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Tag Archives: Meena Kumari

3rd Anniversary Quiz Answers

Thank you dear friends, readers, participants and lovers of the quiz and the blog!
Thank you for the overwhelming response! It was also nice to see you, Lomo and Andi, who put their annual appearance at the birthday celebrations. Good to know, that you are there somewhere in the background. Maybe this is also a good opportunity to thank all the dear readers, who read the posts but can’t respond. THANK YOU everybody for all the support, love and affection you shower on me and the blog.
anniversary
It was great fun for me to put the quiz together, but what was difficult, was to give points. In fact most of the participants gave all the answers right. There were only small technical mistakes, like forgetting to name a singer or the film name explicitly. So the points scored show rather my stringency, or shall we say tight-fistedness in giving points, rather than the participants’ knowledge of the songs.

Nobody got the answer to the 20 points question. What’s more, some also attempted to solve it. In fact, I would have been really surprised if anybody had got it right. Who would keep the statistics of this blog? 🙂
Maybe I should have framed the question properly. My mistake!
Love in Tokyo Asha Parekh
Sunehriyaadein had the best go at that question and her answer had me in splits for hours. With her kind permission I’m sharing it here.
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Posted by on May 9, 2013 in Bollywood, Lists, Quiz

 

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The Tragedienne

My ten favourite Meena Kumari songs

Meena kumari1
Meena Kumari, a face, which launched thousand tragic films. A thousand might be a bit of exaggeration, but she alone on her star-power helped tragic films to great success. In the 50s and even in the frolicking, colourful 60s, people would flock the cinema halls (to different degrees) to see her suffer. She was also an adept comedienne, in which she also excelled and was quite successful as seen in Magroor [1950], Miss Mary [1957], Azaad [1955] and Kohinoor [1960].
Pakeezah Meena Kumari
Meena Kumari at a certain time in my childhood played a big role in shaping the image of women in my psyche. Exposed to a slew of films, where she played a neglected wife, a suffering daughter-in-law, a sacrificing daughter, a caring sister-in-law, a protective sister or ‘simply’ a tormented woman between two men, she moulded an image of women being forever doomed to suffer at the hands of men in life. It is true that even other leading ladies like Mala Sinha (Anpadh) or Nutan (Khandan, Chhota Bhai) played such roles but it was as if they were impersonating Meena Kumari in these films. Meena Kumari remained always the original and the one to which others had to match to.
The presence of strong, independent and liberal women in my family and surroundings though would rectify the image in my mind; Meena Kumari would nevertheless always remain special.
Meena kumari3
On 31st March it was her 41st death anniversary. To commemorate it here are ten of my favourite songs filmed on her. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2013 in Bollywood, Lists

 

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Insomnia

My ten favourite insomnia songs

neend na aaye titleSpending the night in bed tossing around has happened to each and everybody of us. One would like to sleep, but the stream of thoughts just don’t end. The body is tired, but the mind wide awake. You tell yourself, that you have so many things to do the next day and the most appropriate thing to do now would be to sleep. You get irritated over it, which make matters only worse. And then in the wee hours of the morning, when you are supposed to be soon getting up, you fall asleep in sweet, sweet slumber! A dear friend of mine, Raja, was in this situation a few days back. This unfortunate incident made me come up with this list.

But the songs below don’t sing about the situation described above, but are rather moans of separated lovers or are freshly-fallen-in-love pairs. For this list, I have chosen songs with neend(iyaa) na aaye in the mukhdaa (refrain). I hope you like them as much as I do.
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Posted by on March 6, 2013 in Bollywood, Lists

 

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This Singing Business

  • Seeing no new post from me on my blog, my readers got concerned about it. Pacifist just couldn’t tolerate this utter neglect and came again to my rescue. thank you, dear Pacifist. This is her third post on this blog and with it she is showing her business acumen. Bravo, Pacifist! More power to the small businessmen and -women!
    Pacifist’s choice of 10 songs of small business

