Posted on Trivia- The Spice of Life on 23/10/2021
Courtship is the slow, systematic process of pursuing the other person. It is the romance of long and intimate conversations (as well as time) spent with a person before you decide to go for the long haul. It is the real process of wooing someone by letting them see who you truly are as they do the same for you. It is the idea of being intimate friends with someone before becoming life partners. Meeting is important for getting to know one another. It is this aspect that this post explores, with the meeting place being the focus.
There are many songs – like Piya Milan Ko Jaana and Chali Gori Pi Ke Milan Ko Chali – that express the euphoria that the very prospect of going to meet the beloved sparks. They describe the state of mind. They talk of how the lady decks herself up to meet her beloved. Such songs describe courtship at length. But not many songs speak of the actual meeting place.
Today, there are umpteen places where couples can meet and spend some quality time together. Coffee shops, malls and multiplexes are excellent venues for a tête-à-tête. However, if one were to rewind to the golden era, the meeting places mentioned in songs are quite different and interesting. This post tries to explore the different rendezvous as gleaned from the lyrics of the songs of the golden era. Thus, the emphasis of this post is more on the meeting place rather than the meeting itself. Of course, a casual one to one meeting with a person of the opposite sex was not looked at very charitably. Thus, there is an element of escaping the prying eyes of the world in many a song. Some of the songs have risqué lyrics too.
It is important to mention here that there are no flights of fancy in these songs. All the places referred to are real places. It is for this reason that songs that refer to places like chaand ke paar, badalon ke paar, which fall beyond the purview of reality, have not been considered. I may mention here that such songs were discussed in my post Songs of ‘another world‘. There are quite a few songs which are all about where to meet or where they met but there is no specific place mentioned. I have included a song of this kind as well as it has all references to meeting at a particular place (yaheen – here) but just stops short of naming the place because the picturization of the song says it all.
Here is my playlist of ten songs, arranged in particular order.
1) Gori Milna Ho Milna Re Nadiya Ke Par (Sushila, 1966) Lyricist : Jan Nisar Akhtar; Music Director : C.Arjun; Playback Singers : Md.Rafi & Geeta Dutt. This is an adorable song from the movie Sushila. The music director is C.Arjun – who did not get the recognition he deserved in the Hindi film industry. His compositions in Jai Santoshi Maa (1975) were extremely popular.
There is little known about the movie Sushila. The music however is very hummable. This song is very amusing. One of the lines is milne julne ke zaaalim thikaane hazaar. The different locations suggested for meeting the beloved leave one stumped – nadiya ke paar (across the river), bagiya (garden), galiya (in the lane), panghat (village well/watering place), baabul ki choukhat (threshold of her house) and finally the mela (the fair). He gives her all the options and yet she heartlessly refuses saying koi dekh lega (someone will spot us)
Gori milna ho milna nadiya ke paar... nadi paare na milna to bagiyan me milna.. rain thodi si jaye to galiyan me milna.... milne julne ke zaalim thikaane hazaar... jo na galiyan me milna to panghat pe milna... to babul ki choukhat pe milna.... chaahe pal pal jiya apni gori se milna kuch na hoyibe to mailan me chori se milna koi puchhe to bole dulhaniya hamaar
2) Maine Baalam Se Puchha Miloge Kaha (Aadhi Raat, 1950) Lyricist : Rajinder Krishan ; Music Director: Hansraj Behl ; Playback Singers : Geeta Ghosh Roy Chowdhuri, Meena Kapoor & Chorus. This is a rather mischievous song. The meeting place is near the fields (kheton ke paas) and that too at midnight (aadhi raat ko). The meeting of course is a secretive one. When the lady says she is scared of the watchman (chowkidaar), the man replies that he shall also be called to the meeting place (main bulalunga pehle hi usko wahan) probably, to be taken into confidence!! Only the audio of the song is available.
Maine kaha ji dar laage chowkidaar se keh dega jaake mere saare ghar baar se saiyyan ne hanske kaha mujhko pyaar se main bulalunga pehle hi usko wahan maine puchha kahan wahin kheton ke paas aadhi raat ko maine baalam se puchha miloge kahan hanske bole wahan wahin kheton ke paas aadhi raat ko
3) Preetam Aan Milo (Mr. & Mrs.55, 1955) Lyricist : Saroj Mohini Nayyar ; Music Director: O.P.Nayyar; Singer/Playback Singer: C.H.Atma/Geeta Dutt. This song purportedly penned by O.P.Nayyar’s wife was first sung by C.H.Atma as a non-film song and then subsequently used in Mr. and Mrs. 55. O.P.Nayyar was the music director of both versions. The male protagonist in the movie Mr. & Mrs.55, is called Preetam (literally meaning lover). Thus, the song is apt in more than one way. The rendezvous is under a tree (ped ke neeche) in the dead of the night. The song in the movie is sung by Geeta Dutt. Her haunting voice leaves the listener mesmerized.
Bheegi raat mein ped ke neeche aankh michauli khel rachaaya preetam yaad karo jab tumne prem bhara ek geet sunaaya aan milo
4) Aaja Aaja Aaja Nadiya Kinare (Raj Hath, 1956) Lyricist : Shailendra ; Music Directors: Shankar Jaikishan ; Playback Singer : Lata Mangeshkar & Chorus. This song from Raj Hath also marks the end of the movie. The movie is a historical drama where love is pitted against honour. The song at hand is a spirited dance number with a young Helen coming up with a scintillating performance. The meeting place referred to in the song is the river bank (nadiya kinare).
