"Melody should never die" - Anand Milind
Do you remember the famous song, “Papa kehte hain….”, from the film, Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak. I guess this bollywood blockbuster of 1988 needs no reintroduction today. Now if I ask on which superstar this song was picturized, the answer would be spontaneous. Yes, it was Aamir Khan who was introduced to Bollywood with this song. Such was the rage that this song went on to become an anthem of every household. But if I ask, who were the composers of this song, who happened to win their maiden Filmfare award, many of you may wonder & struggle. And that is the most disappointing fact that the most enigmatic composer duo Anand & Milind, is still not recognized for their contribution to Bollywood music industry. After spending over 25 years in the industry, composing for nearly 225 films & resurrecting careers of many eminent playback singers of nineties, these siblings are still searching for the recognition & glory they should have got by now.
Born in a family where their father Chitraguptaji was himself a renowned composer of 60’s & 70’s, their entry in Bollywood was never a cake walk. After completing their studies, they took formal training in Indian & Western instruments before they started assisting their father in films. It was the year 1982, when they got their opportunity to record their first song, “Raja tere raste se….”, with Lata Mangeshkar as solo composers for the film Ab Ayega Mazaa which eventually released in 1984. This film didn’t do well for their career & they continued to struggle with offers very few & far in between until Nasir Hussain approached them for QSQT. They knew, it was a big break for which they had waited pretty long & bingo! The rest is history. They revolutionized the musical trend with these compositions. The saga of romantic songs had again taken the center stage & they kept on providing romantic hits after hits with films like, Lal Dupatta Malmal Ka, Aayee Milan Ki Raat, Dil, Baaghi, Vansh, Bol Radha Bol, Anari, Aaj Ka Goonda Raaj, Lootere, Pehchaan, Kurbaan, Anjaam etc. During that era, many playback singers blossomed under their baton like Uditji, Abhijeet, Amit Kumar, Kumar Sanu, Suresh Wadkar, Anuradhaji, Alkaji, Kavitaji, Poornima & Sadhanaji. They have given opportunities to many struggling singers like Bela Sulakhe, Gayatri Ganjawala, Chandana Dixit to name a few. All this while, very strangely they kept a very low profile in spite of working so much. They never used media to their advantage. They were at their peak between 1990-1996, when every second film had their music. They delivered innumerable hits for many established actors like Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Govinda, Akshay Kumar, Rishi Kapoor, Sunil Shetty, Ajay Devgan, Anil Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt, Sunny Deol, Jackie Shroff & many more.
But after the death of T-Series supremo, Gulshan Kumar, they slowly went into a shell. They never quite adapted to the changing trend where multiple music directors were roped to compose for a single film due to which they lost on many films like Kartoos, Jaanam Samjha Karro & Chota Chetan. Many of their films were shelved & they could never resurrect their own career thereafter. Even in their low phase, they managed to deliver hits like Jaanwar, Dahek, Jhooth Bole Kauwa Kaate, Bhai, Chhupa Rustam, Chal Mere Bhai, Yeh Teraa Ghar Yeh Meraa Ghar.
In their entire career they have always worked with the best available musicians like Manohari, Hari Prasad Chaurasia, Viju Shah, Ismail Darbar, Kersi Lords & assistants like Prakash Verma & Anil Mohile. Their style of composition is very effortless, simple & devoid of jarring notes. Their forte was always melody & they still believe that in this age when the use of electronic sound is at its prime, they can still mesmerize listeners by keeping the melody intact.
Right from the beginning, their association with lyricist Sameer, was by far the nicest of incidents to talk about. They had done close to 1000 songs together & still share huge camaraderie between themselves. Besides they have also worked a lot with Majrooh Sultanpuri & Anand Bakshi. Their most disappointing flops would indeed be Mrityudand & Daayraa, where they had worked with legendary lyricists like Javed Akhtar & Gulzar & actually outperformed themselves as composers. They are definitely one of the most versatile composers of this industry as they have the caliber to create all kinds of music ranging from Classical to Cabaret, Western to Ghazal, & Romantic to Rap.
At this age they are still optimistic to capture the attention of audience by soulful compositions through their forthcoming film, Yeh Khula Aasman, which they believe is one of the very best in their entire career. This film has already created a buzz by winning the best foreign feature film in All Sports Film festival at LA held in 2010. But whether Anand Milind can recreate their magical excellence once again through this film is what remains to be seen.