Lata Mangeshkar & A.R.Rahman - When Legends Come Together..

Lata Mangeshkar and A R Rahman. Two names. Two legends of Indian Cinema. Indian music is incomplete without them. There is no alternate of both of them. While Lata ji has been here since so long time, I am perhaps fourth generation to listen to his voice. Truly God gifted.

On the other hand, Rahman is Master of Music, i believe. Whatever he does, whatever he makes is simply out of this world. Amazing !

The thought of both of these personalities coming together, made me so excited while I heard about Dil Se... Rahman was I think singing a full fledged song, for the first time. And on the other hand, Lata ji was going to sing a song under his music. The song 'Jiya Jale' started jugalbandhi of these music talents. It became an instant hit. With Rahman's unique fusion of Tamil lyrics for Hindi song created magic. It was Lataji's voice which made it 'sone pe suhaga'.

Then after some time, again both legends came together. This time surprise was, Lataji herself was on screen !! Playing herself. She starred in song of movie 'Pukar'. Song was 'Tu Hi Bharosa'. Which talked about keeping faith in tough times. Heartrending words made the song unforgettable. And adding to this was Rahman's fabulous chorus singing. Where he used school children for the same.

After that, Director Shyam Benegal brought Zubeidaa. One of the Best score, Rahman had ever given. It featured not only one, but TWO songs by the diva. 'So Gaye Hain' & 'Pyaraa Saa Gaon'. While the later one, was dreamy and soothing composition. 'So Gaye Hain' comes in two parts with feel of sadness. Loneliness. Rahman's orchestration is so amazing that I can go on listening it and have goosebumps all over me while chorus is singing alongwith Lataji.

Then came long shelved 'One Two ka Four'. A bad movie with average score by Rahman. Maybe long time in the making, cost this. But here also best of lot was Lataji's song. 'Khamoshiyan Gungunaane Lagi' starring equally beautiful Juhi Chawla. A first duet with Rahman, Lata paired up with Sonu Nigam. Juhi looked wonderful in this - see

Then came the best phase.

Lagaan- Perfect voice for a perfect movie. Devotional song - O palanhaare - with Udit Narayan, Lataji did wonders in the song. The best devotional track bollywood ever had. Rahman did magic with his keyboard & similarly Lataji gave so much input that the song has become immortal. Udit has also gave his best. And its no wonder that this one is Rahman's personal favorite of his own work !!

Then Bharatbala got them together in recreation of national anthem 'Jana Gana Man'. Where who's who of Indian Music scene, was singing our beloved anthem. Here Rahman got both sisters - Lata and Asha together after a long time. And as expected, this worked wonders.

Whats much better than listening both of them singing together?? Rakeysh Mehra would always be proud of having both - Lataji and Rahman together in a duet !! in Rang De Basanti. A song about mother and son. 'Lukka Chhuppi' - is my favorite Rahman song of all time. Sure to bring tears to everyone. Everything is so perfect - from Prasoon's words to Rashid Ali's [yes, the same - singer] superb Guitar strings. Everything was par excellence.

I can write an essay on the song itself. Here I would like to share my some thoughts about 'Lukka Chhuppi'. Listen It Here.

Song starts with guitar strings, followed by xylophone tunes. Symbolism for youthfullness but still child to his mother. To a mother-her son is always a child. Then Lataji's voice comes, along with only the strings playing in background. She sound so natural. She has never got married, but worry of a mother, whose son hasn't yet returned home. The emotion is so deep there.

Then comes ARR. Sound of the song, changes to vast outlook. To symbolize that her son is in another beautiful world. Touching new horizons.- Perfect voice, perfect music for such song. Guitars strings gets changed by now. Then in first Antara [para.], along with great words and vocals, another instrument is introduced. Tablas. That sound takes centrestage and Lataji brings tears to eyes of listener.

In that line, listen carefully - when Lataji sings 'Mere Chanda tu hai kahaan...lukkachhuppi....kaha kaha dhundha tujhe...' at that moment beautiful use of Flute is done. (Time 03:30 to 04:05) Only for a few seconds, but a fabulous mastered piece of music. Divine.

Then listen, how tables turn to Rahaman 'kaise tujh ko dikhaun yahaan hai kya....'. The song by now is getting into VASTNESS. Like we are taken to a high mountain. Watching widespread world around us, and suddenly Rahman takes us at new heights with words 'Chhaya liye bhali dhup yahaan hai' (Time 04:32).

I get more lump in throat by last line Rahman sings 'Yahaan sab kuchh hai maa fir bhi, laage bin tere mujh ko akela....' (Everything is here mother, but it feels so lonely without u'). I can never sing those two lines properly, Because I just can't. And this is where, Tabla are stopped. Atmosphere becomes so silent with light guitar strings.

And here comes BEST portion - a Jugalbandi between the two. A classical rendition. The duo singing awesome piece of classical Raga together. AWESOME. Tabla sound gets speed up and Lata/Rahaman together creates magic, pure divine sound. I haven't taken any formal training in music. But still I tried many many times to recite the same - and by far I could succeed in most of the notes.

