14 December 2010

Situational Songs Part 1

This is another fantastic offering by the Sahir Ludhianvi / Madan Mohan team from the film Ghazal, brought to life by the golden voice of Mohammed Rafi. It was picturised on Sunil Dutt, Meena Kumari and Rehman, and when I see the picturisation, it always reminds me of my father who was wont to say that most heroes needed a good whack for gatecrashing the weddings of their ex-lovers. I have to agree. They do do that, and then proceed to sing songs (with the most lachrymose look) that would let any person with the intellect of a comatose gnat  know that there was *something* amiss (a whole lot of somethings! - watch Prithviraj Kapoor at the 3. 25 mark). The heroine proceeds to cry buckets (and yet looks beautiful. I cry and my eye makeup runs in streaks, my nose reddens) yet no one - not the parents, nor the self-satisfied groom kicks the hero out.

I suppose, I wouldn't either. Not when they look so to-tally poetic, so heroic and can sing so well (Rafi's golden notes provide the perfect emotional pitch). And after all, this is a song worth hearing, and I can always allow close my eyes, and allow my imagination to fill in the blanks. 

So, why, I wonder, does this song always move me to tears?

There is a lesser-known Lata Mangeshkar version, which comes first in the movie, I think, though its lyrics are different. It is also, I suppose, the 'happy' version of the song. This is one instance where I infinitely prefer the male version. Rafi's mellifluous voice and the emotion it tries hard to contain actually works in the song's favour, though, as I said before, it is hard not to want to smack Sunil Dutt (or his character, actually). What on earth is the use of putting his beloved (I assume) through this hell, especially when she can't be in throes of bliss anyway (the poor woman is marrying Rehman, for god's sake!)

For those interested, the 'lesser' version (नग़मा-ओ-शेर किसे पेश करूँ) - in my opinion.


  1. "the poor woman is marrying Rehman, for god's sake" Rehman used to be VERY good looking less than a decade before this film! Maybe he and Meena Kumari would help each other out - she'd help him diet and he would help her cut the booze? ;D

  2. He was goodlooking alright, but he always had that smug, stuffed-shirt priggish look that I abhorred. :) I think Meena needed a diet too actually by this time. And definitely not the liquid one she was on. What a crying shame for an actress of her quality!


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