Ten of my favourite Mukesh songs

Of all the male singers who ruled the 50’s and 60’s, the one I’ve usually tended to ignore is Mukesh—and for what I must admit is a somewhat prejudiced reason: the most recognisable Mukesh songs, at least for me, are the ones he sang for Raj Kapoor, and nearly all of them just don’t appeal to me. Is it the fact that they’re picturised on RK (whom I, being the iconoclast I am, don’t much like)? Who knows?

But for Mukesh’s birth anniversary (he was born on July 23, 1923), I decided to explore Mukesh’s songs in greater detail—and realised that a lot of songs I really, really like are in his voice.

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Priceless Parodies

This is going to be my last post for a couple of weeks: I leave on Friday for a two-week jaunt through Switzerland and Alsace, so film watching and reviews are going to take a back seat. But before I go, I decided to do one last post, on parodies. I am providing translations, but they’re rather slipshod. Sorry!

Hindi film songs offer plenty of scope for parodying. In fact, I’ve come across songs that actually parody earlier film songs. My favourite is Suno suno kanyaaon ka varnan (Haseena Maan Jaayegi, 1968), with a madcap Shashi Kapoor singing Mere desh ki ladki sona nigle, nigle heere-moti (“The girl of my country swallows up gold, diamonds and pearls”) instead of the more patriotic Mere desh ki dharti sona ugle, ugle heere-moti (“The land of my country produces gold, diamonds and pearls”), from Upkar (1967). Amusingly enough, the song includes a parody of a song which was originally filmed on Shashi Kapoor: Pardesiyon se na ankhiyaan milaana (Jab Jab Phool Khile, 1965). Best of all? He’s in drag through most of the song. Awesome!

Suno suno kanyaaon ka varnan, Haseena Maan Jaayegi

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