Thank you Harvey. I’m quite pleased at having this opportunity of posting 10 songs on a subject I have often thought about. People selling stuff, doing business. It was a wonderful time of economic opportunity, letting the small fish survive. Today they have been eaten up by the big fish. I don’t mean to imply that they all sold stuff in the filmi manner, but sell, they did.
So in memory of those small dying/dead businesses, here are 10 such songs.
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I do have more than 10 songs with a different product being sung and sold, but I’m such a sucker for melody, tunes which are pleasing to my ears that I left some and took some even though the product got repeated. Boot Polish was one such, Tel Maalish another 🙂
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Posted by on February 9, 2013 in Bollywood, Guest Post, Lists

 

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Anokhe Bhol!

Arunji has been a loyal follower of this blog and has always been very much encouraging with his comments and suggestions. This is his second post here on this blog in the role of an author. It is an honour for me that he agreed to do this post. His personal reminiscences as usual makes this post more dear to me. Thank you Arunji!

Arunkumar Deshmukh’s ten favourite songs with “interesting” lyrics

Words like ‘Dumbak dumba’ or ‘chidi chapata ‘ or Ding dong etc always attracted me in Hindi songs. In the early 50s I was an avid listener of Radio Ceylon. They used to have a weekly programme of ‘ Anokhe Bol ‘ for 15 minutes. I waited thru the week for this programme. it was my favourite programme. Songs played in this programme had odd words in it and those songs haunted me for the entire week till the next programme, when next set of songs took over.
From my early childhood i was very fond of seeing films and enjoying its music. We were in Hyderabad State. This being a Muslim ruled state; there were many peculiar things in those days. For example, in most Theatres, there used to be a class called “ZANANA “(Ladies Only). This was like a balcony. It was meant for those Burkha-clad Muslim women who wanted to see the films, without being seen by the men folk. A huge cloth curtain was dividing the Zanana Class and the rest of the Theatre. A She-male or a He-female (I don’t know which! ) was appointed with the exclusive duty of removing the huge curtain once the film started and closing it before or as soon as the Interval or the end of the film, so that the women could see the film and still not get exposed to the prying eyes of the men folk in the theatre.
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Posted by on November 18, 2012 in Bollywood, Guest Post, Lists

 

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Mohan ki Asha

My 10 favourite Madan Mohan-Asha Bhosle songs


When one thinks of Madan Mohan, one invariably thinks of Lata Mangeshkar. Their cooperation has brought out many a gem, but his partnership with the younger Mangeshkar sister still remains in the shadow of the bigger tree. Here I have listed some of my favourite songs resulting from this collaboration.

I have included only her solo numbers in this list. Enjoy!
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Posted by on November 2, 2012 in Bollywood, Lists

 

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Arunkumar Deshmukh’s 10 favourite cycle songs

Arunji has been a loyal follower of this blog and has always been very much encouraging. With this post he makes his debut here on this blog in the role of an author. It is an honour for me that he agreed to do this post. His personal reminiscences makes this post more dear to me. Now, without much ado I give the microphone to him.

It is said, that Indian Films represent the life in India. There is, however, a section of people who believe that the society emulates what is shown in films. So, what is the truth?

When the Talkie came to India and films were made, only one thought was there in the minds of the producers and that was to make films based on Mythological and Historical stories.
This went on for first 5-6 years, but then film makers realised that people will like their films if they could relate their lives with it. So, films based on stories with village background, the caste system, dowry, the moneylender and the farmers were made. These became popular. The urban and the city viewer who was educated were looking for something different. Thus, films were made on love stories set in cities and bigger towns.

Those days middle class was growing in India by leaps and bounds and these were the people, who could spend the money. Now these were the people the films were aimed at.
In the 40s and 50s, the most common transportation vehicle was CYCLE. Almost everybody knew how to ride a cycle. Few people had cars and motorcycles had not yet become popular. Scooters were yet unknown.

