Music Review : Door Gagan Ki Chhaon MeinAug 04
Year : 1964
Music : Kishore Kumar
Lyrics : Shailendra
As I was discussing with a group of friends the other day, this is one album I would wish to listen, when I am on my death-bed. Was thinking a lot to write about this album but never gathered enough courage. There are so many things to discuss that it will take at least 4 to 5 different timings and ways to write a full review and do complete justice to the music. Just the first try.
The audio CD comes along with other music directed film of Kishore, Door Ka Raahi. And that one is also Kishore’s best output, but somehow DGKCM scores because of the theme of the songs vis a vis the movie/picturization. Will discuss Door Ka Raahi sometime later. This is one CD which I carry with me wherever I am. Always in all my mobile phones, cars, houses, all email-id-inboxes. I HAVE to listen to it when I have to listen to it, period. I have a strange fascination of buying the audio-cd of this film “every”time I see it in the rack of any music shop. First I did it to have a number of copies so that if damaged, I save a few for my retirement. But later it has become a habit Now coming back to the movie/album…
The full movie ( 4202 feet ) is filled with musical gems, be it songs or the fully integrated background music. Music that came out from the heart. Music of of the earthly feeling, which connected one to the “mitti ki khushboo”. Music that invoked the innermost feelings. Kishore had said in an interview in 1958, that he wanted to compose something from his heart, where he would not bother about public taste ( which he did think/stress about, while making Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, “instructing” SDBurman to copy English tunes because public, those days, liked it ). Music was conducted by Bhola Shreshtha ( relatives of BS like to believe that the music of this film was given by BS !! Isn’t it BS ? ), who was again a close friend of Kishore, for many many years. Music assistants were the very talented Frankie and Sebastain ( both whom also assisted Kishore in his first unreleased music direction venture “Neela Aasmaan” in 1958-59 , where he tried to give some original music, which could touch the hearts. sadly the fantastic music and the film remained unreleased ).
Most of the songs can be seen here : http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=8E6379F0446B03D6
The film starts and we get to hear “The voice of God”- Hemant Kumar, as the wonderful titles ( all hand paintings of the screen-shots of the film ) start to scroll….Raahi tu mat ruk jaana….Kishore and Hemant Kumar’s association goes right in the early 50’s, when they used to meet each other during recordings and also during the Bengali Adda’s, where Kishore used to sing ( songs including Rabindra Sangeet). They had striked great friendship immediately which lasted till the end. Hemant da had Kishore singing for Bandi and seeing the versatility and compatibility of HK ( Kishore’s wide spectrum of singing in Bandi : Ek Roz Hamaari Bhi Daal & Chup Ho Ja ), Kishore immediately signed up Hemant da for Kishore’s First production, a Bengali movie Luko-Churi ( what an album ! ). Hearing either person’s output as a music-director/singer, one really wonders, why o why did they not get enough opportunities to create more “magic”, together.
Next song (2nd reel) is one of the favourites of millions : Koyi Lauta De Mere. The starting of the song was something that Hindi Films used to get that kind of quality, once in a blue moon ( Aayega Aanewaala, etc ). Ask any music lover ( not the current generation of course ) about a song which would describe the pathos of going back into the past and this would be the first song to come in their mind.
Suddenly in the next reel, the movie has a pleasant surprise – the 3rd antara of the title song, in Hemant da’s voice : Hote hain mausam ke phere, Raaton ke sang hain savere…Jaake agar lauti hain saansein, Lautenge phir din tere…….Heaven !!
In the 5th reel, we have Kishore singing his career-best song (IMHO) : Jin Raaton ki Bhor Nahin Hai. I just love the way he pronounces the word “”hai” in the line “Jin Raaton Ki Bhor Nahi Hai”. It is so very Prithvirajish !! The solitude projected in the song is just superb. The way the noise of a typical night ( insects chirping, wind blowing ) is blended into the song at the beginning, I have never heard any other example in “film” music ( one example is the non film song in the album “Dil Padosi Hai” of R D Burman ). Kishore purposely did not want many musical instruments and so we can hear just 3 instruments which give a very melancholic touch. The ONLY other Kishore song which can reach the level of pathos/sadness in the voice, is the unreleased film Neela Aasmaan’s, title song , Akela Hoon Main Is Jahaan Mein.
