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O.P.Nayyar’s immortal relationship with Mohammad Rafi

By: Souvik Chatterji, Master of Law from Warwick University, Coventry,UK, Master of Law from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.

O.P.NayyarOmkar Prasad Nayyar (better known as O.P.Nayyar) is known to be one of the trend-breakers of the traditional music in the Golden Age of Indian film music, in the 50s and 60s. During that period although the Film arena were glorified by Giants of different specialisations, namely Naushad with his Brilliant Ragas, Roshan with the use of Sarengi and providing immortal mujras and qawallis, Madanmohan with his everlasting Ghazals, the general trend of Hindustani classicals and folk songs were used by most of the music directors. Excepting Shankar-Jaikishan who worked on diversified subject matters like Hawaiian flavour in ‘Ajeeb Dastaan hai yeh’ in Dil Ek Mandir, 1963 to European Chorus Background in ‘Meherbaa likhoon’ in Sangam, 1964, and Salil Chowdhury blending Russian March in Do Bigna Zameen, 1953, to Indian Chorus in ‘zindagi kaisi hai paheli’ in Anand, 1971, there were not many Music composers who experimented with a blend of Eastern and Western Music. 1

O.P.Nayyar came with an unique trend of merging Punjabi bhangra with Spanish tunes. The other unique feature of OP Nayyar is his association with Mohammad Rafi, the greatest singer India can ever produce in the world of playback singing. Rafi was a genius by his own standards and the way a person gets mesmerised in a historical monument in respect of admiring any part, the diwan-i-khas in Agra Fort, or diwan-i–aam in the same Fort, the same way experts on music have a very tough time judging the best performance of Rafi, whether his ghazals are the best, or his songs with an intoxicated atmosphere, or whether his pure classical numbers. Rafi had sung probably the maximum number of songs for OP Nayyar who knew the westernised andaz would not have suited anyone else in the same way as Mohammad Rafi.

Manna Dey, O.P.Nayyar and Mohd Rafi
Manna Dey, O.P.Nayyar and Mohd Rafi

Born in Lahore in 1926, OP Nayyar was fascinated by music. He was not trained in music, but left home to pursue a career as a composer. He got his first break when he composed the background score for the film Kaneez, 1949. He started his journey with Gurudutt in the film Baaz and the first successful break he received in Gurudutt’s film AarPaar, 1954. Also he stormed the film world with his outstanding performance in the film CID, 1956, Mr and Mrs 55, 1955.

One striking feature in the songs of the film CID, 1956, is that the female voice used by OP Nayyar varied according to the requirement of the film. The main playback singers included Shamshad Begum, Geeta Dutt and Asha Bhosle, the noted songs being “ kahin pe nigahen, kahin pe nishana,” “ puch mera kya nao re”. Yet the male playback was provided by Mohammad Rafi for all the characters of the film. It included Johnny Walker in the song ‘Ai dil mushkil jeena yahaan, zara hatke zara bhachke yeh hai bombai meir jaan’,2 further Dev Anand in the song ‘Ankhon hi ankhon me ishara ho gaya’. It is even amazing that there was a street song being sung by a road peddler in the film titled ‘Leke pehela pehela pyaar’ which could have been sung by any playback singer, OP Nayyar even engaged Rafi to sing it. There were other hits in Mr and Mrs 55, 1955, like ‘Muhobbat karlo, aji karlo’, ‘jane kahan mera jigar gaya ji’ and ‘Dilpe hua aisa jadoo”.

Mohd Rafi and O.P.Nayyar
Mohd Rafi and O.P.Nayyar

If the 50s were characterized by the fast numbers of OP Nayyar, the 60s provided him the honour of being rated as one of the most elegant music directors with the same esteem at which Roshan, Naushad, Shankar-Jaikishan, Madanmohan used to be rated. The two films Ek Musafir Ek Hasina, 1962, and Phir Wohi dil Laya Hoon, 1963, stands out as the films where OP Nayyar had experimented the most. There was a duet of Rafi and Asha titled “aap yuhin agar humse milte rahe, dekhie ek din pyar ho jayega”. The dance sequence on actress Sadhna impersonated the way a peacock welcomes the monsoon. The effects produced by OP Nayyar was so outstanding that the background, the picturisation and the voice of Rafi and Asha synchronised together. The other two songs of Rafi “Mujhe dekhkar aapka muskurana” and “Mai pyar ka rahin hoon” had absolute western tunes with odd chords. Rafi had left the audience speechless with his performance in a slightly classical andaz in the songs “Phir tere shahar me” and “Humko tumhare ishq ne kya kya bana diya, jab kuch na ban sake to tamasha bana diya.” The lyrics of OP Nayyar’s songs were mostly written by Majrooh Sultanpuri and S.H.Bihari who had brought out their most romantic passion while composing the lyrics which could very well be categorised as Shayeris.3

