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Two Maestros of the Musical Horizon :Mohd Rafi & O.P.Nayyar… A Musical Tribute to their “GREAT WORKS”

This info is shared by Mr. Binu Nair

O.P.NayyarHis image hasn’t faded a bit in the last six decades. It’s the most reproduced photo in the world. Music lovers have fallen in love with his “Godly” voice which has transcended many boundaries. People close to him say, he is the greatest singer “ever” but a greater human being too.

People know him as Mohd Rafi. Music, Melody and Mohd Rafi “beg to be said in the same breath” said the Outlook magazine, quite recently in a tribute to the maestro.

The tribute programmes by Rafi lovers is always a “treat” and when it’s a dedicated programme for another music wizard who goes by the name Omkar Prasad Nayyar, the listening joy increases manifold. And, during songs it’s not uncommon to see listeners springing up from their cushioned seats and swaying to the bhangra beats of “yeh desh hai veer jawanon ka, mastanon ka” or the marvellous rhythematic “Uden jab jab zulfen teri“… and to some more of Nayyar’s unparalled creations. Nayyar once told a group of young composers : “you people are unlucky as you do not have a Mohd Rafi to record your songs“.

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

On Jan.28, last year on a Sunday, O.P.Nayyar breathed his last at 3.30 p.m. at Thana at the house of Rani Nakhwa, a music lover. Dr.Ashok Khare, a well known singer and a Rafi bhakt will present Nayyar songs at a dedicated tribute programme in the memory of the rhythem king.

Ashok KhareDr. Ashok Khare is a professor in textile engineering in the VJTI College and has presented 26 “Rafi tribute shows” so far during the last 26 years (mostly on July 31 at Mumbai) and has travelled extensively abroad to places such as Holland, Mauritious, Singapore, Sidney and the U.S with his music group. He has also recorded songs for movies with composers Ram Laxman, Vijay Singh and HMV, Music India and Venus has released music discs of Rafi songs with his voice.

Mohd Rafi was the lead singer for Nayyar saab and the duo has given great treasures to music lovers which Dr.Khare will present live in the concert. Some of the songs selected are : Are dekhi zamane ki yaari; Aana hai to aa; Aap ke haseen rukh pe; Garib Jaanke humko; Chupne waale saamne aa; Subhan allah hai; Aanchal mein chupa lena kaliyan; Churi ban kaanta ban…; Raat bhar ka mehmaan hai..

Dr. Khare will be assisted by popular Mumbai singers Aparna & Vaishali in the concert.

The live musical will be on February 8th at 8.00 PM. The location is Yeshwant Natya Griha, Near Shivaji Mandir, Dadar West, Mumbai and for donor passes please contact : tel.. 244 54805 or cell 9833 8512 42 .

The musical is supported by The Rafi Foundation, Mumbai. Call : 9833 250 701 for further details.

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39 Blog Comments to “Two Maestros of the Musical Horizon :Mohd Rafi & O.P.Nayyar… A Musical Tribute to their “GREAT WORKS””

  1. Prakash Mool bharathi says:

    I was fortunate to speak OP on 26 th evening before boarding train to my native place and reached after 12 hours and indeed it was unfortunate to see on TV he was no more

  2. RAJNISH says:


  3. Priya Sanyal says:

    “perfection personified” Rafi sahab…(36) !

    Times Group(india) lead by Silly Raju Bhartan was among the dirty plotters against such a holy Rafi!
    Raju Bhartan was a shameless persona who often diregarded Rafi sahab in a way that is very hard to comprehend for he simply misused power of media. he starts tributing Rafi sahab but praise others above him even with fake interview! Of 60s he says Rafi sahab was distant 3rd after Mukeshji and talat ji.According to him Rafi sahab was so talked only for his durabilty no substance and he sarcastically two times quoted Rafi sahab`s song “Mera Gunah Maaf kad” reffering to Rafi sahab inferior singing. He is the person who tried to create rival between (pure guru -shishya)rafi sahab and mahendra kapoor ji ,saying kapoor ji kept Rafi at his toe.
    Last not least, All the Kishore -rafi conflict is nourished by the reporters like him apart from other regionalism in film industry!

