Monthly Archives: February 2013

“Music knows no language” Shanker (of Shankar-Jaikishen duo)

Excerpts from an interview by Shankerji,

By Subhash Tiwari

Music knows no language, said Shanker. Today Ravi-Shankar and others are Westernising Indian Music in a manner designed to make it sell it abroad. Our technique from the outset was to so westrnise Indian music to make it sell. We are popular composers, not Classisists. Though when the challenge is Classical, we can meet it as you saw in ‘Basant Bahar’ which in terms of ‘Prestige’ I regard as our greatest achievement. But our music all along has been attuned to the masses. Otherwise we could not have got the results we did from Mukesh. He is not a perfect singer- it’s very difficult to get him in Sur. But the man in the street is not a perfect singer either and Mukesh has got ‘ a certain something’ that makes him the People’s Singer. As People’s Composers it has been our endeavour to draw the Best out of each Artiste.

Rafi, Talat, Manna, Hemant, Lata, Geeta, Asha, Suman- we have presented them all in the simple straightforward manner that appeals to the lay public. Yes we worship success. We gave chaste music in ‘Patrani, and ‘Amrapali’ but public rejected these films. We felt sorry to see so musch of good work go waste. But we have never denied our public the democratic right to reject our films. At the same time we are Autocratic enough to see that they are left with little scope to reject us! In striking this rapport, judicious westrnisation has been a great aid to us. We have westernized no doubt but in our own style. …..

While talking to Raju Bhartan in this interview, Shankerji played many tunes in his mind which had yet to take shape as songs. Read his description…

“He played on Piano a whole array of new tunes he has ready. It is not easy to testify to the final shape these tunes will take as, with Shanker, it is almost always the words that are written to the tune. “Not that I cannot compose from a pre-written lyric- I have often done so,” he said. “But I have such a variety of tunes in stock that, with a little give and take, the words can be fitted harmoniously into one of them. Shailendra was a pastmaster in this. He understood my needs perfectly. He had the words pat for such tunes as Sajan re jhoot mat bolo and….(some text missing) .. did I know then that it was his ‘swan song’ I was composing!

Sad song or Happy, Shanker does his composing on the piano which he plays rather well. “Do you think you play better than Naushad?” I asked, remembering how the ‘Andaz’ wizard had once treated me to Tu kahe agar on the piano. “How can I play better than ‘Naushad ? said Shanker. “Naushad Saab in his days was great, simply great! What a sense of orchestration he gave to our music! We merely built on it.

Shanker, who started out as a tabla player with Husnlal Bhagatram, learnt much from that duo, whose influence you sense in the interlude music of Jiya bequarar hai in ‘Barsaat’ Shanker is at once a musician and a composer. “All my early composing”, he says, “I did on the Accordion”. This accordion artistry reached a new high in the Aa ja sanam wistful of “Chori Chori”- a film Shanker regards as a landmark in their career.

Composed & Contributed by Dr. Subhash Tiwari ji

Useful data about work of Shankar-Jaikishan

Shri Mukund Marulkar ji – who has composed this data

Mukund Marulkar

Friends….I have written about SJ before four days as i was listening their music alone



1)1949=they composed their first picture-BARSAAT

2)1971=Jaikishanji passed away

3)1987=Shankarji passed away

A)SJ have scored music for total -185 pictures
B)SJ composed total songs-1350
C)SJ established their own MUSIC ROOM in Famous Studio
D)Shree Sebastian D’souza was their MELODY section incharge
E)Shree Dattaram Wadkar was their Rhythm section inchargr
F)In SJ orchestra there were 180 MUSICIANS and 10 Arrangers
G)They used 47 types of Instruments-1)Rhythm -14 instruments
2)String-16 instruments 3)Cord-06 instruments 4)Wind-11 instruments

