Monday, 28 December 2020

Babla: Yesterday Once More (1982)

TITLE

A few years ago I posted Laxmichand "Babla" Shah's 1984 soundtrack 'Meetha Zehar'. An excellent score, it did however omit one particular piece of music featured in the movie, a captivating instrumental prelude to the gorgeous song 'Aye Mere Dil Tu Rona Nahin'. I became a bit obsessed by it, and with the help of Shazam and some asking around I was eventually able to identify it as 'Babla's Theme'.

It's the highlight of 1982's 'Yesterday Once More', a collection of mainly instrumental versions of other composers' film tunes. ('Babla's Theme' is in fact a title that appears on several of his albums, one as early as 1977. I don't know if these are all the same recording, or even the same song. I suspect they might not be.) Easy listening lounge music, synth-based, so possibly not for everyone. I can take it in small doses, or in the background. Some tracks work better than others. 'Mere Mehboob Kayamat Hogi' for instance has a harmonica bit I find appealing, and the sax on 'Tum Na Jane Kis Jahan Mein' is like something played at a wedding when the guests have left or fallen asleep except for a single drunken couple still slow dancing through confetti and streamers. 'Afsana Likh Rahi Hoon' has an ear-catching reggae beat, and the vaguely mysterious sounding 'Andhe Jahaan Ke' inspired me to go back to its source.

At the end of the day though, it's the final track that has real significance, and if not for it I probably wouldn't have bothered.

Track listing:
1. Aawaz De Kahan Hai (Anmol Ghadi)
2. Mere Mehboob Kayamat Hogi (Mr. X In Bombay)
3. Gham Diya Mushtaqil (Shahjahan)
4. Tum Na Jane Kis Jahan Mein (Sazaa)
5. Tune Hai Mere Zakhm-E-Jigar Ko (Nagina)
6. Yeh Sama (Jab Jab Phool Khile)
7. Jaiye Aap Kahan Jayenge (Mere Sanam)
8. Afsana Likh Rahi Hoon (Dard)
9. Andhe Jahaan Ke (Patita)
10. Babla's Theme


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Saturday, 12 December 2020

Music From The Third Floor: Vol. 13

Music From The Third Floor: Vol. 12

Another volume of highlights from two (or so) years' worth of soundtracks. To download or stream. And remember, there's plenty more where it came from, in the archive and on Mixcloud.

Track listing:
1. Music (from Bond 303)
2. Sharab Nahin Hoon (from Adhikar)
3. Humdum Mere Maan Bhi Jao (from Mere Sanam)
4. Aye Mere Dil Tu Rona Nahin (from Meetha Zahar)
5. Ae Mohabbat Unse (from Bazar)
6. Meri Jaan (from Dahshat)
7. Dekh Lo Woh Ghata Chand Par (from Roop Tera Mastana)
8. Pantomime (from Shakespeare Wallah)
9. Sajan Tere Pyar Mein (from from Mahua)
10. Mera Naam Hai Jameela (from from Night In London)
11. Man Pukare (from from Tyaag)
12. Baat Zara Hai Apas Ki (from Jahan Pyar Miley)
13. Jani Dilbar Jani (from Raksha)
14. Ek Bottle Hoga (from Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi)
15. Are Saqi Jo (from Dharma)
16. Ek Dukhiyari Kahe (from Ram Teri Ganga Maili)

Listen on Mixcloud.

Cover star: Mandakini (from 'Ram Teri Ganga Maili')


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Monday, 30 November 2020

S.D. Burman: Tyaag (1974)

Tyaag

'Tyaag' [review] is a charming Sachin Dev Burman score made at the tail end of his career. A playful cabaret track is what initially caught my attention, as is often the case. 'Abhi Tujhe Pyas Hai' is a zesty and flirtatious little number, perhaps not as elaborate as what his son was producing at the time, but great fun. The album has more going for it though, especially its trio of lovely ballads: The beautiful 'Kore Kagaz Pe Likhwale', the sweetly sedate 'Ham Tum Tum Ham', and the haunting, trippy sounding 'Man Pukare' – possibly the soundtrack's highlight.

The record is dated 1974, however the film wasn't released until 1977, possibly making it the last one ever to feature new SD Burman music. He passed away in 1975.