    One such example is, this article, its an fake interview,
    “ ”
    Person like Rafi sahab never react on what world says for him, for his tribute was for God and for the listeners who really loves him and his singing,he didn`t know anything else, hence Rafi sahab was always with a smile while these mindless ones always burns in fire of their own jealousy!

  4. BINU NAIR says:

    From post 32 onwards….. persons react very differently in “work stations”….
    mohd rafi saaheb respected the music directors and also did his home work well, very well as a matter of fact.
    remember that – the composer is the boss – in the recording room. there would have been many many moments of – corrections in almost all the songs recorded.
    and there were not much heart burns. but here, raju bharatan as usual to sell his magazines played up “even” minor issues.
    two things i wish to share with music lovers.
    One : that once mohd rafi came prepared for a song, it was very difficult for further corrections for him. but being a person of “perfection personified” he would go any extra way to make the corrections as per the composers wish.
    second point is that few composers were very demanding when recording a song.
    mohd rafi as well as other singers “toed” the line in the recording room – since the boss was the boss in the recording rooms. the composers had their say “as it should always have been”.

  5. girish says:

    @ hari anant – post 32

    The song you are referring to is – Tasveer tere dil mein from Maya. If you go through the archives you will find more details about that incident.

  6. BINU NAIR says:

    Post 32 hari anant : sir, pls check the facts. this was “not” the song..

  7. common_man says:

    hi hari,

    i believe that you are referring to “tasveer teri dil mein”. honestly, i’ve come to realize that all these great musicians are human. we can’t hold them for every utterance. anyyway, realize that raju bharatan sensationized this story. i heard my account from someone whose parents hosted salil choudhury right before his death. salil choudhury suggested that mohammed rafi was confused by salil choudhury asking him to re-sing a particular line several times because rafi thought he was singing it right. it seems that salil wanted rafi to jump scales on a single note whereas rafi did it in two. obviously rafi sang it correctly from a technical perspective but it wasn’t what salil wanted. i’m no longer remember exactly how lata was involved in this besides being the co-singer.

    the person whose parents hosted salil did make one thing clear: in telling this story, salil showed enormous respect and admiration for rafi’s abilities as a singer. he suggested that this song was one of his toughest compositions and…(don’t misinterpret it)…there may have been a chink in rafi’s armor. honestly, i see this as a misunderstanding between humans. and no one is perfect so i don’t care for that either. it’s trivial really. just something raju bharatan sensationalized. i think rafi just didn’t understand salil. otherwise rafi was definitely capable of making the jump to a higher scale in a single note. great song either way from salil, rafi, and lata.

    i no longer remember how many songs rafi sang for salil after 1961 when the song was recorded but i know there were a few. i think rafi & salil didn’t work together afterwards is merely because they went different directions. just a guess…i no longer remember all the facts. it seems like salil did more bengali movies in the mid 60s and 70s.

    salil and rafi made excellent music together. they may have only 30 or so songs together but a high percentage of them are very very good.

  8. Hari Anant says:

    There was an incident of altercation between Rafi Saab and Lata ji during song recording of Salil Chowdhury’ s ” dheere dheere chal chaand…….. ” What went wrong with either, who initiated the arguement. Being a Raffian, I’m at great pains to know this. Salilda sided with Lataji and Rafi saab felt belittled.
    Can someone throw some light on this incident? This query is open to all Raffian friends.

  9. Sunil Kumar says:

    I have read all the discussion and came to know abt the split of Rafi & OPN
    It was indeed a sad event which deprived all of us of future gr8 songs.
    But history cannot be changed .Mistakes happen with all even greats make mistakes but their greatness lies in admiiting their mistakes .

  10. aftab bhat says:

    Mr. Mohhamad rafi is still in my heart. i will never forget his golden moments .
    his sweet melodies will remian eternal till the universe is stand.
    i once again saloute to him.
    Tyhankin you

  11. binus2000 says:

    Dr. ashok khare’s musical was an “unforgettable” success and it
    reminded the listeners of rafi saabs meticulous singing and op nayyars
    great and unparelled works.

    the sweet and swift commentary on opnayyars life by the compere
    added sweetness to the evening music and one must acknowledge the
    professionalism of dr.khare who “never” fails his audience.

    dr.khare gives just two programmes in a year which is dedicated to
    the memory of rafi saab.
    inspite of the political turmoil in dadar areas music lovers turned up
    in large numbers to pay tributes to the memory of OP NAYYAR.