In the film Phir Wohi dil Laya Hoon, 1963, picturised on Joy Mukherjee, OP Nayyar had made a very stylish endeavour towards the traditional blend of the western and eastern music. Rafi’s song “Nazni bara Rangeen hai wada tera” starts off with the traditional folk sequence with Punjabi where as the antara has “humdum mere maan bhi jaavo” which has the effect of Guitar. In the other song “Aji kibla, mohetarma, kabhi shola, kabhi nagma” has the same blend of Punjabi Folk with Guitar effect. In the song “zulf ke chaome chehere ka ujala lekar” OP Nayyar had made Rafi and Asha answer each other in almost a contest of Shayeri, the way urdu writers used to face each other through their poetic verses. Besides OP Nayyar’s beat oriented composition having effect of the tanga (Cart-pulled by horses) titled “Banda parwar, thamlo jigar, banke pyar phir aya hoon” in the film was equally melodious as “Maang ke saath tumkara” in the film Naya Daur,4 picturised on Dilipkumar, “Yuh to humne laakh hasin dekhe hain” in the film Tumsa Nahin Dekha, 1957, “Kisi na kisi se kabhi na kabhi kahin na kahin dil lagana parega”, in the film Kashmir Ki Kali, 1964.

Naushad, Anil Biswas, O.P.Nayyar, Khayyam
Naushad, Anil Biswas, O.P.Nayyar, Khayyam

Besides Rafi’s western romantic mood is utilized by OP Nayyar in a very stylish way in the songs “Diwana hua badal, sawan ki ghata chayi” and “Yeh Chand Sa Roshan Chehera” in the film Kashmir Ki Kali, 1964 picturised on Shammi Kapoor and “Humne to dilko aap ke kadmome rakh diya, is dil ka kya karenge yeh ab aap sochiye” in the film Mere Sanam, 1965 and “Phir Miloge Kabhi is baat ka wada karlo, humse ek aur mulakat ka wada karlo” in the film Yeh Raat Phir Na Ayegi, picturised on Biswajeet. In all these songs the sarengi and santoor had played a very pivotal role accompanied by the intoxicating appeal of Rafi’s voice.

Besides OP Nayyar had a reputation for stubborn individuality all along his career. Many remember him as being aloof and imperious, but always generous with struggling new-comers and those marginalized in the industry. The press and electronic media frequently referred to him as a rebel composer, as did many columnists labelling him a maverick. During the fifties the state-controlled All India Radio found OP Nayyar too trendy and had put in place a ban on most of his very famous tunes from being broadcast. This ban was in force for quite some time. Reports suggest that he was unfazed by this rigid government order and went on to create more of such tunes most of which were national hits. The far away Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation of the then Radio Ceylon was the only source from which his new hits could be listened in.5

Although lack of compromise resulted in OP Nayyar fading away from the film arena in 1970s, whenever anybody has to choose some of the most stylish andaz of Rafi, they have to reflect back on OP Nayyar for the unique compositions which have not been obsolete with the fading time. The Archive of Mohammad Rafi should equally restore the compositions of OP Nayyar as well.

Souvik Chatterji - the author along with his wife, Rumi Chatterji
Souvik Chatterji – the author along with his wife, Rumi Chatterji

1 A Detailed discussion on the composition of Shankar Jaikishan is made in the Article Shankar Jaikishan –the most versatile Musical Gaint of the last Century.
2 My father Ex-Chief Public Prosecutor, Bankshall Court North, (Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court, Kolkata), interviewed Milon Gupta, the famous mouth-organ player who played the mouth organ in the song said Rafi’s impersonation of Johnny Walker had created such an impact on the masses that the song became a greater hit than the song that was composed for the hero of the film, that is Dev Anand.
3 Majrooh Sultanpuri received the highest honour of excellence in Indian Cinema, the DadaSaheb Phalke award for his outstanding contribution to the Film Industry.
4 OP Nayyar received Filmfare Award for his Music Composition in Naya Daur, 1957.