Track listing:
1. Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar: Man Pukare
2. Asha Bhosle & Kishore Kumar: Kore Kagaz Pe Likhwale
3. Asha Bhosle: Abhi Tujhe Pyas Hai
4. Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar: Ham Tum Tum Ham
5. Kishore Kumar & Sushma Shresta: Ik Raja Ka Ik Beta Tha


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Saturday, 20 June 2020

Chitragupta: Hamara Adhikar (1971) / Sonik Omi: Dharma (1973)

Hamara Adhikar

'Hamara Adhikar' is another soundtrack where asking prices have so far prevented me from obtaining an LP copy; fortunately the score's highlight is featured in its full length on this EP. 'Bum Pam Bum Pam Ra Ra Ra' is a bouncy pop'n'roll tune with cool guitar licks (even a Dick Dale inspired bit) and a catchy chorus. The track has pedigree of sorts – it's essentially a straight lift of a similarly titled 1967 Greek tune by Aris San, and was later given an Arabic makeover by Bob Azzam. I like Chitragupta's take best. On the flip side, country-tinged 'Rona Tera Ghadi Ghadi' is sweet too.

Dharma

'Dharma' first came to my attention via the film's superb cabaret sequence. A medley (and for a while I thought the clip might be the construct of a present-day YouTuber, but the whole thing does actually appear in the movie) that revisits 'Mera Naam Hai Jameela' from 'Night In London', combined with an exhilarating new track, itself multifaceted: 'Are Saqi Jo' starts off as an appealing, lounge-jazzy ballroom/nightclub affair, whereupon, after an interlude of traditional dance, we are transported underground, to a seedy, drug-infested den of vice, with heady grooves to match. All very RD Burman influenced (as Sonik Omi were prone to be), but wow; I was kind of mind-blown. The EP-version, edited as always, leaves out the dance break but contains decent portions of the rest. Was a full version of the song released anywhere?

The qawwali 'Raaz Ki Baht Ka Doo To' is apparently quite famous.

Track listing, 'Hamara Adhikar':
1. Kishore Kumar & Asha Bhosle: Bum Pam Bum Pam Ra Ra Ra
2. Mohd. Rafi: Rona Tera Ghadi Ghadi
3. Asha Bhosle: Bhaiya Mera Laya

Track listing, 'Dharma'
1. Asha Bhosle & Mohd. Rafi: Raaz Ki Baht Ka Doo To (Qawwali)
2. Mohd. Rafi: Na Solah Oopar Na Sattrah Se Kam
3. Asha Bhosle & Omi: Are Saqi Jo


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Thursday, 4 June 2020

Sonik Omi: Mahua (1969)

Mahua

This comparatively early Sonik Omi score took me slightly by surprise. While the duo's trajectory would in time see them embrace (and sometimes copy) the modern styles of especially RD Burman, 'Mahua' represents a much more traditional sound, one which I previously hadn't associated with them. And that could go either way. But the music here is of such quality that stylistic form becomes moot.

The album's best tracks have a pleasantly melodic, really quite poppy feel to them, and lyrical content and context notwithstanding, I can easily imagine 'Main Hun Tera Geet Gori' and 'Thumak Thumak Teri Chal Masani' with a modern, more western-influenced (re)arrangment. Not that they in any way require it; they're pretty great as they are. Happy sounding 'Chham Chham Chhani' is another favourite, and best of all might be the opener 'Sajan Tere Pyar Mein', a stirring and uplifting Asha Bhosle song, accompanied by some gorgeous visuals.

Track listing:
1. Asha Bhosle: Sajan Tere Pyar Mein
2. Mohd. Rafi: Thumak Thumak Teri Chal Masani
3. Asha Bhosle & Usha Timothy: Mohe Bikta Sajan Miljaye
4. Asha Bhosle: Chham Chham Chhani
5. Mohd. Rafi & Sulakshana Pandit: Jab Jab Apna Mel Hua
6. Mohd. Rafi & Asha Bhosle: Main Hun Tera Geet Gori
7. Mohd. Rafi: Dono Ne Kiya Tha Pyar
8. Asha Bhosle: Pyar Mera Jo Tu Ne Loota


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Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Shankar Jaikishan: Jahan Pyar Miley (1970)

