Sunday, July 6, 2014

Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon...Long Live Our Indian Army...Our Lata Mangeshkar's Song!

I read this message in twitter just now and lo, it triggered my memories in an FF mode!

1963 :: Lata Mangeshkar sings “Ae Mere Watan Ke Logon” in Ramlila Maidan as Nehru Looks on , Delhi.

Embedded image permalink

I started looking for the song in 'you tube' and came across this treasure instead, which I had been looking for the past many years, the recording of Lata Mangeshkar's 1974 concert at the Royal Albert Hall! 

But first let us hear this song, with beautiful lyrics by Kavi Pradeep and music by Shri C.Ramachandra for the film, 'Haqueekat'. The wikipedia link gives the details of this song.  "Those who don't feel inspired by 'Aye mere watan ke logo' doesn't deserve to be called a Hindustani", said Nehru, who was visibly moved by the song. The song received rave appreciation from across the country."

Whenever I hear this song, my eyes well up with tears.  Same thing happened now.  Took sometime to see properly.  Did you notice the many VIPs standing with Lata on the dais and the crowd standing throughout the song rendition.  This is the true patriotic song.

As you know, I and my family are music lovers, esp. of Hindi old film songs.  My children grew up hearing these songs.  In the mid 70's audio cassettes were famous.  Even music systems were not a household gadget.  We had a car radio (!) cum recorder cum player.  I used to play cassettes when I was not hearing music in the radio.  My son used to love Kishore Kumar's songs and Lata's songs, though Kishore came first! He was very small during these conversations which I and my family still remember... He used to tap the light switch on, standing on the dining table and treating it as a phone used to 'speak' to Kishore.  'Hello, how are you?'...When my cousin came home from Bombay, he asked her if she had met Kishore Kumar because he knew that Kishore lived in Bombay! She became his favourite aunt, thanks to Kishore! Sorry, I am diverting from the main subject!

We had a cassette with songs of Lata.  It was on 'replay' mode most of the time. When the tape broke, I used to paste it together and play was possible then! I could not get a new one since it was not available. Even this was recorded from a recording shop, which was prominent in those days. It was the recording of a 1974 concert of Lata Mangeshkar at the famous Royal Albert Hall, London.  One Mr.Silverman, MP, London, speaks about Lata.  I love the way he pronounces Lata's name and then Dilip Kumar's urdu mixed Hindi, praising Lata. He has got a deep voice.

This you tube link also details the importance of this famous hall and the importance of this concert.  Excerpts:

Album liner notes:

The 103-year-old Royal Albert Hall in London -- Britain's most prestigious auditorium with a seating capacity for 6000 -- witnessed a musical phenomenon unequalled in its hallowed history when the inimitable Lata Mangeshkar made her international "debut" on its august stage with a series of three concerts in the aid of the Nehru Memorial Project in Britain in March 1974.

Seldom, indeed, has the hall been booked for a single recitalist three times in one week. What, however, made the event equally unique was to have the hall packed by an oriental artiste for all three nights -- and something more. For even after the intermission on the final night (March 14), there still were crowds willing to pay double the highest price for admission to the hall!

Inside the hall, Lata, the cynosure of all eyes, received a big ovation as Dilip Kumar -- one of India's top-notch film stars, who was also specially invited by The India League, sponsors of the Memorial Project -- introduced her at every concert as his "little sister" and as "a singer with the voice that defied description and definition".

Tribute after tribute, as also bouquets galore, came to Lata from many eminent personalities of England and India.

Then amid the ideal setting that matched her many-splendoured talent, Lata sang her songs with a seraphic impulse. She could demand and obtain the spontaneous surrender of her 18000 and odd listeners -- and sent them home with gladdened hearts and nostalgic memories.

That is at once the singular distinction of the one and only Lata Mangeshkar..."the undisputed melody queen of India"..."the pint-sized bundle of musical genius"... "a singer with a moonlight in her throat"... "a legend in her lifetime"...

Each and every song here in this link, is a gem.  I tried for an adio CD for a long time now at Landmark and Odessey but couldn't get it.  Thank god, I got it now!  Now, you enjoy!


Destination Infinity said...

The song is very good, but they could have cut the "build-up" which went for 3.5 minutes in the beginning! Also, I would have liked to hear a younger Lata's rendition of this song.

