Music is eternal they say, and singer Mohammed Rafi’s classics only prove this theory. Even nearly four decades after his demise, his songs continue to move old-timers and charm new listeners. There’s little he’s not sung – from bhajans to qawwalis to ghazals and romantic songs, Rafi has explored genres added sheen to them with his perfect rendition. Little wonder, even millennials love listening to numbers such as Abhi Na Jaao Chhodkar or Yeh Chand Sa Roshan Chehra on loop.
On his death anniversary today, we bring you a selection of five golden Rafi numbers. Ask us, and we’ll tell you how difficult it was to zero in on five from the hundreds of gems he’s sung.
Kya Hua Tera Wada
Hum Kisi Se Kum Nahin (1977)
There’s a reason why this song is an evergreen favourite. Rafi’s soothing voice lets you feel the pain of unrequited love, even if you have not actually experienced it. The song also fetched Rafi a Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer. Music for the film was composed by RD Burman, Majrooh Sultanpuri penned the lyrics and Sushma Shreshta was the co-singer. Shot in an old-fashioned restaurant, the song features Rishi Kapoor, Kajal Kiran and Tariq.
Abhi Na Jaao Chhodkar
Hum Dono (1961)
This melodious number captures the subtle romance between the film’s leads – Dev Anand and Sadhana. Sahir Ludhianvi penned the lyrics for the song, while Rafi and Asha Bhosle added life to it with their voices. The song continues to be a huge favourite at stage performances and award shows.
Yeh Chand Sa Roshan Chehra
Kashmir Ki Kali (1964)
Shammi Kapoor and Rafi were a popular combo and this song can comfortably be labelled one of their best outings. Filmed in the picturesque backdrop of Kashmir’s Dal Lake, the song sees Shammi Kapoor praising the beauty of his lover Sharmila Tagore. The song is a trip down nostalgia lane.
Baar Baar Dekho
China Town (1962)
Yet another Shammi Kapoor-Rafi number, the song is a peppy track filmed in an orchestra setting typical of the Fifties. The song sees Shammi Kapoor trying to woo his lady love Shakila. Music for the film was composed by Ravi.
Aaj Mausam Bada Beimaan Hai
Filmed in a garden, this melodious, romantic number featuring Dharmendra and Mumtaz featured in a crime thriller directed by A Bhim Singh. Laxmikant Pyarelal scored music for the film.