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

Geet kitne gaa chuki hoon

Posted on: May 23, 2012


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

The year – 1997. For the first time ever (October ’97), an Indian artist is being honored as the ‘Artist of the Month’ by MTV channel on cable TV. At the age of 64, a Maharashtrian housewife who loves to cook, and is a grandmother, Asha Bhosle graced the honors. And mind you, this recognition is voted for by the MTV audience, a population that primarily consists of teen agers. At an age when most people in many walks of life are either retired or contemplating a more relaxed and sedate life, this diva of Hindi film music, went on to completely reinvent herself. At the age of 64, with a new makeover, she rose once again to become the queen of funky pop.

And this, after having done husky hot cabarets, titillating songs of romance, songs of mischief and coquettish flirtations, soulful ghazals, and classical and semi classical songs. In 1981, she received her first (of the two) national awards for the best female playback singer, for her rendering of ghazals in Umrao Jaan under the baton of Khaiyyaam. It may surprise many, that this award almost wasn’t. For initially, Asha almost declined to take up this assignment. Khaiyyaam narrates that he had to motivate her to take this up as a challenge, by exhorting her to make a great musical masterpiece and a definitive place for herself in the annals of semi classical singing, the same way as her elder sister had accomplished with the songs sung for ‘Paakeezah’ (1971). This comparison to Lata, and the offer of an opportunity to outdo her elder sibling, was the provocation that worked.

Yes, I am sure you have guessed it by now. We are on to a celebration today of mega proportions, not one, but two mega milestones. With this post we complete the count of SIX THOUSAND songs on this blog. And the readers who have been following the fervent activity of the past few weeks, in terms of Asha ji’s songs, are right – this post also marks the ONE THOUSANDTH offering by her to be represented on this blog.

Last November 13th, when we hit the 5000th milestone with the famous qawwaali “Hamen To Loot Liyaa Mil Ke Husn Waalon Ne” from ‘Al HiLaal’ (1958), it was an emotional high for the entire team. Having made the magic number of 5000 songs, no subsequent milestone now seemed intimidating. And sure enough, within 5 months and 11 days, here we are with another 1000 songs under belt. All things considered, this thousand songs have been accomplished at a fairly fast clip, and just a tad over (by 10 days) of the earlier record of 5 months and 1 day for the fastest thousand.

And this journey from five to six thousand has been more eventful in many ways, the primary one being the fact that many new members joined the team as regular contributors, and many regular contributors graduated from comments and / or lyrics to full write ups. The names of Ava Suri, Nitin Shah, Peevesie, Rajendra Bhatt, Pradeep Raghunathan now appear as the newer crop of contributors both for lyrics and for write ups. Prakash ji, and Nahm ji scored double centuries with their lyrics contributions, and Khyati ji hit her first hundred in the same category. And then Nahm ji and Khyati ji broke into the group of write up contributors, and of course Sadanand ji’s write up contributions proliferated.

And of course, the most honorable mention goes for Arun ji Deshmukh, our in house walking encyclopedia of information on films, songs and film personalities of yesteryears. He breached the target of 350 contributions of film summaries, while continuing to post answers and clarifications to many a questions and discussions on the details about songs and personalities. And the best and most recent feather in the cap for him – he spent many a tireless days to research the list of songs by film against the information available in the Geet Kosh and prepared a list of all the films for which complete set of songs have been posted on the blog. Besides, he also prepared and supplied the list of films that are one song and two songs short of this target. This is a great task completed by him. And as the follow up, Atul ji has now color coded the films (in red color) for which all songs are now represented on this blog.

Further to this research by Arun ji, Pradeep ji Raghunathan has initiated a fantastic effort. For all the films whose complete set of songs are on the blog, he has started to compile sets of the actual audio files of songs for these films. The special thing about this compilation is that he is putting in the complete information about the song and its creators, as ID3 tagging. As many aficionados of internet and digitized music will know, ID3 is a standard tagging system by which the information relating to the song like title, singer, author, composer, album, genre, year etc. and many more, can be stored with the audio file itself. Most audio players can decipher and display this information directly. And this information can also be viewed in the directory structure of the windows explorer tool.