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51 Blog Comments to “O.P.Nayyar’s immortal relationship with Mohammad Rafi”

  1. surinder pathak says:


  2. Dr Mukhtar says:

    Mr Chatterji’s knowledge of Indian cinematic music is phenomenal and amazing.
    Esp so as he is a young man.
    His historical description of facts is accurate as we of the older generations have actually lived through the golden era of indian film music of the sixties .
    Hats off to Mr Sauvik Chatterji-may his tribe increase.
    The relationship of the gr8 OP Nayyar who once famously said “OP Nayyar is nothing without Mohammed Rafi, unfortunately could not withstand the test of time.
    Rafi saheb was apparently once late for a recording and when asked by OP Nayyar as to the reasons, Rafi saheb truthfully mentioned that he was rehearsing with Shankar-Jaikishen.
    OP Nayyar who was smarting under the insult as Shakti Samantha has changed him to S-J for “an evening in Paris” went livid wirh anger and he said the song he was recording with Rafi saheb “Dil ki awaz bhi sunn mere fasana pe na ja” woyld be his last as they parted forever professionally.
    Indeed this last song Rafi saheb picturised on the gr8 Joy Mukherji in “Humsaya”is truly a song Rafi saheb sang with a heavy heart for his dear friend OP Nayyar.


  4. Dear Rajaramji,

    Thanks for reminding the readers about the song “humne to dil ko aape ki kadmo pe rakh diya”. It was one of the most romantic tunes of OP Nayyar. Strikingly Rafi had sung his portion in his own way as opposed to the style with which Asha Bhosle had sung the song. The same thing had with other OP Nayyar tunes like “diwana hua badal” in Kashmir Ki Kali, “zulf ki chayon me chehre ka ujala lekar” in Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon. Rafi as brilliant as OP Nayyar in all these songs.

    Souvik Chatterji

  5. rajaram says:

    There was a film ‘NASIHAT’ with actors Dara Singh & Rajshree. It had good songs out of which one song ‘Ankhon se Ishara Karke Hame’ sung by Asha which was excellent . The film itself was not mentioned in any of the coumns by any writer. The film scene with song is in youtube. This is another sample of OP’s foot-tapping, yourthful music.

  6. rajaram says:

    There was a song in Mere sanam sung by Rafi ‘Humne tho dil ko aap ki kadmon pe rakh diya” which is very melodious with the accompaniment of violin. No reader in this column has a word about that excellent song.

  7. Souvik Chatterji says:

    In the film Baharen phir bhi ayegi, in 1966, the title song “baharen phir bhi ayegi” sung by Mahendra Kapoor was a big hit.
    OP Nayyar had also composed some bhajans for Rafi, an example is from the film “naya daur”, 1957 titled “ana hai to aa rah me kuch pher nahi hai.”
    The film every variety of songs including “saathi haath barana” which was a chorus song having rural flavour sung by Rafi.
    Souvik Chatterji.

  8. Souvik Chatterji says:

    OP Nayyar’s songs in Mere Sanam, 1965, sung by Rafi, were all superhits including, pukarta chala hoon mai, humdum mere maan bhi jayo, hue hai tumpe ashiq hum, bhala mano bura mano. Some were beat oriented, others had the flavour of twist, but the santoor, guitar and sarengi were used with elegance by OP Nayyar.
    Souvik Chatterji.

  9. Souvik Chatterji says:

    OP Nayyar’s songs sung by Mohammad Rafi became hits even in those films which did not get box office success. Example is dil ki awaaz bhi sun from film Humsaya. Although the film with Joy Mukherjee did not do well, the songs wre successful.
    OP Nayyar even asked Rafi to sing all the songs for Raj kapoor’s film Do Ustad, 1959, of which some of the notable songs include nazron ke tir mare kas kas kas and tu larki mai ladka. Rafi’s voice even suited him who generally received playback from Mukesh.
    Souvik Chatterji

  10. RAMAKRISHNA says:

    Shalini jee I appreciate your comments. They are free, frank & fearless. but i would like to say in the past I gave my comments which are of lesser in magnitude than those of yours & i got so many advices that i should not do like this. even I got the designation as ‘ head master’ from one of the readers. of course it matters null for me. for me its Rafi Sahab & its his forum.

