Saturday, May 29, 2010

Rafi in Ten Moods - Part II

tum mujhe yoon bhoola na paaoge
jab kabhi bhi sunoge geet mere
sang sang tum bhi gungunaaoge...

He sang to us. And what an apt song! Rafi sahab, we truly can't ever forget you.

When a fire was ignited in the hearts of Rafi fans all over the blog-world by the creation of Rafi in Ten Moods at dustedoff, everyone was left wanting more of it. And who wouldn't?! I couldn't wait to come up with my top ten. It took a couple of days for me to narrow down the choices. As you can imagine, it was very very very difficult, and I removed and added so many songs back and forth to my list. Still it continually kept changing but I finally decided to finalize it and it's here. Phew!

My top ten favorites in no particular order:

  • Philosophical: aaj puraani raahon se, Aadmi (1968)
    Music Director: Naushad Ali
    Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

    It might be considered a sad song too, but I find it more philosphical, the kind when the search-light turns inwards and self-discovery begins: "jeevan badla duniya badli man ko anokha gyaan milaa... aaj mujhe apne hi dil mein ek nayaa insaan milaa...". My absolute favorite are Rafi sahab's voice that echoes... oh wow!

  • Gloomy/Sad: aye mere dost aye mere humdum, Meherbaan (1967)
    Music Director: Ravi
    Lyrics: Rajinder Krishan

    You can feel it in his voice, the pain, the hurt in his heart. It's about the best relationship in this world - friendship. It is one of those songs that makes me feel extremely emotional listening to it. Three Rs (Rafi & Ravi & Rajinder) give us this heart-wrenching number. I have a feeling these people were angels who just stopped by on this planet for us, to help us appreciate life. Listen to the ending part of the song "aye mere dost aye mere humdum" to see what Rafi has an ability to do.

  • Devotional: insaaf ka mandir hai, Amar (1954)
    Music Director: Naushad Ali
    Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

    There have been quite a few in this category to pick from and I had a hard time deciding on one, but I loved the lyrics and their meaning and raag of this one. It sounds just like a prayer, and I think it is. It tells us, there are no rules, no barriers when you want to pray and it tells about all the other truths about life. "yeh soch le har baat ki daata ko khabar hai... himmat hai to aaja yeh bhalaayi ki dagar hai...". I love both versions of it equally. Wish they were part of the same track.

  • Lovesick: aanchal mein sajaa lena kaliyaan, Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon (1963)
    Music Director: O. P. Nayyar
    Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

    When the singer sings, there isn't supposed to be any major music in the background and then when he stops singing, that's when the music picks up. That is how a song is supposed to be. This is the definition of song. Check it out... Mohd. Rafi sahab at his best romantic self and some awesome tabla playing in the background that don't compromise the beauty of the song just complement it. Sigh!

  • Classical: madhuban mein radhika naache re, Kohinoor (1960) [Raag Hameer]
    Music Director: Naushad Ali
    Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

    The best classical song I've ever heard. Did you actually listen to the aalap and the taan and all other crazy hi-tech stuff he sings in this one? Even if a dancer attempted to dance to this one, it would be so unbelievably difficult. Naushad and Mr. Badayuni along with Rafi sahab are crazy people with crazy amounts of talent. That's all I got to say. I am speechless.

  • Heroic/Royal: hoshiyaar! jaanewaale zara hoshiyaar, Raj Kumar (1964)
    Music Director: Shankar Jaikishen
    Lyrics: Shailendra

    Wow! what a song... when Rafi sahab says "hoshiyaar!" it wakes up every single particle of your body and makes it dance with excitement. This one makes me happy when I'm sad and cheers me up and makes me want to "sang sang gungunaa" like he said to us earlier. It leaves me feeling proud of myself, for many or no reasons. That's the jaadu of Mohd. Rafi.

  • Praise/Taareef: salaam aap ki meethi, Boyfriend (1961)
    Music Director: Shankar Jaikishen
    Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri

    The ultimate taareef song! And of course why not, it's for Madhubala. :) You've got to listen to the words for that though, because if you watch her on screen, you'd probably be rendered speechless. Only Harsat Jaipuri can write words like these and only Rafi sahab can woo his love by singing such a song. Rafi sahab, salaam aap ki meethi aawaaz ko salaam. Some of my most favorite songs are the ones picturized on Shammi Kapoor. Initially, I came up with songs in all these categories that were only Shammi Kapoor songs but I figured I was doing an injustice to Rafi sahab by including duets in there and so gave up on that idea and only concentrated on his solo numbers.

  • Adoring: yeh teri saadgi yeh tera baankpan, Shabnam (1964)
    Music Director: Usha Khanna
    Lyrics: Javed Anwar

    Pay attention to the accordian playing and singing. They don't overlap eachother, they're separated and what a fabulous effect that creates... and the speed of music also slows down with the singer slowing down his singing. What beautiful lyrics and it is such a fun number to watch. I love Mehmood and love the fact that Rafi sahab's voice matches him so perfectly. In fact, he would be one singer who has given voice for practically the widest range of actors without actually changing his singing. And he was one of the few singers who insisted on knowing who he was singing for before he sang. This is what has made each and every song custom designed for the singer he has sung any songs for.

