Friday, 27 July 2018

The song Khoya Khoya Chaand was written on a piece of cigarette pack foil

Every song has a story behind it. On this subject, I have written a blog earlier. In this blog, I take this immortal song from Kala Bazar. The song was written by Shailendra and composed by S.D. Burman.
 This was the first time that Dev Anand, Vijay Anand, Waheeda Rehman, S D Burman and Shailendra came together.
Vijay Anand who was the director of the film, who narrated the situation of the song to Shailendra and asked him to write a romantic song for this situation. Shailendra, probably too busy with his other assignments, was not delivering a song, urgently needed for the film. Shailendra was making all kinds of excuses for not delivering.S D Burman, known for his bad temper, was under tremendous pressure. So one fine day Shailendra was at his residence and asked him to give him the words for his tune for this song. Burman da called his young son, Pancham ( R D Burman ) and told him – ” You will go with Shailendra and DO NOT come home unless he gives you the lyrics ” !!!
This incident was narrated by R D Burman in a radio interview in AIR. As Burman da was very angry on Shailendra he asked RD Burman to come along with him and drove to his home. On the way, they stopped at Shankar  Jaikishan's place to finish some pending work.
It was evening…. Shailendra finished his work with Shanker Jaikishen and with Pancham, got into his car. He instructed the driver to go to National Park. There, Shailendra kept smoking cigarette after cigarette. BUT NO WORDS !!! 
Shailendra then thought of a change of place, he asked his driver to proceed to Juhu Beach
R D Burman was cursing his luck as they got back into the car, it was almost night, what will he tell his father about the song.He was 20 years old that time and was an assistant so he couldn't pressurise Shailendra to give him the song immediately.
The time was 11 in the night and nothing is written. The beach was deserted. Those days people used to return home by 7 orr 8 in the evening. Shailendra was leisurely strolling along with the eager Pancham trying to keep step. Suddenly Shailendra asked Pancham for a matchbox. He sheepishly handed over his matchbox to Shailendra. Shailendra was lost in thought, he lit his cigarette, returned the matchbox and asked Pancham to give him the tune Burman da had composed. Pancham, tapping the matchbox in rhythm, hummed the tune.
It was a full moon night and Shailendra was looking at the sky puffing away on his cigarette
and suddenly started writing on a piece of cigarette pack foil. after a while, he told Pancham – “You can go home, tell Dada, I will be at your place in the morning with the full song..”
He hummed the mukhda
Khoya khoya chand, khula aasmaan,
Aankhon mein saari raat jaayegi,
Tum ko bhi kaise neend aayegi
Pancham smiled, he knew that this song was a winner! He ran, hailed a cab and went home. Pancham  in the next morning handed Dada a crumpled piece of cigarette pack foil with the words of the mukhda scribbled on it!!! Burman Da instantly liked the mukhda and asked Pancham to call Shailendra to complete the song.

As we all know that Burman Da was very particular about the words of his songs and similarly Shailendra too chooses his words very carefully as per the situation. Thus the full song was completed in that sitting. Same day Burman Da called Mohammad Rafi to come for the rehearsal of this song The song was recorded after two days.

We must appreciate Vijay Anand who picturised the song so well that it became the highlight of the film. It topped Annual Binaca Geetmala that year. What Vijay Anand achieves is a feat which is very rare. Most directors shy away from shooting and showing us more than two verses of a song. Here, his shooting, along with Burmanda’s music and Shailendra’s words, is so perfect that we go through FOUR verses of this song just glued to our seats !!!! That is why Vijay Anand is adored by film-goers and film-makers all over India.
Song from Kala Bazar 1960

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