    ‘hagiography’ means ‘ writing & critical study of the lives of the saints’ so you treat Rafi sahab as a saint. thats just superb shalini jee. in my previous articles i too wrote Rafi sahab as Saint and even I tell my friends, ‘ look at the photograph of Rafi sahab. observe the smile. its a saintly smile’. you cant get this sort from normal people like us.
    since you have a good vocabulary any thing wrong here you are free to advise madam.

  11. i love his songs & most of his songs sung by rafi & asha. so we lost OPNayyar also.

  12. Shalini says:

    I’m sorry, but this is one of the most poorly written and researched articles I’ve ever come across. The grammatical and factual errors are too numerous to count and the hagiography of Rafi is comical. Rafi and OPN were extraordinary artists and deserve better than this thoughtless, slapdash effort.

  13. OPNayyar had given beautiful & melodious songs, but for mistake he lost it. Rafi sang many songs of his, i like this song “Humdum mere Maan bhi jaavo”
    Wah kya baat hai iss gaane mein, if i listen i dance the way music is.

  14. binus2000 says:

    o.p. nayyar had a heart of gold and he would see that the producers
    paid the musicians the same day they recorded. He would physically
    check the cash before the recordings.
    And on most occassions, he would do the recording in the first take
    itself and every one could proceed to their houses for lunch.

    binu nair

  15. binus2000 says:

    Post 34:

    Sangeet darbar mein yeh darbari kyon joothi baathe failaathe hai
    yeh baat mujhe bhi nahi samajh me aa raha hai.

    binu nair.

  16. Prakash shah says:

    Dear Narayan Ref post:27:In sixties OP was demanding 3 lacs per film,and has daring to not accepting the films even of BR camp on the difference of opinion of BR to tke sahir as lyrics,so he was self respected man,never lean down to any producers or directors to get films,as far as music concern he never bargain his terms in any sense.
    He was the 2nd highest paid Md after SJ.

  17. P. Haldar says:

    ref post 32:

    sangeet “darbar” mein yeh sab log jhoot knyu bolte hain?

  18. P. Haldar says:

    Here are two of my favourite Rafi-Geeta duets composed by OP; the flute opening of the first is sd-esque (op used to admire sd a lot), but then op’s rhythm takes over. Note how Geeta adds a slight nasal touch to her voice. Enjoy “udhar tum haseen ho”:

    And here is “sun sun sun sun zaalima”:

  19. binus2000 says:

    The saxophone is played in Kashmir ki kali by the great
    Manori Singh da , a veteran of great accomplishments and
    78 years young. He stays in Bombays Santacruz area. He regularly
    shows his class and output in live musical shows and in one meeting
    he said : Rafi saab is the real Bharat Ka ratan when I showed him the
    cover of Sargam magazine. I love his works and its my fortune to
    see him doing arrangements for a salil choudhary show some – 30
    years back, at Mehboob studios.

    But a thing irks me a lot . and that’s a famous music composer going
    around and claiming that his dad did the saxophone in Kashmir ki kali
    song : Yeh duniya usike.. zamana usika, Mohabbat me .. which is a
    white lie. the music composer with long louquets is also known for his
    foul language towards singers who take part in music shows in the
    television. I am writing this to try and tell him to stop claiming others
    prize work as his or his kins.

    binu nair the rafi foundation

  20. Haldar Sahab,
    Thanks for that link. Iwas dazzled by the way Rafi Sahab Says ” Zard Zard Haaiiiiiiiiiii” Thanks again

  21. Dear Ganesh ji,
    Your observation shows your great love for Rafi Sahab. I dont want to go into the details of my sentence, but i will join you in what you said. “Rafi saab Ka Jadu chalta raha hai aur chalta rahega!!!

