Ten of my favourite Naushad Songs

Happy Christmas!

Today marks the birthday of Jesus Christ, but also of a man who was pretty much regarded as little less than a god by thousands of music lovers in India between the 40s and the 60s. The one and only Naushad Ali, who was born on Christmas Day, 1919.

While Naushad may not have been the music director I first became aware of, he was definitely among the first, his songs featuring so often on radio programmes that I soon cottoned on to the fact that this man was very good—and very popular. Then, when TV came into our lives with Doordarshan in the 1980s, Naushad became the very first music director I could recognize by face: he was getting on in years by then (though he was still working, composing music for TV series and so on), but every now and then, there would be TV interviews with him, in which he would reminisce about the golden days of Hindi cinema.

Born and brought up in Lucknow, Naushad was deeply interested in both music as well as theatre since a young age, and eventually set up an entertainment company (Windsor Entertainers), for which he composed music. With the advent of the talkies in the early 1930s, Naushad realized that here was his chance to compose for cinema. Much against the wishes of his orthodox and disapproving family, he ran off to Bombay in 1937. Thanks to the support and help of Khemchand Prakash and DN Madhok, he finally got a break in Hindi cinema, his first musical score being for Prem Nagar (1940).

It wasn’t until Rattan (1944) that Naushad got his first hit—and what a hit that was. Remembering the success of Rattan’s music in later years, Naushad recalled a delightful anecdote in an interview. When his parents arranged Naushad’s wedding, they told his future in-laws that their son was a tailor, a respectable occupation compared to the cinema industry employee he actually was. Naushad kept mum, but on the day of the wedding, was flattered to find that the band playing as the baaraat arrived at the venue was performing all the latest hits—that is, the songs of Rattan.

When it came to composing songs based on folk music, or on classical Hindustani music, there was little rivalling Naushad: he was the master of these genres—and that is why, perhaps, his music was so successful through the 40s and 50s. It was in the 60s, as Ganesh Anantharaman points out in Bollywood Melodies: A History of the Hindi Film Song, that Naushad’s tunes (though with some exceptions) began to sound too alike, as if his creativity had dried up. “Perhaps he also found composing in the era of Shammi Kapoor’s Yahoo a strain,” notes Anantharaman.

In the 28 years of his prime between 1940 and 1968, Naushad composed music for only 62 films—not a huge number, if you compare that with some of his contemporaries. But what songs! Some of the greatest, most recognizable, most popular songs of the golden age of Hindi film music were Naushad’s.

In celebration of his birth centenary, therefore, ten of my favourite Naushad songs. These are all from pre-70s films that I’ve seen, and are in no particular order. And, as is usual when I’m compiling lists of songs, no two songs are from the same film.

1. Madhuban mein Radhika naache re (Kohinoor, 1960): Anybody who’s been following this blog for a while would know by now of my love for this song. Of all the Hindi film songs that are classical in tone, Madhuban mein Radhika naache re was the very first one I fell in love with—and, till today, it remains my favourite. The intricacy of this performance takes my breath away: the balance between vocals and instruments, between words and lyrics. Between long stretches of just the sitar being played, and then Rafi’s voice, flirtatious yet accomplished, a virtuoso. A wonderful, wonderful song.

2. Mere mehboob tujhe meri mohabbat ki kasam (Mere Mehboob, 1963): My father, whose sense of humour  can be really wacky, told me a parody of this song when I was young: Mere mehboob tujhe meri mohabbat ki kasam/Mera khoya hua rangeen pajama de de (“My love, let my love compel you/Return to me my lost, colourful pajama once again”). It says a lot for the beauty of the original song that this nutty distortion didn’t ruin Mere mehboob tujhe for me (which, by the way, has happened to me several times—with songs all the way from Sau saal pehle mujhe tumse pyaar tha to Dil ke jharokha mein tujhko bithaakar). Here, while Rafi’s voice plays a huge part in rendering the wistful longing of Shakeel Badayuni’s lyrics, it is Naushad’s music, so contained and low-key, so elegant, which makes this song what it is.

I must admit that this song was a hard one to choose. With most of the other songs in the list, choosing that particular song from the film in question wasn’t too much of a problem. In Mere Mehboob, Naushad produced one beautiful composition after the other, and selecting just one song was a real problem.

