Madan Mohan Birth Anniversary

Updated by admin on Thursday, June 25, 2020 08:43 PM IST

Today, is the birth anniverary of one of the best composers India has ever seen, Madan Mohan. Over a musical span of 25 years, Madan Mohan composed music for 95 released Hindi films (648 songs), 12 shelved Hindi films (28 songs) and one documentary (one song) produced by Films Division. More than this, he influenced countless Indians through his music which touched the soul, and reached new heights of melody. Awards never came his way, but it was probably better that way, we can console ourselves to say, as his music remained unspoiled and untainted by power, pelf or prestige.  
He received National Award as Best Music Director for the film Dastak (1970), but the prestigious Filmfare award was denied to him due to conspiracies. 
He died early, at the age of 51, due to cirrhosis of the liver, when the world was callous to his musical genius becausehe never succumbed to market forces. Like K V Mahadevan in Chennai, for Madan Mohan the lyrics were very important and always came first. For almost all the composers, the tune was most important, and the lyrics were merely stitched to fit in with the music. 
After hearing the songs of Anpadh, Naushad drove all the way to Madan Mohan's house, and praised him for his work, saying he had never heard such music in his life. 
Just look at some of the compositions that he created. 
Madan Mohan - Lata Mangeshkar combo Woh Chup Rahen Tho Mere Dil Ke Daag Jalte Hain from the film Jahan Aara 1964 
Lyrics by Rajender Kishan. 
The tune of Naina Barse was composed by Madan Mohan 18 years earlier but he did not have an opportunity or suitable occasion to use the song. Madan Mohan says the emotion cannot be concealed or suppressed. It will emerge some day, as it did after 18 years. An emotion will always be fresh, and can never be crushed, says Madan Mohan.  
Lata Mangeshkar introduces the song. What more can we want? 
Lag Jaa Gale (Wpoh Kaun Thi)
Tu Jahaan Jahaan Chalegaa Meraa Saayaa Saath Hogaa (Fast) : Mera Saaya 
Tu Jahaan Jahaan Chalegaa Meraa Saayaa Saath Hogaa (Slow) : Mera Saaya 
Aap Ki Nazron Ne Samjhaa (Anpad)
Meri Aawaaz Suno (Naunihaal)
Hum Pyar Me Jalnewaalon Ko (Jailor) 
Agar Mujse Mohobbat Hai (Aap Ki Parchaayiyaan)
Ai Sanam Aaj Ye Kasam Khaayaen (Jahanaara)
Aapke Pahaloo Mein Aakar Ro Diye : Mera Saaya 
Aaj Sochaa To Aansoo Bhar Aaye : Hanste Zakhm 
Baiyaan Naa Dharo O Balamaa : Dastak 
Chhod Kar Tere Pyaar Kaa Daaman Ye Bataa De Ki Ham Kidhar Jaayein : Woh Kaun Thi? 
Chiraagh Dil Kaa Jalaao Bahut Andheraa Hai : Chirag 
Do Dil Toote, Do Dil Haare, Duniyaa Waalo Sadqe Tumhaare : Heer Raanjha 
Dil Dhoondta Hai Phir Wahee Fursat Ke Raat Din (Sad) : Mausam 
Dil Dhoondta Hai Phir Wahee Fursat Ke Raat Din (Happy) : Mausam 
Ek Haseen Shaam Ko Dil Meraa Kho Gayaa Pahale Apnaa Huaa Karataa Thaa : Dulhan Ek Raat Ki 
Hamse Aaya Na Gayaa Tumse Bulaayaa Na Gaya, Hamse Aaya Na Gayaa Tumsae : Dekh Kabira Roya 
Hoke Majboor Mujhe Usne Bhoolaayaa Hogaa : Haqeeqat 
Hai Tere Saath Meree Wafaa Main Naheen To Kya : Hindustan Ki Kasam 
 Har Taraf Ab Yahee Afsaane Hain, Ham Teree Aankhon Ke Deewaane Hain : Hindustan Ki Kasam 
Jaana Tha Hamse Door Bahaane Bana Liye, Ab Tumne Kitni Door : Adalat 
Jiyaa Le Gayo Jee Moraa Saanwariyaa : Anpad
Jhumkaa Giraa Re Barelee Ke Baazaar Mein : Mera Saaya 
Jis Din Se Maine Tumko Dekhaa Hai, Is Dil Mein Ik Sapnaa Saa Jaagaa Hai : Parwana 
Kaun Aayaa Mere Man Ke Dwaare Paayal Ki Jhankaar Liye : Dekh Kabira Roya 