  22. DEBABRATA ROY says:

    Its been a great pleasure to read articled on OP Nyer and Rafi saab.One thing i want to add.Nyer saab has always chosen Asha ji not Lata ji in major of his composed songs.He is simply different.Thank you Souvik

  23. Ganesh says:

    Dear Shirish Kulkarni Saab refer post 22, what u write ? quiet ok but mind ur sentence that “Rafi Sahab, aap ka jadoo phir chalne laga hain” This is not a new thing Rafi saab Ka Jadu chalta raha hai aur chata rahega!!!

  24. Narayanan says:

    Excellent article Soumik, Kudos to you
    OPN saab and Rafi saab had the deadly combo which took the 50s n 60s by a different storm. In many of the films they along with Geetaji,Ashaji were considered the real heros n heroines whether the film did well or not in the box office.

  25. P. Haldar says:

    Here’s a lesser known OP composition: chand zard zard hai. He used two other wind instruments in this song: whistling and trumpet. The person playing the trumpet on screen looks like the one who played the sax in “Hai duniya usiki”. Anyway, enjoy Rafi-Asha on Dev-Madhubala:

  26. mohamed parvez says:

    dear shirish kulkarni ji i got this news from internet just search 60 icons of india in google you will find there

  27. binus2000 says:

    Mohd Parvez ji:
    Actually I searched the hindustan times of last 2 days : 13 th , 14th
    August and could not find the mention of the legend.
    Please post it on this site: thanx .

    binu nair.

  28. mstopkar says:

    refer post 18. Why do we have to demean someone to prove greatness of other? All are great, hugely great. OP is great, Rafi is equally great. No point saying one wouldn’t have been him without any other. OP was OP even without Lata. That does not in any way degrade or lower Lata, OP or Rafi.

  29. Post 21:
    I could not find that news in Hindustan Times.
    But in Times of India todays special section called Movers & Shapers, Rafi Sahab’s name has been included as belonging to that band of men and women whose vision and actions changed India, mostly for the better!
    Rafi Sahab, aap ka jadoo phir chalne laga hain!
    Jai Rafi Sahab

  30. mohamed parvez says:

    great news worlds largest news paper hindustan times nominated rafi saab amongst top 60 indian icon

  31. binus2000 says:

    Post 18:

    If rafi saab was ur great admirer, please tell us more about your
    association with the legend. thanx.

    binu nair

  32. ATM SALIM says:



  33. Md. Azmal Hossain, Dhaka, Bangladesh says:

    Rafi was my great admirer. I am a great fan of him. His voice always hunting me. His departure was a irreparable damage for us. I am a worshipper of his song. He was a great singer in his time. Incomparable singer. His persoanlity was surpassed everybody.

  34. T.K.Prabhakar says:

    Dear sir

    The song ‘Ajeeb dasthan hai ye’ is from movie Dil apna aur preet parai and not from Dil ek mandir as wriitten


  35. Pradeep Kumar says:

    A very well written article by Mr. Souvik Chatterjee on late Sri. O. P. Nayyar’s music contributions to Hindi Film music and his partnership with Mohd Rafi. For all O. P. Nayyar music fans I might add that SaReGaMa/RPG has come out with a terrific set of 4 CDs (and cassettes too) titled “Remembering O. P. Nayyar” released soon after his demise earlier this year. This is a must buy and a collectors item for all O. P. Nayyar and Mohd Rafi fans. The songs were carefully selected by Mr. Manek Premchand with extremely well written sleeve notes and an excellent selection of Sri. O. P. Nayyar’s greatest hits re-mastered with terrific sound quality. Without any hesitation, Mohd Rafi saab never sounded this good. CD 1 with “Udhar Tum Hasin Ho”, “Ankhon Hi Ankhon Mein”, “Mang Ke Saath Tumhara”, “Jawaniyan Yeh Mast”, “Tum Jo Huye Mere Humsafar”, “Main Soya Akhiyan Meeche”, “Bahut Shukriya”, Main Pyar Ka Rahi Hoon”, “Zulf Ki Chhaon Mein”, “Pukarta Chala Hoon Main”, “Aap Ke Haseen Rukh”. Some of the greatest Mohd Rafi hits on the first CD itself. Songs from Naya Daur, Tumsa Nahin Dekha”, Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon, Phagun, Ragini, Kalpana, Kashmir Ki Kali, Sawan Ki Khata, Mere Sanam, Hum Saya etc. are interspersed between the remaining three CDs. A fantastic collection of songs to reminisce while enjoying Mr. Chatterjee’s excellent tribute to Sri. O. P. Nayyar.

