Sunday, September 27, 2009

Naushad: Dard (1947/1977)

Here is a classic Naushad score. Dard is a totally female album. It is one of many albums by Naushad, released prior and in the early 50's, which follows the trend of being in majority female. One factor for this could possibly be that film heroines in the 40's would be more important than their male counterparts, thus having more importance in the film and story. But this would only be one of many factors explaining this tendency.

The "female voices" on Dard might be unknown to some of you, but they were immensely popular at the time and still are to the few who can appreciate the early singers and musicians of Hindi cinema (I hope that you are one of these people or are yet to become one soon). And except for Shamshad Begum whom I love (yet she does not standout on this record), for those of you who have no clue who the other two playback singers are, I will get you acquainted.

Suraiya, the actress and playback singer, was associated to Dev Anand with whom she had a love affair. The peek of her career was from 1947 to 1950. She reigned in this period, for the most part, because she filled the void of the earlier queen Noor Jehan who in 1947 left for Pakistan during Partition. Suraiya's short stay at the top was also due to the arrival of India's very own nightingale, Lata Mangeshkar, as her first big hit "Aayega Aanewala" from Mahal (1949) changed the whole meaning of playback singing. You could not just be good, you had to be great. But Suraiya is not merely the one who filled the gap in between these two legends. For me, she is a simple beauty that evoked rawness and realism with her voice and expressions. I see Lata as a perfect queen and Suraiya as a modest artist. Later she still worked, mostly as an actress, but she still sang for other and herself. She was not a trained singer but she will always be remembered as one of the last popular singing actresses.

Who is this Umadevi (Uma Devi)? Voh Kaun Hai? Well, perhaps Tun Tun might ring more of a bell. We might know her more for her comedic or secondary roles in later films but in the beginning of her career she aspired to be a singer, even threatening to kill herself if Naushad did not give her chance. He did, and she ended up with the hit of the film and one of the best songs "Afsana Likh Rahi Hoon".

"Chale Dil Ki Duniya" was my favorite from the start. Other tracks to listen to are "Beech Bhanwar", Ham Dard Ka Afsana.
Overall, I enjoyed it more and more every time I listened to it. It took me a while but I gave it a chance and it grew on me. Hope it does the same with you!


Side 1

1. Suraiya: Beech Bhanwar
2. Umadevi: Afsana Likh Rahi Hoon
3. Shamshad Begum & Chorus: Ham Dard Ka Afsana
4. Suraiya: Ham The Tumhare Tum The Hamare
5. Umadevi: Aaj Machi Hai Dhoom

Side 2

6. Suraiya: Chale Dil Ki Duniya
7. Umadevi: Yeh Kaun Chala
8. Suraiya & Umadevi: Betab Hai Dil
9. Shamshad Begum: Yeh Afsana Nahin Zalim
10. Suraiya: Dil Dhadke

Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

Stella_1's score: 3.5/5

Get the music now: Naushad Dard


Reza said...

Nice to see your still posting , looking forward to hearing more from Naushad , thank you

bollyviewer said...

You are back! YAY!!!!

I LOVE Afsana likh rahi hoon and liked Betaab hai dil when I heard it recently. The rest of the songs are probably more of the will-grow-on-me variety, but I like them too.

Richard S. said...

This blog has been quiet for too long, but you couldn't have picked a better way to come back. The best thing here since Mela! My Bollywood music collection would be awfully empty without Parties, Sarees and Melodies.

BTW, ditto Bollywviewer on my own two favorite songs from this.

PC said...

Nice to see you back :-)

phil said...

Really enjoying this album thank you Stella