Kal Koi Mujhko Yaad Kare
Kyun Koi Mujhko Yaad Kare
Mazroof Zamana Mere liye
Kyun Waqt Apna Barbaad Kare…
I have written about him before – my favourite songs from his films, his best roles (in my opinion); his heroines and the different ways in which he romanced them; about his never-say-die spirit… he’s even made quite a few appearances in many of my song lists. Then, as I was looking through my lists, I came across this: ‘Dev Anand inebriated songs’. (I swear that was the title of that list!)
After a minute’s hesitation, I thought, why not? After all, they were songs I liked very much, and the list came about when I was researching Main Nashe Mein Hoon and discovered a wealth of songs where Dev Anand was either drunk or pretend drunk, or, at least, holding a glass… What better way to raise a metaphorical toast to an actor and a gentleman than to list some beautiful songs that he lip-synched on screen? (Other than filling a glass with some excellent wine and raising a real toast to him, that is.)
1. Chheda mere dil ne tarana tere pyar ka (Asli Naqli/1962) Mohammed Rafi/Shankar-Jaikishen/Hasrat Jaipuri
There is pain behind the clowning, a pain that is evident in every word he sings. The situation is rather piquant. Anand and his beloved have just parted ways, bowing to his grandfather’s diktat. What is different here is that his love (Sadhana) knows why he has to leave. Back home, his grandfather has thrown a magnificent party at the return of the prodigal and has plans to get him married off to someone of their economic and social status. Only, what the grandfather doesn’t know is that he may have forced his grandson to leave his beloved, but he is not going to be able to force him to marry another. Anand loves Renu, and he will have her, or no other. Mere geeton mein tumhi tum ho…
One of my favourite songs, and not just because it’s picturised on Dev. I like everything about it. Mohammed Rafi’s vocals that slur just the right amount, the romantic lyrics that are underlined with cynicism, the picturization that moves between darkness and light shading everyone grey, the seemingly hardened tawaif, the desperate son who needs to unlock a secret in order to save his father… Unlike most kotha songs, this one is very quiet, very gentle on the ears, the music just there, but not quite, depending mainly on Mohammed Rafi’s golden voice to provide the poignancy.
He will build his house in front of hers, he says, even if the world will come to an end. She sounds a note of caution. Ghar ko banana koi aasaan kaam nahin… but he will have none of it. He loves her, and there is strength in that love. She tries once again – Kaanton bhare hain lekin chaahat ke raaste and ends with a challenge: Tum kya karoge dekhen ulfat ke vaaste… Ha! His confidence is supreme...
Ulfat mein taj chhoote ye bhi tumhe yaad hoga,
Ulfat mein taj bane ye bhi tumhe yaad hoga
Main bhi kuch banaaoonga tere ghar ke saamne….
4. Din dhal jaaye (Guide/1965) Mohammed Rafi/SD Burman/Shailendra
There is anguish here, the grief of being emotionally bereft from his beloved, even though they still live in the same house. What is more, it is his actions that have created the emotional impasse, though he does not seem to see it that way. One of Dev’s finest performances, the song expresses his conflicted emotions perfectly – there is regret for love lost, sadness for what will never be again, bitterness over what he sees as betrayal, and over and above it all, there is heartbreak – Tu toh na aaye teri yaad sataaye… Add the picturization, which cleverly uses the balustrade of the staircase to emphasise the emotional barrier between Rosie and Raju, and the sadness and desperation on Waheeda’s face as she listens to his evident distress, and you have a timeless classic on your hands.
5. Kabhi khud pe kabhi haalaat pe (Hum Dono/1961) Mohammed Rafi/Jaidev/Sahir Ludhianvi
The rejected suitor who has just joined the army (the profession of choice, it seems for dejected lovers) to make something of himself, he finds that even liquor cannot help him leave his past behind. Oh, and you get two Dev Anands for the price of one – the grieving hero, this one here, and his lookalike superior, who is rather bemused by the younger man’s obvious sadness, but offers him some silent understanding.
Mohammed Rafi at his playful best, Dev Anand at his goofiest, and Asha Parekh. Add some bhang-laced laddoos and what do you get?Ye aankhen uff yumma. Funnily enough, Sunder soon realises in the midst of eating the laddoos that they have tampered with, but he continues to eat them rather ruminatively. After managing to steal the truck from the perpetrators, he (obviously) crashes the truck. The truck driver and his friend are following them, and the two, Sunder and Nisha, run away until they can run no more. Nisha is dizzy, she says. He is doubly intoxicated, claims Sunder, by the bhang and her intoxicating eyes. Uff yumma!
In an interview after Dev Anand’s death, Asha Parekh reminisced about shooting this song from one of her earliest films – “We were supposed to act like we were a little drunk. So in the middle of the song, he took off his gloves and started hitting me with it. I was perplexed and didn’t know how to react. Then I started hitting him back. It was the most fun I have ever had during a shoot.”
7. Yaad aa gayi nasheeli nigahein (Manzil/1960) Hemant Kumar/SD Burman/Majrooh Sultanpuri
In Manzil, Dev is a successful but disillusioned and embittered music composer, who has lost his lady love through an unfortunate twist of circumstances. We have an unusual voice here, for Dev – Hemant Kumar, and this is an amazing song. I love the way his voice ebbs and flows over the slurred words (in sur, of course!).
8. Hai hai hai ye nigahein (Paying Guest/1957) Kishore Kumar/SD Burman/Majrooh Sultanpuri
Having chosen money over love, and discovering it is cold comfort, Chanchal (Shubha Khote) is attracted to Ramesh (Dev Anand) only to find out that he is in love with Shanti (Nutan). Used to getting her own way, Chanchal imposes on Ramesh, her husband’s employee, to take her to a party; only, she drugs his drink before they leave. By the time they reach the venue, Ramesh is happy, happy, happy. Even if it is not exactly what Chanchal intended.
9. Mujhe le chalo aaj phir us gali mein (Sharabi/1963) Mohammed Rafi/Madan Mohan/Rajinder Krishen
The story of an alcoholic’s descent into his own private hell, Sharabi was one of Dev’s better performances, but the film failed at the box office. Saawan ke maheene mein is the better known song from this film, but this is an unusual number, and I rather liked the languid way in which Rafi sings this song.
One of Talat’s rare sharaabi songs, this happy-go-lucky number is right up Dev’s alley. He is an unapologetic drunk – Sun lo bhai humne pil li hai thodi, Duniya ki baaton ki parwaah chhodi. For some odd reason, the video clipping seems to have changed the lyrics to Suno bhai humne paa li hai thhodi (which makes no sense at all). But it has Talat’s silken voice, and Dev Anand acting silly on screen, and together, that is a potent combination!
It is said that those we love never really die as long as we remember them. Long may Dev Anand live on then, enshrined forever in our collective consciousness, and in that of those who come after us, and even those who are yet unborn. He lived every moment of every day until he died, and now perhaps he will live on forever in his films and his songs, in the memories of those who loved him, and in the written records of his legacy scattered here and there, for another generation to find. And love.
Written By: Anuradha Warrier, is a writer, editor, film and music buff. She writes for pleasure, edits for a living, and indulges in watching films, listening to music, and writing about both on her blog Conversations Over Chai as and when time permits.
DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely of the author and Bollywoodirect.com do not necessarily subscribe to it. Bollywoodirect.com shall not be responsible for any damage caused to any person/organisation directly or indirectly.
Main Image Courtesy: Telegraph