Kar Chale Ham Fidaa Jaan-O-Tan Saathiyo Ab Tumhaare Hawaale Watan Saathiyon : Haqeeqat 
Kabhee Na Kabhee Kaheen Na Kaheen Koee Na Koee To Aayegaa : Sharabi 
Kaee Din Se Jee Hai Bekal, Ae Dil Kee Lagan Ab Le Chal : Dulhan Ek Raat Ki 
Meree Veenaa Tum Bin Roye, Sajanaa Sajanaa : Dekh Kabira Roya 
Main To Tum Sang Nain Milaa Ke Haar Gaee Sajanaa : Man-Mauji 
Main Nigaahein Tere Chehare Se Hataaoon Kaise : Aap Ki Parchhaiyan 
Mai Ri Main Kaase Kahoon Peer Apne Jiyaa Ki : Dastak, Lata
Mai Ri Main Kaase Kahoon Peer Apne Jiyaa Ki : Dastak (1970) Madan Mohan 
Milo Na Tum To Ham Ghabraaye, Milo To Aankh Churaaye Hamein Kyaa Ho : Heer Raanjha 
Nainon Mein Badra Chhaaye, Bijlee See Chamke Haay : Mera Saaya 
Na Tum Bewafaa Ho Na Ham Bewafaa Hain, Magar Kyaa Karein : Ek Kali Muskayee 
Phir Wohee Shaam Wahee Gham Wahee Tanhaayee Hai : Jahanara 
Rang Aur Noor Kee Baaraat Kise Pesh Karoon : Gazal 
Ruke Ruke Se Qadam Ruk Ke Baar Baar Chale : Mausam 
Shokh Nazar Kee Bijailiyaan Dil Pe Mere Giraaye Jaa : Woh Kaun Thi? (1964) : Asha Bhosle
Too Mere Saamane Hai, Teree Zulfein Hai Khulee, Teraa Aanchal Hai Dhalaa : Suhagan 
Tumheen To Meree Pooja Ho, Tumheen To Meree Poojaa Ho, Tumhen Dil : Suhagan 
Tere Paas Aake Meraa Waqt Guzar Jaataa Hai : Neela Aakash,  Asha Bhosle & Mohd. Rafi
Tumhaaree Zulf Ke Saaye Mein Shaam Kar Loongaa : Naunihal 
Teree Aankhon Ke Sivaa Duniyaa Mein Rakkhaa Kya Hai : Chirag, Lata Mangeshkar, Majrooh Sultanpuri
Teree Aankhon Ke Sivaa Duniyaa Mein Rakkha Kya Hai : Chirag, Mohd. Rafi, Majrooh Sultanpuri
Tum Se Kahoon Ik Baat Paron See Halkee Halkee : Dastak 
Tum Bin Jeevan Kaisaa Jeevan, Phool Khile To Dil Murjhaaye : Bawarchi 
Tum Jo Mil Gaye Ho To Ye Lagtaa Hai Ki Jahaan Mil Gayaa : Hanste Zakhm, Lata Mangeshkar & Mohd. Rafi
Tere Liye : Veer-Zaara (2004), Lata Mangeshkar & Roop Kumar Rathod, Javed Akhtar
Unko Yeh Shikayat Hai Ki Hum Kuchh Nahin Kahte: Adalat (1958)
Woh Bhoolee Daastaan Lo Phir Yaad Aa Gaee : Sanjog 
Woh Jo Milte The Kabhee Hamse Deewaanon Kee Tarah : Akeli Mat Jaiyo 
Yoon Hasaraton Ke Daagh Mohabbat Mein Dho Liye : Adalat 
 Yeh Duniyaa, Yeh Mahafil Mere Kaam Kee Naheen : Heer Raanjha 
Zaraa See Aahat Hotee Hai To Dil Sochtaa Hai : Haqeeqat 
His father, Rai Bahadur Chunilal had already made a name for himself in the film industry. When he learnt about his son quitting the A.I.R. job and packing his bags for Mumbai, he was furious. He did not allow Madan to enter his house. Rai Bahadur had, in the meantime, remarried an educated doctor, Pritam . While, in those days, this was legally and socially permissible, it had possibly distanced him from his family a bit. Consequently, Madan had to spend the next three years "struggling" to join the film industry and unwilling to use his father's name, sustained himself by occasional performances in radio plays and programmes. He became a casual artiste on A.I.R. and started singing semi-classical songs and acting in plays. But the money he made was not sufficient to provide even for his basic needs. He remained hungry on days, slept on the pavements and often wandered about aimlessly in the nights. In spite of all these hardships, he never sought his father's help even once. Recalling those trying times, Madan was to say "At one time, I was doing so badly that I had to starve for five days at a stretch, but not for once did I think of going to my people for help. I had come to Mumbai to join the film industry, not as a music director but as an actor. People producing films did not think of me as capable of acting". Undaunted, he continued to struggle till he got his break.