  36. Asif says:

    Some the greatest songs produced by Op Nayyar were sung by Mohd Rafi. All the songs of EK Musafir EK hasina , Kashmir Ki kali, Tumsa Nahee Dekhha, Baharain Phir BHi Aauengi sung by Mohd rafi were huge hits. I feel OP Nayyar would not have been OP nayyar if not for Rafi.


  37. asok says:

    has anyobdy heard of the film Raakh Aur Chingari—Song is Yeh Anjaan Rahein Yeh Manzil Paraye Mujhe Zindagi Too Kaha Lehke Aayee.I am looking for it for so long, if u have it please pass over.I will be greatly indebted to u. Also looking for songs from movie Naach Utha Saansar,great songs. Shashi Kapoor starter.

  38. P. Haldar says:

    ref post 11:

    Mr. Ramakrishna, I know that rd played the mouth organ for the dosti songs. But milan gupta played it for the background score in dosti. He also played in lp’s dost. I’ve seen both rd and milan perform live; really cherish those memories. There was another person in rd’s group, bhanu gupta, who used to play the mouth organ. rd and lp were great buddies; lp used to assist rd initially and rd would happily play for lp when required. He also used to play the mouth organ and tabla for his dad. But I’m not sure if he ever played for op. But whoever played in “kisi na kisi se”, I just love the mouth organ piece in that song.

  39. A S MURTY says:

    great and very informative article Mr. chatterjee. We did miss you the entire last year, but you are making up with article after article. Good deed. Keep the ink flowing and keep us informed of all other facets of Mohd. Rafi sahab and others associated with him – be it mds, directors, producers, actors, song writers or other singers. yeah, o p did castigate rafi sahab once for coming late for a recording although for no fault of the latter. but they did make up again after o p realised what a blunder he had committed. whoever rebuffed rafi sahab had to pay a price for their folly. rafi sahab never once behaved in that manner with any artiste, junior or senior. keep posting more articles of interest to all of us rafians. thanks.

  40. RAMAKRISHNA says:

    refer post -8,
    haldar babu,

    for your information R.D.Burman was an excellent mouth organ player. he has played for the songs of Dosti. I think he has played the mouth organ starting notes of the song ‘ kisi na kisisey , kabhi na kabhi’ of kashmir ki kali.

  41. Azad Ilahibaks says:

    Can anyone send for me: Aji kibla mohotarma from the film: Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon and Aye chand jara chhup ja.


  42. H.V.GURU MURTHY says:

    Other OPN – Rafi hits were NAYA DAUR (Aana Ho To AA Rahame, Dil Leke, Maangake Saath, Saathi Haath Badana, Mai Bambai Ka Babu, Yeh Desh Hai Veera Jawanon Ka), TUMSA NAHI DEKHA (Chupanewale Saamane Aa, Jawaniyan Yeh Mast, Dekha Kasamse), KASHMIR KI KALI(Deewana Hua Badal, Isharo Isharon Me, Hai Duniya Usiki, Suban Allah, Hai Re Hai), SAWAN KI GHATA (Julfonko Hatale, Hoton Pe Hasin), HEERA MOTI (Hont Hai Tere, Kuch Aur Nahin Bas Dyan Tera), KALPANA (Tu Hai Mera Prema Devta), MERE SANAM(Pukarta, Humne To Dil Ko, Tukade Hai Mere Dilke, Roka Kai Baar Maine, Humdum Mere, Huye Hai Tumpe Aashiq Hum), PHIR WAHI DIL LAYA HUN (Zulf Ki Chaon Me, Door Bahut Mat Jayiye, Aanchalme Sajalena Kaliyan, Lakhon Hai Nigahon Me), HUMSAYA (Dil Ki Aawaj, Tera Shukriyan), BAHAREN PHIR BHI AAYEGI (Aapke Hasin Rukh, Suno Suno Miss Chatterjee, Dilto Pehlehise), EK MUSAFIR EK HASINA (Aap Yunhi Agar, Muzhe Dekhakar, O Yaar Zulfonwale), MOHABBAT ZINDAGI HAIN (Na Jaane Kyun, Yeh Phurnoor Chehara, Tumhari Mulaqat Se), EK BAAR MUSKURADO (Zamane Ki Yadon Ne), etc. Of course, one cannot forget Manmora Bawra piturised on Kishore Kumasr in RAAGINI.

