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

Sun sun meri kahaani mushqil hai jaan bachaani

Posted on: May 12, 2016

This article is written by Arunkumar Deshmukh, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a contributor to this blog. This article is meant to be posted in If this article appears in sites like and etc then it is piracy of the copyright content of and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Today’s song is from the film ‘Rangeela’-53, which was produced and directed by Master Bhagwan. The song is sung by Mohd. Rafi.

In the filmy duniya, i.e. the Film Industry, the LUCK factor plays a very vital role. Everything and everybody is labelled as Lucky or Unlucky. Actors, directors, Music Directors, Film Titles, colour of the dresses, Places of shooting, small items,big items…everything is branded with Luck !

This Luck thing is shown even in films also. I remember that in the film Deewaar-75, the Coolie Badge bearing the auspicious number of 786 is lucky for the Hero. It saves his life a few times. In the end, when he loses the Badge, he gets killed.

Let us see a few cases of Lucky-Unlucky in film world. We all know the famous actor and director Gajanan Jagirdar, but few know that he was branded Unlucky. Padosi-41 was Jagirdar’s first film with Prabhat film company. By the time the film was complete Shantaram and some of his friends left Prabhat making it crippled. The second time that Jagirdar worked in a Prabhat film ‘Ramshastri’-44, the important partner Vishnupant Damle died and Prabhat almost collapsed. The third time that Jagirdar worked for Prabhat was in film ‘Lokmanya Tilak’. At that time the company was auctioned and it was closed down for ever ! When Jagirdar worked in “Shahir Parshuram” of Mangal pictures, the company went bankrupt and closed down. In 1953, top production company Alhad Chitra employed Jagirdar for a bilingual film, “Mahatma”-53. The film not only flopped, it drowned the company and the Producer Datta Dharmadhikari came on the road. He started a roadside kitchen for survival !

Second example is that of the screen pair of Rajendra Kumar and Waheeda Rehman. Their first film “Nirmala”, made by Dalsukh Pancholi was abandoned because Pancholi died. Their next film was ‘Paalki ‘ directed by S.U.Sunny. S U Sunny died half way into the making of the film and the film also flopped. Their next film was S.S.Vasan’s “Shatranj”. Vasan died before the film was released!. Their next film was ‘Dharati’, directed by Shridhar whose wife died and he got Cancer. He left the film ! After this, thankfully, Rajendra Kumar refused to work with Waheeda Rehman.

Talking of Master Bhagwan and his series of failed films, all ending with “La”, it was a game of Lucky and Unlucky titles for Bhagwan. To celebrate the fantastic success of film Albela-51, C.Ramchandra had given a party at his Dadar residence-Saiprasad. Many people from the industry were present. They were all asking Bhagawan about his next film and he was replying that nothing has been fixed as yet.

P.L.Santoshi had also come for the party. He suddenly announced that Bhagwan’s next film was “Jhamela”. Stunned, Bhagwan took him in a corner and asked why he did so. Santoshi said, “Bhagwan, film titles with ‘LA” at the end are Lucky for you.” Bhagwan remembered that his first film as a Producer was Badla-43 and it was a Hit film. Later another film, ‘Bhedi Bangla”-49 was also a Hit film. he was convinced and film Jhamela took birth. Though Jhamela was a flop, Bhagwan started making ‘Rangeela’-53.

Actually, till then all earlier films having name Rangeela in their titles were failures, like Rangeela Dost, Rangeela Mazdoor, Rangeela Musafir, Rangeela Rajasthan, Rangeela Rajpoot etc. In the film ‘Rangeela Musafir’-50, Bhagwan himself was the Hero and the film had flopped, but the Ghost of LA had swarmed Bhagwan completely and he made Rangeela. As expected, it was a resounding flop. Later another film “Rangeela Raja”-60 featuring Bhagwan also flopped. Not only Jhamela and Rangeela, but other films made by him and ending with LA, like Hallgulla, kar Bhala, Sachhe ka Bolbala, La Bela were all Unlucky for Bhagwan. He had never realised that the ALBELA success was NOT due to name, but because of C.Ramchandra’s iconic music and Geeta Bali’s charm. The story too was original at that time. The public empathised with the Hero. Later half hearted copies of the story failed to recreate that magic.

After the phenomenal success of Albela-51,Master Bhagwan was on cloud nine and he floated his own production company, Bhagwan Art Productions. He already owned Jagriti films and Jagriti Studios. He started making films after films. The result was as expected. Slowly but steadily, Bhagwan started falling into the trap of hugh debts due to unsuccessful films produced by him.

After a while, a day came when Bhagwan had to sell all his ten cars one by one, Sea facing Bungalow at Juhu etc and at the end of his career, he had to live in a one room tenement in a chawl,on the very street in Dadar named after his own uncle.

RANGEELA-1953 was one of the early failures of Bhagwan, in the series of future flops, beginning the imminent decline in few more years to come. This film was produced and directed by Bhagwan himself.

