Kishore was the 1st superstar singer who actually sang for the hero, and not for himself. Here he probably scores over other legendary singers like Rafi, Mukesh and Manna Dey who to some extent focussed on classical and technical excellence and the song.
Dada however made it always seem as if the hero is singing. This for me is his uniqueness as a singer. For this blog post, i choose to write on Dada and 3 of the superstar heroes for whom he sang in numerous movies and came to be associated as their voice. These 3 Superstars were Dev Anand, Rajesh Khanna and Amitabh Bachchan. It is Kishore’s greatness that he could become the “Voice” for 3 totally different personalities.
Before that to put matters even more in perfect perspective , let me choose just one Iconic song of Kishore with 7 different heroes and request you to visualise the song which will demonstrate what i said, that its as if its the hero singing.
- Sanjeev Kumar. Tum Aa gaye ho Noor aa gaya hai. Aandhi.
- Dharmendra. Hum Bewafa. Shalimaar
- Amol Palekar. Aane waala Pal. Golmaal
- Rishi Kapoor. Saagar Kinaare. Saagar
- Jeetendra. Naino mein Sapna. Himmatwala
- Shashi Kapoor. Khilte Hain Gul Yahaan. Sharmilee.
- Vinod Khanna. Chahiye thoda Pyar. Lahu Ke Do Rang
Therefore one sees that whoever the hero was, one felt that the hero was singing, and not Dada. Amazing, isnt it?
Now lets focus on Dada and 3 of the superstar heroes for whom he sang
Dada and Dev Anand.
The first song of Kishore Kumar’s career was picturised on Dev Anand. it was a ghazal composed by a renowned poet, Prem Dhavan:Marne ki duayen kyun mangoon. The movie was Ziddi and Khemchand Parkash was the music director. The song became a hit. Kishore sang many many songs for Dev Saab subsequently and Dev Anand himself says they complemented each other. They had a perfect rapport with each other and initially it was Dev Anand who encouraged Dada’s yodeling which Dev called “a solitary voice in the loneliness of the hills, a cry for romance”
Kishore and Dev Saab worked together for as many as 40 movies. They were a magical pair.
Pholon ki rang se, Gaata rahe mere dil, Ye dil na hota bechaara, Pal bhar ke liye koi hamein and kiska rasta dekhein are my top 5 Kishore – Dev Anand Songs. Do u agree ?
Dada and Rajesh Khanna( Kaka).
Kaka’s female fan following is something which India had never seen and will never see again. He received love letters written in blood. His car would be covered with lipstick marks and women would never marry as they could not marry Kaka.
One of the main reasons for Kaka’s popularity was his magical combo with Kishore Kumar. His first stepping stone to success was Aradhana which was his 1st super hit. One contributing factor was the music and the songs and that gave Kishore a second lease, one which would see him at the top for 18 years at a stretch.
Interestingly Kishore had said he will not sing for Kaka in Aradhana but may if Kaka meets him. A disappointed Kaka went to meet Dada. After all he was a newcomer and Dada an established singer. Dada asked him the reason for joining film industry and Kaka said that it was his passion and through cinema he wanted to serve the society through entertainment. That impressed Dada and they had a long talk together. Later Shakti Samanta revealed that the denial was only a drama as Kishore Kumar wanted to study the mannerisms of Rajesh Khanna so that he could sing as if Kaka himself was singing.
No wonder Kaka always said that Kishore was the soul to his body. They worked together for as many as 77 movies.
It is also destiny that Shakti Samanta had wanted to give all songs of Aradhana to Rafi Saab but on request of SD Burman , only one song Mere Sapnon ki Rani was to be given to Dada. Later SD fell ill, and RD Burman stepped in . He insisted on Kishore Singing “Roop Tera Mastana”. The rest is history, Kishore, RD and Kaka became a devastating trio.
My top 5 Dada-Kaka songs are Roop tera Mastana, O mere dil ki Chain, Bheegi bheegi raton mein, Chingari koi Bhadke and Aate get khoobsoorat. What are yours?
Amitabh Bachchan ( Big B)
Big B called Kishore Dada “The Kishore Kumar, versatile in thought and deed”. Dada had many hit songs for Big B and 3 of his 8 Filmfare awards are for Amitabh songs, namely “Khaike paan banaras wala”, “pag ghungroo” and “manzilen apni jagah”. One of the hallmark of Dada’s career as a singer is that for the movie Sharaabi he got each of his songs nominated for best male singer and there was not a single nomination by any other singer
Once they had a tiff. Dada wanted Big B to do a role in his home production and apparently Big B refused. As a result Dada refused to sing for him for quite some time. Finally he relented and sang in Amitabh’s Toofan. A forgettable song Aaya maya Toofan , in an equally forgettable movie. The duo had a magical run together and worked with each other in well over 70 movies.
My top 5 Dada-Big B songs are Dekha ek Khwab ko, Chookar mere man ko, Dilbar mere, O Saathi Re and Rim jHIM Gire saawan.
Till the next Part, (Kishore and his fellow singers), feedback on part 1-3 are welcome.