Aaja aaja aaja nadiya kinare taaron ki chhaiya tohe kab se pukare
5) Panghat Pe Dekho Aai Milan Ki Bela (Naujawan, 1951) Lyricist : Sahir Ludhianvi; Music Director: S.D.Burman ; Playback Singers: Md. Rafi & Geeta Ghosh Roy Chowdhuri. This beautiful duet composed by S.D.Burman features Nalini Jaywant. She looks out of the window to witness an absorbing song and dance performance. The reference is to Radha going to meet Krishna stealthily (chori chori) at the panghat (village well/ watering hole). She then begins to imagine herself as Radha and Premnath (the hero) as Krishna. The song has a strong tinge of Bengali folk music.
Panghat pe dekho aai milan ki belaa thumak-thumak Raadhe chori-chori aai sakhiyon se puchhe kit chhupe hain Kanhaain
6) Rut Hain Milan Ki (Mela, 1971) Lyricist : Majrooh Sultanpuri; Music Director: R.D.Burman ; Playback Singers: Md.Rafi & Lata Mangeshkar. This soft romantic number is all about meeting in the lap of nature. The song is picturized on Mumtaz and Sanjay Khan. Sanjay Khan is star gazing on the machaan (scaffold) of a field, as he waits for Mumtaz. Mumtaz manages to slip out of the house. Both the lyrics and the music are impressive. The changes in the tempo of the song also make it special. The ambience adds to the beauty of the song. There is a reference to the different meeting places – baag (garden), khet (field), nadiya kinaare (the riverside).
Rut hain milan ki saathi mere aa re mohe kahin le chal baahon ke sahaare baagon mein kheton mein nadiyaa kinaare
7) Chaand Churaake Laaya Hun (Devata, 1978) Lyricist : Gulzar ; Music Director: R.D.Burman ; Playback Singers: Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar. This song weaves the combined magic of R.D.Burman and Gulzar. The lyrics are rather strange and frivolous. The man wants to meet his sweet heart behind the church even as the man gifts her the moon – something he has stolen for her!! Sanjeev Kumar plays an orphan -Tony – in the film and his life revolves closely round the church. This perhaps explains the church being chosen as a rendezvous. The song is worth watching for all the antics of Shabana and Sanjeev.
Chaand chura ke laaya hun chal baithe church ke peechhe ho na koyi dekhe na pehchaane baithe ped ke neeche arre chal baithe church ke peechhe
8) Yaheen Woh Jagah Hain (Yeh Raat Phir Na Aayegi, 1966) Lyricist : S.H.Bihari ; Music Director: O.P.Nayyar ; Playback Singer : Asha Bhosle. This movie is based on the tried and tested reincarnation formula. The songs of the movie are a real treat for the ears. The lady is trying to get the man to recollect their love saga of an earlier century. This is where this song comes in. The reference is to the place where they have met before and professed love for each other. Though the place is not named, the emphasis on the spot is well laid with the words yaheen woh jagah hain – this is the place.
Yaheen woh jagah hain, yahin woh fizaayen yahin par kabhi aap hamse mile the
9) Uden Jab Jab Zulfen Teri (Naya Daur, 1957) Lyricist : Sahir Ludhianvi ; Music Director O.P.Nayyar ; Playback Singers: Asha Bhosle & Md.Rafi. A very beautifully made movie, Naya Daur showcases the challenges of industrialization in the post independence era. Packed with great performances, a crisp script and great music, it was a blockbuster. Sahir and O.P. Nayyar create pure magic.
This particular song is an entertaining, merry, lyrical duel where gazing at the moon on the terrace (chhat) becomes the perfect excuse for the male protagonist to meet up, something the lady love, of course, does not accede to. Thus, the terrace is the rendezvous and the moon the purported object of admiration. What’s also unique about this song is that it is usually the woman’s zulf (hair) that is complimented in almost all film songs but here, it is the man’s hair that’s being praised, despite the fact that the lady sports a long embellished plait!
Ho tujhe chaand ke bahaane dekhu tu chhat par aaja goriye tu chhat par aaja goriye jind meriye abhi chhedenge galee ke sab ladke ke chaand bairee chhip jaane de ke chaand bairee chhip jaane de jind meriye
10) Jab Deep Jale Aana (Chitchor, 1976) Lyricist & Music Director: Ravindra Jain ; Playback Singers : Yesudas & Hemlata. This song from a very lovable movie is set to Raag Yaman. It is perhaps one of the best film songs based on Yaman. The swars added in the song after the second stanza (ne re ga re ga ma ga re sa sa ni pa pa ma re ga sa ni sa ga pa ma pa) enhance its melody. There is an innocence in the song and its picturization. The reference is to the first meeting which was under a mango tree, on the banks of the river. The man calls his beloved to meet again at the same spot.
Jahaan pehli baar mile the ham jis jagah se sang chale the ham nadiya ke kinaare aaj usi ambua(amua??) ke tale aana
This brings me to the end of my playlist. The first song of this post from the movie Sushila, exhausts a majority of the rendezvous options – nadiya ke paar (across the river), bagiya (बगिया – garden), galiya (गलिया – in the lane), panghat (पनघट – village well/watering place), baabul ki choukhat (बाबुल की चौखट– threshold of her house) and finally the mela (मेला– the fair). The words milne julne ke zaaalim thikaane hazaar (मिलने जुलने के ज़ालिम ठिकाने हज़ार) consummately sum up this post. Now, based on your outlook, constraints and risk taking ability, it is for you to decide where you want to meet. This is it from me till we meet next on my blog.
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