Harjap Singh Aujla
A yesteryears popular music director of Punjabi films Sardul Singh Kwatra once, who is no more us, once painfully remarked that the Bombay film industry can swing in extremes, at times it can be very generous and at others very cruel. It bows its head before you, if you have a big nametag or a big name God-father is solidly behind you and more often it denies respect your genius. Perhaps Sardul also meant that even he was not given his due by the
According to Sardul, the
Music Director Vinodâ€™s real name was Eric Roberts, but for film industry he chose a more familiar and shorter name â€œVinodâ€. This was revealed to me by one of his sons-in-law Kelly Mistry, who is married to his daughter Veera Roberts. His other daughterâ€™s name is Veena Roberts (after marriage Veena Solomon).
Sardul was feeling very dejected about the plight of music director Vinod, who died at a young age and in poverty
on the Christmas day in 1959. Sardul Kwatra knew Vinod since his days in
According to some historians Vinodâ€™s mentor Pandit Amar Nath died in 1946. Some other historians say that Pandit Amar Nath died in February of 1947. But by 1944 most of the
Vinod got the best break in life in 1949, when he got the contract to compose the music for Hindi film â€œEk Thi Ladkiâ€. The film became a hit and its Lata song â€œLara lappa lara lappa layi rakhda, addi tappa addi tappa layi rakhdaâ€ became a nation-wide hit. The tune of this song was based on an old Pahadi Punjabi folk tune of Kangra district. While listening to his other songs for this film, a similarity with the tunes of film â€œMirza Sahibanâ€ composed by his mentor Pandit Amar Nath could be clearly established. This goes to prove that Vinod, in letter and spirit, learnt the art of tune making from his teacher. This earned him contract for another Punjabi film â€œBhaiya Jiâ€ made in 1950. Lata sang several memorable songs for this movie. One of its sad songs â€œAjj mera mahi nall tutt
Talat Mahmood and Mohammad Rafi were the favourite male singers of Vinod, who always did full justice to his tunes. According to Sardul Kwatra Vinod had no God-father like Shanker and Jaikishan had in producer actor Raj Kapoor and producer Amiya Chakravarty and Naushad had in a very popular producer Mehboob Khan. Roop K. Shori, who gave Vinod music composition contracts for his films, somehow did not belong to the big league of
Roop K. Shori of course was a very famous film producer in
team with him. Music director Vinod and lyricist Aziz Kashmiri were members of his group. Vinod composed the music for most of Roop K. Shori films. In all Vinod composed music for 27 Hindi films, out of which he shared music with other music directors for at least six films. Some of his films were not completed and some were not released even after completion. Among some of Vinodâ€™s best known creations were the musical compositions of films â€œAnmol Rattanâ€ (1950), â€œWafaaâ€ (1950) â€œSabaz Baghâ€ (1951) â€œAag ka Dariyaâ€ (1953), â€œLaadlaâ€ (1954) and â€œMakhi Choosâ€ (1956). For a while Roop K. Shori got Vinod a salaried job as a music director in â€œFilmistan Studiosâ€. One characteristic of Vinod was that in Punjabi films he inserted Hindi songs and in Hindi film songs he inserted some Punjabi wording. This trend was discontinued later on, but since the nineties once again Punjabi songs are becoming a part of most Hindi films and these songs are proving big hits.
According to Vonodâ€™s son-in-law Kelly Mistry, Vinod was born on May 28, 1922. On the average Vinod was doing one or two successful films a year from 1948 to 1957, but one or two hit films in a year are not enough to ensure a decent standard of living in a city like
Both Shyam Sunder and Vinod, in spite of being thoroughly professional, were never financially well off. They both died during the fifties. After Vinodâ€™s untimely death at a young age of thirty seven on December 25, 1959, his wife Sheela had great difficulty in bringing up his children. Vinod loved his childhood city of
Although Vinod composed music for thirty two films, but most of these films were under small banners and the music of many was let down by the filmâ€™s poor showing at the box office. The following is the complete list of his films:
1. KHAMOSH NIGAHEIN 1946
2. PARAYE BUS MAIN 1946 (with Niaz Husain)
3. KAMINI 1946
4. CHAMAN (PUNJABI) 1948
5. EK THI LADKI 1949
6. TAARA 1949
7. ANMOL RATTAN 1950
8. BHAIYA JI (PUNJABI) 1950
9. WAFFA 1950 (with Bulo C. Rani)
10. MUTIAR (PUNJABI) 1950
11. FOR LADIES ONLY 1951
12. MUKHRHA 1951
13. SABZ BAGH 1951 (with Gulshan Sufi)
14. AAG KA DARYA 1953
15. EK DO TEEN 1953
16. ASHTALLI (PUNJABI) 1954
17. LAADLA 1954
18. RAMMAN 1954
19. HAA HAA HII HII HOO HOO 1954
20. JALWA 1955
21. OOT PATANG 1955
22. SHRI NAQAD NARAIN 1955
23. MAKHI CHOOS 1956
24. AMAR SHAHEED (with Vasant Desai) YEAR UN-KNOWN
25. SHEIKH CHILLI 1956
26. GARMA GARAM 1957
27. MUMTAZ MAHAL 1957
28. NIKKI (PUNJABI) 1958
29. MISS HUNTERWALI 1959
30. DEKHI TERI BUMBAI 1961
31. EK LADKI SAAT LADKE (with
32. RANG RALIYAN (with Lachhi Ram and Mukherjee) 1962
Note: Last three films were released after his death at the age of thirty seven in 1959.
Had Vinod remained busy under big banner movie makers, he may not have died at the prime of his youth. One of Vinodâ€™s masterpiece creations is the music for the Punjabi film â€œMutiarâ€ (1951). One of its Urdu Ghazals â€œAye dil mujhe jaane de, jis raah pe jaata hoonâ€ recorded in the silken voice of Talat Mahmood is simply outstanding. Its Punjabi version was never recorded. The lovers of
1. Dr. Har Mandir Singh Hamraaz of Kanpur U.P., the author of â€œHindi Geet Kosh from 1931 to date, for painstakingly digging up and supplying complete list of Vinodâ€™s films.
2. Dr. Surjit Singh of San Diego California USA, for enabling me to access his veb-site for listening to Late Allahdad Khan of Peshawar Pakistanâ€™s great collection of vintage Hindi and Punjabi film music.
3. Shri Harish Raghuvanshi, a film music historian of Surat Gujarat, the compiler of â€œMukesh Geet Koshâ€, â€œGujarati Film Geet Koshâ€ and the writer of â€œInhe Na Bhulanaâ€ for digging up information about music director Vinodâ€™s forgotten Hindi and Punjabi film songs.
4. Late Sardar Sardul Singh Kwatra, Music Director of yesteryears for sharing his Vinod related precious memories with me.
5. Music Director S. Mohinder (Mohinder Singh Sarna) for sharing his memories of Vinod with me.
6. Vinodâ€™s son-in-law Kelly Mistry for sharing thoughts and photos with me.
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