Exactly 4 years after releasing ‘Volume-3’ (1951–60) successfully in January 1980, which was first one out of the proposed 4 Volumes of ‘Hindi Film Geet Kosh’, now I feel thrilled while handing over ‘Volume-2’ (1941–50) to the music lovers with lot of happiness. I am myself surprised that even after 4 years' of publishing and sale of ‘Volume-3’, no publisher has come forward to publish the remaining volumes and by putting my body, soul and money, I had to publish this 2nd one at my own risk and responsibility to fulfill the love-filled demand of music lovers. I have tried my best to present this volume as early as possible.
Before the story moves forward and I keep it before the readers the details of last 4 years, I would like to repeat the story that I had told to music lovers in Volume-3 to pacify the curiosity of those music lovers as to how the task of this unique compilation came out :
"The story is old but not more than 10 years as my age is less than 28 years. Readers can consider this as an interesting story as well.... During 1969-70 as a new regular listener of the programmes of Radio Ceylon, I used to participate in it as well. At that time, along with other programmes, I had a special interest in a programme named ‘Vaakya Geetanjali’. The announcer would announce a meaningful sentence of 7-8 words and wanted the listeners to provide the songs starting from each word of that sentence. Instead of worrying about my name to be announced amongst the listeners who sent correct solution of this puzzle, my interest was more on whatever songs I had quoted were found correct or not. Thus, one can say that indirectly, the thought of a ‘Geet Kosh’ generated from this practice. I used to compile songs in alphabetical order. Volume of compilation thus started increasing slowly day by day. Whenever I used to come across a difficult word in the ‘Vaakya Geetanjali’ programme for which I couldn’t make out a song, I used to get restless. Then I thought as to why not a systematic compilation of Film/Non Film songs produced till date be made. As soon as this thought struck to me, I started focusing more on the compilation of songs. When this idea of compiling the songs related information struck to me, I didn’t think it to be difficult. The compilation work had thus started. The question arose as to the information for which period need to be compiled first and which is to be left out. At that time, non-film song compilation was also started. However considering the magnitude of film songs, the compilation work of non film songs was dropped.
On checking minutely between the period 1931-70, I found that there were around 4,500 Hindi Films made and if I try to concentrate a particular decade or a year and start compiling the songs therefor only, then what would happen to the information of songs that I would come across for other period/years. And if such information is left out to be picked up later, what is the guarantee of getting the same at later stage and that it would not get lost for ever. This thought struck to me quite frequently. After considerable thought, it was decided that all the information for the 4 decades be collected and compiled whatever we come across and once a sizable compilation has been done, it can be decided as to the information relating to which particular decade or years should be published first……………"
(From the preface included in Geet Kosh, Volume-3)
Thus had begun the task of compilation and in January 1980, after facing all difficulties and financial constraints, I handed over ‘Volume-3’ (1951–60) to the music lovers. As per most sought after decade, ‘Volume-3’ was the first one to be published and as was expected, there was slow demand of the book, may be due to lack of publicity, which continues till now (There are only a few copies of ‘Volume-3’ left now). During the years 1980 and 1981, the sale proceeds of 'Volume-3' were getting accumulated. In the year 1982, the task of publication of 'Volume-2' started. When I gave a look at the compilation sheets of songs of 1,250 films censored between 1941 and 50, I found that even though lots of details regarding songs had been collected, there were still many pages without information. That is why I decided to make a trip to gather missing information before preparing the manuscript of ‘Volume-2’. During the last 4 years from the date of publication of ‘Volume-3’, lots of new sources had been unearthed. There were meetings with such music lovers and well-wishers whom I had never even thought of. So, in May 1982, I started the first leg of my journey and reached Bombay. For this trip, I was accompanied by my local friend Girish Chandra Sharma and Bishwa Nath Chatterjee from Nagpur. In Bombay, we collected information directly from old lyricists, composers and singers such as Hasrat