3. Mera salaam jaam lejaa (Udan Khatola, 1955): While the last song of Udan Khatola—one of the most heartbreaking songs of farewell in Hindi cinema, as far as I am concerned, O door ke musaafir—is a beautiful one, the title song from the same film is the one I decided to showcase on this list. With the clip-clop ‘tonga beats’ which OP Nayyar had pretty much made his trademark, Naushad departed from his more usual style of folk and/or classical tunes and created a song that’s frothy and light and very infectious (in fact, it has more than a shade of OP Nayyar in its composition). The ‘oye!’ coming in now and then is folksy, but the ‘aaaaaah’ of the chorus has a somewhat Western choral feel to it. Superb.

4. Mann tadpat hari darshan ko aaj (Baiju Bawra, 1951): This song has something of an iconic status in Hindi cinema, especially when one wants to emphasize the secular nature of the Hindi film industry: because a devotional song, so obviously an intrinsic part of Hindu worship, owes its beauty to three Muslims: Mohammad Rafi (who sang it), Naushad (who composed the music) and Shakeel Badayuni (who wrote the lyrics). Here, discussing specifically the music of Mann tadpat hari darshan ko aaj, I must say how much I love the way Naushad changes the pace of the song, introducing it in a low-key, subdued way that allows Rafi’s voice to take centrestage—but finally, in the very end of the song, allowing a crescendo that includes a chorus and more frenetically-played musical instruments.

5. Uthaaye jaa unke sitam (Andaaz, 1949): I have a connection with this song: my uncle, David Vernon Liddle ‘Verni’ played the guitar for Uthaaye jaa unke sitam (Naushad was one of the composers for whom Verni played a good deal). That connection, however, is beside the point in this case: I love Uthaaye jaa unke sitam for other reasons too (no, the regressive lyrics, so full of righteous self-sacrifice, aren’t part of that). But the music, so understated when Lata’s singing and swelling so beautifully (though still restrained) in between lines, is lovely. It’s seemingly simple, but you can, on listening carefully, see how it changes as the song progresses. And, of course, there’s Lata’s voice itself: Naushad is supposed to have told her to sing this song in the style of her ‘Pakistani sister’ (Noorjehan), and Lata does that remarkably. She does sound uncannily like Noorjehan here.

6. Aawaaz de kahaan hai (Anmol Ghadi, 1946): And, taking up from the previous song—in which Naushad asked Lata Mangeshkar to sing like Noorjehan—a Noorjehan song. Like Rattan, Anmol Ghadi was one of those films that had an absolutely stellar score, one superb song after another. Choosing between songs like Jawaan hai mohabbat haseen hai hai zamaana, Udan khatole pe ud jaaoon, and Aaja meri barbaad mohabbat (which are my favourite songs from Anmol Ghadi) was a tough one, but I finally decided to stick with the song which I had instinctively picked as my favourite: Aawaaz de kahaan hai. I love the tune, and the way Naushad keeps the music so subdued that Noorjehan’s gorgeous voice shines forth (Surendra’s voice, I must admit, I am not as enamoured of). This song comes through mostly in the form of the tune carried by Noorjehan, with pretty much minimal instrumentation. Classic.

7. Akhiyaan milaake jiya bharmaake (Rattan, 1944): A much younger me—till well into my teens, and even beyond—just couldn’t summon up a liking for Hindi film songs of the 40s. The voices, as far as I was concerned, were too nasal, the music too dated (yes, I held strong and not always intelligent views on matters like this). But among the handful of songs from the 40s that I didn’t mind was Akhiyaan milaake jiya bharmaake. Today, I can safely say that I don’t merely ‘not mind’ this song, I love it. Zohrabai Ambalewali’s voice is playful and flirtatious, and Naushad’s music fits the scenario perfectly: the young woman teasing her lover into not going away. The pep of the interludes, the somewhat folksy feel to the entire song: hummable and infectious.

