Legends Kishore Kumar: The Versatile Genius SaReGaMa; 5-CD pack,
Whether they were fun songs, sad songs or introspective songs, if there was one singer automatically tagged ‘versatile genius’ it was Kishore Kumar, whose 77th birth anniversary it is today. Lata Mangeshkar put it best when she called him India’s Danny Kaye (producer, director, actor, singer, and in actual fact even more, lyricist and music director, too), she referred to him as the “sampoorna kalakaar”. Perfect tag.
This compilation box of the Kishore Kumar rainbow in the Legends series of five CDs and the precious little booklet that comes with it is something you would like to hug before you eke out the five pots of gold inside and push into your CD player. The five CDs have 18 songs each in the first two, 17 in the next two and 14 in the last. Known as the voice of Dev Anand, like Mukesh became identified as Raj Kapoor’s voice, it appropriately starts with an introduction by the dashing Dev, and the Munimji song, Jeevan ke safar mein raahi. The conclusion is equally charming, with Kishore’s own remarks and the signing-off song (though only a snatch), Aa chal ke tujhe main le ke chaloon (Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein).
It is as impossible to encapsulate the five CD fare as it was to pigeonhole the eccentric genius himself. So, at random: among the little speeches, it has everyone from Ashok Kumar to Shah Rukh Khan, his other ‘Face’ Rajesh Khanna to Amitabh Bachchan.
And then you have the great big songs of the great big artiste: CD1 has Dukhi man mere (Funtoosh), Nakhrewaali (New Delhi), Ek ladki bheegi bhaagi si (Chalti Ka Naam Gadi) , Koi humdum na raha (Jhumroo), Chhoti si yeh duniya (Rangoli), Jaago sonewalon (Bhoot Bangla) and Koi lauta de mere (Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein).
You still want to know what CD2 has' Khwaab ho tum ya (Teen Deviyan), Hawaon pe likh do (Do Dooni Char), Roop tera mastana (Aradhana), Woh shaam kuchh ajeeb thi (Khamoshi), Khilte hain gul yahaan (Sharmeelee).
Hungry for CD3, are you' How about Chingaari koi bhadke (Amar Prem), Dil aisa kisi ne mera toda (Amanush)' Enough!
Oh, all right, just pick two at random in CD4: Ruk jaana nahin tu kahin haar ke (Imtihan) and maajhi re (Khushboo). And two in CD5: Zindagi ke safar mein (Aap Ki Kasam) and Hume tum se pyaar kitna (Kudrat).
Don’t even ask for the usual suspects, we haven’t stopped gasping at the guess list yet. Does Kishore Kumar live on or does Kishore Kumar live on!
Mone rekho Lopamudra Mitra SaReGaMa; Rs 42
A wonderful collection of primarily Tagore’s love songs that is sure to sway a romantic heart on a rainy afternoon. And the singer is none other than Lopamudra Mitra who has mesmerised audiences earlier with her style and mellifluous voice. Still, this album falls a little short as it seems Lopamudra is out to prove a point — that she is no longer interested in singing Tagore’s songs in the right gayaki; instead she is here to bring in her latest Bangla band style into the songs. Needless to say, she has faltered in her attempt. Highly popular numbers like Bandhu michhe raag koro na, Mone ki dwidha rekhe gele, Ketechhe ekela birohero bela, have all been sung in a typical Adhunik style that has weakened the very essence of the songs and unnecessary use of heavy music in between has robbed the words of their effect. Very unexpected from someone of Lopamudra’s stature.