Jaipuri, Bulo. C. Rani, Chitragupta, Hansraj Behl, Rajkumari, etc. The burden of meeting more singers, music directors and lyricists was put on Nalin Shah’s shoulders. A lot of information was gathered from music lovers who had put lots of efforts in collecting 78 rpm records which proved good source of information. Main among them are Vijay Nafde and Paresh Dubey. Other notable contributors include Dr. Prakash Joshi, Narayan Mulani. From Mulani Bhai, we referred lots of booklets, gramophone records and its catalogues from and got a treasure trove of information. During our stay at Bombay, we went to Pune for 2 days. In Pune, with the help of Jayant Kulkarni, we were able to gather information. We met B.V.Dharap, the compiler and publisher of ‘Indian Films’ 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977-78 and gathered good amount of information who had made collection of booklets of Silent as well as talkie films and other related sources. With some good-bitter experiences of ‘National Film Archive of India’ and a few big-wigs, we returned to Bombay. In a get-together organized by Dr. Prakash Joshi, we were able to meet many new music lovers. We met well known film-cricket critic Raju Bharatan and a few other supporters who not only showed interest in ‘Geet Kosh’ project but also agreed to support in whatever way possible. In the office of ‘Wadia Movietone’, we met John Cawas who gave us few Booklets to refer. Thereafter, we reached Baroda from Bombay and met Shri Harish Raghuvanshi who has dedicatedly compiled songs sung by late Mukesh in all Languages (around 1,000) and is going to release a book containing full text of songs very soon. With the help of Shri Raghuwanshi, we met local music lovers and acquired their suggestions for the remaining Volumes. Alongwith providing information for the compilation of songs for ‘Geet Kosh’ volumes, Shri Raghuwanshi was instrumental in the publicity and sale of the ‘Volume-3’. After reaching Rajkot from Baroda, Shri Arvind Patel (former M.P.) welcomed and honored us. We got help from Shri Yasin Dalal, Madhusudhan Bhatt and other friends and noted down the information from the available booklets. Special mention needs to be made of Shri Pushpendra Singh Jadeja, who had a huge collection of gramophone records, booklets and disc catalogues in his ancestral house at Veerpur Estate. We visited Virpur Estate to refer his collection and gathered the desired information. On our special request, Shri Suleman Kherani and his friends came to Rajkot in the night itself alongwith good number of booklets mostly relating to forties. From his collection, we easily got booklets of many stunt films (which were otherwise hard to find) which filled my compilation sheets to greater extent. During the last leg of this trip, I met Anil Biswas, who had left Bombay and had settled permanently in Delhi and gathered information about the singers of many songs from the films for which he had composed music.
It took lot of time to post the information gathered during this trip to respective compilation pages. While I experienced the limitless love and support of music lovers, I also realized that they were eagerly waiting for the publication of the remaining volumes as well. After returning from the trip to Kanpur, Shri Suleman Kherani of Jamnagar sent the remaining booklets also, for which Kaiyyum Abdul Aziz of Gondal (Distt. Rajkot, Gujarat) had pursued a lot. Aziz Bhai spent good amount of money to get lots of booklets, books related to films, record catalogues and sent them to me along with providing details of songs played from Radio Ceylon’s ‘Bhule Bisre’ programme.
From the end of the said trip till pre-publishing of ‘Volume-2’, Shri Nalin Shah (Bombay) working as a representative, met and gathered information from all the singers, lyricists, composers, directors such as Zohrabai Ambalawali, Qamar Jalalabadi, Naushad Ali, Sajjad Hussain, Kidar Sharma, A.R.Kardar, Vijay Bhatt, etc. and sent to me without insisting me to visit Bombay to collect all the information.
After updating all the details at respective compilation sheets by March 1983, Shri Bishwanath Chatterjee came specially from Nagpur to Kanpur in April 1983, to prepare the manuscript for ‘Volume- 2’ to give to the Press for printing purpose and it was completed to a good amount. Shri Chatterjee had helped me in a similar way for ‘Volume-3’ as well. The task of preparing Song Index and Film Index started and by July 1983, the printing work of this Volume also started which was completed by January 1984. Although the decision to include the song list in this Volume was easy but the difficult part was to prepare the same. For preparing Index of around 11,000 songs in an alphabetical order, I got immense help from Ms. Satinder Kaur (Wife – Sometimes helping but sometimes not) and her neice Ms.Manjit Kaur.
