Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

Kaun veeraane mein dekhegaa bahaar

Posted on: August 6, 2011


This article is written by Sudhir, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie songs and a regular contributor to this blog.

Hearing the renditions of Saigal Saab is such a idyllic experience. His mastery of the seven sur and the three swara of music is unparalleled. His control on the sound, and its aarohan-avrohan is immense and unmatched. As one listens to his recital, one realizes that the flow of one note into the next is so smooth and effortless, that it is completely un-noticeable. Listening to his voice is like elegant smooth glide through a stream of honey. His resonance takes on a distinct identity of its own, and the printed material carries separate treatment of Saigal, the person and “Saigal, the voice” or “Saigal Ki Awaaz”. In fact, ‘Saigal, the voice’ assumed an identity of its own, and it became a topic of discussion in newspapers and magazines.

Being able to sing like Saigal Saab, was an initial recognition and more than that, a satisfaction that many singers sought. Singers like Mukesh, Kishore Da, Surender, CH Atma etc., started off their singing careers with an effort to emulate the ‘Saigal Style’ or “Saigal Gaayaki”. On their individual journeys, some of these singing stars developed their own distinct styles, unlike CH Atma who continued to follow the same.

And this distinction is achieved just as is. In the 15 years of career and across the 185 recordings, there is no phase of development and growth in Saigal Saab’s rendition. The quality and the purity of sound, the tonal control, the emotional content, any characteristic, any measure of musical congruence that can be applied; is consistent and constant from 1932 to 1947. Which is unlike any other singer, whose career can be analyzed into more than one phases of development and maturing. Saigal Saab’s voice is what it was in 1932, and it remained so in 1947 – a quality that can be understood only on the basis of a divine presence. Saigal Saab’s voice is simply what it is, and what it is meant to be. Nothing more or less. Each item of music serviced by the “Voice of Saigal” will have all the same superlatives and adjectives attached to it.

This non-filmi ghazal, circa 1937-38, is another marvelous rendition of profound philosophy. As one listens to this (and other such songs and ghazals), one is not just struck by the musical quality of rendering the piece, but one is also taken by the realization that the depth of the voice is not just about singing, but is about expressing the true understanding of each word and verse of the item rendered. The depth of meaning hits the listener with an intense compulsion. Such that beside the soulful sound, the realization and the comprehension is a fulfillment in itself.

This ghazal is written by Ameer Minaai. Its composer is not identified. In this ghazal, the poet is elucidating the inevitability of the mortal end of the human existence, and describing in many ways this final state into which the living transition, as the life force depargts. The words and their stringing together is almost as if by magic.

ek ahl-e-dard ne sunsaan jo dekha kafas
bola ab aati nahin hai kyun sadaa-e-andaleeb

On perceiving an empty cage, an empathetic being asked, why can I not hear the sounds of the nightingale any more.

ahl = person, individual
dard = pain, grief, anguish, sorrow
ahl-e-dard = one who can empathize the anguish
sunsaan = deserted, desolate; the philosophical meaning is lifeless
dekha = see, observe, perceive
kafas = cage; the philosophical meaning is the human body
bola = said
sadaa = sound, echo
andaleeb = nightingale, lover
sadaa-e-andaleeb = sound of the nightingale, voice of the lover
aati nahi kyun = why not anymore

Again, this verse can be interpreted as – on perceiving the lifeless unmoving form of a loved one, an empathetic being who understands the pain and anguish, asked why is my loved one talking no more.

baal-o-par do chaar dikhla kar kaha saiyyaad ne
ye nishaani reh gayee hai ab bajaaye andaleeb

The keeper of the birds indicated to a few feathers, a broken wing remaining, and said, these are the relics that now exist, the nightingale is gone, has flown away.

baal-o-par = feathers and wings
do = two
chaar = four
dikhla kar = showed, pointed towards, indicated
kaha = thus said
saiyaad = a hunter and keeper of birds; the philosophical meaning is the messenger of death
nishaani = remnants, remembrance; in philosophical terms, refers to the mortal remains of a human person
ab = now
reh gayee hai ab = it now remains, it is now leftover
bajaaye = instead of
andaleeb = nightingale, lover; in this context, it is also ‘the soul’

Again, this verse can be interpreted as – the messenger of death pointed towards the mortal remains of the loved one and said, the soul has flown away, and this is what now remains of what once was a loved one.

kaun veeraane mein dekhega bahaar
phool jungle mein khile kin ke liye

Who can say they can see the spring in the desert. Why-fore and for whom the flowers of spring would bloom in the wilderness.

kaun = who
veeraana = desert, a place bereft of any person or habitation; in this context once again refers to the mortal remain, bereft of life

mein = in
dekhega = will see, can see
bahaar = spring; in this context, also mean life
phool = flowers
jungle = forest, wilderness
khile = bloom, blossom
kin ke liye = for whom

Again, this verse can be interpreted as – once the wilderness has set in, no flowers will ever bloom here again. Once the soul has left the body, no one can bring life back into the mortal remains.

dil ka zaaman tu, tera kyaa aitbaar
pehle ik zaaman ho zaaman ke liye

dil = heart, life, source of vital energy
ka = of
zaaman = one who can give a guarantee; related word is zamaanat, which means guarantee
tu = you
tera = your
kyaa = what
aitbaar = confidence, trust, belief
tera kya aitbaar = what is the confidence one can entrust you with; in other words, you cannot be trusted
pehle = first, afore
ik zaaman ho zaaman ke kiye = a guarantee for the guarantor

What guarantee can there be (or that there can be no guarantee) for the life force that drives the human person. First, before I can trust this guarantee, find me a guarantor for this guarantee.

