The monumental contribution of the great Composers of yesteryears in sustaining Indian Classical Music हिंदुस्तानी शास्त्रीय संगीत को लोकभोग्य बनाने में हमारे हिंदी फिल्म के फन कारों का महत्त्व पूर्ण योगदान (Scroll down for Hindi version)

“I like to listen to classical music; it is so soothing but don’t understand it”
Haven’t you heard such admission by a lot of your friends? The essence of classical music is embodied in structured melodious patterns.

Before independence it was the royal patronage that sustained the great artistes through the ages. In the absence of technological marvels like microphones, amplifiers, speakers it does not take much imagination to conjure up an assembly of less than around 100 people attentively listening to some of the finest music from the stalwarts of yester years – courtesy of the Kings.

It must have been a task for the musicians to reach the last rows of listeners in the hall. We must salute the range of the vocal chords and of the instruments they played.

The arrival of modern gadgets should have made it possible for the artistes to regale much larger audiences. But that did not happen overnight.

There in comes the role of our great Film Music Composers. The advent of talking movies required insertion of short duration songs as lip-synched by the lovely actors. Before we knew, the era of playback singing was here. The composers realized that they had a treasure trove of unending melodious music only if they could package it in 3 minute-songs.

It is to the credit of these masters who worked very hard to encapsulate the beauty of the ready material in songs. It is hard enough to render a full-scale classical raga but it is even harder to do it in 3 minutes. Add to that the visual effect of their favourite stars singing these songs right in front of their eyes!
The moviegoers lapped it up – the hummable melodies set to some esoteric ragas that they could hear again and again through gramophone records.

My music lover friends, now it is easy for you to realize the stupendous role that the composers of yester years played in sustaining classical music.

Take the case of the song you see me playing here – “Naino mein badaraa chhaye” based on the popular raga Bhimpalash. If you listen to it carefully, the composer Madan Mohan does take some liberties in using some notes and some patterns that are strictly not Bhimpalash.

But the sky is not going to crash! Just like poetic license such liberties add to the beauty the song. It is just like tasting some spicy chutney in between enjoying a big thaali of mouthwatering Punjabi, Gujarati or Maharashtrian fare.

The pattern you hear “bada raaaaa chaye” is Pa Dha Ni (raaaaa) that is strictly not Bhimpalash, though the notes are!
One big liberty that Madan Mohan has taken is when you hear “ sharmaa ke degi to……. he….”, the ‘he’ is on the note komal dha! , not in the raga bhimpalash!

Ok, Ok.

Classical music enthusiasts would also agree with me that many a times the difference between certain ragas are so fine that it escapes our attention. Read about the difference between bhimpalash and dhani and you will know what I mean.
The central point is that by taking the socalled liberties the composer consciously deviates from the traditional structure of the raga but in the process makes the song catchier.

So, returning to the main topic; moviegoers dazzled by the story, the song and the melody must have wondered about what makes the song so nice and hummable.

Folks, back to the drawing board, they go back to the classical music lovers, to learn that so-and-so song is based on a raga known as bhimpalash. They try to even memorize the name of the raga associated with the song. Their knowledge of the classical music grows as they listen to the song again and again, humming it over again and again.
In colloquial Hindi this is called “Ulti Ganga” or awareness in reverse. Songs like “Aaj gawat man mero jhumake “ exposed us to raga Deshi. “Man Mohanaa bade Juthe” to raga Jay Jaywanti, “Man tadapat hari darasan” to Malkauns. Can you imagine gaining his knowledge through a regular one hour rendition of the same raga? No matter how much the classical vocalists or instrumentalist tried they would have never exposed the general population to the beauty of ragas as the composers did through a 3 minute song.

The powerful melody set to a traditional raga, being shown on the huge movie screen, sung by their favourite actors, and going back to the song again and again through the gramophone record – a sure shot to popularize Classical music.

For me it is a great way to introduce a raga that I am about to play by an opening remark “ Remember the song ‘Man re to kaahe naa dhir dhare…’ it is set to raga Yaman Kalyaan that I am going to play”
The listeners connect immediately to whatever elaborate alap, jod, Jhala I play in that raga because they can relate to it – something to hang on to instead of wondering as to what is going on.

To compare this with another aspect of movies:
Popular historical movies such as “ Padmawat, Bhagat singh, “ make people go back to read more history after watching the movies. Otherwise the subject called history would be too drab to many.

So three cheers for the great composers of yester years who rekindled our interest in the treasures of classical ragas.

Anyway, enjoy the song that I have played in the video. I would be too happy to play the traditional bhimpalash when I am face to face with you in a baithak concert!

कई लोंगो से आपने जरूर सुना होगा की ” हमें शास्त्रीय संगीत सुनना अच्छा लगता है लेकिन समझ में नहीं आता है”

सही बात?
हमारा शास्त्रीय संगीत मेलोडी पैटर्न प्रधान है । स्वराज मिलने से पहले राजाओं ने शास्त्रीय संगीत कारों को आश्रय दिया और इस तरह वो बरकरार रहा । जरा सोचिओ। पुराने ज़माने में जब न तो कोई म्युज़िक सिस्टम था न कोई एम्प्लीफायर, न माइक, न स्पीकर । जब ये दिग्गज संगीतकारों राजाओं के सामने गाते बजाते होंगे तब मुश्शील से सभा में एकाद सौ सुन ने वाले होते होंगे। जब वो संगीतकार ताने छेड़ता तो ज्यादा से ज्यादा कितनी दूरी पर सुनायी देता? कुछ विशिस्ट लोग ही ये अटपटा संगीत का आनंद ले पातें होंगे या समझ सकते होंगे

