A notable omission in my modest collection of gramophone records of Hindi film songs was the LP record of the 1960 film SARANGA with music by the great, but largely unrecognised, music director Sardar Mallik. I have been searching for this LP album for the last several years and it was only recently that I could get it, from a regular source, to my utter surprise and pleasure. The record with the jacket intact is in top condition without any scratches. What made me and other music lovers to search for this album of an otherwise ordinary film starring Soodesh Kumar and Jaishri Gadkar is the beautiful pathos filled song ‘Saaranga teri yaad mein’ penned by Bharat Vyas and rendered by Mukesh in his inimitable voice and singing style in which only he can sing. It is considered to be one of the top songs of Mukesh when the composer, lyricist and the singer gelled together to create an immortal song. The song was a big hit the moment it was heard on the radio and was hugely popular in the campuses.
The memories of this song lingered in the heart even when it slowly vanished from the radio and the cassettes and MP3 discs containing the song became increasingly difficult to find. In none of the several exclusive LPs of Mukesh this song was included to the utter disappointment of the admirers of Mukesh and the song. This and the fact that the song ‘ Saranga ter yaad mein’ evoked such nostalgia that the thrill of collecting this LP album became all the more ‘thriller’!The album also contained another beautiful song of Mukesh, ‘Hain diwana hun mein’ and the Lata Rafi duet,’Piya kaise milun tumse’. And a rare feature of the album is that it contained a version (not a full version) of the song ‘Saranga teri’ by Rafi in a slightly different tune or rather in the form of a recitation. As I had not seen the film I do not know how this version by Rafi was used in the film.
Tail piece:- Though Sardar Mallik could not make it big, his son Anu Malick continues to hold his own in Hindi film music world.