    a memorable evening indeed and golden era music is back again.

    binu nair…..the rafi foundation cell : + 9833 250 701

  12. xxx says:

    ref to entry #26

    aseer sahab,,

    regarding ur comment—“some films list, probably longer than dada’s hit parade can be easily produced for Sahir sahab where the poetry of song easily a thousand times more valuable than the tune. what is paon choo lene do phoolon ko without the poetry..”

    i respect ur views but im really surprised by ur comment,, dear aseer sahab how cud u give d whole credit of “paon chho lene do” to sahir ji?? its really strange!!! ya it was gr8 shayari but wasnt roshan saab gr8 there?? and wat abt rafi saab’s contribution??
    sahir ji was gr8 shayar but do u really think that his poetry was 1000 times superior than those gr8 tunes & singers???.. and if it was really so dan y wudnt n.dutta who worked extensively wd sahir became equally iconic as roshan or sd burman??

    dada’s hit parade from 1951-75 was enuf to challenge d supremacy of any legend of his era,, and if one really noticed dat from 1960-75 dada gave gems under ill health odrwise he was only composer from 50s who never repeated himself…music quality stepped down from 1975 onwards wen two gr8 legends madanji & dada burman left us..and golden era ended wd death of rafi sahab….

    refer to # 27
    thanx for ur compliments sir…. god bless u.. and apology from my side also for hurting u unintentionally… and ya lots of odr gr8 rafi saab’s acolytes from dis forum can lead us along the right path,, im juss a small thing happen to dis forum…

    concluded from my side too…
    take care…

  13. Aseer says:

    i m writing my last post here, at least to respected Kapil ji here
    to be a Rafian, embrace Rafism wholly. Rafi sahab never argued and always loved everybody no matter what is the past record. let him lead us along the right path.
    the post which stirred me is now gone. i dont know whether to thank the moderators or what for that. let peace prevail.
    I also sincerely apologize to Mr Kapil Goswami here, had i hurt him intentionally or unintentionally.

  14. Aseer says:

    @ kapil ji
    hmm, wrote a lot but hardly anything concrete.
    firstly, u like dada and when someone( may be his name is OPN) said Sahir insulted dada, u were pumped up and used all ur white collar not-so-good vocab against Sahir. without any proof!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    secondly, some films list, probably longer than dada’s hit parade can be easily produced for Sahir sahab where the poetry of song easily a thousand times more valuable than the tune. what is paon choo lene do phoolon ko without the poetry. and now(i know u wudnt like this) where is dada during the verses of pyasa?????? Sahir made those verses and Rafi saab delivered, dada remained on the record label only.
    and now u feel that ur post # something something shud be removed as that is hurting some Rafians and Sahir fans.(i am a big time, in fact i feel as a lyricist Sahir is the best where as dada’s supremacyas a composer can often be challenged). why dont u write after u feel rather than feel after u write?

    also why dont u write about when dada-Sahir worked in tandem to produce gems after gems, rather than amplifying the break off? this world already is full of hatred, let the flower of love bloom at least here.

  15. xxx says:

    ref to entry 23::

    mr.aseer ,,

    u wrote–
    “””my point is that were u present when sahir sahab was insulting dada?””””

    no i cudnt,, as im juss 20yrs of age,, came much after wen both maestros(sdb & sahir) attained their heavenly bliss……

    but i wud like to ask u something.. dat y sdb parted his ways wd sahir aftr so many beautiful albums??
    >taxi driver
    >naujawa…. and many odr gr8 albums..

    ok.. juss leave all odrs… consider only three songs one wd rafi sahab, one wd talat.. one wd hemant..
    >jinhe naaz hai hind par(song par excellence wd gr8 sahayari)
    >jaye to jaye kahan
    >jane wo kaise log the……

    i believe all above 3 were among the top ten renditions of respective singers..

    now aftr such a quality work this magical combo parted their ways,,, something went wrong b/w dem.. i believe it was sahir’scomment–“i made sd burman”-as told by nayyar sahab & wat i believe dat at the age of 77+ nayyar sahab wudnt tell anythig fake…
    this comment didnt affected sdb as much as it affected sahir….

    the major part of his fame went to majrooh,, as dada durman revived the career of majrooh in late 50s…

    just imagine these albums wd sahir..