जब म्युज़िक के नए नए उपकरण आने लगे तो ये ही संगीत बड़ी बड़ी सभाओं में पेश करना आसान हो सकता था। लेकिन ये नहीं हो पाया। शास्त्रीय संगीत को समझने वाले या तो उसका आनंद लेने वाले काम हो गये। और ये चीज़ होती भी तो बहुत समय लग जाता।
अब बारी आयी हमारे महान फिल्म फनकारों की!
उनको तीन मिनट के गाने बनाने के लिए जैसे एक भण्डार सा खुल गया। इतने सारे राग, रागिनियाँ। वाह!
टॉकीज़ का ज़माना आ गया। एक्टर लोग प्लैबैक से तैयार किये गये गाने पे गाते दिखाई देने लगे। फिल्मा की स्टोरी, मोहक एक्टर्स और बाकी सब ऑडिओ विज्युअल इफ्फेक्ट से फिल्म देखने वाले पर बड़ा असर पढ़ना जाहिर था ।
फिल्म फनकारों के सामें खजाना तो था लेकिन उस खजाने में से मेलोडी निकालके एक ३ मिनट के गाने में डालना बड़ा मुशिकल काम था लेकिन हमारे फनकारों ने कर के दिखा दिया।

फिल्म देखने वाले ऑडियंस को तो मज़ा आ गया। एक से एक बढ़ कर गाने तैयार होने लगे। लोग गुन गुना ने लगे और ग्रामोफोन के जरिए बार बार सुन ने लगे। अब जिसे कहते है न वो उलटी गंगा शुरू हो गयी । अरे ये गाना तो बड़ा सुन्दर है जो फ़लाने राग पे आधारित ह। तो वो ये राग का नाम याद रखने लगे, राग के बारे में अधिक जानकारी ढूंढने लगे। ये हुआ शाश्त्री शास्त्रीय संगीत का फैलावा!

अब देखिये ये वीडियो को जिसमे मैंने एक पॉप्युलर गाना “नैनो में बदरा छाये” बजाया है। ये राग भीमपलाश पे आधारित है। यु कहो तो फनकार मदन मोहन जी ने कुछ लिबर्टीज़ ली है हरूर लेकिन उस से गाने की मधुरता और बढ़ जाती है
ध्यान से सुनिए: बद रा में जब रा बजता है तो सप्तक के प ढ नी होता है लेकिन भीमपलाश में प धनी नहीं आ सकता ह। प नी स नी धप् आ सकता है।
और एक बात : अंतरे से जब वापस मुखड़े पे आते है तब ” शर्मा से दे गी तो हे ” में ‘हे’ कोमल ध पे है जो भीमपलाश में है ही नहीं!

लेकिन इस सी कोई आसमान नहीं टूट पड़ा। जैसे कविता लिखते समय कवि पोएटिक लाइसेंस लेता है वैसी बात है।
यूँ कहिए की मदन मोहन जी ने ऐसा करके और मधुर कर दिया गाने को ।

याद है न ? “मन तड़पत हरी दरसन ” गीत से लोंगो को मालकौंस राग की पहचान हुई । “आज गावत मन मेरो झुमके” से राग देशी की पहचान, ” मन मोहना बड़े जूठे से” राग जय जय वनती की पहचान हुई

रागो को समझाना आसान है इन फ़िल्मी गीतों से जो शास्त्रीय राग पे आधारित है । ये समझ पक्के शास्त्रीय संगीत्कारें शायद ही कर पाते।

आज कल मैं भी जब कोई राग प्रथम तरंग पे बजाता हूँ तो सबसे पहले सुन ने वालो को ये राग कौन से गाने में आता है वो कह देनेसे कार्यक्रम अच्छा होता है
वो ही उलटी गंगा वाली चीज़ होती है जब कोई ऐतिहासिक फिल्म देखने के बाद लोग वो ही हिस्टरी के बारे में पढ़ने लग जाते है। इतिहास जैसा नीरस विषय (कुछ लोंगो के लिए ) बिलकुल रसमय हो जाता ह।

तो दोस्तों, मेरा नैनो में बदरा छाये गाना सुन ने के बाद अब मेरा शुद्ध भीमपलाश राग सुन ने के लिए कब पधारेंगे? हो जाय !

8 thoughts on “The monumental contribution of the great Composers of yesteryears in sustaining Indian Classical Music हिंदुस्तानी शास्त्रीय संगीत को लोकभोग्य बनाने में हमारे हिंदी फिल्म के फन कारों का महत्त्व पूर्ण योगदान (Scroll down for Hindi version)

  1. Yes you are right I do not know classical music but I love to listen because of excellent work done by our music composers of Golden era…

  2. Wah! Rajendra bhai!! Please keep playing beautiful music!
    Music is the shortest path to attaining God’s bliss!

  3. Beautiful rendition of the Madan Mohan Classic. I also agree fully with your comments on the help rendered by our film music composers in sustaining Indian Classical Music, both Hindustani and Carnatic.

  4. Wonderful writeup and equally wonderful rendition of madan mohan’s composition. The ultimate goal of any raag, for that fact any music is – paramanand. The rest is all theory. If any music / raag touches your heart, the purpose is solved. The music composers of golden era had to knack of touching hearts of people through their brief compositions. That’s what made their music immortal !

    1. Absolutely. Take for instance the following case:

      Thumri in Raga Tilang by Indubala.

      Very few would have heard of her, but listen to the words and you will recall the song “ Sajan sang kaahe nehaa lagaa” from the movie “ Main Nashe mein hoon”
      Just appreciate how Shanker Jaikishan has woven magic with similar words in Tilang

Leave a Reply