8. Chhod baabul ka ghar (Baabul, 1950): Baabul had some nice songs, but of all of them, my favourite is this one—and, it seems, perhaps Naushad (and director SU Sunny? I don’t know) thought so too, since Chhod baabul ka ghar appears repeatedly through the film, sung by various people. It’s a credits song; Dilip Kumar sings the refrain once, Shamshad Begum sings the cheerful version for Nargis, and right at the end, Talat sings a heartbreakingly slow, poignant version. I love the simplicity of this song: the music has the sort of down-to-earth, relatable feel that SD Burman had said was the hallmark of a song that would be likely to succeed. For me, the genius of Naushad shows in the way he tweaks the same song to create a completely different feel: the pep and joy of the Shamshad version is miles apart from the sorrow of the Talat version.

9. Aaj ki raat mere dil ki salaami le le (Ram aur Shyam, 1967): Unlike (say) his contemporary SD Burman, Naushad is generally not regarded as one of those who constantly reinvented his music in such a way that he always stayed contemporary. He was immensely successful and his songs very popular in the 1940s and 50s, but by the late 60s, Naushad had begun showing signs of a certain ennui, and though he did compose music through the 70s and 80s—right up to 2005, actually—there were none of those stellar scores he had once been so known for.

Ram aur Shyam, therefore, marks one of the last of his good scores: a film that had some lovely songs, including the cheery Aayi hain bahaarein mite zulm-o-sitam, and O baalam tere pyaar ki thandi aag mein—and this one. A farewell that’s disguised as a party song, but actually talks of an impending separation, perhaps forever. A lovely tune, and beautifully rendered by Rafi.

10. Teri mehfil mein kismet (Mughal-e-Azam, 1960): And, to end, a song from one of the most epic blockbusters Hindi cinema has ever known. Mughal-e-Azam holds a special place in the annals of Hindi cinema, for just about everything that went into it—the extravagant sets, the all-star cast, the painstaking detail, the chemistry between Dilip Kumar and Madhubala, the dialogues (Kamal Amrohi’s and Wajahat Mirza’s, among others’) and Naushad’s music. Naushad composed some 20 songs for Mughal-e-Azam, though eventually only a few of these were retained in the film.

While the very popular Pyaar kiya toh darna kya might be the first song that comes to mind when one thinks of this film, to me that song, good though it is, has been rather done to death. And Mohe panghat pe Nandlal, while also lovely, is not originally Naushad’s composition—it was a thumri which had been sung many times before by others.

And there is this, a wonderful qawwali. Madhubala’s and Nighar Sultana’s characters face off, ostensibly throwing challenges at each other, but actually with their words cloaked in innuendo. To the prince who looks on, the real message is directed: to him is the singer’s love offered, even if it brings her nothing but woe. Sadly prophetic for poor Anarkali, but such a classic song.

Which are your favourite Naushad songs? Please share!


45 thoughts on “Ten of my favourite Naushad Songs

  1. Nice selection, I would include O Gadiwale Gadi dhire haank re from Mother India..or you have excluded Mother India because it is not Black and White.


    • No, I’ve not excluded Mother India because it’s not black and white (after all, Ram aur Shyam is colour too), but because I don’t especially like that song. TBH, none of the songs of Mother India are favourites of mine.


      • madhu, would you please tell me your favourite songs from mughal-e-azam…a legenadary naushadic score. Just ennumber then liking wise…all of the 12. it would be too great of you.


        • I would never be able to do that – just too difficult to choose where to place each song (and, personally, there are some songs there that I don’t especially care for). My favourite is Mohe panghat pe Nandlal, then Teri mehfil mein kismat and Jab raat hai aisi matwaali (both about equally), then perhaps Prem jogan ban and finally Pyaar kiya toh darna kya (I think I might have liked this song more if it hadn’t been subjected to such overkill – I think familiarity has bred contempt in this case). The other songs, I wouldn’t want to try rating; it’s not that I don’t like them, but I think they aren’t as good as the others.


          • oh! i found your reply. Actually while i processed refresh mode, i couldn’t find my question. so i did ask it again. thankyou! madhulika for your answer.you list is well-recieved by me. I admire your choices and what about songs picturised in the dungeon on madhubala….I think they are 2. They are indeed well-crafted in cinematography. What do you think about them?


            • No worries, I’m glad you managed to see the answer. I can recall only one song in the dungeon (and I don’t have the time to go check it out, or see if there’s another one too), but while it’s good, it’s not one of my favourite songs from the film.


