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The Melancholic Magic Of Mukesh




Mukesh was a singer who never failed his songs. No matter what he  sang he was always a winner with his fans.The Mukesh bhakts loved to hear him sing about the broken heart. Truly, who could equal the plaintive and poignant Sajanwa  bairi ho gaye hamaar(Teesri Kasam),Jaane Kahan Gaye Woh Din(Mera Naam Joker), Chandi ki deewar na todi(Vishwas) and Humne  apna sab kuch khoya(Saraswatichandra).

My favourite  song of heartbreak by Mukesh is  Tum bin jeevan kaise beeta from the film Anita composed by Laxmikant-Pyarelal. Each word of  the melody leaves an everlasting imprint on the heart.

The  song was filmed on Manoj Kumar whose preferred ghost  voices were Mahendra Kapoor and  Mukesh.

Recalling his  long and enormously fruitful association with Mukesh, Manoj Kumar says, “Most of my sad song  were sung by Mukesh. No one could  match him in the  tragic songs.My own favourite is Koi jab tumhara hriday tod de  from Purab Aur Paschim . Ek pyar ka naghma hai from my film Shor is Mukesh’s signature tune. One thing  about Mukesh: his songs  were his only. The songs sung my  Mukesh  could not be sung by  any other  singer.The songs that were composed for Mukesh were  meant only for him.”

Manoj agrees Mukesh  was  unfairly mikecast in  songs of heartbreak. “He sang some really mischievous songs for me in Sanyasi and  Dus Numbri. Those were  big hits too.But somehow he is remembered more by the  sad songs.”

Mukesh  was Raj Kapoor’s permanent ghost voice. When Mukesh died suddenly, Raj Kapoor burst into tears and  exclaimed, :  “I’ve lost my voice.”  No Raj  Kapoor  film was possible without Mukesh’s  singing.

Mukesh first sang for  Raj Kapoor in Neel Kamal and there was no looking back.When  RK turned director with Aag  in 1948 Mukesh  sang the heartwrenching  Zinda hoon iss terah.

Before his sudden death Mukesh sang one of his last songs for Raj Kapoor’s Satyam Shivum SunderamHe  was also supposed  to  sing Woh aurat hai tu mehbooba  for the same film . But with his demise the song was inherited b  his son Nitin Mukesh.

Manoj Kumar planned to record the immortal love duet Zindagi ki na toote ladi in  Kranti with Mukesh and Lataji. With Mukesh’s sudden demise,his son Nitin stepped into the song.Imagine  what  this monumental melody would have meant in Mukesh’s voice!

The last  song that Mukesh sang was for a film titled Chand GrahanTujhko yun dekha  hai composed by the great Jaidev, a composer  for whom  Mukesh sang very few songs.

And then he was gone. We can  only summon the  voice back with one of its most cherished songs: Oh jaane wale ho sake toh laut ke aana.


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