    >sujata(went to majooh)
    >bandini(went to shailendra & gulzar)
    >guide(went to shilendra)
    >teen devian(went to majroh)
    >meri surat teri aakhen(went to shailendra)…

    and for sure if dat 1957 incident wudnt hav been occured than at least 3 of above 5(and many odr gr8 sdb’s albums) wud surely went to sahir… as sdb consistently utilised sahir from 1951-57…

    sdb also revived shailendra’s career in ealry 60s wd many gr8 albums…

    but no doubt sahir was gr8,, his work wd roshan sahab’s barsaat ki raat, tajmahal,dil hi to hai was just amazing, he also did gr8 work wd ravi too….

    javed akhtar once said that– “main wo uchaiyaan chhona chahta hun jo sahir ne chhui thi”

    my complain against him is dat wat made genious to pass such a silly & laughing comment–“i made sd burman””– as told by opn…

    this comment only affected sahir…. his contemps replaced him in major projects of sdb & opn…….

    and i know very well dat this is a,, a place to worship lord of playback singing rafi sahab,, but apart from paying my high regards for rafi sahab,, im also here to praise these 6 maestros
    >naushad ji
    >dada burman
    >madan ji
    >roshan ji
    >pancham da

    i lost my temper wen i read regarding sahir in opn’s interview,, as i respect burman da a lot..

    my humble req to moderator— plz emove my entry # 13 as it’s most probably hurting many sahirji’s & rafi saab’s fan here…
    kapil goswami

  16. binus2000 says:

    Aseer ji :

    i love the legend op nayyar … but the facts say that opn did
    give music post 1970 ………. but the “nayyar magic” had sadly
    left him…
    as i said, nayyar saab was “great”; he left many talented people
    during the nayyar daur and he lost his “magic touch” for more than
    two decades – towards the end…

    the music world will never forget nayyar saab.

    binu nair.

  17. Aseer says:

    @ binu ji
    spot on. b4 splitting dil ki awaz bhi sun but they patced up and sang a few, never comparable to the earlier works.
    OPN also said in 1975, those who say Rafi is dead, give me a movie and i ll prove them wrong. not sure of the year but around that time, 73-74-75

  18. Aseer says:

    @ xxx
    “but being an eminent lyricist doesnt mean u start insulting divine composer like dada burman…” my point is that were u present when sahir sahab was insulting dada? or for that matter have u read Sahir’s version of the story? I guess not. so u cant judge. no right sir. even the judges listen to the defendant, dont they? and why not gloorify the positive rather than the negative. this is a place of worship and not mud throwing(my interpretation).
    “u cant deny d fact dat sj’s best work came under shailendra & hasrat(sj’s favourites)”, all i said is that under influnce of anger u wrongly typed Sahir’s name(a form of poetic justice, no offence intended) in place of Shailendra.
    plz keep the dirty linens for ur washing machine sir, thats my sole agenda.

  19. xxx says:

    aseer sahab,,

    i appreciate & accept all your compliments and valuable advice for me..

    thanx and god bless you……

    now regarding sahir— in my previous post i mentioned sahir as gr8 sahir or eminent lyricist sahir.. i dont think that there was any sign of disrespect….. but being an eminent lyricist doesnt mean u start insulting divine composer like dada burman…

    but no doubt dat he was gr8(probably d best) …….

    and ya,,, u cant deny d fact dat sj’s best work came under shailendra & hasrat(sj’s favourites)… sj left lots of projects for them–as told by hasrat himself…

  20. Binuji i will try to come to meet u next sunday. Plz. give me the appointment for that.

  21. Binuji great article and i am also trying to say that opnayyarji made a great mistake with rafisahab for a minor thing which he lost his stardom aftersome time. he took mahendra kapoor for his future songs whch he said in his last days that he was feeling guilty about that. i think when rafisahab sang so many melodious songs under his baton, op should have some patience at least for a hour. no problem, it is a history. rafisahab and opnayyarji is no more, but the songs they have kept us a great treasure. whatever will be both are great legends in their respective things.

  22. Hussein Sheikh says:

    Post # 14, yes there’s a song “Zamane ki aankhone dekhi hai yaaron…” from the film “Ek Baar Muskura Do”. A nice song, anybody need it can mail me.