  2. Some beautiful songs…Ye saawan rut tum aur hum from Dastaan. Mere pyar bhi tu hai from Saathi. They have a catchy western tune unloke typical Nayshad. Highly enjoyable!!
    All songs of Dil Diya Dard Liya and Leader are also good. I would go with Koi sagar dil ko and Ek Shahensha ne. Kya rang e mehfil has an interesting middle eastern flavour.
    Not to forget Ganga Jumna…all gems again.

    Merry Christmas Madhuji and kind regards.


    • Thank you, and best wishes of the season to you, Gauravji. Yes, I like the songs of Leader and Dil Diya Dard Liya too – Koi saagar dil ko is lovely, and I also like Sar kataa sakte hain lekin. Ganga Jamuna too: some nice songs there.


  3. Merry Christmas Madhu……

    A wonderful selection of songs from the many classics of Naushad. I like all the songs you mentioned. Whenever I hear the title song from Mere Mehboob, I somehow feel that Rafi caresses each word lovingly like drops of honey. Of course, there would be many songs of Naushad I like that are not in your list – but I will share only two of them.

    1) Tere sadke balam from Amar. To me this is a glorious song and the beauty of the composition makes you feel as if you are riding on waves with Lata’s voice being pitch perfect.

    2) Aaj purani raahon from Aadmi – the music is haunting and the lyrics and Rafi’s voice capture the philosophy very well.

    Naushad was not just a master of Indian classical and folk music. He mastered western music and notations as well. He was among the first to use Western musicians (primarily from Goa) to give a rich, harmonic touch to the music in the interludes (right from the days of Rattan). But, he preferred the Indian melodic style in the vocals even when the instruments and orchestration style had elements of western classical music. if we observe his music in Saathi – the vocals are delightful, Indian type melodies and the music in a few songs had elements of western classical music like counterpoints. Kersi Lord used to arrange Naushad’s music and he often said Naushad used to give him everything written down with Western notations that made his job of arranging and conducting very easy.

    He was not lacking in innovation either – Mere Saiyyaanji from Uran Khatola did not have any instruments in the interludes, only vocals. And some of his background score in Pakeezah enhanced the visuals beautifully using guitars!

    It would have been very difficult for Naushad to change his style of composing vocals in the Shammi Kapoor era and he gradually faded away in the 60s – like most of the composers from the Golden era.


    • “I somehow feel that Rafi caresses each word lovingly like drops of honey.

      Well put! Yes, I agree completely. He imbues that song with so much emotion, so much love.

      I love Aaj puraani raahon se; that had been on my shortlist and could have scraped into the final list too, but didn’t – so I’m especially happy to see you mention that. Beautiful song.

      Thank you also for the discussion of Naushad’s innovations and arrangement; that made for interesting reading.


  4. Merry Christmas Madhuji.
    What a great tribute to one of the greatest composers of the golden era.
    You have highlighted some of the iconic songs.
    Raviji has very aptly summarized Naushad’s musical journey. While he tried successfully using western tunes in Jaadu, dastan etc., he wasn’t much satisfied with his compositions. He finally decided to go for Indian flavour and Baiju Bawra surely brought out his best in classical based segment.
    Later, Shabab, Mughal e Azam and Mother India, Ganga Jamna gave him more opportunities to explore Indian classical and folk based songs. He excelled in each and every song.
    And, I agree (sadly) that towards the end of the 1960s, his compositions sounded somewhat copies of his earlier hits. After, Ram aur Shyam, his creativity suffered.

    I would add, songs from Amar, Shabab, Ganga Jamna, Palki.
    Anyone from each film.

    Enjoyed the post very much. Again today, I’m just a reader than a fellow blogger. Sometimes, it feels refreshing that, I’m just a reader. Enjoying right now a little break from my blog.

    Wishing you again Merry Christmas



    • Thank you, Anupji! Glad you liked this post, and wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year too!

