Laxmikant-Pyarelal is the name that needs no introduction in the field of Hindi Film Music or Hindustani Music.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal (1963 – 1998) was / is a household name in every part of India, from the mid sixty to till date. The name represents an archive of hit film music that was churned out non-stop right from 1963 till the end of the century. LP, Laxmikant-Pyarelal were amongst the few Hindi Film Music Directors of the good old yesteryears who were active right till the end.
Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar, was born on the day of “Laxmi Pujan” (Diwali) in the year 1937 (2nd / 3rd November). May be because of that his parent named him as Laxmikant. He spent his childhood amidst dire poverty in the slums of Vile-Parle (E) Mumbai which in those days was comparable to today’s Dharavi slums. His father died when he was child. Because of the poor financial conditions of the family he also could not even complete his academic education. Laxmikant’s father’s friend, a musician himself advised him and his elder brother to learn music. Accordingly Laxmikant learnt to play the mandolin and his elder brother learnt to play the tabla. In spite of spending two full years in the company of known mandolin player Hussain Ali, Laxmikant was never really given an opportunity to operationally learn how to play the instrument. However he mastered this art on his own. He began organising and performing in Indian Classical Instrumental Music concerts in order to earn some money. Later Laxmi did get the opportunity to learn the mandolin from known player Bal Mukund Indorker and also to learn the violin from none other than Husnalal of from the popular duo of Music directors Husnalal Bhagatram, especially in the 1940’s. All this occurred when Laxmikant was barely 10 years old!
Laxmikantji have also worked as a musician, to play Mandolin with C. Ramchandra, Shankar-Jaikishan, O P Nayyar, Hemant Kumar, Ravi, Roshan and S D Burman.
Pyarelal Ramprasad Sharma, was born on 3rd September, 1940. He was the son of a renowned trumpeter Ramprasad Sharma, whose knowledge of music was well known and extended well beyond playing the trumpet. Pyarelal learnt his music basics from his father and later went on to learn the violin from a Goan teacher Mr. Anthony Gonsalves. Later the name Anthony Gonsalves was even used in the film Amar Akbar Anthony released in 1977 having LP’s music as a tribute to Mr. Gonsalves. Pyarelal started to play the violin when he was eight years old and practiced the same 8 to 12 hours daily. By the age of 12, his family’s financial condition forced him to earn money by playing in studios. Pyarelal then used to frequent visiting and playing the violin in studios such as Ranjit Studio.
Pyarelalji have worked with as a Violin Player, as a musician with Bulo C Raani, Naushad, Madan Mohan, C Ramchandra, Khayyam, Chitratupt and S D Burman.
Both Laxmikant-Pyarelal have worked together as an assistant with R D Burman (Chhote Nawab ) and Kalyanji-Anandji (Chhaliya, Poornima, Satta Bazar, Mehandi Lagi Mere Haath, Bluffmaster, Himalay Ki God Main, Jab Jab Phool Khile, and many), Usha Khanna and Ramlal.
It was 1952. Sometimes Pyarelal used to be indulged in playing cricket on the ground after working in the studio with the other people. On one of these occasions, Laxmikant came and asked them whether he could join in, and everyone agreed. That’s how Laxmikant and Pyarelal first met. Laxmikant was 15 and Pyarelal was 12 years old at that time. There ware a lot of people like the two of them, but most of the other players were older. In those days most songs were recorded with just eight to ten musicians. Laxmikant and Pyarelal being small were made to play standing on chairs! Comparable age and very poor financial background gave birth to a tight friendship between Laxmikant and Pyarelal.
When Laxmikant was 10-11 years old, he had to play the mandolin in a Lata Mangeshkar concert in Radio Club Colaba. His beautiful and polished playing did not go unnoticed. The legendary Lata herself called Laxmikant after the show and inquired about him. After learning of his financially poor background, Lata recommended Laxmikant’s name to great music directors like Shankar Jaikishen, S. D. Burman and C. Ramchandra.
