This Blog is about a special Guru Shishya Parampara which lasted for three decades until death separated the greatest singer of our times. I am talking about the Guru music maestro Naushad Ali and the Shishya the immortal singer Rafi Saab!
Naushad composed music for only 76 films (65 Hindi) in a span of 65 years. 25 films of which have been silver, nine golden and two diamond jubilee hits. He based his music upon the "ragas" that formed a basis in Indian classical music, and due to this his music was complex and with depth.
Naushad said about himself "What I have religiously endeavoured to do, through the popular medium of films, is gently to educate our people on our own tradition, lying untapped, while we have been borrowing from the worst rather than the best, of the West.We used to agonise over every tune and phrase in music, spend sleepless nights over a song, and work on it until it was perfected. "
The combination of Dilip Kumar-Mohammed Rafi-Naushad-Shakeel Badayuni went on to work wonders during those golden era.
Naushad’s father sent Rafi with the recommendation letter. Rafi was introduced by Naushad first as a chorus singer. Although Rafi worked with different music directors, he was always an obedient student with Naushad from beginning till the end. Success never changed his attitude towards his Guru.
Naushad at last found a singer who can sing any type of song with full masterly. He found that Rafi could mould his voice according to the mood of the song and according to the style of the character on which the song is to be picturised.Naushad discovered that in an era when low octave singing was the norm, Rafi had a phenomenal range, and yet, he never sounded out of tune
All the anecdotes here are as told by Naushad himself a few years before his death.
Naushad recorded this song for the movie Dulari which you can enjoy every night even today .Next day after the original Recording Rafi came to Naushad's home and said that he thought about this song whole night and felt that he did not do full justice to his composition although Naushad was fully satisfied. He wept like a child requesting Naushad to record again and Naushad could not believe the dedication of this singer. Naushad recorded the song again and Rafi was satisfied.
Suhani Raat Dhal Juki Na Jane Tum Kab Aahoge
Listen to this Immortal song in Video in a live performance sung by Rafi in front of his mentor Naushad and then see the dedication of this singer.
Naushad describes another real incident .When a criminal was about to be hanged he was asked his last wish. His wish was not to see his family or eat special food but something different which shocked the prison ward .The criminal said before he dies he wants to listen to this song of Rafi Saab. A tape recorder was brought and this song was played . Can you guess what was the song ? Rafi rehearsed for 15 days for this song and after recording this song his voice was broken. and people started telling he won’t get his voice back.
Okay the raaag was Durbari and you got it! . It was Baiju Bawra!
Naushad said this about Rafi.
“Rafi those days used to feel concerned that, though singing extensively, he had not been able to create the same impact as Talat Mehmood or Mukesh. ‘Well, here’s your chance”, I said. ‘This Baiju Bawra theme offers you the kind of vocal challenge which, if you meet, you will find yourself made for life.’
O duniya ke rakhwale sun dard bhare mere nale.
This patriotic song was sung by Rafi during the Indo China War in 1962 when passions ran high and lot of human loss .He sang in Delhi in front of Jawaharalal Nehru in a national broadcast .As he became emotional tears idown from Rafi thinking of the families who lost their sons in the battle.The song is
Yeh Mere Laad Lo
Here is another interesting incident. Naushad composed this song in Raag Ameer for Kohinoor. But the Producer was not satisfied as he felt that song and Raag was too complex for the common man to appreciate and asked Naushad to change the tune.Naushad was reluctant . Rafi told the producer that he will not take his fees for this song and only if people like it he will take the fees and the same tune was retained.
That was the song which became a rage when released.After the movie became a hit the producer came to Rafi to pay the fees. Rafi told him that he has already collected the fees. When the producer said that he has not paid yet, Rafi told him that Janta has appreciated the song well which is more than the fees and refused to take his fees.
Madhuban Mein Radhika ....