      Amar, Shabab and Ganga-Jamuna are films from which I like some of the songs; I must admit that – possibly because I’ve never seen Palki – I don’t offhand recall any songs from that film. :-(


      • “Palki” is in fact a bit special. It’s 100 % melodrama, and viewers who regard melodrama as sentimental candyfloss for the uneducated will probably hate it. But if you consider melodrama as an legit form of storytelling, it’s very enjoyable. Bad and sad things happen to good people and you will easily empty a Kleenex box deploring their fate :) According to Waheeda Rehman, K. Asif was ghost directing parts of it. I add a song that will hopefully give you an idea of it’s overall atmosphere. Needless to say I love it a lot…


        • Ah. I don’t mind melodrama within limits, but too much of it tends to get on my nerves. :-D

          What a lovely song Dil ki kashti bhanvar mein aayi hai is. It’s been so long since I heard this (and I know I have), that I’d forgotten all about this. I must put this movie on my list, if only for the music. Thanks so much, Manuela.


  5. A fitting tribute on Naushad’s 100th birth anniversary! Here are some of my Naushad favourites, apart from the ones you’ve listed:

    The beginning of the great Naushad – Rafi partnership
    “Suhaani raat dhal chuki” from Dulari

    A lesser known, breezy song from Dulari – the “Hoon Hoon, Haana Haan” by Lata and Rafi is very charming
    “Mil mil ke gayenge” from Dulari

    One of the many wonderful pathos-laden songs sung by Lata for Naushad
    “Jaane wale se mulaqat” from Amar

    Another beautiful Naushad-Rafi song, full of the gravitas which was sort of reserved for Dilip Kumar
    “Koi sagar dil ko behlata nahin” from Dil Diya Dard Liya

    Unusually, a Naushad song picturised on Joy Mukherji
    “dil ki mehfil” from Saaz aur Awaaz


  6. Naushad was unique ! While many musically hit films of other renown MD’s of the golden era had at least one or two weak songs, films of Naushad of the 50’s had hardly any. Take Andaz, Aan, Shabaab, Baiju bawra, Amar, Mother India, Udan Khatola, Mughal-e-aazam and try to find a single routine song !
    He was also a master of Indian Classical Music . In SHABAAB, 12 songs were based on 11 different Raga’s ! The song that you have mentioned ‘ madhuban me radhika naache re ‘ is based on Raag HAMEER which is a very-very rare Raag and there are hardly a handful of film songs based on that Raag.
    Salutes to him and you too for selecting him for the tribute…


    • My knowledge of Indian classical music is so poor that I wouldn’t be able to identify the raga of a song even if a gun was held to my head. But Madhuban mein Raadhikha naache re I knew was based on Raag Hameer because I think I read about it on AK’s blog – if I remember correctly there was a post long ago which listed the ragas of some famous songs, and this one stuck in my mind because I love the song so much. I hadn’t realized the songs of Shabaab were based on 11 different ragas: interesting.


  7. Dear Madhulika,

    Someone once commented that it is Hindi Film Songs which keep India united. Thanks are due to the earthy music of Naushad to a great extent. And you really require 100 songs to do full justice to the Maestro.

    On a personal note, I feel sad that you left SHABAB and MELA out, but then we are a generation apart and tastes change.

    About that Clip-Clop song from URAN KHATOLA (1955), it’s predecessor was the song from ANMOL GHADI (1946) already covered by you in a separate Blog on Actress Noor. It certainly has more clip-clops than the 1955 song :-)

    But you were wise to select “Awaaz de kahan hai…”. Not many would know that it has the haunting strains of the SONG OF INDIA in the Interlude played on the Trombone. As most of us know, the SONG OF INDIAN TRAVELLER was composed by Russian Composer NIKOLAI RIMSKY-KORSAKOV way back in 1898. But the story of the Indian Traveller who sings the song to showcase his Country is set in the 11th Century. The original SONG OF INDIA is sung in Russian. Here is an Instrumental version from the Film LAS VEGAS (1941), played by Tommy Dorsey. I am sure you’ll be able to find the strain that Naushad incorporated in the song from ANMOL GHADI :

    ( for Jazz enthusiasts, that’s the legendary Buddy Rich on the drums)

    Naushad was also a Master in Background Score of Films and it is difficult to give examples as YouTube does not have clips of such Music.

