Joy Mukherjee and Rafi combination would be remembered for generation
By Souvik Chatterji
Veteran actor Joy Mukherjee died on 9th March, 2012. He was the son of noted filmmaker Sasadhar Mukherjee and Sati Debi. Sasadhar Mukherjee was the co-founder of Filmalaya Studios.
Joy Mukherjee stormed bollywood films with his debut in the film Love in Simla in 1960. It was directed by RK Nayyar. Iqbal Qureshi composed the music of the film. From that time the everlasting combination of Joy Mukherjee with Mohammad Rafi stormed bollywood music for the next 10 years.
After acting in the films Umeed and Hum Hindustani, Joy Mukherjee stormed bollywood with the film Ek Musafir Ek Haseena in 1962. Raj Khosla directed the film. The magic of OP Nayyar with Rafi made the audience spellbound. All the songs were masterpieces including “aap yuhi agar humse milte rahe”, “phir tere shahar me mitne ko chala aya hoon”, “humko tumhare ishqne kya kya bana diya”, “bahut shukhriya bari meherbani”, “mujhe dekhkar aapka muskurana”, to name a few. The songs just intoxicated the audience. Ek Musafir Ek Haseena the second biggest hit film of 1962.
The Joy Mukherjee, OP Nayyar and Rafi magic continued in the film Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon in 1963. It was produced and directed by Nasir Hussain. Again the songs were masterpieces including “zulf ke chayon me chehereka ujala lekar”, “nazneen bara rangeen hai wada tera”, “banda parwar thamlo jigar”, “lakhon hai nigahon me”, “anchal me saja lena kaliyan”, “aji kibla mohe tarma”, to name a few. It was par excellence. Probably OP Nayyar and Rafi combination was at the zenith. The film ended up being the third biggest hit film of 1963.
In 1964, Joy Mukherjee’s film Ziddi did great business. This time it was directed by Pramod Chakravarty. The music was composed by SD Burman. Rafi’s songs “janu kya mera dil ab kahan kho gaya”, “teri surat se nahi milti kisi ki surat”, “pyar ki manzil mast haseen” were all melodious songs and became superhit. Rafi Joy Mukherjee continued in the films Ishaara, Door Ki Awaaz and Aao Pyar Karen.
Joy Mukherjee again stormed bollywood in the film Love in Tokyo. Shankar Jaikishan’s composition of music in the film rocked bollywood. Lata’s songs “sayonara sayonara”, “hume tum mil gaye humdum” was as popular as Rafi’s “Japan, love in Tokyo”, “aaja re aa zara aa”, “o mere shahekhuba”, and Manna Dey’s “mai tere pyar me bimar hun kya arz karun”. The westernized andaz of Rafi mesmerized the audience along with Japan’s exotic locations.
Joy Mukherjee and Rafi again created magic in the film Shagird in 1967. This time Laxmikant Pyarellal stormed bollywood. Rafi’s songs “o bare miya diwane”, “o hai zara khafa khafa”, “duniya paagal hai” all created magic. Joy Mukherjee’s online chemistry with Saira Banu attracted the viewers. From Humsaya in 1968, gradually Joy Mukherjee’s box office popularity declined. OP Nayyar composed the music of the film and Rafi’s song “dil ki awaaz na sun” again became hit, but the film did not do great business.
From that time onwards Joy Mukherjee gradually faded out of the industry. His later films like Ek Kali Muskai, Dil Aur Muhabbat, Dupatta, Ek Baar Muskurado did very ordinary business. Rafi sang notable songs in some of these films, but neither the compositions nor the songs did touch the souls of the audience in the same way, the way it did in Love in Tokyo.
Joy Mukherjee had given lips in more than 200 songs of Mohammad Rafi. His songs and the films should be restored to remember the great combination of evergreen Mohammad Rafi with the romantic actor.