I should listen to Lataji's film songs - I am not aware of many of them. I will try to buy a DVD too.

Destination Infinity

SG said...

Nice song. But I want to take issue with Nehru’s statement. When Nehru made that statement, there were only 45% of the Indians understood Hindi. (Now it is 65%). So other 55% (now 35%) are not Hindustani (Indian)?

sm said...

beautiful song

Sandhya said...

DESTINATION INFINITY: Young Latha's voice:

This is even better:

Shail said...

Only today did I notice the song has 'Madrasi' in it. No wonder! :D

Sandhya said...

SHAIL: All South Indians are Madarasis even now!

We call all of them North Indians instead of Bengalis, Odishawale or Rajasthanis! A Maharashtrian friend of mine enlightened me when I asked her why everyone call even Kannadigas, Madarasis!

Sandhya said...

DESTINATION INFINITY: I think the build up was taken from the movie.

That was a concert of 1997. You can hear her younger voice in the last video (audio) of 1974. You can hear many beautiful/famous songs of hers.

SG: Here, Hindustani means Indian, people who reside in Hind. Whether we like it or not, mostly Hindi speaking people were there in the government always. I wonder how our Kamaraj became so famous in those days. He was very close to Indira Gandhi. I have read that he was close to many other leaders like Morarji Desai too! I admire him. I must make a post on him one day!

Modi speaks quite good English. But speaking with emotion means, he is very good in Hindi, but naturally. Some minister's comment about govt.transactions should be in Hindi, is taken back now. It will be a black mark for him! English is going to be THE language in India in future.

The budget was submitted in the Parliament in English, not Hindi by Arun Jaitly!

Have a look at this link:

Even my servant maid and driver's children have taken Hindi as second language in school (English medium). Funny thing is, they will study well and fly off to other countries!

My children know Tamil and Hindi too but both of them are comfortable only in English!

SM: Yes, sm! My favourite!

Bikram said...

now that indeed is a beautiful song and Lata Ji, is one of the best in the world..

I have this song in my car actually i have a cd that is full of all NAtinalist songs and I do listen to them now and then..

some people here call me too emotional and Indian because thats why i become when talking of home


Ankita said...

I just love that song! It always bring tears to my eyes :)

thank for the wonderful info that you have provided :)

Sandhya said...

BIKRAM: I can understand Bikram. People who are abroad are more patriotic than people who are here. Did you hear the next video which has got more lovely songs of Lata?

ANKITA: Yes, it does for me too! Thank you, Ankita!

BK Chowla, said...

After defeat in 1962,India was in a mess and the moral of the nation was at its lowest.
This song was very touching and was very emotional

Avada Kedavra said...

This is probably the best patriotic song I have heard. I had memorized the entire song and could sing it when I was young. Now I don't remember the lyrics completely.

Anonymous said...

The younger, authentic version is awesome. I hope there are no remixes of that!

Rahul Bhatia said...

Lovely memories came back after reading this post and I still remember when as a kid I heard this song first time at National Stadium in Delhi rendered by Lata Mangeshkar post Indo China war!Thank you, Sandhya!

Sandhya said...

BK CHOWLA: Even now, I feel emotional whenever I hear this song! Very meaningful song.

AVADA KEDAVRA: Yes, after 'vande mataram' this was the best patriotic song in my school days too!

SWEETY SHINDE: Since this is a pure patriotic song nobody would dare touch it!

Did you hear the II video? You must have. Latha's voice was very young and melodious then!

RAHUL BHATIA: You heard it live? Great! I can feel the atmosphere over there when the song was rendered.

Thank you, Rahulji!

Rama Ananth said...

This is also my favorite song, Even I m always moved to tears, whenever I hear it. It is in the Youtube.
My sister who sings very well sang this song during one of her college festivals, and i remember it was greatly appreciated by everyone there.
It is one song that can really move all Indians after the national anthem of course.
Many years ago I had also written about this song in my blog space.

Shail said...

@Sandhya, If we were called South Indians that would be okay, because we are South Indians, but not Madrasis :)

Sandhya said...

RAMA ANANTH: Yes, Rama. Whoever is a bit familiar with Hindi will always love this song.

I think I too had done a post on this earlier, hahahaha! This one is just for Latha's voice!

SHAIL: Yes, you are right, Shail...sigh...

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