This Krishna Bhajan is played in every temple set in Raag Malkauns. When Naushad composed it he asked all the musicians to come in proper attire as he is going to record a Krishna Bhajan. After the recording when producer distributed Prasad and sweets the studio atmosphere was like a temple where everybody was saying Krishna Krishna...Listen to this song please. A Hindu Bhajan composed by Muslim sung by Muslim and divine lyrics written again by Muslim. Wherever there is hatred between communities play this song !
Man Tarapat Hari Dharshan -Baiju Bawra Raag Malkauns
Naushad composed the Ghazal for the film Habba Khatoon .Naushad called Rafi for the recording in 1980 . When Rafi heard this tune in Raag Pardeep for the movie he became emotional .He told Naushad that of late he has been singing so many songs which does not touch his heart. After singing this song when Naushad offered the fees he refused and said the satisfaction he got in singing this song was more than what money can give him. He told Naushad he will not take the money and hinted to Naushad that he will leave this world soon and left the Recording.That was the last song recorded with Naushad. A few weeks later Naushad got the phone of the demise of his favourite singer The movie was shelved and music was not released.
As many music lovers would not have heard this Ghazal being not released , I have attached the audio file.
Jis Raat Ke Kwaab Aaye Raag Pardeep
Unfortunately and to his distaste the times were changing which demanded more fast-paced, tunes, and Naushad could not adapt towards the end as he belonged to the era where music was pure and classical.
I would like to continue with my other personal favourites of Naushad soon as this blog is too long already .
Naushad presents last journey of Rafi
Photo from Rafi.com
WE DO NOT SEE SUCH RELATIONSHIPS & SUCH DEDICATION NOWADAYS. WHAT GURU SHISHYA RELATIONSHIP EXISTED BETWEEN RAFI & NAUSHAD IS SOMETHING DIVINE. MOHD. RAFI WILL ALWAYS BE "THE BEST" SINGER FOR ME. SINGERS CAME AND WENT BUT NO ONE TOUCHED MY HEART AS HE DID. I LISTEN TO HIS SONGS DAILY AND AM ALWAYS MOVED WITH HIS RENDITIONS. I ALWAYS WANTED TO SING LIKE HIM. I ALWAYS WISHED I HAD THE MASTERY OVER MY VOCALS LIKE HE DID.
I PERSONALLY FEEL HE HAS NOT RECEIVED THE DUE RECOGNITION HE DESERVED. HE SHOULD BE GIVEN A POST HUMOUS HONORARY TITLE FOR HIS CONTRIBUTION TO MUSIC. MUSIC TO ME IS "MOHAMMED RAFI"
Thanks for your appreciation of the Blog .As Naushad used to say regarding his music,I just compiled the old information in a new bottle. The credit goes to the MD Naushad Saab and immortal Rafi a dream team in that golsen era for music
SUPERB AND HIGHLY INFORMATIVE
NO MORE WORDS
I SHARED IT WITH FACEBOOK
BLESSINGS TO YOU AND YOUR SWEET FAMILY
UMA MAHESWAR NAKKA
It was a pleasure to see your comment . Since the topic is about evergreen music of the past it can be commented any time! I am sorry as you have noticed I did not have time to see the blogs and was busy with some other project for the last few months. I have a lot to catch up.Hoping to be active soon. Nice of you for remembering and for this nice comment and recommendation
Thanks and regards
Let this teach the detractors die hard chaos makers to Indian ways of life a thorough lesson - these lines should drive into their minds - Ether
"This Krishna Bhajan is played in every temple set in Raag Malkauns. When Naushad composed it he asked all the musicians to come in proper attire as he is going to record a Krishna Bhajan. After the recording when producer distributed Prasad and sweets the studio atmosphere was like a temple where everybody was saying Krishna Krishna...Listen to this song please. A Hindu Bhajan composed by Muslim sung by Muslim and divine lyrics written again by Muslim
Though I took time to visit this exceptionally wonderful blog - i feel glad that the link was posted to me. Long time you are away from Sulekha - hope to see you soon.
Thank you so much for sharing this memorable piece.