    With warm regards



    • Thank you, Parthaji, for that information about Song of India. I had no idea, even given that I like Aawaaz de kahaan hai so much! Thank you, too, for Udan khatole pe ud jaaoon: lovely song, and one which was on my shortlist, even though I finally settled for another song from the same film.

      I must admit I have not yet got around to watching Mela, though yes, it has some great songs. As does Shabaab – my favourite there is (perhaps obviously?) Chandan ka palna.


      • Manna Dey often complained that Naushad Saab did not use his voice as much as he would have liked to. In fact you can count these songs on your fingers, hardly 10 of them, sung by Manna Dey under Naushad’s baton.

        One of them, I would select as perhaps the best from “SHABAB” (maybe better than “Chandan Ka Palna” in Musical Content) is this traditional North Indian Bhajan :

        One more trivia : For a song from “LOVE AND GOD” (1986), he had seven prominent singers in a Chorus song, namely Hemant Kumar, Manna Dey, Talat Mahmood, Khan Mastana, Balbir and Suman Kalyanpur. In fact, this song was the only one that Lyricist ASAD BHOPALI wrote for Naushad.

        One can go on and on…..

        With warm regards



          • Dear Madhulika,

            Taking a cue from Anuradha, a belated Merry Christmas to you. At least she has the time difference as an excuse, I have none and hang my head in shame.

            A fantastic 2020 to you and your family!


            • Thank you so much for the greetings, Parthaji! Here’s wishing you and your family a very very happy 2020, too.

              Bhagat ke bhes mein hai bhagwaan is a wonderful song too, I agree. And thank you for that bit of trivia about the song from Love and God – I had no idea!


  8. Merry Christmas Madhu,
    For me Naushad was the undisputed Great Mughal of Film Music. Even with a relatively small number of 62 films, and consequently less than 600 songs – a fraction of Laxmikant-Pyarelal, Shankar-Jaikishan and RD Burman – he remains a towering figure. It is difficult to choose his ten from hundreds of superhit songs. My great favourites not figuring in your post are: O door ke musafir humko bhi saath le le re, Marna teri gali mein jeena teri gali mein, Chandan ka palna resham ki dori, Aaj mere man mein sakhi.


    • True, very difficult to choose just ten songs from Naushad’s ouevre. I had a tough time selecting these, and among the ones that nearly made it to the final list were O door ke musaafir and Chandan ka palna.


  9. A very Merry Christmas to you, too!
    Naushad is certainly one of the most distinguished composers in the history of Indian Cinema. My personal fave however is not one of his (wonderful) songs, but the opening title music from “Aadmi” (1968). I just love and adore it’s noble pathos.


  10. Madhu, since this is Naushad, of course, I love everything on the list. And it may be the only list you have done in which I know every item very well. For some of the films you mentioned – such as Uran Khatola and Anmol Ghadi – I could list just about every song among my favorites.

    I could also add quite a few more, from films not on your list. :) But I’ll just offer three for now:

    The soundtrack to Dillagi is great – so many good Suraiya songs on that one! But my favorite is sung by Shamshad Begum and Uma Devi:

    And then there’s that great Lata song from Aan:

    And this one from Anokhi Ada… The melody has really stood out for me; it’s popped up in my head a few times since the first time I heard it, several years ago. Shamshad Begum is also great here, and Naseem Banu is very amusing in this scene!


    • Thank you, Richard! I’m glad you liked this post and that all the songs were familiar ones. :-) Meri pyaari patang and <I<Aaj mere mann mein sakhi are songs I like too. Nazar mil gayi, I must admit, I had to listen to in order to remember which one that was. I think I’ve heard it before, but I can’t be sure. Lovely song, and I do agree that Shamshad Begum is great in it.


  11. Hope you had a great Christmas Madhuji!!

    Aaj ki Raat, Teri Mehfil mein kismat are my favourite too.

    My other favourites of the legend are:

    It sounds very self pitying & whinny but somehow I like this song.
    “Hue hum jinke liye barbad” from Deedar

    I hated “Pyaar kiya to Darna Kya” till I read complete lyrics and saw it’s picturisation. It is the defiance of Madhubala and Anger of Prithviraj Kapoor got me hooked.
    But always liked “Khuda Nigehban ho tumhara” with it’s minimal yet effective music and “Ae Ishq ye duniya wale”. I think second one is often ignored yet very delightful song in this entire heavy duty saga.