Both Laxmikant & Pyarelal have a strong bonding at Sureel Bal Kala Kendra, a music academy for children, run by the Mangeshkar family. It was named after a gang of Sureela boys including Laxmiji, Pyareji, Lataji’s younger brother, Hridaynath Mangeshkar, Laxmiji’s brother Shashikant, Pyareji’s brothers Ganesh and Gorakh as well as few friends, totaling 15 young boys. The sureela boy’s gang hung around together at Lataji’s home, day and night absorbed in the notes of golden music, intoxicated by rhythm and melody.
Laxmikant and Pyarelal started to get work for each other and also play together whenever they had the opportunity. Due to bad payment to musicians from the music directors in Mumbai in those days, Laxmikant and Pyarelal even went to play in Madras. In between, Pyarelal had even decided to leave India and go to Venice to play for symphony orchestras, similar to his colleague, the renowned conductor Zubin Metha. However, Laxmikant discouraged him from doing this. Even renowned mastros like Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia (flute) and Pt. Shivkumar Sharma (Santoor) were their colleagues and at that time were indulged only in playing at rather than composition. Slowly, the pair that had now got recognition got an opportunity to assist music directors Kalyanji-Anandji in 1957. Once during this tenure, the absence of Kalyanji Anandji’s regular arranger Sebastian D’Souza gave Pyarelal the opportunity to be arranger for one of the songs. Pyarelal showed unusual prowess in this. It was LP then, who became the assistants of Kalyanji Anandji.
Simplicity, Commitment and the quality of Unconquered Versatility gave Laxmikant-Pyarelal a Supreme Staying Power of 35 years in the Hindi Film Music.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s tunes used to be very simple but at the same time it used to be extremely sweet, catchy and melodious.
LP had an excellent sense of what would work at the common man’s level and in cinema halls, more than in Internet forums. They had a vast command over Folk and Hindustani Tunes. L-P (Laxmi-Pyare), were the composers who excelled, consistently, for more than three decades, in all forms of film songs such as Classical, Folk, Qawwali, Mujra, Western, Lori, Bhajan and Ghazal etc. They were also outstanding at exploiting several instruments, including their favorite Dholak, Tabala and also the Violin, Guitar, Bongo and Piano, Santoor, Sitar, Mendolin and many Indian as well as Western instruments.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s music is of the common people, for the common people and inspired by the common people. It was a perfect music for any successful film to have.
::: LAXMIKANT-PYARELAL ::: (1963 – 1998) : ::: THE SPARKLING JOURNEY OF an LP ERA :::
Unstoppable Flow of Passion and Talent.
In 1963, noted film maker Mr. Babubhai Mistry gave a chance to Laxmikant and Pyarelal to score the music independently for the film “Parasmani” which released in 1963. They started the music director’s name as Laxmikant-Pyarelal.… (LP in short). The LP era has now started. All the songs of the film became immensely popular. Songs like Hasata Hua Nurani Chehara, Wo Jab Yaad Aaye, Mere Dil Main Halki Si etc. are still being hummed by the people even these are more than 57 years old. (as of October, 2019).
After that Laxmikant-Pyarelal got the “B Grade” films, to score the music. Films like “Sati Savitri”.(Songs:-.Tum Gagan Ke Chandram Ho,.. Jeevan Dor Tumhi Sang Bandhi,..Kabhi To Miloge, Intani Jaldi Kya Hai Gori )… “Sant Gyaneshwar” (Songs:- Jyot Se Jyot Jagate Chalo,.. Khabar More Na Line)… “Hum Sab Ustaad Hai”…(Songs:- Pyar Batate Chalo,… Ajanabi Tum Jane Pehachane Se,)…”Mr. X In Bombay”..(Songs:- Mere Mehaboob Quayamat Hogi,.. Chali Re Chali Re Gori,…Khoobsurat Haseena..) .. “Shreeman Fantoosh”..(Songs:- Sultana Sultana Tu Na Ghabarana,…Yeh Dard Bhara Afasana). All these sweet and melodious songs became immensely popular and are still in demand even after 56 years.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal got the opportunity to score the music in Rajshri Films “Dosti” in 1964. (Songs:-Chahunga Main Tuze,.. Janewalo Zara,..Meri Dosti Tera Pyar,..Mera To Jo Bhi Kadam,..Rahi Manawa Dukhti Chinta,.. Gudiaya Hama Se Ruthi Rahogi..). All the songs became hit.