And what about the blog itself? Well, the blog itself notched up a fantastic target – it clocked a cumulative total of 3 million visitors around the time 5900th song was posted. And if we look at the visitor counter today, just hundred songs later, we are already ahead of that milestone by 90 thousand more visits. The traffic to this site is exponentially increasing. Atul ji continues to work at enhancing the site. We already have a new page wherein the songs are now categorized by music director. And there is more newer things on the way. – just watch this space. 🙂 🙂

And so, by many a measure, this journey from the 5001st song to the 6000th song has been the most busy, the most eventful and the most exciting 1000 song period for this blog. Congratulations to the entire team – all this has been possible because of the exemplary and selfless effort that each contributor has been putting in, the fantastic team work and bonhomie that is visible on this blog, and of course, the subdued but the most consistent and diligent leadership by Atul ji.

6000 down, 40 thousand more to go – onwards team mates, the weeks and months ahead promise a very exciting, enchanting and a melodious journey, the best of which is still to come, really.

You may wonder how can I make such a statement. There is a specific reason for making this claim. In the past few months, my focus has been to try and locate films and songs that belong to obscure and unheard of films. Trawling through the YouTube and other online sources, the searches are most of the time rewarded with unexpected and unknown songs. But that is not all. I realized that despite the huge storehouse of Hindi film songs now available online, a much larger quantity of films and songs is still waiting to be re-discovered and re-published. One of my target sources are the now defunct VHS libraries. I have discovered that these libraries hold many a lost gems that have not yet seen the light of the day as a disc release. And then there are collections of really obscure 78 rpm recordings, that are as yet unheard online. The names of some such films are so unfamiliar that the first reaction is to simply skip past them, looking for more familiar items. But I have come to discover that these unknown and in some ways unwanted films, carry musical gems of the first water, that are just waiting to make a splash and wow the listeners. I am slowly gathering such totally obscure films and songs, and will start to share them as soon I get into a cycle to digitally process them. And thence I make the statement – the best is still to come, really. 🙂

And the mega milestone in the name of Asha ji. Well, the debate about who is the better singer will probably continue forever. Or maybe, this debate probably is a non-debate in any case. Based on definitive research and documentation, it is now generally accepted that Asha Bhosle has the most studio recordings to her credit, as compared to any other singer in the same league. And so, by that measure, hitting the 1000 target is probably just the beginning on this blog, for this never-say-die singer, who has chalked up the most impressive array of musical offerings. A voice that seems to defy time, a singer that simply does not know fatigue and continues to dazzle audiences of all ages. A career that started in the mid 1940s, she continues to sing playback after more than 6 decades in the industry. And generations after, the young performers of the new century in the 2000s and 2010s are still continuing to lip sync the sound of this fabulous singer.

Coming from the musical clan of Pt. Deenanath Mangeshkar, a classical musician, vocalist and a theater actor, Asha ji is the third of the Mangeshkar sisters, after Lata ji and Meena ji. An interesting aside here. The family’s actual last name used to be Hardikar. Pt. Deenanath changed it to Mangeshkar, to identify his family with his native town, Mangeshi in Goa. Music and singing is the heritage she was born in, and music it was that she was trained in. 1933, 8th September, Satara in what was then known as the Bombay Presidency (and now known as Maharashtra), Asha made her first appearance on the stage of this world. Much is written and known about her, and so I will skip the biographical details. But two things I will touch upon – her early career, and the key aspects of her persona.

In 1942, with the passing away of Pt. Deenanath Mangeshkar at a young age of 42, the Mangeshkar family came into economic situations that compelled the siblings, still in their teens, to venture out into the world and fend for themselves and the family. Lata ji, the eldest, took the lead and started a singing and acting career in 1942. And in 1943, young Asha would also get a break into the playback singing regime in the films. She sang her first film song, “Chala Chala Nav Bala” for the Marathi film Majha Bal (1943). The break into Hindi cinema would have to wait for another five years. And Asha ji recalls these as years of struggle, for both sisters, in a singing world that was then ruled by the likes of Amirbai Karnataki, Rajkumari, Zohrabai, Khursheed, Noorjehan, Zeenat Begum, Naseem Akhtar etc. The teen aged Asha had to wait in wings, literally, being part of chorus singers in some films. She remembers she sang as part of a chorus line, for music director Vasant Desai in the film ‘Andhon Ki Duniya’ 1947. And of course, chorus singers are not credited by name, they are just an anonymous member of the singing group called ‘. . .aur saathi’ (. . . and chorus).

