There are some songs which almost everyone likes in the first listen and then continues liking even after a long time. Some songs catch our attention in the first listen but we slowly lose interest in it after multiple listens. Some songs catch the attention of only a few people while some songs, (massive hits when released) are slowly forgotten after a certain period of time. There are only a few songs which remain as fresh as when they were released and which are even now loved by everyone. To this category belongs the song of today, 'chandan sa badan'.
I saw and heard this song for the first time when the movie 'Saraswathi Chandra' was screened on Doordarshan. Those were the days when every movie screened on TV was watched as TV was still a novelty. Saturday and Sunday evenings were reserved for movie watching on TV, irrespective of the quality of the movie screened. When I heard this song the first time I was fascinated. Mukesh used to be, and still is, a favorite singer of mine. So I doubly happy when I heard this melody. I have since then heard it in almost all Mukesh collections and I still don't tire of this song. I guess it is the same for many of you who have heard this song earlier.
The music of this song is by Kalyanji Anandji. I always think that their musical output was very similar to another duo, Lakshmikanth Pyarelal. Some memorable tunes and lot of ordinary stuff. They had scored music for some very successful movies like 'Safar', 'Don', 'Qurbani', 'Mukkadar Ka Sikandar', 'Johnny Mera Naam', 'Dharmatma' etc. Yet, the number of songs of this duo I like is a very small percentage of their output.
The charm of this lies in its simplicity. It is a fairly uncomplicated tune, with uncomplicated orchestration, sung in a very uncomplicated, straight from the heart mode by Mukesh. The lyrics of Indiwar are simple. You hear them once and the words embedded themselves in your heart.Black and White is always fascinating. Added to it you have Nutan on screen. The Kalyani ragam (or Yaman) is used very effectively in this song. No wonder it captured the hearts of a generation and still continues to. I can safely say that all those associated with the song, Kalyanji-Anandji, Indiwar and Mukesh achieved immortality through this song.
As a bonus, I give you another song of Kalyanji Anandji I like a lot. I love the lyrics and the way Kishore and Asha deliver the song. This is a slightly rare song, compared to many of the other 'hits' of Kalyanji Anandji. from the film 'Mahal' starring Dev Anand and Asha Parekh.