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The Romantic Gems Of Lata Mangeshkar That You Probably Haven’t Heard



Lataji Mangeshkar

  1. Tumne piya diya piya  sab kuch mujho apni preet dai ke(Uss Paar):  Every  fan of Lataji and Sachin Dev Burman knows Burman dada reserved his best compositions for her. And when they fell out a for a few years he couldn’t sleep or eat properly. Us Paar is one of Sachinda’s best  soundtracks . Lataji had two sparkling solos: Yeh jab se  hui jiya ki chori and Tumne piya. The latter is  filmed on a boat with Moushumi Chatterjee  singing to  Vinod Mehra. The undulating waves , those lovelorn lyrics by Yogesh, the exquisitely laid-out tapestry of beats  and emotions  and above all, Lataji’s voice brimming with sublime passion….this is  as flawness as a musical experience can get.Says Moushumi, “Maze ki baat yeh hai , she sounds like me, how did she  do it?” Humanity has been wondering the same for almost a century.
  2. Chand kyon zard hai(Do Shikari) ): An absolute  gem of  a love ballad from an obscure unseen  Rekha-Vinod  Khanna-Biswajeet starrer  from 1979  in which the  Nightingale is  in peak  form, negotiating  the summits and sighs of Chitragupta’s composition with the precision of a  surgeon’s scalpel  and the spontaneity  of  a monsoon shower. This  masterpiece  on romantic yearnings is written by Dr Rahi Masoom Reza. Composer Chitragupta was very dear  to Lataji. “He was  a prolific super-talented composer. Among his  love songs this one  went unnoticed . A pity  that songs were  often eclipsed  when a movie didn’t run. My other romantic song that Chitraguptaji is known by  is Dil  ka diya jalaa ke gaya yeh kaun meri tanhai mein from Opera House. You  prefer Chand kyon zard hai. I  prefer  Dil  ka diya,” Lataji’s lilting laughter said it all.
  3. Mohabbat Ke Isharon Mein(Dushman  Dost): Even Lataji  didn’t remember this  luminous  latent lyrical masterpiece composed by R D Burman  for a  1980s’ potboiler. When I played it for her she was, for  a change, impressed by her own song. It is a truly  heartbreaking love  ballad, remarkable for the way  it  expands on the theme of heartbreak using Anand Bakshi’s  anguished words to show what a one-way street  love can be  for those who  don’t get  it back. And what words Bakshi wrote for Lataji’s  evocative throat:  milan ki tamanna liye  nazar yun bhatakti rahi  judai ki diwar se  wafa sar patakti rahi…wah!  Incidentally R D Burman  was  agonized by the  obscurity  which this  love ballad  had to face  due to  inept marketing
  4.     Tum agar  roooth na  jao  toh main  ek baat kahun: Film Unknown :  This is an architectural marvel, a monumental ode to love composed  by  the great Jaidev who  composed   such gems for  Lataji as  Allah tero naam(Hum Dono)  and  Tumhe dekhti hoon (Tumhare  Liye).   There  is no detail of the  song anywhere.When  I sent the  number to Lataji she remembered  recording the  song and described   it as  ‘bahot  khubsoorat’ gaana which was  recorded  for a film but got shelved.  It later surfaced  in  another album titled  Jaidev Unheard in another  voice. But the  original version   by Lataji is  a tour de force.
  5.   Ek Sunehri Sham thi(Aao  Pyar Karen):   Not too many female music composers  have risen to make their presence in Bollywood. Usha  Khanna did. And some  of her most  beautiful  love  ballads were sung by the Goddess Of All Melodious  Things. Ek  sunehri sham tthi as written  by the underrated Rajinder Krishen , possesses  a gossamer  delicacy.The notes are woven with the   intricacy  of  Kashmiri embroidery . Said Lataji about the song, “Usha Khanna was very talented. And one of the rare women among composers  in Hindi cinema. She never got her  due. But I remember her songs, Ek sunehri sham conveys the peaceful feeling during an evening  spent with someone very dear.”
  6.    Sooni sooni raahein rahon pe nigahen(Phir Janam Lenge Hum):  Lataji always wondered why this  love  song of birha(separation) did  not get counted among her  best songs.  She loved the  composition and regarded it among Bappi’s best. “It is  very beautifully written and  composed.”  Bappi laments the  song’s lack of popularity.  “It is one of  my favourite  love songs. Mata Saraswati—that’s what  I call Lataji—has sung Gauhar Kanpuri’s lyrics  as if every word shatters her heart.I composed this number in Hindi and Gujarati. I recommend it  as my favourite Valentine song.”
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