TITLE

All credit to Mohd. Rafi, who recorded some superb songs for Shankar Jaikishan, but it's the female sung tracks that appeal to me on their 1970 score for 'Jahan Pyar Miley'. Of the two versions of the title tune 'Chale Ja Chale Ja' I prefer Suman Kalyanpur's - something about its groove. And I'm really taken by the energetic and lavishly orchestrated 'Nas Nas Men Agan'; the scene in the film looks gorgeous and I wish the clip was in better quality. The best and I believe most famous track is the dazzling cabaret number (and Helen-vehicle) 'Baat Zara Hai Apas Ki'; steamy, jazzy (French New Orleans-tinged) and wonderful. The video clip features the main song; on record we're treated to a playful build-up as well.

A word on its playback singer, Sharda (aka Sharada). She's appeared on a few soundtracks posted earlier, most of them by Shankar Jaikishan, but is considerably less known than the likes of Asha Bhosle and Lata Mangeshkar. I've tended to enjoy her contributions; in addition to the above (for which she won a Filmfare Award), 'Leja Leja Leja Mera Dil' from 'An Evening In Paris', 'Hello Hello Sun Sun Sun' from 'Pyar Mohabbat' and 'Jane Chaman Shola Badan' from 'Gumnaam' all spring to mind. She released a self-penned, non-filmi EP in 1971; very groovy and kind of garage/psychedelic sounding; copies are hard to come by and likely out of my preferred price range, but I am intrigued. She even went on to score a few soundtracks herself; that's certainly something to investigate.

Track listing:
1. Mohd. Rafi: Chale Ja Chale Ja
2. Sharda: Baat Zara Hai Apas Ki
3. Mohd. Rafi: Dil Hai Ke Dharakta
4. Lata Mangeshkar: Nas Nas Men Agan
5. Mohd. Rafi: Ae Jan-E-Baharan
6. Suman Kalyanpur: Chale Ja Chale Ja


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Monday, 4 May 2020

Laxmikant Pyarelal: Night In London (1967)

Night In London

For reasons now forgotten it took me a long time to decide 'Night In London' would be a worthwhile soundtrack to acquire, and subsequently an even longer time to actually locate a copy. The cost of dithering; man, some of these original pressings are pricey. I had to make do with one of somewhat dubious origin.

It's a wonderful score from Laxmikant Pyarelal though, from its exuberant, catchy title tune, through to the final rock'n'roll infused song to a dog (beginning with a bark) 'O Mere Yaar Tomi'. In between we're treated to a sweet, jazzy stroll through the English capital (and beyond) in 'Nazar Na Lag Jaye' before heading to Hong Kong for the rather dreamy 'Ba Hosh-O-Hawas'. And to top it all, the dazzling, emotion-charged, super-seductive cabaret number 'Mera Naam Hai Jameela'. Starring Helen. That riff from 1:45 onwards really gets stuck in your head, doesn't it?

Helen.... swoon.

Track listing:
1. Mohd. Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar & Chorus: Night In London
2. Lata Mangeshkar & Chorus: Mera Naam Hai Jameela
3. Lata Mangeshkar & Mohd. Rafi: Baagh Men Phool
4. Mohd. Rafi: Nazar Na Lag Jaye
5. Mohd. Rafi: Ba Hosh-O-Hawas
6. Mahendra Kapoor & Lata Mangeshkar: Sun Ai Bahar-E-Husn
7. Mohd. Rafi: O Mere Yaar Tomi


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Friday, 24 April 2020

Shamsunder: Bazar (1949/1979)

Bazar

In a cool pop-art(ish) sleeve comes a score from long ago. The focus of MFT3F has seldom been music made before 1960; soundtracks from the 1940s are scarce here. Remissness perhaps – 'Bazar' is certainly a very enjoyable record. One imbued with that sweet tinge of nostalgia; lovely melodies, melancholy sounding many of them (obviously/unfortunately I don't know what they're singing about); beguiling arrangements. Highlights for me include Rafi's 'Shaheedo Tumko Mera Salam', Lata's 'Ae Dil Unko Yaad Na Karna' and the duet 'Ae Mohabbat Unse'. (I love the subtle percussion on the latter.) The next time I listen I may well pick others. Why do I keep thinking I've heard 'Apni Nazar Se Door Woh' before?