    Kaisi Haseen Aaj from Aadmi.
    Seems Both Dilip Kumar and Manoj Kumar are hell bent on making Waheeda Rehman as uncomfortable as possible. But the song is a gem.

    There are better known songs in movie “Saathi” however I like “Mere Jeevansathi” Simmi Garewal looks very elegant. But in a brief scene where Vyjayanthimala appears shows why she is better actor. A song praising beloved without putting him on pedestal.

    So much I would like to add my favourite “Teer e nazar” from Pakeezah but it is composed by Ghulam Mohammed.


    • Thank you for the wishes, and for the song! Especially, thanks for Khuda nigehbaan ho, which I should have mentioned among the best songs of Mughal-e-Azam: it’s really beautiful. Kitni haseen aaj is also a wonderful song.

      And yes, I echo the love for Teer-e-nazar. :-) Incidentally, my father maintains that Naushad composed some of his best scores when his assistant was Ghulam Mohammad.


  12. A fitting tribute to one of the most unique music composers we have seen in our lifetime, Naushad! I am completely with you on the introduction to him on Doordarshan and the standout there was “Suhani raat dhal chuki” and it was amazing to see an array of musicians and the honey laced rafi sahab singing completely mesmerizing the audience.

    I already see many of my favorite songs in your list and also added by others so I have nothing to contribute but to appreciate someone who was so special that his music still lives on and inspires us and as someone says unites our fragile country.

    Naushad sahab was obviously famous for his music but anyone who has heard him speak, he spoke almost every word in a poetic manner and I wonder if deep inside he was a shayar… Thank you for your post reminding us of his rich legacy.


  13. You have listed all my favourite songs, and mentioned a particular favourite –O door ke musafir.

    One of my absolute favourites is this frothy song from DastaanTa ra ri, ta ra ri, which is one of the few songs in which Mohammed Rafi playbacked for Raj Kapoor.

    Then there’s the haunting Dharti ko akaash pukaare by Shamshad Begum and Mukesh from Mela.

    And Lata’s Panchhi ban mein from Babul

    And Lata’s Mohe bhool gaye saawariya from Baiju Bawra, which is my favourite song from the film, though Mann tadpat hari is a close contender.

    Add Do sitaron ka zameen par from Kohinoor, Bekas pe karam
    and Humein kaash tumse muhobath na hoti, which are my favourite songs from Mughal-e-Azam – and I’m in seventh heaven. :)

    A belated Merry Christmas to you, and yours, Madhu. Hope the year ahead will be filled with grace.


    • Thank you for the wishes, Anu, and for the songs! I had never heard Ta ra ri aa ra ri before, and it’s so lovely that a very special thanks for that. :-)

      Do sitaaron ka zameen par, Bekas pe karam keejiye, Mohe bhool gaye saanwariya and Panchhi ban mein are also favourites of mine – all really good songs.


  14. What a tribute to the legendary music director ! Indeed it’s a very difficult task to choose just a handful of songs from the treasure created by Naushad. I am delightfully surprised to find my favourites like Mera Salaam Le Ja and Aaj Ki Raat Mere in this list. An interesting trivia connected to Aawaz De Kahaan Hai is that a movie with the same title was made in 1990 with the music of none other than Naushad only. The movie was a flop but Naushad had composed a couple of musical gems for that. One of them is as follows :


  15. Wonderful post! Naushad is probably my favorite composer, right up there with Sachin da, and you have listed my favorite songs by him. I guess the only songs I would have added were
    Tu kahe agar … from Andaz https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emuDkBWbibI
    Do hanson ka joda … from Ganga Jumna https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lC7nNgydKJs
    Do sitaron ka zameen … from Kohinoor https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ma8ht2nxEtQ

    My list could go on and on. Not an easy job for a Naushad music lover! Thanks for doing it for us viewers!


  16. madhuji, would you please ennumerate the songs of mughal-e-azam, you liking wise. its an exemplary naushadic score. I’d be greatly contended. All of the 12 as per you consider them from the best down the list to average( as there’s not a single song even below avrage :-D )


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