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Rain, Rafi and Romantic songs

By Jyothi Prabhakar for Delhi Times covering Rafi Foundation’s event of July 31, 2012

Mohd Rafi

Mohd Rafi

The weather was just right for this concert, with the rains giving Delhi a romantic feel. The event was a tribute to legendary playback singer Mohammed Rafi, organized by the Rafi Foundation. And thankfully, the event started without waiting for the stars to arrive. But before we get to the songs and the singers – Jackie Shroff came first, spotted the photogs, quickly whipped out his sunglasses in the dark of the auditorium and put them on.

Yesteryears actor Biswajit came soon after. The compere of the evening, Manisha Dubey, began with ishtaqballs and gulpeshis and handed over the mehfil, as she said, to Suresh Raheja, who was to be the Rafi for the evening. From there on, it was three nostalgic hours of listening to Rafi’s songs and anecdotes, and incidents from his life.

Newspaper clipping of the article

Newspaper clipping of the article

Rafi’s daughter Nasreen and her husband, Miraj, were there too. Zeenat Aman and Ismail Durbar were in their front row seats soon after, and by the time Rajeev Khandelwal and his wife Manjiri came, there were no seats! Quick re-juggles between songs ensured they sat down.

The orchestra was quite good, and so was Nagesh Kumar, who came on stage as Rajesh Khanna when Gulabi Ankhen was being sung. The surprise of the evening, however, was Biswajit sang the song picturized on him, Pukarta Chala Hoon, so well that encores were demanded. Jackie refused to sing, “Bhidu, gaane ko nahi, sunne ko aaya hoon,” he said. And Mukesh Chander, the former Delhi Police additional commissioner, traffic, needs a special mention. He did a solo flute recital on one of Rafi’s songs that evening – a perfect 10 performance.

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One Comment to “Rain, Rafi and Romantic songs”

  1. R.Padmanabhan says:

    We all know what a phenomenal singer Rafi Saab was ! We also know why the
    Dada Saheb Phalke award was instituted. In my humble opinion, I am of the opi-
    nion that after listening to his mellifluous songs, he cannot be a wrong choice as
    an awardee of that prestigious title. Please do not jump to the conclusion that I
    am raking up a political issue. From a purely musical standpoint, he is a worthy
    winner lock, stock and barrel.

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