In 1957, Madan composed the music for Dekh Kabira Roya. It was a small budget film with all new faces introduced on screen. But the director Amiya Chakraborty provided 
Madan very inspiring song situations, which resulted in a fabulous musical score. The music was a smash hit. Songs like Hamse Aaya Na Gayaa, Kaun Aayaa Mere Man Ke 
Dwaare, Meree Veena Tum Bin Roye became chartbusters of the year. Slowly but surely, Madan started shaping his musical style which become famous as Madan Mohan style in the following years.
On June 16, 1957, he recorded one of his "highest musical feats". He conducted Lata Mangeshkar and a chorus of 50 male and female voices accompanied by an orchestra of seventy musicians for a song Log Kahe Mere Nain Baaware. The song featured in an opera sequence and was shot on Nutan in the climax scene of Chandan (1958). It was recorded in 12 parts by sound recordist Ishan Ghosh at Raman Studios, Chennai. The rehearsal of the song lasted well over 20 days and before the final recording, three more rehearsals were taken. The recording lasted for nearly 12 hours. Before this, Madan Mohan had recorded songs with as many as 40 musicians.
The famous "Madan Mohan style" was established in the true sense with Adalat (1958) when he composed some outstainding melodies - Jaanaa Tha Hamse Door, Yoon Hasaraton Ke Daagh, Unko Ye shikaayat Hai, Jaa Ja Re Jaa Saajanaa, Zameen Se Hamein Aasmaan Par... so many great melodies in one movie. This was the movie which made Madan Mohan the uncrowned king of ghazals. After this, he composed many ghazals and with each composition, he attained great heights of popularity and fame. A situation came when every producer wanted him to compose at least one ghazal for his film.
Madan Mohan came up with flying colours by getting back to his elements with melodies like "Woh Bhooli Daastaan, Bhooli Huyi Yaadon, Chalaa Hai Kahaan, Badali Se Nikala Hai Chaand... all for the film Sanjog (1961).
With Sanjog, Madan Mohan changed his orchestration style dramatically. It was more refined, more melodious and with a unique musical arrangement. Anpadh (1962), Manmauji (1962), Aap Ki Parchhaiyan (1964) and Ghazal (1964) witnessed this transformation of his musical style. This new style of Madan Mohan was more soulful and widely followed in the industry. Other composers of the day now started getting influenced by him.
Another important film of the time was Haqeeqat (1964). It hardly had any scope for film music. But this was one music director who could embellish it with such polished gems as Main Ye Sochkar Uske Dar Se Uthaa Thaa, Zara si Aahat Hoti Hai, Khelo Na Mere Dil Se, Hoke Majboor, and Ab Tumhare Hawale Wattan Sathiyo.
The year, 1964 witnessed eight releases in a row having Madan Mohan's compositions, including Aap Ki Parchhaiyan (a love story), Ghazal (a musical), Haqeeqat (war film), 
Jahanara (costume drama), Pooja Ke Phool (family drama), Suhagan (social theme) and Woh Kaun Thi? (mystery). Madan Mohan handled each subject gracefully and came out with many all-time hits for these films. The last mentioned actually became a trendsetter for haunting melodies. The tune of Naina Barse Rimjhim Rimjhim from Woh Kaun Thi?, had originated in Madan Mohan's mind some 12 years earlier. For want of a fitting lyric and effective film situation, he had put it on the back burner for so long. His decision to fit it in this film highlighted his understanding of song situations.
The following years saw the release of Rishte Nate (1965), Dulhan Ek Raat Ki (1966), Mera Saaya (1966) and Naunihal (1967) full of typical Madan Mohan melodies. A highly 
elated writer-producer Sawan Kumar Tak noted: "Madan is one whose rare artistic sense and incomparable compositions have enriched Naunihal. And how he has helped me 
complete the film is another story. That was the time when strict orders were issued not to exploit Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru's name in any manner".