The first breaks as a credited singer came for the young Asha under the baton of Hansraj Behl. Generally, when people remember Asha ji’s career, the first significant name that comes to mind is the music director OP Nayyar, and that so for reasons not simply limited to music and singing. But what folks generally miss out or forget is that it was Hansraj Behl who was the first music director that took upon this completely raw voice and mentored her in her initial years, whence she would take off into a prominent career riding the melodies of OP Nayyar, albeit that happened about 6 to 7 years later. Hansraj Behl is the music director that Asha ji also remembers as being her first tutor and guide in the world of film songs.

In 1948, she sang one line “behna khush ho ke sagun manaaye”. The film, ’Chunariyaa’; the song “Saawan Aaya Saawan Aaya Saawan Aaya Re” – a long six minute song that occupies both sides of the 78 rpm record. Written by Mulkhraj Bhakri, the primary singers are Geeta Roy and Zohrabai. Asha ji got to sing one line under the direction of Hansraj Behl, but the best part was that her name appeared on the record and in the credits. Her career in Hindi film singing was launched.

Then in 1949, she recorded her first solo song “Hain Mauj Mein Apne Begaane, Do Chaar Idhar, Do Chaar Udhar”, written by Aarzoo Lucknawi for the film ‘Raat Ki Raani’, once again under the music direction of Hansraj Behl. She recorded two songs for this film, the second one being “Hamaare Dil Pe Tera Ikhtiyaar Honaa Thhaa”. In 1949 itself, she also sang in the film ‘Lekh’ under the music direction of Krishan Dayal. Out of a total of 15 songs in this film, Asha has the credit for 5 solo songs and two duets, one with Mukesh and one with Rafi Saab.

After the two films in 1949, her career began to proliferate, although the significant regret that she always carries is that for long years, she was always the second or third preference after the mainline female singers i.e. Lata Mangeshkar, Shamshad Begum and Geeta Roy. For many years, she was considered part of the second line singers who would get the leftovers after the choicest songs and melodies were assigned to the top three. It may be debated whether her association with OP Nayyar was providential, or a mutual attraction, or a matter of business expedience. But the fact will remain that Asha got her first major hits, a significant rise in recognition, and a place as a serious contender as the top class female singer – after the release of ‘C.I.D’ (1956) and ‘Naya Daur’ (1957). The success and popularity of her songs in these films, set the tone for her career and a permanent place for her in the Hindi film music.

The phase and the partnership with OP Nayyar lasted into the mid 60s. And then came the RD Burman wave. The year was 1966, and the “Haseena Zulfon Waali” descended upon the Hindi film landscape with the release of ‘Teesri Manzil’. The signature songs of this film set in the next phase of Asha ji’s career, that was once again signified by another association / relationship with the music director who was six years her junior. Another famous partnership, and another famous association that presented the world with a whole new image of a singer – she went on to conquer the milestones and the heights of success and popularity, putting into shade even her own legendary elder sibling, Lata ji.

A remarkable pairing from 60s and 70s was Asha ji singing for Helen. For the many hundreds of on screen performances by the one known as the ‘Darting Goldfish’, there are many voices that have sung for Helen. But as she once remarked herself – “Just like Krishna had many wives but he was known as Radha’s Krishna, the same way many singers have sung for Helen but whenever you talk about Helen you remember Asha and when you talk about Asha you remember Helen.” For both, it was an indelible influence on each other’s careers, a kind of a signature reciprocity of mutual success.

Asha Bhosle – the name spells a rebel. With a streak of individualism and a diehard self-determination, Asha has created an image of a non conformist rebel. In 1949, just 16 years old, taking a matter of heart to its extreme, she eloped with Ganpatrao Bhosle, a man 15 years her senior. The glitz of love did not last long, and Asha spent a personally devastating 10 years at the end of which she finally returned back to her maternal home with two kids in tow and a third one in the womb. Her relations with her maternal family were strained right from the time of her elopement, and especially Lata ji took a bitter view of her actions. At a time when the Mangeshkar family was managing economic difficulties, Lata considered Asha’s actions as a betrayal, leaving her alone to fend for the rest of the family. The episode was still a festering wound in the minds of the family, when out came the rumors and the details of her association with OP Nayyar. Lata Mangeshkar went on record to publicly express her disdain for her own younger sister.

