Among the most significant singers and composers from the Hindi film industry in what have popularly been called the golden years (roughly 1945 to 1970), Hemant Kumar Mukherjee has left us with an extraordinary corpus of music, both in Hindi and Bengali. His off-cinema work has impacted us no less. That's also why we don't just hear his music, but sing his songs and his compositions. Consider just a few of these works of art in his voice:
Teri duniya mein jeene se (House No, 44, 1955), Jaane wo kaise log the jinke (Pyaasa, 1957), Beqaraar kar ke humen yoon na jaiye (Bees Saal Baad, 1962), Ya dil ki suno duniya waalo (Anupama, 1966), and Tum pukaar lo (Khamoshi, 1969).
But think of his music compositions too, especially for other singers:
Na ye chaand hoga (Geeta/Shart, 1954), Chhup gaya koi re door se pukaar ke (Lata/Champakali, 1957), O raat ke musafir chanda zara bata de (Lata, Rafi/Miss Mary, 1957), Aaj rona pada to samjhe (Kishore/Girl Friend, 1960) and Saaqiya aaj mujhe neend naheen ayegi (Asha/Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam, 1962).
This book is a fond remembrance of this creative genius whose music has impacted millions of music
Hemant Kumar, what a wonderful singer, what a gifted composer! Decades after this amazing man left us, we sing his songs and enjoy his tunes, not just in Mumbai and Kolkata, but everywhere music buffs live.
The Unforgettable Music of Hemant Kumar looks in detail at specific areas of Hemant Kumar's work. Chapters include the journey of his life, from Varanasi to Calcutta to Bombay and back to Calcutta. It lists his discographies as a singer-both in Hindi and Bengali films—as also out of cinema in many languages. It identifies his songs as a composer, again in his work in many languages. The essays address his singing-in that famous baritone voice, his compositions, the classical raags that his tunes romanced with, the instruments he frequently used, the singers and lyricists that he worked with, and his Rabindra Sangeet. Featured is an interview with his son Jayanto and much more. Popular personalities like him, who have spent decades doing stellar work, often have plenty of trivia attached to them and their work. As such, we have put together a largish chapter on such trivia about Hemant Kumar.
Manek Premchand has a diploma in Journalism and a degree in Arts from Bombay University. He has many friends in the film industry and remains fascinated by the enormous role that Hindi cinema's music has played as a key bonding medium in a country as disparate as ours.
This fascination has motivated him to write six books on the subject. These are Yesterdays' Melodies Today's Memories, Musical Moments From Hindi Films, Romancing The Song, Talat Mahmood–The Velvet Voice, Hitting The Right Notes-Hindi Cinema's Golden Music and The Hindi Film Jukebox-Exploring Unforgettable Songs. A seventh book Shiv Kumar Sharma-The Man And His Music was co-authored with two others. Besides these, he has written hundreds of music-related articles for a variety of newspapers.
He has also been a consultant with Saregama India Ltd. and a show host on many radio platforms including WorldSpace Satellite Radio. He also teaches elements of Broadcasting to post-graduate students at Xavier Institute of Communications, a part of Xavier's College, Mumbai. He is currently an adviser to Manipal University Press.
North Indian Music (285)
Original Texts (60)
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