6th reel opens with the entry of Nana Palshikar and here could be the unreleased song of this film “Raaja Babu” I have yet to listen to this song, even though people claim that they have on their VHS’s ( vishwas nerurkar also says that it was picturized ). The next scene has the fantastic lori of Ashaji “Khoya Khoya Chanda” where Supriya (heroine) puts to sleep Amit Kumar. The noise of the chimes ( after the word “chanda” and “taare” ) is a bit irritating (loud) in the CD, but in the film, surprisingly it sounds lovely. One of the most underrated lories ever.
7th reel has one song that is cut in the movie : Chhod meri baiyyaan balam beimaan, sung by Ashaji….What a lovely “mela” song !! The south-Indian tone of Ashaji in a few words is something which ONLY she can achieve. The beats of the dhol and “taasha” is something rarely heard in Hindi Film Music. Ashaji’s masti is simply mindblowing. The musical phrase of SDBurman’s “Hoyila la jhinga la la”is heard in this song quite often and what a perfect fit it is !
Then in the 8th reel we have the evergreen classic “Aa chal ke tujhe main le ke chaloon” – again an anthem for all parents. Kishore was definitely capable of belting out these kind of lyrics ( being born and brought up in the heartland of Hindi language state – Madhya Pradesh ). This is one song for which I have made many additional stanza’s of my own ( kaan ko haath lagaake – Kishoreda aur shailendraji mujhe maaf kar do ) because I simply love the concept of the song. It is so fresh and inspiring. Some people might find the excessive use of flute in the song but it gels with the picturization (IMO). Somehow I have a strong feeling that Shailendra could have some contribution to this song too. Shailendra and Kishore again came together in this film, after Neela Aasmaan and Suhaana Geet ( both unreleased but fantastic music albums by Kishore ). They had seen each other’s capabilities in many previous songs in the 50’s and also striked a great friendship till the death of Shailendra. Kishore used to come to the house of Shailendra, early mornings, dhoti or lungi clad and wake him up. Sometimes just banging the horn and waking him up. Then they used to go along the seashore to write lyrics on the tunes of Kishore.
After the interval, in the 11th reel, we have Ashaji singing one of her career-best songs “Path bhoola ek aaya musaafir”. Again the pathos in Ashaji’s voice is simply unmatched. The lyrics are so apt ( hero has his own problems in life and leaves the heroine’s house and the heroine does not have any “adhikaar” to stop him ). The sobbing of Asha at the end of the song, is the last word of expressive voice in Hindi Film Music. I have the LP of the film but never got the opportunity to listen to it, since it is packed away and not within my reach now : but there is one more stanza of Ashaji, which I have never heard in the film as well as in the CD. It goes as : uske aage in ankhiyon ne….
Then comes in the 13th reel, one of the best bhajans that Hindi Films ever saw : O Jag Ke Rakhwaale. Manna da once told me that they all were crying when they were recording the song. “Kishore was simply an unbeatable artist. I was amazed at his composing skills when singing this first song for his film”. Kishore’s entry into the song sweeps away the carpet from the otherwise wonderfully sung song by Manna da. The helplessness of the Hero’s voice is too much for the heart to take. It weeps and weeps like there is no end.
The background music was a perfect match to the ambience of each shot. The flowing of “jharna”, chirping of birds, the trees had their usual place in Kishore’s movies. One of the highlights of the b/g music was at the end when there was a fighting going on. The noise of laathi’s was very well reproduced. The film technician talks about this anecdote quite well in the audio file enclosed
Ameen bhai was doing the radio publicity of the movie and the songs. The songs were liked by one and all in the industry ( except the reviewer of filmfare it seems – he termed them as good songs and ineffective b/g music ). Lataji made a special mention in one of her interviews about the wonderful songs. Kishore, in one of his interviews in Rasrang ( 16/09/1967 – one of Kishore’s best interviews in terms of his views on comedy and serious cinema ) said that Satyajit Ray appreciated the film and music very much. Kishore touched his feet and asked his blessings. He said that an artist like him always looked for appreciation and such happy and proud moments.
Kishore had dedicated this film to the loving memory of his father “Kunjlal Ganguly”, who passed away during the making of the film on 22/10/1962. The film faced huge setbacks ( financial ) and Kishore even sold/mortgaged some of his mother’s jewellery for the film to be completed.
8 songs !! Overall a fantastic album and the best in the annals of the Hindi Film Music, in my books. So much melody so much heart put into it. I feel so sad that such music cannot be produced in the current fast-food scenario. Film producers are taking the rich musical tradition to the pits. Sad. Very sad.
First published on www.passionforcinema.com