I remember, I got my first Cycle when I was in school. My school was 3-4 miles far and I used the cycle to go to school in the morning and to go to friends in the evening. There were many cycles on the road and there was a Traffic rule that every cycle must have a Lamp on the Cycle’s handle as a caution to other vehicles. These lamps were kerosene and Cotton-batti lamps in the night. Sometimes, the lamps got extinguished due to wind. Unaware of this, the police used to catch us. On hearing our plea about the lamp, wind etc, the police would touch the glass of the lamp. if it was still warm, we were let out with a warning only. This was the life in late 40s and early 50s, when I was in Hyderabad State.

It was natural that now cycles too should feature in films. Imaginative Directors used cycles for the heroes when they chased the heroines and for the heroines when they went on a picnic with sahelis. In many films, the village affluents would be shown as cycle owners and the city people using it for moving about.

Up to the 70s, cycles were part of many films. Slowly, cycles were replaced by scooters, Mopeds and motor cycles in films and by 80s, it was only cars and fancy Mobikes for the heroes. Poor cycles were reduced to be shown, only used by the doodhwalla bhaiyyas (milk-men).
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Posted by on October 2, 2012 in Bollywood, Guest Post, Lists

 

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Look! It Is A Bungalow!

My ten favourite bangala (bungalow) songs

A dream of one’s own house/cottage in the suburbs has been and is the motor of many middle class households all over the world. Maybe it is the security it offers or the need for privacy, to have a garden and the cosy life which one associates with it and thus to achieve ultimate goal of every human being to be happy. If one really ‘achieves’ all these things with the acquisition of this cosy house is secondary. I think the dream in itself the best part of it.

Like many of the dreams and aspirations of the common man (whoever or whatever he/she is), even this aspect has not been neglected in the Hindi film songs. Here are my favourites!
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Posted by on August 23, 2012 in Bollywood, Lists

 

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Of Clouds and Separation

My ten favourite songs on clouds and separation


Mid-June, the rains used to arrive in Bombay when I was a kid. The black clouds would hold the promise of change. This would mean relief from the heat and dust of the preceding summer months and a burst of new life. The dreary plain near our house would promise to turn into a pond with lots of small streams arising and emptying in it. These small streams would then become alive with small and big crabs and tadpoles! Coinciding with the arrival of the black clouds, the new school year would also arrive. This would mean new textbooks! The dark messenger would also bring the hope, that I would share the class room with my friends from last year, but at the same time also the anxiety if I would again have to spend this new school year with class bully.

These dark water-bearers of sky, who brought so many emotions in my being were and are also the bearers of hope over the centuries in India for separated lovers. The earliest mention is found in Meghduta (the cloud messenger) by Kalidasa (most probably 4th century CE). It tells the story, how a yakṣha (a supernatural being), after being exiled, asks a passing cloud to take a message to his wife. In Hindi cinema though, we find mostly women singing to the clouds. They call upon them to be their messengers, to take a message to their far-off beloveds, asking them to return back.
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Posted by on June 16, 2012 in Bollywood, Lists

 

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Drunken Quiz and Clever Answers

First of all I would like to thank everybody for their good wishes to my/our blog on its birthday.
The quiz got a nice response. Shashi and Samir sent me the answers the very next day. They had some sophisticated techniques to get to the answers. Samir in his feedback to the quiz elaborated on it. Samir, would you be so kind to post it also in the comments section below? It is very enlightening!
Lalitha was very industrious and worked till the last hour and sent me her answer four hours back.
Totally eight persons sent me their answers and it was fun going through them. Lomo and Andi were new for me. They told me that they usually read my posts and the comments by the readers and that they enjoy it a lot and at times more the comments than the post itself (so says Andi).
Here are the scores
Archana = 128,5
Pacifist = 126
Shashi = 124
Samir = 106
Lomo = 100
Lalitha = 93
Andi = 93
Anu = 55
Congratulations Archana for scoring the most points and thanks to all participants! The email communication with you regarding the hints and clues was a source of great pleasure for me!

Well, here are the answers! Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2012 in Bollywood, Lists, Quiz

 

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