H) They adapted 67 Lyricists and Male singers-46 and Female singers-45
I)Out of 1350 songs 980 were solo songs,243 were duets songs and 127 were other group songs
J)They were the pioneer of “TITLE SONGS” in 92 pictures having 103 songs
K)They introduced “DO PAILOO<DO GEET” in 26 pictures having 28 songs
L)SJ stands for SILVER JUBLEE in 35% of their total 185 pictures
M)SJ composed total songs from 1949 to 1971=1100 in which they shared 50% each,but after demise of Jaikishan, Shankarji composed 250 songs in 56 pictures.
O)They have used classical 60 RAAGAS in their songs and their popular BHAIRAVI RAAG was used in 75 songs which I know,may be more if studied in deep.
P)They worked under 116 – Producers and Directors for their music of 185 pictures.
Q)They were highly paid for each picture from one lakh to five lakhs
R) From 1949 to Jai’s demise in 1971,Jaikishanji provided “BACK GROUND MUSIC”to 95% pictures out of 130 pictures , where as Shankarji provided title songs,theme songs and totally dance songs.Mostly romantic and light songs were given by Jaikishanji.
S)Their almost songs were popular among the mass public and simply hummable to common public with their instrumental tunes also.
T)Their songs were first tunned in and then penned by Lyric keeping in mind on whom actor or actress picturisation is to be done and then singers are called for recording.
U)They were the first music composers who have given more importance to use of various types of instruments with heavy orchestration melodiusly but easy to be simple for listening and humming.
V)Their prelude music,interlude music,counter melody and end music was the major part ,secondly lyric and singer as per situation demand and theme of picture.
w)They have very high respect to other music directotrs of that time and healthy music friendship.
X)They were honoured by government for “PADMASHREE” in 1968.
Y)They have got “NINE” filmfare awards for their best music.
Z)They innovated special catchy music for 78 RPM records and original sound track separately.
AA)Contribution of Shankar-Shailendra and Jaikishan-Hasarat Jaipuri was outstanding for their eternal songs from 1949 to 1968.
BB)They were fond of reuse of their previous tune of back ground music as well as prelude and interlude music tunes for composing forth coming picture song
CC) In HFM history ,first time HMV company launched totally “BACK GROUND MUSIC” LP 33and 1/3 RPM record of MERA NAAM JOKER in 1970.
DD)SJ also stands for “SWARONKE JAADOOGAR”.
EE)They helped Government by performing social music programmes.
FF)Shree Shankarsingh Ramsingh Raghuwanshi.Date of birth-15th October 1922 in Madhya Pradesh, Mother’s name-Tarabai Raghuwanshi, Married in 1953
Wife-Kundan, NO issue.
Height-5 feet,No education

Skill in danceof katthak,mastery in Tabla,accordion,sitar,guitar,sarod,dholak,violin,orchestration and theme songs.

GG)Shree Jaikishan Dahyabhai Panchal.
Date of birth-4th November 1929 in Bansda Gujrath State.Mother’s name-Ambaben Panchal, Married on 31st august 1963 with Pallavi, Sons-Chetan and Yogesh, daughter-Bhairavi

Height-6 feet,Handsome,cheerful personality

Skill in back ground music,mastery in harmonium,accordion,trumpet,title music,violin,melody and management in orchestration,fond of English films.

Death-12th September 1971 at the age of 42.

HH) Out of 980 solo songs—1)Lata-319 songs
2)M. Rafi—222songs
3)Asha—109 songs
4)Mukesh—81 songs
5)Kishore—50 songs
6)Sharda—42 songs
7)Mannade—33 songs
8)SumanK—18 songs
9)Talat—13 songs
10)Mahendrakapoor—12 songs
11) Female others— 42 songs
12)Male others—39 songs

II)Out of 243 duets songs—1)Lata+Rafi—51 songs

2)Lata+Mukesh—35 songs
3)Lata+Mannade—17 songs
4)Lata+Asha—12 songs
5)Lata+Kishore—07 songs
6)Asha+Rafi—38 songs
7)Asha+Kishore—20 songs
8)Asha+Mannade—09 songs
9)Rafi+ SUman—11 songs
10)Rafi+sharda—07 songs
11)Lata+subirsen—03 songs
12)Sharda+kishore—03 songs
13)Sharda+mukesh—04 songs
14)Lata+Talat—05 songs
15)Mukesh+suman—03 songs
16)Geetadutta+kishore—03 songs
17)Lata+Hemantkumar—02 songs
18)Asha+mukesh—02 songs
19)Other duets—11songs