  43. P. Haldar says:

    The author has mentioned that Milon Gupta had played the mouth organ for Bombay’s national anthem. There’s another op composition which has a beautiful mouth organ accompaniment; it’s one of the lesser celebrated songs from Kashmir ki Kali, but it’s a favourite of mine. My guess is that Milon Gupta played the mouth organ for this song too. Enjoy Rafi’s “Kisi na kisi se kabhi na kabhi” from the King of Rhythm:

  44. rafifan says:

    Re Comment No.4

    Mr. Ramkrishna you are right that O.P. was mad at Rafi for showing up late for a rehearsal but that was not the end of their relationship. O.P. did use Rafi after 2 years. In an interview a few years ago he said,

    “The biggest mistake of my life was keeping that farishta away from my studio for 2 years.”

    That is reverence which never ended between the two.

  45. P. Haldar says:

    I’ve always admired the orchestration in OP’s music. In my humble opinion, no one has employed the sarangi-santoor-dholak-drum-guitar-sitar-drum-sax-flute combo the way he did. When he was at his best, there were few md’s who could surpass him in orchestration. Just listen to the music of “Diwana hua badal”. Much before fusion music came into vogue in the 70s, OP defined what fusion music was all about. Within a few seconds, there would be a switch from sitar to guitar or from dholak to drums, but the rhythm would always remain so beautiful. And there was always that unpredictability about the change in sur and taal, the op magic. He used three deadly weapons to maximum advantage — Geeta, Rafi and Asha. He definitely gave Rafi’s voice a different dimension. As far as Asha is concerned, I don’t think there’s any md who comes close to him, not even the burmans.

  46. rafifan says:

    I remember listening to a program from Vividh Bharatee titled “Fauji Bhaeeun ke Liye”. O.P. was the special presenter and he recited the following verse from Allama Iqbal and said that this was his motto of life.

    “Aye taaere’ lahuti us rizq se maut achchi,
    Jis rizq se aati ho parwaz me kotahi”

    (taaer = bird, lahut = stratosphere, rizq = sustenance, parwaz = flight, kotahi = shortness)

    This verse was written to emphasize the need to keep one’s self-worth and not to compromise with short term gain.

    When in the 70’s the music was getting corrupted and O.P. left the music scene refusing to compromise and started the homeopathic medicine practice, I thought he kept up his motto.

  47. RAMAKRISHNA says:

    Souvik I would like to add my views with reference to your article. The song ‘ ajeeb dastan hai yeh’ is from the film ‘ Dil apna aur preet paraye’ picturised on Meena kumari jee. Rafi sahab has rendered the humoruos number ‘ Main hoon Mr Johny, mainey sab mulkon ka piya hai pani’ for Johny Walker in the film ‘Mai Baap’ music by O.P.Nayyar. What a superb playback. In the movie one feels as if Johny walker himself is singing. I heard that once during a recording session of O.P.Nayyar for a film Rafi sahab came late. Of course rafi sahab apologised with the reason that he was held up in a session with Shankar- Jaikishen. And that was the end of relationship of Rafi sahab with O.P.Nayyar. In the latter movies Mahendra Kapoor was taken as a playback.

  48. binus2000 says:

    where was this souvik chaterjee all these days : I was just imagi-
    ning; after reading the o.p. nayyar : special.
    for readers info : I may add that o.p. nayyar gets the highest
    royalty after a.r.rehman and in the seventies his musical senses
    quite dried up. Music lovers will always be indebted to him for his
    path-breaking musical offerings.

    binu nair.

  49. P. Haldar says:

    Souvik, a good article again. In the fourth picture, I think it’s Anil Biswas in between Naushad and OP.

  50. Ganesh says:

    May anybody send me “Meri Gadi Uran Khatola” from film “Aurat”
    my e-mail id is

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