Category: Music

  • The Best Duets of Lata Mangeshkar

    [This post originally appeared here.] From 1945 to now, Lata Mangeshkar‘s career has clocked more than 70 years and more than 5000 songs. Such is her impact in the Hindi film industry and so deep is her discography that it’s very likely that almost every post in this series has one or more songs by her. Given that there…

  • MySwar References

    One of the things we love on MySwar is the trivia – the story behind the music and the musicians. We source the trivia from books we read and from the World Wide Web. While we stored these source references, we didn’t have a way to show them to our users. Not anymore. We just…

  • The Best of Hasrat Jaipuri

    [This post originally appeared here.] Starting with “Barsaat” (1949), Raj Kapoor’s team consisting of music directors Shankar – Jaikishan and lyricists Shailendra and Hasrat Jaipuri churned out popular scores film after film for over two decades. Unlike Laxmikant – Pyarelal, who had a clear demarcation of responsibilities, both Shankar and Jaikishan composed tunes. A widely…

  • Asha Bhosle: The Ageless Bollywood Diva

    [This post originally appeared here.] Asha Bhosle started her Hindi film career in 1948 and unlike many of her peers who’ve hung up their boots, she continues to work and travels the world giving concerts. Asha Bhosle’s best songs came under the baton of two men – O.P. Nayyar and R.D. Burman. Long posts could be…

  • Laxmikant – Pyarelal: Hindi Film Industry’s Most Prolific Music Directors

    [This post originally appeared here.] Laxmikant – Pyarelal are easily the most prolific of Hindi film music directors. Their career spanned almost four decades, during which they worked for around 500 films and composed 2500+ songs. Other than the quality of their music, they owed their long careers to their relationships in the industry, their…

  • Tonga Songs In Hindi Films

    [This post originally appeared here.] The key feature of the Hindi film tonga song was a rhythm that evoked the clip-clop of a horse pulling a carriage. Although he didn’t invent the tonga rhythm, O.P. Nayyar was probably the most skilled at it. He dominated a crowd-sourced tonga song playlist I put together some time…

  • Patriotic Songs In Hindi Films Before Independence

    [This post originally appeared here.] Patriotism has always been an important theme in Hindi films. Films like Anand Math (1952), Haqeeqat (1964), Shaheed (1965), Upkar (1967), Kranti (1981), Prahaar (1991), Border (1997), The Legend Of Bhagat Singh (2002), Swades (2004) and Rang De Basanti (2006) had strong patriotic themes. There are many film songs capable…

  • Khemchand Prakash – The Royal Musician of Hindi Films

    [This post originally appeared here.] Khemchand Prakash was one of the giants of Hindi film industry. He shaped and defined Hindi film music when it was still in its nascent stages. In a short career spanning just about a decade, he left behind a legacy that exceeded his output as a music director. Khemchand had…

  • Jaidev – Quality Over Quantity

    [This post originally appeared here.] Jaidev was one of the most talented composers of the Hindi film industry. Despite his talent and the critical as well as popular acclaim many of his albums received, he wasn’t rewarded with the commercial success or the name recognition some of his peers enjoyed. After more than three decades…

  • Anand Bakshi’s Generation-Spanning Work

    [Starting this week, we’ll re-publish here the Bollywood Retrospective series published in DNA blogs. This post was originally published here.] This post is based on a question posed a few years ago on Twitter by film historian Pavan Jha, a passionate follower and chronicler of films and film music. The question – “Name the 5…