Monday, March 19, 2007

Farewell to O.P. Nayyar :::



The name Omkar Prasad Nayyar doesn't mean much to today's Bollywood fans but his passing on January 28th marks the end of an era for Hindi cinema's golden age. Born in Lahore in 1927, he was almost as famous for what he did not do in Bollywood as he was for his unforgettable melodies. What he did not do was to record a song with the legendary Lata Mangeshkar - ever. He felt her voice did not suit his compositions and instead made a star out of Asha Bhonsle (Lata's younger sister) who was a virtual unknown before becoming his favorite chanteuse. O.P. Nayyar stopped composing songs for the most part in the late 1970's but he remains an indelible part of Bollywood's musical history.

The two selections for today are from Bollywood's golden era and while the songs may have been released over thirty years ago there is a reason why they are remembered as 'evergreen'. The timeless vocals and melodies remain as fresh and vibrant today as they did when my parents heard them via shortwave signals on All India Radio every evening. Like I have said before - if you haven't heard a song before - it's new for you.

The song for today is Uden Jab Jab, a duet by Mohammed Rafi & Asha Bhonsle from 'Naya Daur' starring Dilip Kumar & Vaijantimala. This album won the Filmfare Award for the best soundtrack of the year (1958) and remains one of the sweetest duets that ever graced the silver screen - see it here.


6 comments:

trupti said...

O.P.Nayyar's tunes had a distinct quality to them...I can almost always differentiate his tunes from others....I loved that "Dekho Kasam Se" song from Tumsa Nahin Dekha.

Sanket Vyas said...

That is also one of my favorites! I find it so hard to post just one or two songs sometimes - leading me to believe that I am bound to have multiple postings on certain composers & singers, perhaps on their 'janam dins' (birthdays)?

Amit said...

I love O.P. Nayyar's music. His composition for Aar Paar and Mr. & Mrs. 55 still sound fresh, and Geeta Dutt's voice is magical.

Sanket Vyas said...

Agreed - he is just timeless even years after his compositions were recorded. Geeta Dutt's voice is also a favorite of mine - so different than Lata's but with so much depth as well.

Raj said...

Nayyar Saab was a true genius. To be able to work at a time when composers like Madan Mohan and Naushad Saab were reigining and bring the flair of true indian folk music to indian cinema and do it as successfully as he did (all without the voice of Lata) was nothing short of extraordinary. There is a wonderful article from the outlook magazine, whihc I have posted on my website whihc would be of interest to OPN fans. Do check it out at www.brandbombay.com
I chanced on your blog today and loved the articles. Keep up the good work. Cheers.

Sanket Vyas said...

Thanks Raj - I completely agree with you about Nayyar Saab. You don't necessarily have to be from his generation to appreciate his music - I am in my 30's but still am moved as anyone else by his compositions. I will stop by your site to check out the article.