Music of “Dosti” kept LP in top position in the Hindi Film Music. This position of Laxmikant-Pyarelal remain unaffected and continued till 35 more years.
The LP era had now begun even when other older and established music directors of the golden era were still very much active. “Dosti” film music gave LP their first ever Filmfare Award (by beating Shankar-Jaikishan’s “Sangam” and Madan Mohan’s “Woh Kaun Thi”).. Then came “Lootera” a super hit musical non star cast film which is remembered only because of Lata Manageshkar’s super hit songs with Laxmikant-Pyarelal.
After this victorious feat LP and success went together without a break or loss of continuity.
In 1966 LP started cementing their place in Hindi Film Music. LP’s first musical hit film, with big star cast, “Aaye Din Bahar Ke” was released, followed by “Pyar Kiye Jaa”. Truly speaking 1967 belongs to Laxmikant-Pyarelal, they not only confirmed the Number One position in Hindi Film Music, but also consolidated it with series of hits by one after another. Non star cast film “Farz” was LP’s first ‘golden jubilee’ musical hit followed by big star cast films like “Anita”, “Shagird” yet another ‘Golden Jubilee’ hit. “Patthar Ke Sanam”, “Night In London”, “Jaal” and another evergreen musical hit “Milan”. Laxmikankt-Pyarelal received their second Filmfare Trophy for “Milan” without any stiff competition.
Now this was the time that Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s music became an essential component of the every successful film.
Big film producing names, like Prasad Productions, Rajashri Productions, K Sridihar, Rajkumar Kohli, Mohan Saigal, J. Om Prakash, Raj Khosla, Mohan Kumar, S. Mukharjee, Manoj Kumar, Ramamand Sagar, Harmesh Malhotra, R K Nayyar (Actress Sadhana’s Husband), Ravi Tondon, Tirupati Pictures (Jeetendra), Bikramjit Films (Dharmendra), Surinder Kapoor (Anil Kapoor), Yash Johar(Karan Johar’s Father), including V.Shantaram, Raj Kapoor, Yash Chopra, Manmohan Desai, Subhash Ghai and many more, started replacing their regular music directors and preferred Laxmikant-Pyarelal on regular basis and in return LP have given an outstanding music to justify the replacement with big names.
Entire list of the LP’s film will be too long but just to highlight the names of a few more films with hit music such as Raja Aur Rank, Taqdeer, Jeene Ki Raah, Do Raaste, Mere Humdam Mere Dost, Jeevan Mrityu, Piya Ka Ghar, Aaya Sawn Zumake, Uphar, Dharati Kahe Pukark Ke, Dushman, Hathi Mere Saathi, Humjoli, Mera Gaon Mera Desh, Sharafat, Jigari Dost, Abhinetri, Shor, Roti Kapda Aur Makaan, Aan Milo Sajna, Raja Jani, Dost, Meheboob Ki Mehendi, Daag, Bobby, Loafer, Pratigya, Imtihaan, Khilona, Majboor, Dharam-Veer, Chacha Bhatija, Roti, Prem Kahani, Anurodh, Satyam Shivam Sundaram, Amar Akbar Anthony, Gautam Govinda, Aasha, Badaltey Rishtey, Suhaag, Desh Premee, Sargam, Karz, Kranti, Mian Tulasi Tere Angan Ki, Prem Rog, Ek Duje Ke Liye, Ek Hi Bhool, Sur Sargam, Hero, Pyar Jhukta Naheen, Utsav, Aakhri Raasta, Naam, Nagina, , Inquilaab, Hum, Tezaab, Naam, Meri Jung, Eeshwar, Ram Lakhan, Chalbaaz, Mr. India, Khuda Gawaah, Saudagar, Khalnayak, Bhairavi, Deewana Mastana etc. and many more are enough to realize the potential of the LP duo to churn out hit music over a continuous stretch in time. The pair gave music to approximately 500 films in the 35 year span. Most of the composed songs carried the fragrance of beautiful melody.
:: LAXMIKANT-PYARELAL :: Song Composing Culture / System.
The songs composed by Laxmikant-Pyarelal. it is very difficult to Judge / Find which song is composed by Laxmikant OR which song is composed by Pyarelal. It’s still remains the secret.