How can we be sure that the guarantee will hold; who is the guarantor of this guarantee.

Or that there is no guarantor of such a guarantee, it is just a make believe, a pretension to deceive oneself.

laash par ibrat ye kehti thee ‘ameer’
aaye thhe duniyaa mein is din ke liye

laash = mortal remain, dead body
par = on, upon
ibrat = caution, warning
kehti thee = thus it said

ameer = rich person; takhallus – poet’s signature in the last verse.

The context of this word can also be understood, in terms of the normal meaning of this word. Ameer is a rich person, in this context, ameer is a person who still is alive (as opposed to one who is no longer alive). With this context, the verse is now addressed to the living beings, and as such it is a warning, a caution that beware, this fate awaits even you.

aaye thhe = came here
duniya = world, creation
mein = in, into
is = this
din = day
Em>ke liye = for

For the perceptive, they can read the inscription on the mortal remains, a reminder of the assured truth of this world. That we all came into this world, for the destiny of this day – all of us will have to leave this mortal body and depart from this world. It is inevitable.

Some will say this is a depressing philosophy, a disheartening consideration. But yet, that is also the unshakable truth of life, no matter how one perceives it or how one presents it. Once again, in Saigal Saab’s voice, the meaning of this ghazal touches a profundity, that is not achievable, simply on reading these words.


Song-Kaun veeraane mein dekhegaa bahaar (Saigal NFS) (1938) Singer-K L Saigal,Lyrics-Ameer Minaai

Lyrics

ek ahl e dard ne
aaa
sunsaan jo dekha qafas
bola ab aati nahin hai
kyun sada e andaleeb
baal-o-par do chaar dikhla kar kaha saiyyaad ne
ye nishaani reh gayee hai ab bajaaye andaleeb
kaun veeraane mein dekhega bahaar
kaun veeraane mein dekhega bahaar
kaun veeraane mein dekhega bahaar
kaun veeraane mein dekhega bahaar
phool jungle mein khile kin ke liye
phool jungle mein khile kin ke liye
phool jungle mein khile kin ke liye

dil ka zaaman tu, tera kyaa aitbaar
he e e
dil ka zaaman tu, tera kyaa aitbaar
pehle ik zaaman ho zaaman ke liye
pehle ik zaaman ho zaaman ke liye
pehle ik zaaman ho zaaman ke liye

laash par ibrat ye kehti thee ‘ameer’
laash par ibrat ye kehti thee ‘ameer’
laash par ibrat ye kehti thee ‘ameer’
aaye thhe duniyaa mein is din ke liye
aaye thhe duniyaa mein is din ke liye
aaye thhe duniyaa mein is din ke liye
aaye thhe duniyaa mein is din ke liye

5 Responses to "Kaun veeraane mein dekhegaa bahaar"

Sudhir ji,
Very good article.You have the knack of taking the reader on a joy ride with great ease.
Here is some information on the Urdu Poet AMIR MINAAI (1826-1900).
Amir was born in Lucknow,but grew up in Rampur(UP).A great poet of his times and a great Mystical too.
his Qasidahs (Long poems) for Muhammed are sung by devotees.he was the court poet of Rampur.He travelled to Mecca/Medina and after the death of his Patron Nawab Kalbe Ali Khan of Rampur,came to Hyderabad after hearing Nizam’s fame and interest in Poetry.He became Nizam’s teacher in Poetry.He lived there in great honour as Poet Laureate and was titled Fasih-ul-Mulk (Eloquence of the Nation).His poetry was natural and graceful in expression.His proficiency was so great that no poet could stand against him in a Mushaira.He also had extraordinary wit.
he died in 1900 at Hyderabad and was burried next to another great poet Daagh Dehalvi.
Ghalib abd Daagh were Amir’s admirers.
-AD

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Arun ji,

Thanks for your appreciation and encouragement. 🙂

And as always, so much more information from your side. Thanks for that also.

Rgds
Sudhir

Like

Arun Ji, Amir, Daagh, Ghalib, Zauq, Zaffar, Jiggar and too many more to mention, wrote incredible works… No doubt, but when Saigal
rendered some of them them in Ghazal form, these few became immortal….. I only wish that if Saigal had lived longer, if for no other reason, at least to immortalize many other writings….. I was 11 years old when my father drove us all 49 miles from Ferozepur to Lahore to
The opening of the movie Parwana in 1946…. Mr Saigal’s last film, and released after his death. At such an early age, I remember my father humming “Aaye thhey duniya Mein iss din key liyae”…. Like it was yesterday…….. Dying is so easy after reading Amir, and listening to
Mr K.l. Saigal…….
Great job….. Please keep it up…..I will contribute if you like…..
Paul Bhalla

Like

Sudhir Ji, Another beautifully written page – befitting the most amazing and peerless vocal expressionist ever ! The NFSs show his real depth and genius. Many thanks again!

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I think the beauty of all ghazals sung by the great K.L.Saighal was that the verse was the centrepiece of the rendering.In his inimitable voice the accompanying musical instruments played a small part unlike today. The life source of the composition remained intact undisturbed by scores of music effects.The verse and the voice remained supreme.

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