RMIM Archive Article "195".
From the RMIM Article Archive maintained by Satish Subramanian
# RMIM Archives..
# Subject: Year in Hindi Films
# 1948 (Part 1): Kishore and Asha
# Posted by: Surjit Singh, firstname.lastname@example.org
From the RMIM Article Archive maintained by Satish Subramanian
1948 Part A: ASHA and KISHOR
To get information about these two giants of the Hindi movie
playback scene, get article numbers 11 and 12 for Asha and
article numbers 7, 8, 9 and 10 for Kishor. The articles can be
obtained by sending e-mail to email@example.com with the
subject rmim article n, where n is the article number. To
get the list of articles, send the subject rmim article list.
Asha has sung the largest number of songs (about 7595 until
1994) for Hindi movies, and, she has said in interviews
that she also sang the largest number of songs for Marathi
movies. The definitive reference book "svaraashaa" on
Asha may be obtained from
Mrs. Vasanti Nerurkar,
2/15 Kailash Parwat, Gilbert Hill
Andheri, Bombay, 400058 India.
Phone number is 022-624-3587.
This 400 page book, has the first lines, music
directors, lyricists, other singers, movie, year of release of
all her Hindi movie songs, and also has about 40 pages of
pictures. In addition, it has many valuable lists. I have ordered
but not received my copy yet.
She sang her first line in a chorus, "saavan aaya (3) re",
from chunariyaa (1948), MD Hans Raj Bahal and lyricist Mulk
Raj Bhakhari. She sang only the words, "bahanaa khush ho
ke sagan manaaye". The other singers were Zohraa and Giitaa.
Her first solo was, "hai.n mauj me.n apane begaane" in the
movie raat kii raanii (1949), MD bahal and lyrics aarzuu
lakhahnavii. The first song of Asha that I have heard is from
baavare nayan (1950), a duet with rafii written by Kedar Sharma,
MD Roshan. The duet is, "muhabbat ke maaro.n kaa haal ye duniyaa
me.n hota hai".
In this Platinum Decade (1941-50), she sang just 51 songs.
Some other female singers and their numbers for this decade are:
Zoharaabaaii - 1229
Lata - 383
Geeta - 340
She will surpass all female singers in the next Golden
Decade and in every decade after that.
Kishor started his playback singing career with the solo,
"marane kii duaaye.n kyo.n maa.nguu.N" and a duet with Lata, "ye
kaun aayaa re" for Dev in the movie ziddii (1948), MD Khemchandra
Prakash and lyricist Professor Jazbii for the solo and prem
dhavan for the duet. The movie was directed by shaahid latiif,
also well-known as a story and a dialog writer. Latiif
was born on June 11, 1913 in Chandausi, UP; graduated
from Aligarh Muslim University; joined Bombay Talkies in
1940. He collaborated on the scripts of jhuulaa (1941),
basant (1942) and, qismat (1943). He directed movies like
aarzuu (1950), buzdil (1951), sone ki chi.Diyaa (1958),
bahaare.n phir bhii aaye.ngii (1966). His wife was the noted
Urdu writer Ismat Chugtai.
The ziddi duet was Kishor's first duet with Lata, they will sing
320 more duets. Kishor was not mentioned in the credits, but
he played a gardener, who made several witty remarks to the
audience. Once he helps Dev get out of a ditch and speaks to
him. The ziddi songs are the only two songs he sang in 1948.
In 1949, he sang 3, in 1950, 10, for a total of 15 songs in the
Asha and Kishor sang their first duet, "ek, do, tiin,
chaar, baaGo.n me.n aayii bahaar", from the movie muqaddar
(1950), MD James Singh, lyricist bharat vyaas. I
"downloaded" it from Radio Ceylon in 1976 or so. It is quite
good and reminds one of their mastii - bhare duets in the
Here are excerpts from my favorite interview of Kishor that
appeared in India Today of May 15, 1985. It was given to Sumit
Mitra and happened when he announced his retirement from show-
biz. At that time, he was 56, had had two heart attacks, four
marriages, an unending string of playback hits, charging
about Rs. 35,000 for one movie song.
IT: Which of the following are you first - director,
KK: Actor. I am an actor who sings off the screen for
another actor. ...
IT: But if you'are constantly acting as a singer, don't
you think that you run the risk of losing a consistent
KK: Who cares for singing styles in films really. K. L.
Saigal had the best style, but today's audiences will not
accept the unreality of a ceremomnial piece of music every
now and then. We playback singers develop a lot of vanity.
We tend to think of ourselves as singers independent of
IT: Aren't you handicapped by not being a trained musician?
KK: Very little. I have a good memory, and that helps. ...
IT: Is it not abhorrent that songs should be an integral
part of Indian commercial cinema ... ?
KK: Who am I to object to songs? It is my livelyhood. But
its responsibility lies with the filmmakers who, after 50
years of sound film, have not been able to give cinema an
identity of its own. ...they'll put the blame on the
audience. But the film-goers have been conditioned to expect
a boy and a girl to burst into song when they meet. When a
man and a woman roll over each other on velvet grass in
Kashmir valley, you expect them to make love - not sing in
the voices of Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar.
IT: People here talk of your aloofness towards other singers
- like the late Rafi, and Lata Mangeshkar.
KK: That is utterly baseless. I had great regard for Rafi, a
singer of rare calibre. Lata is the goddess of singing;
she fully knows about my admiration for her. I think what is
more frequently criticised is not my attitude to colleagues
but my attitude to singing for films. Playback singing is
fun and good money. But it's not a big art really; only the
film and record people glorify it with all those gold and
silver discs given to singers. I wish I could take all of
them to the goldsmith and draw the metal out.
IT: Has Indian playback singing any future?
KK: Commercially, yes. Artistically, no. You don't expect
music to be brilliant when the films are so bad. Actually,
the B-grade movies that are doing good business now cater to
an audience which wants a lot of noise to fill the
soundtrack and a lot of feminine flesh to fill the optical
track. Jeetendra, Sridevi ... what kind of music do you
expect with these ingredients? The industry is full
of shopkeepers who'are out to make money - not art.
IT: Who is the best music director you worked with?
KK: S. D. Burman. I owe everything to him.
IT: And the worst?
KK: I'll tell you after I reach Khandwa (his hometown where
he wants to retire.)
The second part of 1948 - A Year in Hindi Movies will posted
Posted by Surjit Singh, a diehard movie fan(atic), period.