Even though lots of efforts, time and money have been put up into the compilation and publication of presenting this ‘Volume-2’, there might be still some shortcomings when it comes to the expectations of music lovers. Readers who are interested in film music can fill in the blanks with newly found information at respective pages. We were not able to spot the actual names of many male and female playback singers during the period 1941 to 50 for the simple reason that the process of acknowledging the singers’ names on gramophone discs had not yet started at that time which was the only reliable source carrying most of the songs. Instead of mentioning the names of actual singers who rendered playback for the songs, one finds the names of the characters on whom the songs were picturized in the films. Such names create lots of confusions. Even after making sincere efforts, the real names of many playback singers could not be found even from the concerned music directors who actually made the singers to sing the songs. The heart gets saddened even more when upon asking the respective music composers as to who has sung a particular song, the result is zero or even after trying to recollect the names which have got lost in the oblivion, it is a sheer guess with a doubt. Under these circumstances, getting authentic and correct information was/is a challenge as no one else can give correct information than a composer himself. Same is the case with Lyricists too. They aren’t able to spot their songs they wrote for the films jointly with other lyricists. Even when we kept before them full text of songs from a film which had only two lyricists, they weren’t able to identify their own songs. On gramophone records and in booklets, there are no details for the individual songs in most of the cases. Even when the lyricist is alive and a meeting was arranged but when he is not able to confirm for sure that it is a song written by him, the heart sinks as no other source can give a better confirmation than the person himself. For this reason, the doubtful details that we got from other sources have been omitted due to lack of authenticity and I believe it is better to keep the page blank rather than providing incorrect information.
In the last stages of printing of this Volume, during the Bombay trip lots of details of male and female playback singers were acquired from Shri Narayan Mulani, who had collected it by meetings with singers, lyricists and composers and also from another music lover Shyam Samant who provided details from his collection of songs on cassettes which he made with lot of efforts. Nalin Shah again met Naushad and provided me the details of singers and lyricists of the songs for which he composed music and all such information has been included in the ‘Addenda’ of this book.
There were lots of difficulties during the printing but a special thanks to the compositor and Vivek of ‘Vivek Press’ who even though argued but did the printing accurately and made it possible otherwise this would have delayed further.
Even after putting the entire amount of proceeds collected from the sale of ‘Volume-3’, when there was shortage of funds for making ‘Volume-2’ ready, there was help coming selflessly from Bishwanath Chatterjee (Nagpur), Harish Raghuvanshi (Surat), Girish Chandra Suman (Aligarh), Satnam Kaur (Kanpur) and also I would like to thank all those who after providing support for ‘Volume-3’ didn’t opt to take it back but instead, encouraged me to come out with the remaining Volumes – Bishwanath Chatterjee (Bhopal), Mahendra Modi ‘Videsia’ (Ramgarh Cant), Gauri Shankar Shukla (Delhi), Bharat Bhushan ‘Dost’ (Jamshedpur), Gorakh Prasad Gupta (Chaibasa), Gopal Prasad Gupta (Katihar).
I feel indebted to Ratan Lal Ji Kataria (Kekri, Distt. Ajmer) for his valuable advices. Providing us photocopies of desired booklets selflessly by B.V.Dharap (Poona), translating into Hindi from Urdu by Shri Rashid Ahmed are a few more to whom I would like to thank from the heart. I am remembering Inderjit Singh ‘Nishchal’ as it was his timely suggestion that any special information about any film should appear as footnote with respective film. For the doubts in the usage of Hindi, I would remain ever grateful to Shri Rajendra Kumar Shukla, who showered his blessings all the time when I was his student.
The decision to release the ‘Volume-2’ in Bombay was taken since long and even though Shri Ajit Sheth of ‘Pankaj Mullick Music Research Foundation’ has taken back his initial proposal to release the same and taking care of all expenses, the preparation of the release function goes on and hopefully, it will be released on 25 February 1984 at the hands of the well known composer Naushad Ali of forties at Jai Hind College Hall, ‘A’ Road, Churchgate, Bombay 400 020. The release event is being managed by the newly formed ‘Vintage Cine Music Lovers Association’ for which I am thankful to them.
Due to increased number of pages, though planned earlier, additional information gathered for ‘Volume-3’ (1951–60) could not be included in ‘Volume-2’ as an ‘Appendix’. For that, there are plans to release a separate booklet with Song Index of Volume-3. After releasing first ‘Volume-3’ (1951 – 60) and now ‘Volume-2’ (1941 -50), it is proposed to release ‘Volume-4’ (1961–70) now which would be followed by ‘Volume-1’ (1931–40). It is also proposed to release a book under the title ‘Hindi Filmon Ke Sangeetkar’ (1931 till date) which will include all the names of the composers with titles of their films and certification years. Suggestions from music lovers regarding this project will be welcome.
Kanpur : Basant Panchami 1984 Har Mandir Singh ‘Hamraaz’