The next major affiliation for her was RD Burman. Once again, the relationship ran into rough weather, partly for Asha’s unstinted devotion to her children, and partly due to the external detractors. But apparently the duo sorted out their misgivings after some time.

These (mis)adventures distanced her from her own family for a long time, and in the first decade of her career, Asha was both stung by a streak of rivalry for her elder sister, as also cowed down with a huge inferiority complex on her account. The one thing that the relationship with OP Nayyar – he helped to bring in a sense of identity and a semblance of confidence in her own voice and her own abilities. He made her experiment with her singing, and encouraged her to explore her prowess that would establish her voice as a unique sound in the industry. This experimentation continued with RD Burman. And after all the effort that established her as a sensuous singer, she went on to sing for Khaiyyaam in the film ‘Umrao Jaan’, establishing yet another facet of her abilities. Not that the poignant songs had not happened before, She had her fair share of sounds like “Baitthe Hain Rehguzar Mein. . .”,(‘Chaalis Din’, 1959), “Sabaa Se Ye Keh Do. . .” (‘Bank Manager’, 1959), and “Tang Aa Chuke Hain Kashmakash e Zindagi. . .” (‘Lighthouse’, 1958). And yet her name always evoked a very strong image of Helenesque songs, that would take an ‘Umrao Jaan’ to reset.

What more to say of this gifted individual, the one who would re invent herself past the age of sixty, in a mould of funky pop to the extent that she would be voted as the featured artist by an audience that was primarily in their teens. All one can say is – Sing well Asha, and prosper.

Now the song that I select for this write up. A song that sounds like an anti-thesis to the very character and the life story of the personality. And the one better is – this is a non film song. A sound that would evoke nostalgic memories of the late 50s, this song is one of her celebrated non film offerings. The lyrics by Bharat Vyas go right down into the soul and touch a gloomy string that strum and descend into despair and fatigue. The music composition is by Nikhil Ghosh – a soft, low key sound that actually enhances the emotions expressed by the words.

Listen to the rendering of the first few lines, listen in peace and silence – and you will feel the tiredness in the voice of the singer. The rendering is truly remarkable, for the voice sounds weary, and the emotion of despair and gloom will overcome the listening. Coming from an artist whose hallmark are the lush and intense sounds “Ye Hai Reshmi Zulfon Ka Andheraa. . .” (‘Mere Sanam’, 1965), it almost feels as if this cannot be Asha Bhosle singing it. But she is.

A marvelous song and a soulful rendering, listening to this song makes one feel, yes, this could well be the signature tune of this accomplished diva, juxtaposing her many thousand recordings against her personal struggles, and private tribulations. Oh Asha ji, yes, kitne hi sunder geet sun liye hain aap se. . .

geet kitne gaa chuki hoon is sukhi jag ke liye
aaj roney do mujhe pal ek apne bhi liye

Many a songs have I sung
For the pleasure
Of this exultant and opportunist world
But today
Let me be
Let me weep
For a moment
Just for myself
Only for myself

ro rahi thi been aur sun kar sukhi sansaar thhaa
naachti thhi ungaliyaan aur kaanptaa har taar thhaa

The world happily enjoyed
Unaware that the music it heard
Was the lamenting cry of the ‘been’
(None could feel the pain of)
The dancing fingers on the strings
Or the shivering strings as they played

(NOTE: ‘been’ is a musical instrument played by blowing into it. It is different from flute in its makeup, the manner of holding it, and the music it produces.)

aaj toota taar meri been ka aaghaat se
aaj kumhlaayaa kusum mera adhik barsaat se

Today, the string of my music broke
Such was the assault
And the flowers (in my garden)
Withered away in excess rain

saaz dhone do nayan ke ashru khonay do mujhe
kal sunaaungi madhur kuchh aaj roney do mujhe
aaj roney do mujhe pal ek apne bhi liye

Allow me to weep
And let my tears flow
To wash clean my music
Let me weep today
Tomorrow I shall sing
Another sweet melody for you
But let me weep today
Let me be
Let me weep
For a moment
Just for myself
Only for myself


