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Remembering Singer & Composer - Madan Mohan

Updated: Mar 23

A film of Chetan Anand’s “Haqeeqat’ (1964) was scored by Madan Mohan, starring Balraj Sahni and Dharmendra and based on the Sino- Indian war of 1962. He used Rafi, who sang numbers like Kar Chale Hum Fida, Main Yeh Soch Kar. Lata was used for the song “Zara Si Aahat Hoto Hai”, and the unscreened “Khelo Na Mere Dil Se".


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About Madan Mohan


In the Hindi film industry “Madan Mohan” was one of the most respected composer and singer. Mainly he was immortal for his gazal.


Madan Mohan was born on 25th June 1924 in Baghdad where his father Rai Chunilal was working as an accountant general with the Iraqi police forces. He died on 14th July 1975 in Mumbai.


He was very fond of singing, so in 1947 he got his first chance to record two ghazals penned by Behzad Lucknawi, Aane Laga hai koi, Nazar Jalwa Gar Mujhe. Between 1946 and 1948, he assisted music composers S.D Burman for Do Bhai and Shyam Sundar in Actress.


Singer Cum Composer As A Madan Mohan’s Work


As a composer for films, Madan Mohan's carrier took off when he assisted S.D. Burman in the film “ Do Bhai” (1947). Later he started his career as an independent composer with the film “Ankhen” (1950). The first song he recorded for “Ankhen” was "preet lagaa ke maine ye phal paaya" voiced by Mukesh. The film turned out to be a hit for both the composer as well as the debutant director, Devendra Goel.


After the success of “Ankhen”, J.B.H.wadia offered him to compose the music for his film “Madhosh” (1951). Working with the lyricist Raja Mehdi Ali Khan, his music for the song "meri yaad main tum an" proved to be quite popular. He also composed music for the Raj Kapoor – Nargis starrer “Ashiana” (1952). He continued his work with “Shabistan” (1951), “Dhoom” (1953), “Nirmohi” (1952), “Baghi” (1953), “Mastana” (1952), “Fifty Fifty” (1956), “Pocketmaar “ (1956) and “Bhai Bhai “ (1956).

His famous composition style was established firmly with the film Adalat (1958) with songs like "jaana tha humse door", "yoon hasraton ka daag", "unko ye shikayat hai" and others. In the 50s, when O.P. Nayyar and Shankar- Jaikisan stormed the industry even every producer wanted their style adapted into film music.

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He composed his two songs for “Sarabi” – Sawan Ke Maheeney Mein and Kabhi Na Kabhi Koi Toh Aayega, both filmed for Dev Anand, are among the most well-known renditions of Mohammad Rafi. His other composition like “wo chup rahen to” from the film “Jahan Ara” (1964), “Maine rang li aaj chunariya’ from “dulhan ek raat ki” are two similar examples where he also wrote songs for male singers such as Talat Mahmood (phir wahi shaam, main teri nazar ka suroor hoon from “Madhosh”) and Mohammed Rafi (ek haseen shaam, dulhan ek raat ki, tere dar pe aayaa hoon from “Laila Majnu”, teri aankhan ke siva duniya mein from “Chiraag”) as well.


A film of Chetan Anand’s “Haqeeqat’ (1964) was scored by him, starring Balraj Sahni and Dharmendra and based on the Sino- Indian war of 1962. He used Rafi, who sang numbers like Kar Chale Hum Fida, Main Yeh Soch Kar. Lata was used for the song “Zara Si Aahat Hoto Hai”, and the unscreened “Khelo Na Mere Dil Se". The same film saw the voice of Rafi, Talat, Manna Dey together.

The late fifties, sixties, and seventies were the most productive time in his career. His songs compositions from those decades include films like “Adalat”, “Anpadh Dastak’’, “Hanste Zakhm", “Heer Raanjha", and many others. His second last film released five years after his death, “Chaalbaaz”. He got the 1971 national film award for best music direction.

After the release of “Mausam” however, Madan Mohan had passed away. A number of his unused compositions also featured in the 2004 release “ Veer Zaara” directed by Yash Chopra. His unused tunes were recreated by his son, Sanjeev Kohli, for the film, starring Shahrukh Khan, Preity Zinta, and Rani Mukherji. The lyrics were written by Javed Akhtar and Lata Mangeshkar was invited to sing the majority of the melodies composed by him. He was awarded the IIFA award 2005, for his music direction “ Veer – Zaara”.


Making Of The Songs | Part 1 | Veer-Zaara | Shah Rukh Khan | Preity Zinta | Rani Mukerji


Making of Songs | Part 2 | Veer-Zaara | Shah Rukh Khan | Preity Zinta | Rani Mukerji


In a career spanning 25 years, Madan Mohan wrote the music for more than 100 films, amounting to a discography numbering over 600 songs.

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