Shamsunder, aka Shyam Sundar, appears to be a mostly forgotten music director, at least judging by the scarcity of information available online. Researching him had me scratching my head; I initially thought he and actor Shyam might be the same person, due to them both working on this film. Add the fact that actor Shyam was sometimes dubbed by a playback singer also named Shyam... well, it became rather confusing.

Track listing:
1. Lata Mangeshkar: Basalo Apni Nigahon Mein
2. Lata Mangeshkar & Mohd. Rafi: Ae Mohabbat Unse
3. Mohd. Rafi: Yeh Hai Duniya Ka Bazar
4. Shamshad Begum, Mohd. Rafi & S.C. Batra: Chhaila De Ja Nishani
5. Mohd. Rafi: Shaheedo Tumko Mera Salam
6. Lata Mangeshkar: Ae Dil Unko Yaad Na Karna
7. Mohd. Rafi & Lata Mangeshkar: Apni Nazar Se Door Woh
8. Shamshad Begum: Pee Aaye Aakar Chal Bhi Diye
9. Mohd. Rafi: O Janewale Chand
10. Rajkumari & Mohd. Rafi: Zara Sun Lo Ham Apne
11. Mohd. Rafi: Mere Bhagwan Too Mujhko
12. Lata Mangeshkar: Sajan Ki Galiyan Chhod Chale



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Wednesday, 15 April 2020

Rahul Dev Burman: Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi / Lakhon Men Ek (1971)

Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi

The 'Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi' LP is one of those very sought after soundtracks that tend to cost silly money when copies turn up. Too much for me anyway, so I've made do with a shortened EP. Luckily the score's highlight makes an appearance, Kishore Kumar's delightfully cool-yet-upbeat 'Ek Bottle Hoga'. Funky in a quirky kind of way, it's quintessential early 70s RD Burman and would have been a rare male inclusion to the Bollywood drunk song mixtape compiled a few years back. 'Sunoji Tum' and 'Lelo Chuiyan' are fun too – maybe I really do need to get the full length!

Do Chor

From what I've been able to find out, the soundtrack to 'Lakhon Men Ek' was only afforded small format releases, including this EP. [Correction: There was in fact an LP release of this too.] I like it; 'Ye Duniya Khel Tamasha' is traditional, percussive, and catchy, and 'Chanda O Chanda' is a sweet pop song, in two versions. Lata's solo one would be my pick of the pair.

Track listing, 'Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi':
1. Suman Kalyanpur & Kishore Kumar: Sunoji Tum
2. Mohd. Rafi: Kholke Ankhen
3. Kishore Kumar: Ek Bottle Hoga
4. Kishore Kumar & Lata Mangeshkar: Lelo Chuiyan

Track listing, 'Lakhon Men Ek'
1. Mohd. Rafi & Asha Bhosle: Ye Duniya Khel Tamasha
2. Lata Mangeshkar: Chanda O Chanda
3. Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar: Chanda O Chanda


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Saturday, 1 February 2020

Shankar Jaikishan: Shikar (1968)

shikar

As acquisitions become rarer, new posts become less frequent. But I do have a couple left in the box, starting with a late 60s Shankar Jaikishan score; they tend to be good value. And while 'Shikar' [review] might not be in my top anything of theirs, there's a nice (poppy) vibe running through it which makes for pleasant listening.

'Shikar Karne Ko Aaye' has a bright folky feel; even before finding the YouTube clip I could have guessed it was set in the countryside. Upbeat 'Hai Mere Pass To Aa' is another opportunity for Helen to be as sexy as only she can. Asha Parekh dances seductively to the great cabaret number 'Parde Men Rahne Do'; the instrumentation and arrangement is slightly more traditional here, yet it's my favourite track on the album. I've also grown a bit of fond of 'Jabse Laagi Tose Najariya'. There's always something to be said for both Asha Bhosle and Lata Mangeshkar on the same song.