PHILOSOPHY OF SONG COMPOSITION
One must understand how Laxmikant-Pyarelal used to compose the songs. Most of the Music directors pairs will compose the song separately / individually, under the respective banner like wise, Shankar-Jaikishan or Kalyanji-Anandji…
Interestingly, Laxmikant was the follower of Jaikishan style, not only in music but also in following Jaikishan’s wearing of wrist watch, cloth etc. Whereas Pyarelal was a follower of Shankar style of music.
Both Laxmikant and Pyarelal were complete musicians. Both of them knew the art of film song compositions as well as the orchestra arrangements. Both of them were capable of extracting the “best” from the singers as well as from the musicians.
In particular Pyarelalji, other than his proficiency in conducting the orchestra, he was an adroit in eliciting impishly rendering from the singers. For example, Lata Mangeshkar’s solo songs, ‘नींद निगाहों से खो जातीहै मुहोब्बत मुहोब्बत (Lootera 1965). The मुहोब्बत word was repeatedly rendered 58 times, each time in different way. बिंदिया चमकेगी sssss (Do Raaste, 1969), giving the stress on चमकेगी. चलो sss सजना (Mere Hamdam Mere Dost, 1968), rendering the word चलो sss, romantically. मैं तेरे इश्क़ मैं मर न जाऊं ssss कभी and many more.
The act of song compositions of Laxmikant-Pyarelal, still remains a secret. No one could guess which is Laxmikant composition or which is Pyarelal composition. It was a complete team work. All songs have an “LP” stamp. No THIRD person was involved.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal have composed over 2900 songs, according to change of time and the situation demands, for nearly 503 films ( a record ), in the span of 35 years. It should be noted that Laxmikant-Pyarelal were consistent in delivering top hit songs.
Laxmikant-Pyarelal songs are available for all the Indian festivals, including Eid, Easter and Christmas. Laxmikant-Pyarelal songs are for all generations. Laxmikant-Pyarelal songs are available for any situations. If any Radio station starts playing Laxmikant-Pyarelal songs 24 hours X 7 days, none of the songs will be repeated. Such an enormous quantity of popular songs with quality, variety and melody, as well.
In SIXTIES (1963 to 1969), Laxmikant-Pyarelal gave tough challenges to Old Horses like Shankar-Jaikishan, O P Nayyar, Madan Mohan, Roshan, Ravi, Chitragupt, Hemant Kumar, Kalyanji-Anandji, etc. Conquered Number ONE position in the year 1967.
In SEVENTIES (1970 to 1979) Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s position remain unaffected, maintained number ONE position but this time Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s competitors were, R D Burman, Kalyanji-Anandji, Ravindra Jain, Rajesh Roshan, Khayyam (after 1976)
In EIGHTIES (1980 to 1989) Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s position still remained the same, maintaining number ONE position but this time the challenges were from Bappi Lahiri, Rajesh Roshan, Khayyam, Anand Milind and to some extent R D Burman (till 1985).
In NINETIES (1990 to 1998) Laxmikant-Pyarelal were right ton top till 1994. But this time LP’s competition was with New generation music directors like, Anu Malik, Anand-Milind A R Rehman and Nadeem-Shravan.
The Long Playing Record / 50 Years of Friendship of Laxmikant-Pyarelal broken on 25th May, 1998 when Laxmikant died.
In this web / blog, I have tried to incorporate Laxmikant-Pyarelal associations with Singers, Songwriters, Filmmaker, Filmfare Awards. Binaca Geetmala, Few Films Music Review, Variety of Songs composed etc. Hope ! Music Lovers will enjoy it. I will appreciate the feedback, either way, in comment box.
I am a Mechanical Engineering Graduate. Boiler Proficiency Engineer. Deeply In Love With Hindi Film Music When I Was Eight Years Of Age, Since 1963. I Have A Liking For All Contemporary Music Directors Compositions. I Am A Fan Of Laxmikant-Pyarelal Music. I Have Grown-Up By Listening To Laxmikant-Pyarelal Music. I Like Test Cricket Only. Worked Overseas For 22 Years, In The Capacity Of General Manager. The Fields Of Project Implementation, Facility Management, Construction Management and Plant Maintenance In INDIA, NIGERIA & AFGHANISTAN.