This was a story of a village boy-Babulal, who is eager to study in school, but due to his wicked stepmother, has to do household chores instead. Fed up of this and to try his luck,he runs away to Bombay,where he meets Vidya Devi,a kind and young school teacher,who not only helps him but also starts teaching him,seeing his earnestness.Over a period,to sustain himself,Babulal,who was called Buddu in his village gets educated and also sells Chana,near to hisschool.Duely,he becomes a successful businessman,owning a shop,house etc.He is under the impression that Vidya Devi is in his love,but he is disillusioned when he hears a conversation between Vidya and her would behusband.Vidya
refers to him as a good and honest student only.

Babulal learns that his father is in financial troubles and his house is up forauction.To help father,he collects all his money and is about to leave for village,when he learns that Vidya’s marriage to her fiance is in trouble,as Vidya’s father can not gather that much money.
Babulal is in two minds.Finally.he gives the money to her father for marriage,sells his shop,business and house to collect money and leaves for the village to help father.

The entire story went on predicted lines and did not succeed.

The music of Rangeela-53 was given by Jamal Sen. His name is not a famous name, because he gave music in just a few films, but the industrywallahs and lovers of classic music know him too well. He was one of those few ones who had immense capability, but like Sajjad Hussain, he too was stubborn, unbending, egoistic, outspoken and reserved. In an industry full of Chamchaas and cut throat competition, artistes like Jamal or Sajjad were misfits.

Lata Mangeshkar respected him so much that to sing in his films, she sent several feelers and messages to him till she was called by him. Lata sang 10 songs for him in 4 films. 6 were solos, 2 male duets and 2 were Female duets.

If talent were the only criterion for a composer to succeed, Jamal Sen should have been the most successful music director of his time. But he was not.

His proficiency in singing, dancing (Kathak) and poetry, which lent a touch of completeness to his musical acumen and set him apart from the run-of-the-mill composers, became a liability for him in an industry which had no value for real class. The result: a composer who gave such brilliant scores as in Shokhiyaan and Daaera, died unsung, after a long spell of isolation.

In his last days Sen had but one friend, composer Ghulam Mohammed, who after being afflicted with a serious heart ailment, had shifted to Bombay’s far off suburb, Borivli, where he (Sen) was living in a dilapidated room.

Jamal Sen’s forefather Kesarji who hailed from Sujangadh in Rajasthan, was said to be a disciple of Tansen and was hence called Kesar Sen. Jamal Sen was born on 26-11-1904, at village Churu. The family tradition in music was passed on to Jamal at a very young age by his father Jeevan Sen, a court singer and an acknowledged Ustad. Jamal, who could sing and play various musical instruments was especially good on the dholak, tabla and Pakhawaj.

Jamal Sen had been in Calcutta initially and sang on AIR Calcutta. He met Pankaj Mullick and studied Ravindra Sangeet too. Due to this link, he joined Pankaj Mullick in giving music to film Kasturi-54 also. From there ,he shifted to Lahore in 1938.

While in Lahore, Jamal Sen was introduced by music director Shyam Sunder to Master Ghulam Haider, which marked the beginning of a fruitful association spanning 12 years. Sen’s knowledge of classical and folk music and his mastery over the dholak made him an asset to Ghulam Haider in films from Khazanchi (1941) to Majboor (1948), until Masterji migrated to Pakistan in the wake of Partition.

He shifted to Bombay, after partition. Then a chance meeting with director Kidar Sharma gave him a break in films as a composer, and he proved his virtuosity in his very first film, Shokhiyan in 1951.

The imaginative use of the raag Yaman Kalyan in Sapana ban sajan aaye (Lata Mangeshkar) was a testimony to the composer’s command over classical music. The songs — Raaton ki neend cheen li (Suraiya), a ghazal where melody is predominant, and Aai barkha bahar (Lata, Pramodini, chorus)—bore the richness of Rajasthani folk music. A Door des se aajare (Suraiya, Lata) is a classic example of folk and classical music intermingling to create an enchanting melodic pattern.

Shokhiyan was followed by Kamal Amrohi’s Daera in 1953. Though a flop, the film is remembered for the perennial appeal of the bhajan, Devta tum ho mera sahara, maine thama hai daman tumhara (Rafi, Mubarak Begum, chorus), in raag Bhoop. When the situation required, Sen could also compose a Western tune Sun sun meri kahani (Rafi) for Bhagwan’s Rangila!

Jamal Sen, who had begun his career as a singer on AIR, Calcutta—he was among the first to sing Vande Mataram on radio—should have stuck to a career in, classical singing. With his talent and lofty ideals, he was a misfit in films. His inability to manipulate and his refusal to compromise, made him a loner, and the mediocre films which he scored music for led to a colossal waste of his rich talent.

Jamal Sen knew Producer Director K.Asif for many years.Once they met somewhere and Asif took Jamal to the sets of Mughal-E Azam. There a dance sequence was to be shot and Gopikrishna was rehearsing the steps. Jamal saw everything but did not comment anything. As Asif knew him well,he suspected something and asked Jamal what was wrong. Jamal told him that the sets are absolutely appropriate but the dance steps and the ‘Bol’ were not commensurate with the period when Akbar was reigning. Asif asked him then and there to make new Dance steps, prepare the ‘Bol’ and make music for that sequence.

