Rafi songs set for new life - Tribute to the master

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  • Published 3.04.08

Siliguri, April 3: Twenty-eight years after his death, Md Rafi’s legendary voice is set to make a fresh splash with a new album, Teri Ada, thanks to a music director from Siliguri.

Ashutosh, who gave up his family business in Siliguri to make it big in the Mumbai music industry, has helped restore six unreleased songs by Rafi recorded more than 30 years ago for Dilip Bose’s Hindi film, Sorry Madam, which never got made.

According to Bose’s son Dipankar, Sorry Madam was supposed to be the Hindi remake of a hit Bengali film by the same name starring Biswajit.

“We even moved to Mumbai from Calcutta in the early 70s to make the film. My father got the music recorded, but the film never happened. In his later years, he even thought of releasing the music as a tribute to Md Rafi, but that too did not happen,” said Dipankar.

Now Dipankar and his brother Dibakar have decided to give shape to their father’s unfinished dream.

“As a tribute to both our father and Md Rafi, we decided to release the songs in the form of an album,” said Dipankar. “We have also decided to make the film, Sorry Madam, in Hindi, which we plan to shoot entirely in Darjeeling and the neighbouring hills.”

Ashutosh, a creative affiliate of Narayani Productions, was given the task of restoring the decaying record. “The record was in a bad shape and there was fungus all over the tapes,” he said. “I converted the old record to the digital mode and then did necessary touch-ups here and there. The biggest challenge was to retrieve the original tracks with minimum damage.”

“He has done a fantastic job, completely flawless!” said Dipankar.

Teri Ada, which is being released by Big Music, has six songs written by Kafil Azhar. The music composer was Anand Milind’s father Chitragupt, known for setting music to films like Oonche Log, Bada Aadmi, Aplam Chaplam, Opera House and Zabak.

“Since the song ‘Teri Nazar Teri Ada’ is the most catchy of them all, we decided to name the album Teri Ada,” Dipankar added. “We are very hopeful that the songs will be liked by people of different age groups.”

Ashutosh has been living in Mumbai ever since he did the promotional score for a low-key Bollywood feature film, Red Swastik, with co-musician John last year. He also wrote the lyrics and sang the song.

A self-taught singer, Ashutosh is a guitarist and his first major foray was a music album, Zenith, with John while they were both in Siliguri. “It is a collection of instrumental music and is doing very well in Mumbai too,” he said. “Several fashion choreographers are using them for their ramp shows.”