The composer had his own take: "Mohammed Rafi's song Meri Awaaz Suno from Naunihal, was very popular with the public as a disc even before the release of the picture. As the lifeless body of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru is carried to cremation, his message is given in this song. It is a message from one of the greatest world leaders to his countrymen whom he loved and for whom he had lived and died. The very novelty of the situation and the context of the song and the beauty of the message itself provided me with an inspiration which made me do my best and my very best. The song has become a unique creation and will remain evergreen in the minds of people for long".
In the year 1970, Madan Mohan's film Dastak was released. It was like a musical art movie giving full scope to the composer to showcase his talent. The songs Baiyaan Naa Dharo, Mai Ri Main Kaase Kahoon and Ham Hain Mataay-e-Kuchao fetched him the National Award for best music direction for that year. This was the first time that Madan Mohan's contribution got recognition at the national level. 
Dastak was followed by Heer Ranjha, Madan Mohan handled the subject very sensitively. On the one hand he composed romantic songs like Milo Na Tum To Hum Ghabaraye and Meri Duniyaa Mein Tum Aayi and on the other hand, soulful songs like Do Dil Toote, Doli Chadhale Hee  and Yeh Duniyaa Yeh Mehfil.
The song Yeh Duniya Yeh Mehfil from the film is a unique composition of the maestro. It has altogether four stanzas. The tune of all four stanzas and the interlude music attached to them differs from each other and yet, the song arrives smoothly on the sign line after completion of each stanza. It is a unique triumph of form over content - four different melodies in one song and yet it appears as one complete song. Said Madan Mohan "It is usually very difficult for a music director to get unusual song situations and one is quite thrilled and inspired for better composition when a novel song situation turns out to be a novel situation".
Hanste Zakhm (1973) was yet another example of novelty. As usual, the song situation was very challenging. The hero of the film, a taxi driver, tries to convince the heroine, who is a prostitute, of his sincere love. The song starts on a slow tempo where the heroine is not responding to the pleas of hero. In the second stanza, when she starts giving favourable indications, the tempo and rhythm increases a bit. And in the third stanza, when the heroine accepts her suitor's love, the mood of the song changes dramatically with fast rhythm and happy notes. Indeed, it is a very complicated song. A music director of Madan Mohan's caliber only could have handled it so effectively. The song was Tum Jo Mil Gaye Ho, rendered very effectively by Mohammed Rafi.
During his last days, he was offered Mausam (1975) and Laila Majnu (1976). Both the subjects and their setup suited Madan Mohan's temperament perfectly. Laila Majnu was a traditional love story for which Madan Mohan composed a very beautiful number Husn Haazir Hai Mohabbat Kee Sazaaa Paane Ko sung by Lata Mangeshkar. Mausam was a very soft romantic subject and was handled with equal softness by Gulzar. Madan Mohan understood the mood of the film, composed songs like Dil Dhondtaa Hai (in happy and sad version) and Ruke Ruke Se Qadam, which really helped the film to convey its theme effectively.
In spite of producing such outstanding work consistently over a period of time, Madan Mohan had very few assignments on hand at the end of his career. He was victimized by the politics of the industry prevailing at that time. During that period, only three to four studios were available for song recording. Many top music directors used to book the studios for months together in advance, not allowing their rivals any opportunity to work. If any music director needed a studio, he had to beg the so-called music barons for the favour. 
This hurt Madan Mohan immensely. A man of a high sense of self-esteem he got frustrated and preferred to spend time by himself rather than beg for studio dates. This had 
affected his domestic life too, and in desperation, he turned to the bottle. Soon he developed medical problems, only to succumb to cirrhosis of the liver.
Talking about their marriage, Madan Mohan's wife Sheila once described him as a very caring husband: "He's a family man. He has given me all the comforts of life. He always has time for his family. Many a time, he would take the whole family out for picnic or for dinner at some nice spot. He's been fond of sports - billiards in particular. And of course, he's always engrossed in music. At times, he gets up in the middle of the night and starts composing a tune that could have flashed in his mind then, on the harmonium. This also happens while driving the car. He would suddenly stop and start writing some lyric on a piece of paper kept in his pocket". 
Madan Mohan 25 June 1924 – 14 July 1975. His songs will live for ever. Dedicated to Madan Mohan on his birth anniversary 
By R. Rangaraj 


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