Though I think this is incomplete, because I couldn't get Rahman's flawless rendition, those some notes are missing. But still when I learned this in whole, I was so so so very much happy. Here, are the same, I would love to share it with you. Hope you will like it to sing along. [right click and save image in your hard disk]

Then still Rahman singing and in background Lata's amazing vocals. Superb ending to a superb track. Leaving us stunned with its awesomeness.

Below is my Playlist of videos. It has even got Making of the great song 'Lukka Chhuppi' and some live performances by the diva. Along with all songs mentioned above. Tell me, which one is your most fav??


  1. My most favourite has to be Lukka Chhupi from RDB. I loved the way you have described the song :) Other than that, Jiya Jale and O' Paalanhare are brilliant too. In terms of choreography, Jiya Jale is my instant choice..good to see SRK doing some hatke stuff, which is rare ;)

    Lata ji and ARR make a great duo..I hope we get to hear much more from them in the coming years. Thanks for this post :)

  2. I love O Paalanhaare and Lukka Chhupi more than the rest. If I picked one, it would have to be O Paalanhaare, because it almost made me cry the first time I saw it. You could almost feel the sweat and blood that the team was putting into it all, and their understanding that they need help from a greater force to overcome the trouble. That jugalbandi in Lukka Chhupi is difficult to sing! These are true geniuses indeed.

    I know Lata has cut down on her filmi songs, but her album Saadgi a couple years ago was great. I wish she and Rahman (and maybe Asha Bhosle and Sonu Nigam) do a classical album some time, that would be phenomenal.

  3. Lukka Chhupi is really one great song. Speaking of the RDB soundtrack Khalbali was good too. It is amazing how ARR manages to put Daler Mehendi's voice to perfect use in the title track.
    Passionate and well written post.

  4. Even though i like all of them i'm quite attached to Luka Chupi ..One of the reason is the movies impact . My favurite line is ARR's

    "Kya bataoon maa kahan hoon main

    Yahan udney ko mere khula aasmaan hai

    Tere kisson jaisa bhola salona
    jahan hain yahan sapno vala

    Meri patang ho befikar udd rahi hai maa

    Dor koi loote nahin beech se kaate na"
    Its amazing yaar..

  5. First of all, sorry to everyone, for not being here for a while. I was travelling again...

    Bhargav: Thanks. I am so passionate about the RDB's song. My fingers are crossed for another Lata/Rahman composition. Lets see..

    tBF: have quite different choice. But not surprising. Lagaanite you are..;-). but yes, the reason you have written, is surely interesting. I will rewatch the song with your angle.

    Yes, Saadgi was great album. I absolutely loved it. Can we see her and Gulzar in poetry rendition sometime??? It would be fab. And your idea is out of this world. It would be greatest album ever.

    Sujoy: Thanks for stopping by. Khalbali is pulse racing song indeed.
    Thanks for your words abt me. I am little more passionate to music then to movies :-)

    nabs: Hi nabs, yeah, Rahman takes this song to unreachable heights. I just love thos lines. superb singing. superb writing.

  6. Nice and very thoughtful. Enjoyed reading.

  7. Hey, thanks a lot Nicki.

  8. Darshit, Its really great article, i listened 'LUkka Chuppi' song again after reading this and enjoyed more !!!

  9. JNSurya Prakash Thanks a lot & Welcome to my blog. I am so glad, you enjoyed the song a lot 'after' reading this.

  10. rosalinda13:35

    Lukka Chupi is definitely one of my very favourite too, but I still feel that Jiya Jale is the best of the Lataji-ARR duo. On the same note, Jiya Jale did not have Tamil was Malayalam.

  11. Hi, rosalinda Welcome to my blog. Lukka Chhupi is really a gem of a song. Thanks for the correction of lyrics. Just corrected my post.

  12. O Paalenhare is one of the best devotional song I have ever heard..I shed a tear the very first time I heard it...the striking voice of Lataji along with the musical brilliance of A R Rahman was absolutely amazing...this is perhaps the best song in my list...simply wow!

  13. Hi, Ashutosh
    Welcome to my blog. Indeed, O palanhaare is such a divine bliss. Rarely such songs come up. And given perfect orchestra of Rahman, its really a gem of song.

  14. Anonymous01:18

    i actually adore your posting type, very helpful.
    don't quit and keep creating simply because it just good worth to follow it,
    excited to find out a lot more of your own writing, cheers :)

  15. hey.. lataji and rahman performed in together in hyderabad in 2003. i was lucky to be part of the audience.. lataji sang 5 songs of rahman on stage. what a show it was. two of the greatest legends of hindi film music on stage together.. i loved it.. i have the recordings of that concert with. love to share it with others.

  16. bhargava
    It would be really great if you can share those videos man. that must be a lifetime experience.


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