Track listing:
1. Mohd. Rafi: Shikar Karne Ko Aaye
2. Lata Mangeshkar & Asha Bhosle: Jabse Laagi Tose Najariya
3. Asha Bhosle: Hai Mere Pass To Aa
4. Asha Bhosle & Chorus: Parde Men Rahne Do
5. Asha Bhosle: Main Albeli Pyar Jata Kar
6. Mahendra Kapoor & Krishna Kalle: Mere Sarkar Meri Aahonka Asar Dekh Liya


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Monday, 21 October 2019

Kalyanji Anandji: Aamne Saamne (1967)

Aamne Saamne

Kalyanji Anandji's 1960s output isn't generally as immediately attention-grabbing as that from the following decade, yet as has been demonstrated earlier on this blog, their pre-funk-era scores could at times be highly enjoyable affairs. 'Aamne Saamne' [review] [2] [3] is no exception.

The highlights are on the LP's first side. Opener 'Kabhi Raat Din Hum Door The' has a top melody with a kind of elegant, hummable pop feel, while 'Nain Milakar Chain Churana' is very much akin to, and on par with, Shankar Jaikishan's famous rock 'n' roll tunes of the same era. Sung by Mohd. Rafi, naturally. 'African Dance' pre-dates the wild freak-out instrumentals that would intermittently appear on their 1970s soundtracks; loud and primal. I don't find side 2 as interesting, though it must be said that 'Mere Bechain Dil Ko' is growing on me.

Track listing:
1. Lata Mangeshkar & Mohd. Rafi: Kabhi Raat Din Hum Door The
2. Mohd. Rafi: Nain Milakar Chain Churana
3. Chorus: African Dance
4. Mohd. Rafi: Mere Bechain Dil Ko
5. Mohd. Rafi: Aajkal Hum Se Roothe
6. Manna Dey & Miss Shami: Ankhiyan Na Churao


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Friday, 4 October 2019

Laxmikant Pyarelal: Roop Tera Mastana (1971)

Roop Tera Mastana

Quite a few vintage Bollywood soundtracks (like the ones on my want list) are becoming increasingly hard to find for less than silly money, so I was particularly pleased to get this nice copy of 'Roop Tera Mastana' from someone not out to fleece his customers. It's a great score too; a diverse collection of excellent songs on which Laxmikant Pyarelal's flair for dramatic arrangements is evident throughout.

Lovely opener 'Akash Pe Do Tare' is soulful and soaring; 'Haseen Dildruba' sounds exotic (looks erotic) and slightly dangerous. 'Ban Ke Than Ke' is more traditional yet poppy and catchy; 'Dil Ke Baten' is packed with all sorts of emotions and has a bit of a groove going on. It's my favourite track here, along with cool, jazzy 'Dekh Lo Woh Ghata Chand Par'.

I believe the film's title means "your beauty is intoxicating". I'm pretty sure many will be familiar with the fab S.D. Burman song of the same name.

Track listing:
1. Lata Mangeshkar & Mahendra Kapoor: Akash Pe Do Tare
2. Mohd. Rafi: Haseen Dilruba
3. Mohd. Rafi: Buddhe Pe Aa Gayee Jawani
4. Lata Mangeshkar & Kishore Kumar: Dil Ke Baten
5. Lata Mangeshkar: Ban Ke Than Ke
6. Mohd. Rafi: Bade Bewafa
7. Lata Mangeshkar: Dekh Lo Woh Ghata Chand Par


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Thursday, 8 August 2019

Satyajit Ray: Shakespeare Wallah (1966)

Shakespeare Wallah

'Shakespeare Wallah' [review] belongs on MFT3F mostly by association, as it technically isn't a product of Bollywood. Yet it makes sense to include it; the film is made and takes place in India, it features well known Hindi actors, and its beautiful music is composed by one of the country's biggest cinema legends. Not unlike 'Bombay Talkie', which coincidently came from the same producer-director team, Ismail Merchant and James Ivory. Whereas that soundtrack was by a pair of MDs who appear on the blog regularly, this is a score by a man who never has.

As many undoubtedly know, Satyajit Ray is a world renowned film maker. What I to a lesser extent was aware of is that he was also a composer. His music here consists not so much of songs, apart from the sweet 'Manjula's Song: Dil Dharke', but of instrumentals and short vignettes. They're low-key and sedate, merging Western composition (topically Renaissance-tinged at times) with Indian instrumentation; the result is lovely and often quite haunting. It's difficult, and perhaps pointless to pick out particular favourites; 'Pantomime' reminds me of something German prog-/Krautrock band Popol Vuh could have recorded, and Wes Anderson included 'The Deserted Ballroom' (in addition to tracks from 'Bombay Talkie') on the soundtrack to 2007's 'The Darjeeling Limited'.

