Mohammed Rafi (24 December 1924 – 31 July 1980) had an immortal, melodious voice. He was trained in classical music and had an unparalleled range. Rafi conveyed different shades of emotions through his songs whether romantic, sad, classical, devotional, ghazals or bhajans. He could sing every kind of song with an ease and perfection that made him the uncrowned king of Indian playback singing.
He was born on December 24, 1924, and was fond of singing from childhood. As singing was not considered respectful in those days, he ran away from home to Lahore, where he got training under maestros such as Bade Gulam Ali Khan and Ustaad Abdul Waheed Khan. Rafi sang on All-India Radio before he entered the cinema. Sham Sunder was the first music director who recognized the artiste in Rafi and gave him a break in a Punjabi movie, Gulbloch, in which Rafi sang Soniye, Hiriye nee.
Mohammad Rafi's first big break came late in 1946. Shooting for a Dilip Kumar, Noorjehan starred blockbuster film Jugnu which was started in 1946.He sang a duet with Noorjehan"Yahan badla wafa ka be wafayi ke siwa kya hai"When the film was released in 1947, this very duet became the best selling song. This gave the necessary break to Mohammad Rafi and from then on he never looked back and went from strength to strength. He also acted in this film.
By the middle of 1947, Mohamad Rafi had become a household name in Hindi speaking
Pandit Husnalal Bhagatram gave Mohammad Rafi an immortal song "Is Dil Ke Tukde Hazar Huye, Koi Yahan Gira koi Wahan Gira, Behte Huye Aansoo Ruk Na Sake koi Yahan Gira koi Wahan girl".Mohammad Rafi gave his emotion-filled voice to this song. This song became an instant hit.
In 1948 another song by Rafi "Watan ki raah mein watan ke naujwan shaheed ho" from Shaheed, which became the signature tune for the movie, became overnight a nationwide hit.
The music director Shyam Sunder's tunes rendered by Mohammad Rafi for film Bazaar(1949) including a duet with Lata Mangeshkar entitled "Apni nazar se door voh, unki nazar se door hum, tum hi batao kya Karen, majboor tum majboor hum" caught the imagination of entire Hindi knowing India.
Mohammad Rafi's utmost devotion to his profession and hard work under the music direction of Pandit Husnalal Bhagatram paid great dividends and he became
After 1950 most of the great music directors of
S D Burman also used Rafi's voice for Dev Anand and Guru Dutt beautifully.Rafi worked with Burman in 37 movies, including Pyaasa (1957), Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959), Kala Bazar, Nau Do Gyaran, Kala Pani , Tere Ghar Ke Samne (1963), Guide (1965), Aradhana (1969), and Abhimaan (1973).
Rafi's partnership with Shankar Jaikishan was among the most famous and successful in the Hindi film industry. Under Shankar-Jaikishan, Rafi produced some of his songs for actors like Shammi Kapoor and Rajendra Kumar. Out of six Filmfare awards, Rafi won three for S-J songs – "Teri Pyari Pyari Surat Ko", "Baharon Phool Barsao" and "Dil Ke Jharokhe Mein". The song "Yahoo! Chahe Koi Mujhe Junglee Kahe" was sung by Rafi, only to be matched a fast-paced orchestra and a composition by Shankar Jaikishan. S-J had Rafi give playback for Kishore Kumar in the film Shararat ("Ajab hai daastan teri yeh zindagi"). Rafi sang a total of 341 numbers (216 solo) for Shankar-Jaikishan. Among the films of this combination are Basant Bahar, Professor, Junglee, Suraj, Brahmachari, An Evening in Paris, Dil Tera Deewana, Yakeen, Prince, Love in Tokyo, Beti Bete, Dil Ek Mandir, Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai, Gaban and Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai.
The composer duo Laxmikant-Pyarelal (L-P) patronized Rafi as one of their singers, right from their very first song by him from the film Parasmani (1963). Rafi and L-P won the Filmfare Awards for the song "Chahoonga Main Tujhe Saanjh Savere" from Dosti (1964). Rafi rendered the highest number of songs for the music director duo Laxmikant-Pyarelal: 369 numbers (186 solo) for L-P.
Rafi sang for many famous music directors during the 50s and 60s. He sang Naushadâ's composition Man tarpat Hari darshan ko, with the same perfection he sang O.P. Nayyar's light composition Yeh hai Bombay meri jaan. He also sang S.D. Burman's Khoya-khoya chand – Kala Bazar, Shankar Jai Kishan's Ehsaan tera hoga mujhpar – Junglee, Roshan's Zindagi bhar nahin bhoolegi – Barsaat ki Raat, Madan Mohan's Main nigahen tere chehre se – Aap ki Parchhaiyan, Salil Chowdury's Koi sone ke dilwala – Maya and Ravi's Sau baar janam lenge – Ustaadon ke Ustaad.
Rafi was truly a singer for the masses and not for any particular class. His voice appealed to all, the old, young, rich, poor, men and women.
Rafi brought cheers and smiles to millions of his fans through his songs. In his songs like Main zindagi ka saath nibhata chala gaya, Rafi tried to inspire the dejected and give hope to those who had lost faith in life and God. On July 31, 1980, a massive heart attack silenced this peerless singer forever. But his songs keep him alive.
The First Song of Mohammad Rafi
Rafi Sahab's first Hindi Film Song
Song from Pehle Aap 1944
The Song that gave fame to Mohammad Rafi-first duet with Noorjehan
Song from Jugnu 1947
First On screen appearance
First Solo Hit
Song from PYAR KI JEET 1948
The First Duet of Mohammad Rafi & Lata
Song from Shadi Se Pehle 1947
First Filmfare Award Song
Song from Chaudhvin Ka Chand 1960
Second Filmfare Award
Song from Sasural 1961
Third Filmfare Award Song
Song from Dosti 1964
Fourth Filmfare Award Song
Song from Suraj 1966
Fifth Filmfare Award Song
Song from Brahmachari 1968
Sixth Filmfare Award Song
Song from Hum Kisise Kum Naheen 1977
English Song By Mohammad Rafi
The Last Song of Mohammad Rafi
Song from Aas Pass
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