Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Veritable Treasure Trove - Raag Yaman On the Lighter Side...

Raag Yaman has given us innumerable songs that have stood the test of time and changing public tastes.  We look at some of the truly 'timeless' numbers from the Hindi Film-world in this post!

Having said that Rāg Yaman is one of the most versatile matrices capable of expressing a range of emotions, we can find numerous songs in the Hindi film and non-film domain. Practically every singer / composer has given us a few gems in Yaman and Yaman-Kalyān, but the melody-queen Latā Mangeshkar still reigns supreme in the domain.

We begin our day with Latā-didi’s ‘Shree Rāmchandra Krupālu’ in the early hours and drift off to sleep late in the night with ‘Beeti nā bitāyi rainä’ (Film: 'Parichay' with Bhupendra). The range of songs in-between is simply amazing! Consider just a few – ‘Sansārse bhāge phirate ho’ (Film: Chitralekha), ‘Lau lagāti’ (Film: Bhābhi ki Chudiyān), ‘Jeevan dor tumhi sang’ and ‘Tum gagan ke chandramā’ (both from Film: Sati Sāvitri), ‘Kinu sang khelu holi’ (Meerabāi’s devotional song), ‘Jāre badarā bairi jā’ (Film: Bahānā), ‘Jiyā le gayo ji’ (Film: Anpadh), ‘Mausam hai äshikānä’ (Film: Pākizāh), ‘Chhupālo yun dil mein pyār’ (Film: Mamtā with Hemant Kumar), ‘Zindagi bhar nahin bhoolegi’ (Film: Barsāt Ki Rāt) and a host of others truly memorable ones!

Other artists from film-world are not far behind. Talat Mehmood, with his velvety voice, has given us ‘Aānsoo samazke kyoon mujhe’ (Film: Chhāyā) and ‘Seene mein sulagate hai aramān’ (Film: Tarānā with Latā) while Mukesh has left behind ‘Tum bin jeevan’ (Film: Anitā), ‘Sārangā teri yād mein’ (Film: Sārangā), ‘Chandan sā badan’ (Film: Saraswatichandra) and ‘Bhooli hui yādon’ (Film: Sanjog) for posterity. Mohammed Rafi, the voice with an incredible range, sang ‘Man re tu kāhe na’ (Film: Chitralekhā), ‘Lagtā nahin hein dil merā’ (Film: Lāl Quilā), ‘Ehsān terā hogā mujhpar’ (Film: Junglee) and ‘Abhi na jāo chhodkar’ (Film: Hum Dono) in Rāg Yaman.

Late KL Saigal, the immortal singer, is also best remembered for ‘Mein kyā jānoo kyā jādoo hai’ (Film: Zindagi), ‘Diyā jalāo’ (Film: Sangeet Samrāt Tānsen) and ‘Do nainā matwāle’ (Film: Meri Bahen / aka My Sister) sung in Yaman-matrix.

Even Kishor Kumar, not particularly known for his classical leanings, has given us ‘Woh shām kuchh ajeeb thi’ (Film: Khāmoshi) and ‘Aāp ke anurodhpe’ (Film: Anurodh) based on this matrix. Yesudās, the southern superstar, is still best remembered for ‘Jab deep jale ānā’ (Film: Chitchorfrom his forays in the Hindi film world. And who can forget veteran Mannā-dā  with Ashā Bhosale when they belt out effortless tāns in Re man sur mein gā’ (Film: Lāl Patthar)...!

The younger generation also feels gravitated to the irresistible magic of Yaman’s scale and the evidence can be found in compositions like ‘Aāye ho meri jindagimein’ (Film: Rājā Hindustāni), ‘Ghar se nikalate hi’ (Film: Pāpā Kehte Hai) and ‘Sochenge tumhe pyär’ (Film: Deewānā). Shankar Mahādevan’s ‘Breathless’ composed in Rāg Yaman stayed atop the best-seller charts for a considerable time.

But the icing on the cake, also my personal favourite, in Yaman is ‘Ranjish hi sahi’ sung by Mehdi Hasan, the ghazal-maestro. Oh gosh, what a wealth of compositions and we have not even scratched the surface...!

To round off this lovely riot of songs, here's a 'fun-medley' of some evergreen Yaman songs for your pleasure – a true treasure trove indeed!!!  We will round-off this Yaman-trek with the next post especially devoted to Marathi compositions in this pleasure-domain...


  1. Apratim
    I dont know how to thank you!! To a laymen -this is a treasure

  2. Raag Yaman has been my all time favorite and one of the best for playing in veena

  3. A neat set of blog entries. I ran out of my intellectual stamina before I could complete reading all. To write and that too so consistently needs a different paradigm of stamina and skill. I need a second sitting to complete reading. Your language both Musical and English is amazing. I have always encouraged illustrating Ragas by mainstream popular Cinema songs with classical touch. Whether one likes it or not, we have to live with the reality that film music is orders of magnitude more popular than classical - this, naturally and obviously, is not to devalue classical. I am a decent connoisseur of classical music. Must be a record of sorts because, even then, I am absolutely non-technical - zilch in that area. And still managed a few nice rendezvouses with Pt. Bhimsen Joshi, Pt. Kumar Gandharva, Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur and specially Vidushi Gangubai Hanagal. Very very fortunate and transcending. My most cherished memories of my life. Hopefully one day, I will get to put all those experiences in some sort of write-up.

  4. Liked your site !
    Yaman Medley was wonderful!

  5. Thanx Veedee for your encouraging words! I hope to put up the third (final) episode on Yaman in Marathi compositions very shortly - do check out that as well and tell me how you like it...

  6. Beautiful! Simple but very effective..!
    That is exactly what is needed nowadays to bring back the golden era of Classical!
    Great work..!

  7. Thanx a ton Kalyani for your feedback! What you mentioned in your comment is precisely what I had in my mind when I started this blog. There are several other posts on this blog talking about various other raags - do read them & tell me how you find them! Feedback is our lifeblood - thanx again...!