Monday, November 30, 2015

Two musicians ...same situation...

Anarkali and Mughal-e-Azam , both were based on the same story , the love story of Salim and Anarkali,both were musicals and both were hits of that era.

Anarkali , starring Bina Rai and Pradip Kumar was the older of the two,released in 1953,It was a black and white movie and the music was by C.Ramchandra.

Mughal-e-Azam , released in 1960, was also a black and white film originally , though a coloured version was released in 2004.Mughal-e-Azam had the hit pair of Dilip Kumar and Madhubala.... and surely,there could be no other Anarkali , other than Madhubala !However, Mughal-e-Azam from its inception suffered multiple bouts of bad luck including the breach in the relations between his lead pair. Apparently when the romantic songs of the movie were shot Dilip and Madhubala couldn't stand each other! The music of this film by Naushad  was also a chartbuster in those days.

The story of Prince Salim and the beautiful courtesan Anarkali has no basis in the history ,the movie " Anarkali " acknowledges this but Mughal-e-Azam has been criticized due to liberties it had taken in depicting this story.

Let's take one song each, from both the movies, that was written for a similar situation...." Ye zindagi usiki hai " from film Anarkali and " Khuda nigehban " from the film Mughal-e-Azam . Anarkali is being entombed alive and she is singing to say goodbye to her beloved.Incidentally both the renditions are by Lata Mangeshkar and both are perfect !

" Khuda nigehban " is a lovely song , no doubt about it, it is Naushad's trademark...a classical composition based on Raag Yaman.Madhubala looks absolutely divine . Her quivering lips and tears portray her anguish of being parted from her lover permanently..." Tumhari duniya se ja rahe hain...utho , humara salam le lo "

" Ye zindagi " on the other hand has a very plain Bina Rai , we wonder what did Prince Salim see in her, that made him fight with his father. But when  singing in Lata's voice " ise majar mat kaho , ye mahal hai pyar ka " even Beena looks beautiful then !

But if you close your eyes and listen to both , we find that  C. Ramchandra has created a gem , a song that can bring on goosebumps and can start a flood of tears. It is a  "goodbye, I am dying "song but still so vibrantly alive that it can not fail to touch the listener's heart....

Naushad Saab always made perfect compositions, musically correct classical raag based songs such as this one. But somehow it fails to touch your heart. It lacks emotion. It is too perfect !

So...what do you think....Naushad or Chitalkar ?....Do tell me....