Jamal Sen did that and Asif was more than happy.

However that piece of Dance and music was not used by Naushad in the film, possibly due to professional jealousy.

Later, when K. Asif announced Sasta Khoon Mehenga Paani, which had a Rajasthani backdrop, he-asked Jamal Sen to be an advisor to bring authenticity to Naushad’s compositions. But luck once again played traunt with him and the project never saw the light of day.

A proud and arrogant man, Jamal Sen never went out of his way to grab work. As a result, he was slowly relegated to the periphery of the music scene, and then to oblivion. Shokhiyaan and Daaera were a thing of the past. A commerce-oriented cinema had little use for his talent. Under the circumstances, it was a poor consolation to him that his imaginative score in the documentary,Madhumakhi, won laurels abroad.

Jamal Sen knew his prowess. And was proud of it. Once, after hearing him sing, Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan called him a `Tansen’ and a ‘Sur Ka Bichhu’, Ustad Amir Khan described him as ‘Sangeet Shastri’. Notwithstanding the impressive titles and tributes, Jamal Sen continued to exist in a state of penury, unwanted and uncared for.

In his later years, out of sheer frustration, he turned to liquor, and lived on the hope that his sons Shambhu Sen and Madan Sen would carry forward the family’s rich tradition in music. But Madan suddenly died of heart failure at the young age of 40. And he never recovered from the shock. Within a year, on April 12, 1979, he too died .

Jamal Sen composed music for 13 films – Shokhiyan, Daaara, Dharam Patni, Rangeela, Patit Pawan, Ritu Bahar, Amar Shaheed, Aalha Udal, Manchali, Sankalpa, Baghdad, Kasturi(with Pankaj Mallick) and Pehla Kadam-81. Actually, Jamal Sen had retired in 1962 itself. When film Pehla kadam-81 was planned, a song which he had composed for film Shokhiyan, but had not used, was utilised in this film-Pehla Kadam-81.

There were 11 songs in the film. 5 songs are already discussed. This is the 6th song. This song is very good. In the period of early 50’s , the western influence of Rock and Roll was showing in our films here and many composers were making songs on those tunes. This song too uses western style but somehow it has become very enchanting. I find lot of similarity of this song with “chhod chale pyari duniya ko” of Kishor/Rafi duet from the film Bhagambhag composed by O P Nayyar. The interludes are very similar. Enjoy this melody….


Song-Sun sun meri kahaani mushqil hai jaan bachaani (Rangeela)(1953) Singer-Rafi, Lyrics-S H Bihari, MD-Jamal Sen


sun sun meri kahaani
mushqil hai jaan bachaani
sun sun meri kahaani
arre mushqil hai jaan bachaani

taara ram pam
gaana sargam
bhoo gaye hum
bhool gaye hum
saari tikdam sari tigdam
chakkar hai ae ae ae
chakkar hai ae
aane lage
aane lage
aane lage

yaad aa gayi aaj naani
meri naani
thhi kaani
o naani
meri naani
sun sun meri kahaani
mushqil hai jaan bachaani

aaye hans kar
reh gaye phans kar
jaayen kaise
jaayen kaise
yahaan se bach kar
yahaan se bach kar
mushqil mein ae ae ae
mushqil mein aen
aise ghire
aise ghire
aise ghire
bahta hai aankhon se paani
ho paani
haaye paani
ho paani
ho paani
sun sun meri kahaani
mushqil hai jaan bachaani
sun sun meri kahaani
arre mushqil hai jaan bachaani

3 Responses to "Sun sun meri kahaani mushqil hai jaan bachaani"

After your most informative post what could be added? A small trivia.In the movie Albela-51 itself Bhagvan Dada had given a hint about Jhamela. The full movie is available on YT.Just before 7 minutes to end you can see the ad of ” Jhamela starring Ashadevi ” ( GeetaBali’s role in Albela). It may be about a play but the root goes to Bhagvan himself.
Any comments ?

D Samant


D Samant ji,

Thanks for your comments and keen observations of the film Albela-51.
I know that Jhamela was written on the Theatre advt. Board,but I am sure it is just a coincidence that pyarelal Santoshi also took the name of Jhamela as Bhagwan’s next film.
It is just impossible that Bhagwan had thought about his next film, while making his first experimental social film. At that point of time Bhagwan was in solid tension how this Social film woulld accepted by his audience. It is interesting to note that in order not to lose his captive audience of stunt films, he had taken Baburao pehelwan and had also made room for a fight scene in the film.
A lot was at stake for Bhagwan with this Social film. He must not have imagined even in his dreams that the film would be such a grand success.
I can go on writting about Bhagwan and Albela…..may be in another article. There are so many anecdotes to tell…


For his photo and some rare songs


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

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