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A haunting melody

This is one of the last movies we saw while we were at Hakimpet; probably the very last. My dad’s squadron moved to Adampur immediately after this. Even when I saw the movie, I was enchanted and captivated by this song.

The movie “Geet Gaaya Pattharon Ne ” was Jumping Jack Jeetendra‘s debut film. It was produced by V Shantaram through his own film production company and was meant to be the launch vehicle for his daughter, Rajashree.

A rather convoluted plot which is totally peripheral to the basic purpose. Shantaram wanted to showcase his daughter’s strong points: her beauty and dancing skills. And he does that in plentiful measure.

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Jeetendra is the poor sculptor’s son who finds his muse in the lady he falls in love with– Rajashree. He uses her as a model and makes many a sculpture. The sets were lavish and so were the statues. Shantaram’s sense of art was fabulous as can be seen in his other movies as well. Based on a story by K A Narayan, the movie was “sub kuchh Shantaram” !! The maestro was not taking any chances for his daughter’s launch vehicle, he produced, directed, edited, wrote the screenplay and the dialogues too!!

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The movie proceeds on expected lines of a misunderstanding initially over the quintessential male ego, expectations that the girl would be more interested in money, then a child he sees her with that sows doubts about her chastity in his mind. Finally all is revealed and the girl turns out to be a rich heiress. All ends well, as is usual in Bollywood.

To me the redeeming and most outstanding feature was Rajashree, she looks wonderful and dances superbly. The other invaluable gem was Ramlal‘s music.

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There is a superb song sung by the great Kishoritai Amonkar : “Saanson Ke Taar Par, Geet Gaya Pathharo Ne”, which as the lady could weave with her divine vocals, is pure magic…

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This song was sung by Asha Bhosle and has a very pronounced echo introduced to add to an element of dreaminess to the way the song is picturized.

Ramlal Choudhary was one of the unsung extremely talented music directors that Bollywood had in plenty. He started life as an assistant to and a wind instrument player (flute/ shehnai) for Ram Ganguly. He actually got a first break as an independent music director for the Raj Kapoor- Vyjayanthimala starrer “Tangawalla” produced/ directed by P L Santoshi, which was, sadly, never released despite almost being completed (including a total of 6 songs!) .

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He made two very memorable movies with V Shantaram in the mid 60s (Sehraa and Geet Gaaya Pattharon Ne) which had beautiful scores and songs that are remembered till this day (who can forget “Taqdeer ka fasaana” , “Tum to pyaar ho, sajani…” and “Ja ja re, tujhe hum pehchan gaye” from Sehraa). Unfortunately the success of the two big banner movies bred jealousy amongst the other big names in the field who started a malicious whisper campaign and drove a wedge between Ramlal and V Shantaram.

Frustrated and hurt he even tried to produce his own movie and was duped by his partner in the venture. He lost a lot of money in the failed project and disillusioned by all this, never worked in the industry ever again.

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In the dog eat dog world of Bollywood where sharks were probably more apparent in the field of composers than any other, a man like Ramlal died an unmourned professional death…

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Stay calm, stay happy folks, together we will beat the dual challenge of the Chinese Virus and the super spreaders.

By abchandorkar

Consultant Interventional Cardiologist, Pune, India

4 replies on “A haunting melody”

Grt memories As a young 20 something I was transfixed by Rajashree She was in all the hoardings in the classic pose !
Shantaram was multitalented with driving ambition A rarity today
And in that dog eat dog murk of the industry Ramlal was one among many who fell by the wayside

Liked by 2 people

Great to hear Ramlal from you SIR🙏
A very humble and genius artist heard
His interview once..was full of his grand persona🙏👍🙏 what a beautiful and unique music he gave..just pure Hindustan in it.!! No theft no plagiarism at all👍
Yesss Tere khayalon me hum..my all
Time favourite song👌👌👌👌👍

Liked by 2 people

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