majrooh Sultanpuri. Now, Majrooh had a wide range – from serious writing (“aa ri aa ja, nindiya tu le chal kahin”) to comedy. Here his rollicking, witty stuff cannot but make put a smile on even the most depressed person.



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Arre O Goriya Kahan Tera Des Re – Caravan (1971)
Where LP enter, can RD be far behind ? Majrooh again.
That I allow Caravan only one song here is purely because of edition rules. Otherwise, almost every song of Caravan could belong here (“Chadhti jawaani”, “kitna pyara vaada hai”, “daiya re”). Which also makes Caravan one of the most uplifting movies itself. A total timepass movie – which I have seen many times – and will never tire of seeing. This song, sung by members of a caravan as they travel from Bombay to Bangalore to put up shows, is one from my early days and even today I love listening to this song.

Sorry, cannot get the film video but here is the song nevertheless.



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Aaj Mausam Bada Be-Imaan Hai – Loafer (1973)
I had another Jeetendra movie in mind as my next song but, sticking to rules, I am giving this slot to Dharmendra - considered by many as the most handsome hero ever in the Hindi film industry (Vinod Khanna fans may not agree). It is said that when Dharam played the villain in Aayee Milan Ki Bela and was “defeated” by Rajendra Kumar, the hero, many did not like this ending. To many, Dharam was way too handsome to lose the heroine (Saira Banu) to Rajendra Kumar. :grin:

Anyway, this is not about film stories but about songs. This song is definitely one that lingers. And lingers.

Another Laxmi-Pyare special – and with Anand Bakshi’s lyrics this time - this is a song that I can keep listening to. I know I can say this to all my songs here but this is one that certainly does not need any video at all. Rafi saab. Enough said.



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Aji thehro, zara dekho – Parvarish (1977)
This is a double-treat, in fact, a quadruple treat – where you have Amitabh Bachchan, Vinod Khanna, Shabana Azmi and Neetu Singh. In another edition, I will throw in the entertaining AmarAkbarAnthony song but in this edition I want to pay tribute to one of the funniest “theme” songs I have heard. For anybody who understands Hindi, don't miss this.

The music is by Laxmi-Pyare (yes, again). And this time Majrooh even excels himself by coming up with some really excellent, situational fun lyrics. Combined with the picturisation, they are hilarious. What is that word I am looking for ? Uplifting ? Very.



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Ek Raasta Hai Zindagi – Kaala Patthar (1979)
Rajesh Roshan also now makes it to my list – with this excellent composition. This was my favourite song at one time - and even today, I love listening to this. Shashi Kapoor gets in too, as a result of this song. Although it is strongly Kishore, don’t miss the Lata impact in the song.
I will also remember this song for Sahir saab. He died in 1980 – I remember his death and remember this song being played a lot at that time. Ek Raasta Hai Zindagi, Jo Tham Gaye To Kuchh Nahin. RIP, Sahir saab, you are definitely one of my favourite lyricists.

Apologies if the video is not of particularly good quality.



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Tu Is Tarah Se – Aap To Aise Na The (1980)
This is my entry for the 80s. Not really into the 80s but this will have to do for this edition. There are definitely more songs of the 80s but they will figure in future editions.

This song lingers. And lingers. And lingers.

There are three different versions of this song – one by Rafi, one by Hemlata, one by Manhar Udhas. All of them are very good. Though I probably marginally prefer Rafi’s version, I am putting up Manhar’s here (the picturisation is better, IMO. Basically, I don't want to see Deepak Parashar's wooden face :grin: ).

Oh, by the way, here is where Usha Khanna comes in. Very pleasant composition.

And yes, lyrics in this song are great too. Thank you, Nida Fazli saab.



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Chura Ke Dil Mera – Main Khiladi Tu Anari (1994)
Ok, the brickbats can start now :behindsofa: but I promised to cover the 1990s too and this is my first entry for this decade.

I actually happen to like this song. A lot. It is sung by Alka Yagnik and Kumar Sanu and is very catchy. I like Akshay Kumar and Shilpa Shetty here. The song is written by Rani Malik and composed by Anu Malik. It has his stamp all over it.



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Na Kajre Ki Dhaar – Mohra (1994)
That I have picked this song over the other, way more popular song (“tu cheez badi hai mast”) is a tribute to this song. I love that song too and it will definitely figure in my next edition. But for now, “na kajre” must be included – if only because whenever I listen to this song, I just close my eyes and let it sink it. This one lingers too. The picturisation could have been better – there is probably only so much you can do with Sunil Shetty :grin: but I just love the song.

Viju Shah’s music set to lyrics by Pankaj Udhas. In fact Udhas has even sung the song, together with Sadhna Sargam.



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That’s it then, folks. It has been a long Geetmala – probably longer than normal. But I just wanted to let my thoughts flow – and not be curtailed by limitations of space or time.

Hope you liked this edition. I have tried to spread it across generations and even across actors. Music directors and lyricists did repeat a bit but I did want to get this set in.

As I wrap up this edition, I find some notable exceptions. Rajesh Khanna, Dev Anand, Nutan, Kalyanji Anandji, S D Burman, Naushad...

Looking at these names, I already know some songs of these famous personalities. So I already have plenty of material for my next edition on the same subject – and all of these will most likely figure.

Thanks a lot for your time. I hope you have the interest and patience to go through the whole presentation.

For the record, I took the help of the following site to get info on some of the lyricists (I knew the MDs top of head). I thought it only fair to give it a mention.

http://www.earthmusic.net/

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Re: Raja Presents...Songs that lift up your mood

Postby Ankur » Wed Mar 10, 2010 6:16 pm

Some good ones here.

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Re: Raja Presents...Songs that lift up your mood

Postby Alishabc » Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:25 pm

really nice collection