  • Patriotic: jahaan daal daal par, Sikander-E-Azam (1965)
    Music Director: Hansraj Behl
    Lyrics: Rajendar Krishan

    Overflowing with love and respect for Bhaarat, that's what this song is! It's almost like a prayer. I simply love the Sanskrit shlok in the beginning "gururbrahmna gururvishnu...". It makes each and every single hair on my body stand up. Even the chorus sounds and chanting so fascinating and out of this world. And makes me feel so blessed to be able to appreciate being a Bhaaratiya. A song that tells us all about Bhaarat desh.

  • Romantic: door reh kar na karo baat, Amaanat (1977)
    Music Director: Ravi
    Lyrics: Sahir Ludhiyanvi

    If you really want to enjoy this song, don't watch it. Best listen to it and if you can leave your window down/open while listening... and if it's raining out, even better. It transports you to a completely different world... what voice!! OMG, it's mindblowing! I agree, it wouldn't have been possible to do this, if it wasn't for the music or the lyrics. My most favorite line is "zindagi bhar ka hai ab saath, kareeb aa jaao...".

    Video of song from film (missing last stanza):

    Full audio song:

    I feel like singing for Rafi sahab: O door ke musaafir, hum ko bhi saath le le re, hum reh gaye akele... hum reh gaye akele...

    To this, he'd probably sing: so ke bhi jaagte hi rehte hai jaanbaaz suno... meri aawaaz suno pyaar ka raaz suno...

    I could never have just 10 favorite Rafi songs. Here are some more of my favorites of Mohd. Rafi sahab.

    Long live, Rafi sahab! May God bless you, whevever you are.

    Anonymous said...

    Absolutely lovely collection! I actually had never heard that song from Shabnam before, so that was a discovery. :-)

    Thank you so much!

    bollyviewer said...

    Aah the moods of Rafi - as hard to quantify and classify as a "Rafi top ten"! Love your collection. I've never heard Aye mere dost mere humdum before! I wonder if it was the inspiration for the title Mere Humdum Mere Dost.

    Kanan said...

    Madhu, thank you, dear. Isn't that Shabnam number lovely! I really enjoy watching it also.

    I am sure you've listened to this comic numbers that I like a lot yehi hai tamanna.

    Another ghazal for you in case you've missed it, but I doubt that. raaz-e-dil unse chhupaaya na gayaa.

    Btw, have you heard tumhe main agar apna saathi banaa loon? I think it almost falls under the come-hither category from the way it sounds, doesn't it!

    Kanan said...

    Bollyviewer, completely! so hard to pick and choose. Really happy to know you enjoyed my collection. Are you planning to pick your top ten and share with us anytime soon?

    I never thought of the connection between "aye mere humdum" and the film name Mere Humdum Mere Dost, but now that you say it, I think it's very well possible. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. :)

    Anonymous said...

    No, I hadn't heard Tumhe main agar apna saathi banaa loon - unfortunately, I wasn't able to find a video (or even an audio) file of it. Will keep looking.

    Yes, I love both Raaz-e-dil unse chhupaaya na gaya and Yehi hai tamanna (the latter is a favourite song even with my sister and her children, both of whom enjoy the music as well as Dharmendra's absolutely endearing dancing!)

    Pradeep said...

    Loved it and each of the songs mentioned bring in new freshness and tazagi everytime I listen to it. Thanks for this. Truly heavenly.


    Random Musings said...

    Fabulous fabulous! reminded me of the days in India when I used to stay up and listen to 'Chhaya Geet'and 'Aap ki farmayish' :)

    I was humming the Shabnam song, and for some reason was reminded of the gumnaam song, Jaane chaman..

    Rafi with Sharada.. another great number.

    sunheriyaadein said...

    What a fabulous list!!!! Love every song here.
    I hadn't heard Aye mere dost mere humdum before. And for a moment I thought it was from Mere Humdum Mere Dost .
    So good to see so many posts on Rafi saab's moods. I could never be able to single out any one romantic song from his collection and that's the reason I haven't done a post on this yet.

    Kanan said...

    Madhulika, oh you must listen to "tumhe main agar" it is one gorgeous gorgeous song.. youtube does have a blurry sort of version here. The music is to die for.

    Yehi hai tamanna is one of my favorites too along with jaan pehchaan ho mostly for the dancing and then Rafi sahab's singing of course ;)

    Kanan said...

    Pradeep, heavenly is the word. I just can't get enough of Rafi sahab's singing. Thanks. :)

    Btw, I think I have found at least two more Gujarati songs of Rafi sahab. I'll send you the album/film names and other info.

    Kanan said...

    Random Musings, I really wish I got a chance to listen to those programs. I remember listening to a couple of radio programs on Radio Ceylon years ago but the memory is very vague. I would have loved to follow Amin Sayani's programs too. I've only listened to a few of the recordings of his programs.

    Wowie jaane chaman looks nice. First time I'm watching it and listening to it with interest... I wish it was sung by Asha or Lata instead, don't you think? Gumnaam has really nice songs. Gotta watch it one of these days. Thanks for stopping by. :)

    Kanan said...

    Sunheriyaadein, thanks very much :) It's thanks to Rafi sahab really. I used to have this collection of songs I'd never listened to so I had just dumped part of that on my ipod and then it was playing all of these one after the other and I was discovering these gems. Once I start listening to them, I just get hooked so even for me, it was a very pleasant surprise when I first heard "aye mere dost" and it was so heartwrenching... it made me cry listening to it. I've added some of those rare ones on my lyriks blog and more are yet to come.

    As for your favorite songs post, do give it a try, at least to start collecting that way you'd know it's not impossible and we will get yet another fabulous collection to listen to. :) I'd absolutely love to see it, listen to it and enjoy it.