  23. binus2000 says:

    opn also had a tug of war with yusuf khan.. the great dilip kumar.

    after naya daur, the team never came back again….. the reason
    being opn claimed he was the hero of naya daur and snubbed
    dilip kumar saab at a party, it was reported…

    binu nair.

  24. binus2000 says:

    Aseer ji,,,,

    film sambandh too had no rafi nos… one of the popular song in it
    was chal akela, chal akela….

    after opn insulted rafi saab the producers and distributors too lost
    interest in opn as they doubted the shelf life of his songs without
    mohd rafi saheb.

    binu nair….

  25. binus2000 says:

    Aseer ji….

    u are right and i am not too wrong sir.

    before the split o.p.n recorded : dil ki awaaz bhi sun mere fasane
    pe na jaa… the lyricist had perhaps foreseen the split with opn
    and rafi saab…

    after, two years rafi saab went to opn, they hugged each other and
    bygones became bygones.

    rafi saab surely sang for op.n after a gap of some two years. but,
    the magic was missing from opn .

    ======== re: the controversey with sahir saab and with rafi
    saab , opn was in the wrong and he paid for it……

    talented writers like sahir will never be jobless, i feel.

    opn made singer asha bhosle but this crooner says in interviews that
    pancham da is the “greatest” music composer ever .

    opn had a big “will power” and he was truly great and talented.
    and, he had a god gift…………………

    he had a bad temperament but a heart of gold ,many many many
    people in the industry say , this … and i believe it.

    asseerji : i am singularly unlucky in the sense that opn invited me
    to his thane house and the appointment was on tuesday but he
    left us a sunday just two days before the appointment on Jan 28..

    binu nair… the rafi foundation…mumbai…

  26. Aseer says:

    wrong info on binu ji’s part
    film ekbaar muskurado which came in 1972 had a Rafi track if my memory isnt cheating me. much later than dil ki awaz bhi sun in 1968

  27. Aseer says:

    Mr Kapil Goswami
    I know very well what u r talking about. how dare u say Sahir lost his way completely. do u really need a checkup sir. I feel u need professional counselling. And if necessary I can send u a list of Sahir’s gems for Rafi sahab after this “insulting” incident.
    and about Sahir and the saga, can u prove that OPN was true and Sahir wasnt. None of these geniouses are with us anymore so plz learn to respect them. If u try to spit at Sahir, u must spit with ur head vertically to zenith and according to Newton, ur spit will adorn ur face only.
    what has happened to this site, is this a place to abuse someone only?
    I dont know why te owner and the modeeator of this site allowed this post.
    I recommened a removal

    PS- Mr triple X, may be in anger u typed wrong, SJ was happy with Hasrat and Shailendra and not Sahir.

  28. Dear Rafi fans,

    On 2nd February, Saturday, DMS, Chennai arranged a musical eveving “Tribute to OPN” at Chowdiah Memorial Hall in Bangalore. The program went on from 6.45 PM to 9.45 PM. What a treat it was for full three hours. The audience were transported to another world and became younger by 30 years. It was wonderful to see even aged people dancing to the tunes of OPN. The five Singers did full justice to Rafi, Asha, Geeta, Shamshad, Mahendra Kapoor and Mukesh. I was lucky to be sitting with Mr. Narayananji and his family while enjoying the evening.

    We wish more such programs are arranged in future.

  29. binus2000 says:

    on 2nd feb.. we attended a programme of o.p. nayyar tribute
    in borivlis prabodhan thackeray hall.

    I have not seen such an enchanting programme for a long time.
    what was captivating was that the six singers sang all the songs
    most competitively just as the “originals” but – there was a

    the songs of rafi saab were “piercing” and “touching” the hearts.
    the programmme was capped by the marvellous mirthful bhangra
    type chorus : yeh desh hai veer jawanon ka, mastanon ka ,
    which was sung by six singers.

    the female singers also joined in making the presentation innovative;
    the music lovers were clapping and enjoying every minute of the
    “nayyar daur”..

    binu nair… the rafi foundation, mumbai…

  30. binus2000 says:

    Post 6… majeed khan….

