Swaranjali: A musical tribute
A recent programme held at IIC was an effort to bring alive the rich musical legacy of Indian cinema of yesteryears
Where have all the Grandee lyricists gone? They may not be around physically but what about their compositions? They too seem to be rolling off the memory disc. Old is real gold, is what Dr Charu Kapoor, a professor of Physics at Delhi University, also keen music lover, feels with a bit of distress and dismay. In the bygone decades of 1950s, ‘60s, and ‘70s, there were films whose memory is even today conjured by their songs where the rhythmic synergy of words and music created an everlasting imprint.
A Visharad in vocal music and with a learning association with Daagar Bandhu and Savita Devi, Dr Kapoor has decided to put her music at the service of the rich musical heritage of Indian cinema. In January this year, she did a programme at the India International Centre on the ‘Legacy of Nautch Girls in Indian Cinema’ with renditions of choicest tawaif numbers such as Chhun chhun ghungharwa from Mahal (1949), Sakhiya aaj mujhe neend nahin (Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, 1962), Thaade rahiyo (Pakeezah, 1972) and a host of others.
Earlier, she did a programme on ‘51 years of Indian cinema’ with songs like Aah ko chahiye (Mirza Ghalib, 1954) to Nayi nayi ye baatein (Parineeta, 2005)
This time at the CD Deshmukh Auditorium, India International Centre, on September 3, she paid a mellifluous tribute to three legendary lyricists of Indian cinema — Shakeel Badayuni, Sahir Ludhianvi, and Rajendra Krishan each of whom were masters of their genre, inimitable wordsmiths who teamed up with iconic music directors of yesteryears like Naushad, Madan Mohan, Hemant Kumar and many others of the ilk.
They weaved the magic of words with resonating music to produce timeless gems like Afsaana likh rahee hoon (Shakeel-Naushad, Dard, 1947), Na milta gham to barbaadi ke afsane kahan jaate (Shakeel-Naushad, Amar, 1954), Tadbeer se bigdee hui taqdeer bana lae (Sahir-SD Burman, Baazi, 1951), Jurme ulfat pae log (Sahir-Roshan, Taj Mahal, 1964), Yun hasarton kae daag (Rajendra Krishan- Madan Mohan, Adalat, 1958), Woh chup rahen toh mere dil kae daag jalte hain (Rajendra Krishan-Madan Mohan, Jahanara, 1964).
These songs and many others of this genre were included in the presentation. These songs are timeless due to their meaningful lyrics and soulful music portraying a range of human emotions — from joy and ecstasy to distress and pathos. The music was peppered with biographical tit-bits of these lyricists that made the audience connect even better. All in all, it was an effort worth complimenting, to bring alive the rich musical legacy of Indian cinema of yesteryears.
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