Song-Geet kitne gaa chuki hoon (Asha Bhonsle NFS)(1960) Singer-Asha Bhonsle, Lyrics-Bharat Vyas, MD-Nikhil Ghosh

Lyrics

geet kitne gaa chuki hoon
is sukhi jag ke liye
aaj roney do mujhe
pal ek apne bhi liye
geet kitne gaa chuki hoon
is sukhi jag ke liye
aaj roney do mujhe
pal ek apne bhi liye

ro rahi thhi been
aur sun kar sukhi sansaar thhaa
ro rahi thhi been
aur sun kar sukhi sansaar thhaa
naachti thhi ungaliyaan ho
naachti thhi ungaliyaan
aur kaanptaa har taar thhaa
aur kaanptaa har taar thhaa

aaj toota taar meri been ka aaghaat se
aaj toota taar meri been ka aaghaat se
aaj kumhlaayaa kusum mera adhik barsaat se
aaj kumhlaayaa kusum mera adhik barsaat se

saaz dhone do
nayan ke ashru khonay do
nayan ke ashru khonay do mujhe
kal sunaaungi madhur kuchh
aaj roney do mujhe
aaj roney do mujhe
pal ek apne bhi liye
geet kitne gaa chuki hoon
is sukhi jag ke liye
aaj roney do mujhe
pal ek apne bhi liye

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22 Responses to "Geet kitne gaa chuki hoon"

Atulji and all my dear friends

Congratulations on achieving 6000th song.

And Again Thank you Sudhirji for nice post, as usual.

Regards & lot`s of love
Prakash

Thanks a lot !

I think “been” in this song refers to “beena” or “veeNa” – which indeed is a string instrument. The rest of the expression relating to “been” in the song then fits perfectly well with this interpretation of “been”.

Badhai ho Atul on this landmark! Massive effort, bringing untold joys to music lovers. Sudhir Ji, another very well written post.

Thanks ! It is indeed an important landmark for the blog.

What The F

–Before anyone gets offended, this is actually the title of a song from a very recent movie of 2011. It is hard to say if changing society trends are contributing towards changing music styles in Hindi movies, or if its a certain section trying to influence the masses thru their creations. In any case, its sad to see the younger generation going down this path. Many people, both over and under 30 years of age, would just frown whenever I would mention a song/movie from 50s or 60s. Then I would make them listen/watch, and they would be pleasantly surprised and lament that why they were not introduced to such magical work earlier! At times like this, blog such as this is a cherished treasure, not just from the point of view of sharing and talking music among ourselves, but also for the hope that there is something substantial is being created for the next generation, which will hopefully enhance their lives.

Congratulations for another significant milestone.

Best Regards.

Thanks a lot ! So there is a recent song too with similar lyrics ? I hope that the people creating the new song will acknowledge that they are inspired by this old classic instead of relying upon short memories of music lovers and claiming originality for their song.

What a perfect selection as a 6000th song! Geet kitne gaa chuki hoon….. Congratulations to Atulji and all contributors/readers.
Atulji, you should be proud of the work you are doing for all music lovers.

Yes this song is quite appropriate for the occasion.

Atulji,
Congratulations on reaching 1000th song of Ashaji. What an effort!

Wow! Hearty congrats, Atul!!!! What a special milestone! Congrats to everybody here. This 1000 has indeed come at a brisk pace, almost T20 speed. 😉

Very interesting to read this post – and especially excited when Sudhirji says “the best is still to come”. 🙂 Looking forward to newer things happening here. Good to hear about Pradeep’s ID3 tagging project and that rare songs are being actively sourced for the blog. Am sure there are many that don’t make it to youtube. All in all, lots of exciting times ahead.

Like has been mentioned, future generations will hopefully realise the value of this blog. As younger generations come in and older songs get more and more difficult to stay in public memory (and even get lost due to neglect), this blog will be the repository that people will be able to turn to. And the value of this cannot be overstated.

Finally, about the song – and the write-up itself. I think I need to stop complimenting Sudhirji on his write-ups because I’ve run out of words to say how wonderful I find them. This is another outstanding write-up from him. As always, it comes straight from the heart.