Track listing:
1. Title Music
2. Cleopatra's Barge
3. Arrival Of The Troupe In The Rain
4. Manjula's Procession
5. The Good Old Days
6. Mubarak Begum:  Manjula's Song: Dil Dharke (Heartbeat)
7. Pantomime
8. Bobby's Funeral
9. Love Theme – Sanju And Lizzie
10. Carla Begs Lizzie To Return To England
11. The Deserted Ballroom
12. Lizzie And Sanju Backstage
13. The Unhappy Ending
14. Lizzie Sails For England


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Sunday, 16 June 2019

Rahul Dev Burman: Raksha (1981)

Raksha

Upbeat and lively, 'Raksha' is a soundtrack with essentially great sounding tracks that nonetheless I have, for the most part and for some reason, been struggling to get really excited about. It is arguably growing on me and may continue to do so over repeated listens, but the songs don't stick the way RD Burman's best work does. Curiously, it is one of very few scores not given a single mention in my go-to book on him and his career. (And speaking of books...)

'Naye Purane Saal Men' certainly has me humming and my feet tapping; kind of fun but the melody sounds... I don't know, a bit simplistic maybe. Midway it samples White Christmas for no apparent reason; perhaps the on-screen party is a Christmas one. 'Main Chalta Hoon Mujhe Jane Do' is similarly cheerful but it's only at the sporadic synth breaks that my ears prick up.

The real highlight is in fact the opening track, the near perfect percussion-driven, moog-augmented lounge-funk cabaret number 'Jani Dilbar Jani'. I keep returning to that. Doesn't Parveen Babi looking stunning in its picturisation? (Didn't she always?)

Track listing:
1. Asha Bhosle: Jani Dilbar Jani
2. Asha Bhosle, Kishore Kumar & Chorus: Naye Purane Saal Men
3. Asha Bhosle & Mohd. Rafi: Main Chalta Hoon Mujhe Jane Do
4. Kishore Kumar: Tere Liye Mere Liye
5. Asha Bhosle & Kishore Kumar: Mil Gaye Dil Mil Gaye


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Friday, 31 May 2019

Rahul Dev Burman: Phir Kab Milogi (1971/1974) / Do Chor (1972)

Phir Kab Milogi

These two titles were, until recently, completely unknown to me. I suspect the reason might be that neither were particularly big hits, combined with the fact that the soundtracks never appeared as LPs. Or, maybe I'm simply not as knowledgeable as I think I am...

'Phir Kab Milogi' the movie came out in 1974, though it seems to have been held back a few years as this EP is dated 1971. All four songs are good; my favourites are 'Le Qai Khushbu' which has a great funk-pop vibe, and 'Kahin Karti Hogi' which is a take on the Herb Alpert (among others) track 'The Lonely Bull'. 'Ram Qasam Bura Nahin Manoongi' sounds vaguely familiar too, but at the moment I'm unable to place it.

Do Chor

1972's 'Do Chor' is more of the same. Pleasant pop tunes, unassuming yet still memorable, in that special Burman way. 'Meri Jan Meri Jan' may have borrowed some ideas from Cliff Richard's 'Fall In Love With You', but that's allowed, in Bollywood anyway. For me the EP's highlight is loungy drug number 'Yari Ho Gayi Yar Se'; I'm a sucker for that type of thing.

Track listing, 'Phir Kab Milogi':
1. Lata Mangeshkar: Le Qai Khushbu
2. Lata Mangeshkar: Ram Qasam Bura Nahin Manoongi
3. Lata Mangeshkar & Mukesh: Kahin Karti Hogi
4. Lata Mangeshkar: Tum Mujhse Roothe Ho

Track listing, 'Do Chor'
1. Kishore Kumar & Lata Mangeshkar: Kali Palak Teri Gori
2. Kishore Kumar: Meri Jan Meri Jan
3. Kishore Kumar & Lata Mangeshkar: Chahe Raho Door
4. Lata Mangeshkar: Yari Ho Gayi Yar Se


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