When music wizard Madan Mohan restored Talat Mehmood's prestige

Mansoor Khan, Glamsham Editorial
4/8/2015 6:07:03 PM
Talat Mehmood, the unparallel king of ghazal needs no introduction. His super hit ghazals like 'Sham-E-Gham Ki Qassam ….;  Jalte Hain Jiske Liye …. Aye Mere Dil Kahin Aur Chal….' are immortal and shall continue to regale ghazal lovers for centuries to come.


However, readers would be stunned to know that though Talat Mehmood, who ruled the mid-40s and the 50s as the most sought after playback singer, had to face bitter competition in the 60s from emerging new talents like Mohammad Rafi, Mukesh, Kishore Kumar, Manna Dey, Mahendra Kapoor etc.

In fact, his popularity plunged so low that film distributers declined to accept his songs and music directors had to tragically re-record the song in other singers’ voice. For instance, in Dilip Kumar’s movie AADMI, music maestro Naushad had recorded a duet on Dilip Kumar and Manoj Kumar.

The song was 'Kaisi Haseen Aaj Bahaaron Ki Raat Hai;  Ek Chaand Aasamaan Pe Hai Ek Mere Saath Hain…' The song was initially recorded in the voice of Mohd Rafi (for Dilip Kumar) and Talat Mehmood (For Manoj Kumar). But on distributor’s demand Naushaad sahab re- recorded the song replacing Talat Mehmood with Mahendra Kapoor.

Incidentally, HMV record company did not dump the Rafi -Talat Mehmood version. One can still hear this beautiful song on radio even today. However, if you watch the movie, you will hear the Rafi- Mahendra Kapoor version on screen.

Surprisingly, when most music directors bowed to the demands of film distributors, music wizard Madan Mohan did not oblige.

In his film JAHAN ARA, starring Mala Sinha and Bharat Bhushan, when film distributers protested music director Madan Mohan to replace Talat Mehmood with Mohd. Rafi or for that matter Manna Dey, Madan Mohan put his foot down! He was adamant on retaining Talat Mehmood or quit the film.

As the movie was a period film and had many ghazals, hence film producers agreed to Madan Mohan’s diktat, after all Madan Mohan was the specialist of Ghazal.

Madan Mohan not only gave super hit ghazals but also restored Talat Mehmood’s prestige. Remember the hit ghazal like 'Phir Wohi Sham Wohi Gham…..; Teri Aankh Ke Ansoo Peejaoon….;  Main Teri Nazar Ka Suroor Hoon…..'