It is so wonderful to see so many contributors now on this blog – and more and more people coming here. Like Sudhirji says, it was 3 million just a few days ago, and it is already another 90,000 thereafter. Feels SO good to see this blog buzzing. I’m sure with all the goodwill and bonhomie that we share here, we will keep it going and achieve even greater heights!

Thanks a lot, Raja.

The milestone is quite special as we are recognising an artist who sometimes gets overshadowed by her illustrious elder sister. The more we look at her songs, the realisation gets strengthened that we have yet to cover many of her gems.

During the course of last few hundred songs of this blog, when we were trying to ensure that Asha Bhonsle’s 1000 th song coincided with the blog’s 6000th song, we came across lots and lots of great Asha Bhonsle songs which are not widely known to music lovers, and some of these songs are not yet discussed.

The article by Sudhir jee is worth its weight in gold, and I am sure that its worth will be realised fully as time passes.

Oh, I forgot to congratulate you on Ashaji’s 1000th song here. That’s also a stupendous achievement for this blog. What an icon she is!!! Even today she is so young at heart – absolutely love her!!!

I tried to leave a comment here yesterday but it got lost 😦

I wish we could give everyone here and esp. you Atul, a standing ovation.

The credit goes to the visitors, contributors and all the well wishers whose encouragement keeps us going.

This writeup is stupendous and Sudhir jee deserves our thanks and kudos for this extremely informative article.

Atul ji/ Sudhir ji
I know I am late here.I am presently out of Mumbai on family duty of attending functions and giving Ashirwads,as an elder in the family.
I had no access to a computer and even now,it is for few minutes.
My Heartiest congratulations to Atul ji and all our team members for this fantastic achievement.
As Sudhir ji rightly said,it was possible because of Atul ji’s leadership,encouragement and acknowledgements of the contributors.
Sudhir ji’s contributions are on the top for attracting more and more visitors,what with his unique Transalations aqnd very informative write ups.We are lucky to have people like Sudhir ji and Rajaji,who stood behind Atul ji solidly,whenever needed.
Once again I congratulate everybody in the Team and pray to God that He gives us more such occasion to celebrate.
The song selected on this eve is also excellent and my favourite.very few people know that the wordings depicted the true situation in Asha ji’s life at that time.
-AD

Thanks a lot for your comments. We missed your comments on this as well as on other posts in the last couple of days. Hopefully you will be back in full flow soon.

The contributions by regulars is what is making the contents of this blog a valuable knowledge base for Hindi movie music based information. Hopefully the best is yet to come as Sudhir jee puts it.

a big hi to the entire atuldom
i am d absolute last in wishing atul for his 6000th song. actually i had just read the post on the day it was posted but then didn’t realise the significance of the post, even that reading was only a glance thro as i was not in town and i had just managed to flick my niece’s lap top for a minute. even today i ve only read half of what Sidhirji has written rest will be read tomorrow.
so congrats to atul for reaching 6000
as also Asha Bhonsle’s 1000

There is a slightly faster paced version of this song posted by ajayuv, the most prolific poster of old Hindi songs on YT. I don’t know which version is the correct speed. Whether they were different recordings or the speed got distorted in digitizing. Anyway enjoy and decide which version you like better.

This song link which is provided with the writeup has the song converted from the record and specially uploaded for the occasion. We wanted to make sure that the original Asha Bhonsle recording was uploaded.

Been is also slang for VEENA or Beena. In this poem Been word is used for VEENA. If it had been used for Been ( Flute ) as you write the poet would not have written “ Aaj toota Taar Meri Been Ka because Flute doesn’t have Taar or strong.

What an immortal number! But I’d always thought this was Sandhya ji Mukherjee singing! I still can’t believe it’s Asha ji’s Voice!!
Lovely revelation for me! Long live Asha ji

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(© 2008 - 2018) atulsongaday.me The content of this site is copyrighted and it may not be reproduced elsewhere without prior consent from the site/ author of the content.

What is this blog all about

This blog discusses Bollywood songs of yesteryears. Every song has a brief description, followed by a video link, and complete lyrics of the song.

This is a labour of love, where “new” songs are added every day, and that has been the case for over TEN years. This blog has over 14700 song posts by now.

This blog is active and online for over 3700 days since its beginning on 19 july 2008.

Total number of songs posts discussed

14789

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Movies with all their songs covered =1153
Total Number of movies covered =4044

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