    next time sure u can make it. dr. khare was inquiring about u
    for the invitation.
    the rafi foundation national co-ordinator mr.narayan of bangalore
    opens or meets rafi lovers in the length and bredth of the country
    when he is on official tours.

    have u been able to speak to rafi lovers in the u.s.a.?.. pl. let us

    binu nair…. the rafi foundation…mumbai

  31. binus2000 says:

    mr. piroe saab :
    no.. its not the humsaaya song.. its a song from a small time
    movie in which rafi saab was late.
    dil ki awwaz bhi sun was the last recorded number with opn by
    rafi saab.
    u will be shocked to know that opn cancelled the recording, send
    back rafi saab and footed the bill of the studio for the day.

    rafi saab was held up at shankar jaikishan’s recording and now
    some say that s.j. had done this deliberately….

    its opn’s mistake and loss. we saw his fortunes falling as a
    mahendra kapoor could not step into rafi saabs shoes in opns
    rafi and opn patched up but the “magic” had vanished from opn.
    its all gods wish ….. as ” he ” is the one who gives and takes….
    we men and women are all mortals……. although our pride cheats
    us many times – with dangerous consequences.

    binu nair.. mumbai…

  32. Mr. Piroe says:

    Mr. XXX
    I agree with you but I was a little bit scared to say this. One thing is to be said, that when O.P. ji deserted Rafi Saheb, The Quality of his music was on a low pitch [Quality]. Except..the song of Mukesh ji. Chal akela chal akela.,,this is a great song of late Mukesh ji.
    I also wanted to ask O.P. why he coudn’t wait a little bit. I think this is the Humsaya song problem.
    God Bless Rafi saheb and O.P. Nayyar ji.and Mr. Mukesh ji.

  33. K.J.Ravi says:

    Although OP is known as the ‘rhythm king’, his oeuvre included some of the most melodious songs ever composed, and who could be the singer except Rafi Sahab! For example: ‘Aap ke haseen rukh pe aaj naya noor hai’ (Baharen Phir Bhi Aayengi, 1966), ‘Aanchal mein saja lena kaliyan’ (Phir Wohi Dil Laaya Hoon, 1963), ‘Pukarta chala hoon mani…’ (Mere Sanam, 1965) and ‘Hai duniya usiki, zamana usika…’ (Kahmir Ki Kai, 1964).

  34. Majeed Khan says:

    Mysalute to the Rafi Saab and OP Nayyar Saab combi.
    Whole World enjoys with their golden work.
    I am unfortunate this time missing such a brilliant songs by Khare Sahab as I am in USA for an assignment.

    Majeed Khan

  35. binus2000 says:

    harvinder ji…

    every one has a choice of his favourite music directors .

    How about naushad ji, shankar jaikishan ji and o p nayyar…
    in that order, sir….

    binu nair..

  36. Hussein Sheikh says:

    Post # 1: Sorry for the error, to all Rafi Saheb’s fans, I wish a Happy Republic Day.

  37. xxx says:

    binu ji,
    nice and valuable info shared by u……

    opn was just superb,,

    accn to anandji bhai opn ji utilised rafi sahab in best way…

    my only complaint against opn ji is why he parted his ways wd rafi sahab,, why he couldnt spare half an hour for a singer who provided him superstardom….???
    why nayyar sahab??

    anyways he is no more wd us…….. bhagwan unki aatma ko shanti de….

    ******long live nayyar sahab******

  38. Harvinder says:

    OP Nayyar saheb belived in quality and nothing but quality. My teen age son with inclination towards western music and little regard for normal hindi songs/ghazals also says that your op nayyar has rytham and surprisngly spots duplicate voice of sonu nigham and not original before i spot, singing rafi saheb’s song.

    i have never dared to give rating to op nayyar saheb amongst md’s as he stands taller than the greatest. even when you are overwhelmed by other md’s compositions (and they are in great numbers), yet upon listning to nayyar saheb’s composition next moment, i revert back to ” op nayyar saheb beyond comparisson “

  39. Hussein Sheikh says:

    Rafi Saheb sang unforgetable songs for O.P. Nayyar which are remembered even this day! Nayyar ji said very true to young composers that they are unlucky for not having Rafi Saheb sing their songs. Those who worked with Rafi Saheb are very lucky. Meanwhile, to all Rafi Saheb’s lovers I wish a Happy Independence Day.

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