Himesh Reshammiya has this uncanny knack of delivering hits and remaining in the news at all times. His ‘Naiyyo Lagda Dil’ from Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan is already the most-celebrated number from the film that has a record number of music directors. Simultaneously, his Bad Boy hero, Namashi Chakraborty, informed me that he was present one afternoon when Rajkumar Santoshi had a sitting with the composer. All the four tunes were finalized that very same day within hours, says an awe-struck Namashi.
Trivia Tunes: Legendary composers and their Fast & Furious ways of delivering content
Speaking of speed, when I met composer Ilayaraja when he was recording a Hindi song at Yash Raj Studios a decade back, the unassuming legend informed me without the slightest arrogance that he has often finalized the entire score – six songs or more! – of a film one day after getting the brief for the situations. Obviously, the songs were all of different genres.
Amar Haldipur was similarly impressed by composer Laxmikant (of Laxmikant-Pyarelal) who would spin totally diverse compositions for the same situation (and sometimes lyrics) within minutes of either contemplation or scanning the written words. This was done if a filmmaker did not much care for the tune provided. Said Amar, who was a musician with the duo, “I have seen only other composer who was able to do this—Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan! And each tune was perfectly apt for the mood and situation!”
As Anand Bakshi would often say, “If I take a bath in 20 minutes and you need only five minutes, it does not necessarily mean that I have bathed better! Speed and quality have nothing to do with each other!”
Ajay Devgn recently recounted how much he missed the lyricist. He said, “Bakshi-saab had the perfect knack of understanding a song. I did Hindustan Ki Kasam, Dil Kya Kare and Raju Chacha with him and he was brilliant!” What’s more, besides these three home productions, Anand Bakshi also wrote excellent lyrics for Ajay’s outside films Bedardi, Kachche Dhaage, Zakhm and some more.
At the recent event to announce the facilitation of royalties to singers, the Indian Singers’ Rights Association (ISRA) revealed the reason why, unlike in countries where singers also got their dues, in India, this did not happen. There was this absurd theory that a singer was merely “A vocal instrument, like a violin or a tabla!” Said Anup Jalota, “In that case, if a singer was not needed at all, they could have got ‘Baharon phool barsao’ (Suraj) sung by, say, a driver! And any of Lata (Mangeshkar)-bai’s songs by someone untrained too, like a maid!”
At the event, it was great to see the late Mohammed Rafi’s son, Shahid Rafi, sharing cordial moments with Shabbir Kumar and Udit Narayan—two distinct voices that have followed in the Rafi school. Shabbir was an orchestra singer specializing and excelling in Mohammed Rafi hits before he found anchor in cinema after Rafi’s exit. Due to the similarity in tenor and the resultant songs he got to sing, he was labeled as a Rafi clone. Udit, on the other hand, had a distinct and different voice, and has always maintained that he emulated the great singer in his way of pitching his voice, and the clean, wholesome and soft way of singing.
Also Read: Trivia Tunes: From Sahir Ludhianvi’s lyrics over whisky to Lata Mangeshkar’s lost gem
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