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

Zindagi Fareb Hai Fareb Se Nibhaaye Ja

Posted on: June 30, 2017


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 atulsongaday.me. If this article appears in sites like lyricstrans.com and ibollywoodsongs.com etc then it is piracy of the copyright content of atulsongaday.me and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Today’s song is from film ‘Chaand Taara’ (1945). This song is sung by Noor Mohammed ‘Charlie ‘ and chorus. Today (30th June) is the anniversary of Charlie’s passing away in 1983. This song is in his memory. This song also happen to be a parody song. No, no, I am not doing a series on parody songs. It is just a coincidence that I got hold of a second rare song which is also a parody song.

For the third successive time the story of the song discovery is repeated. I got this song from my same friend as last time, but it too was not a complete song. As usual our very own Sudhir ji came to my rescue and very kindly he has uploaded the complete song on You Tube, from his own collection. Thanks Sudhir ji, may your tribe increase manifolds. In this connection, Sudhir ji has expressed his valuable and thought provoking opinion-

“I am beginning to get a feeling that some up loaders are probably doing this on purpose. This song is available in a very clear recording for a duration of 3:05, whereas this up loader has posted only 2:14 duration of the song.

I know of certain collectors who do this for commercial purpose, enticing music lovers with a partial sample. Then there are others who believe that they are the only one who have this song, and they simply want to show off, but not to share the whole song. To each his own, based on individual motivations. “

So sad that even heavenly music has become a matter of making money.When the old film music has become a heritage and a historic item for us, some people are busy in making money. But then, life is like that only. One can not really blame them squarely, for they too have to recover their investments !

At the moment, I think, only free lance writers and historians of old films and HFM, who have no commercial expectations, are the true lovers in this field. Those who publish books or use their knowledge in prearranged ticketed public programmes are commercially inclined. People who operate exclusive blogs for old Hindi films and old HFM as well as social media group operators are doing yeoman’s service for the sustenance and re-discovery of vintage music and making it available free to music lovers all over the world. Atul ji fits perfectly in this category and we are proud to be a part of his team.

By the 40s the system of playback was firmly established. This actually came as a great relief to most composers. Till then they had to tolerate terrible non-singers. Now, except for few singing actors, all others could have playback from expert and professional singers. Despite this, in few cases, some producers insisted that their comedians sang their own songs. That is how, you can see songs by comedian Sunder, comedian Yaqub or comedian Charlie. Thanks God other comedians like Master Bhagwan, V.H.Desai or Bhudo Advani did not / could not sing !

1945 was the period when Noor Mohammed Charlie was on peak of his popularity. He not only sang his songs, but he also played the lead role in a few pictures. Stories were amended to give him more scope in the films. In the 1950s and the 1960s, this honour went to comedian Johnny Walker. Thank God, he did not sing songs (though he spoke in his chirpy voice in some songs). Mohammed Rafi compensated enough for him by having a special style of singing and a special voice for Johnny Walker songs.

These days everyone likes the comedy of Amitabh Bachhan. Many of his films became hits due to his comedy roles. Today most of the heroes themselves do the comedy part in the film. But till 1970, there used to be a separate slot for a comedian. Today’s generation knows comedians like Paresh Raval, Anupam kher etc. For them older comedians are Johnny Lever, Satish Shah or Rajpal Yadav. Before that, they can think of Johnny Walker, Mehmood, Keshto Mukherjee, Asit Sen, Dhumal, Jagdeep, Asrani or Deven Verma. But the art of comedy had started much earlier, in the 1930s and 40s. Comedians like Ghori, Dikshit, Fatty Prasad, VH Desai, Bhudo Advani were famous. Amongst all the comedians of that era,there was one superstar of Comedy- NOOR MOHAMMED CHARLIE.

Noor Mohd. was born on 7-1-1911 at Ranavava, near Porbandar, Gujarat, in a Memon family. (Later, comedian Mukri was also a Memon from Konkan area). Not interested in studies, he was very fond of seeing films, at times, even by stealing money from home. He was sent to Bombay and worked as an umbrella repairman in a shop. His desire to become an actor was so strong that one day he straight went to Imperial Film Company’s owner and asked for a job. In the tradition of those days, he was asked if he could sing. His reply was,” I can sing, act, ride, run, fight, cry, laugh, quarrel, dance, play or swim”. He was hired instantly at a salary of Rs. 40 pm. From 1925 to 1931 he did 9 silent films. In one of these films he did the acting of Charlie Chaplin. It became so popular that he made this get up his trademark and grew a toothbrush moustache, just like Charlie Chaplin. He also added ‘Charlie’ to his name. He did his first talkie film “Zarina” in 1932 and then there was no looking back.

Initially with Sagar Movietone, he shifted to Ranjit and did 17 films with Ranjit. He became so famous and popular that films were sold on his name. He was the first superstar amongst the comedians. He started to get special songs shot on him in almost every film – much before Johnny Walker in the 1950s. He sang his own songs. He left Ranjit and was the first actor to became a ‘free-lance’ breaking the studio system. Some of his films and songs therein were famous over all India In film ‘Sanjog’ (1943), he sang “Palat, Tera Dhyaan Kidhar Hai“. This line became so famous that young boys in colleges used this line for calling girls, in those days. In film ‘Dhindhora’ (1941), he sang “Ek Do Teen Char Panch Chhe Saat Aath Nau Dus Gyaarah Baarah, Teri Nazar Ne Mujhe Maara”. (Raj Kapoor used ‘Ek Do Teen’ in the song of his film ‘Awaara’ (1951) “Ek Do Teen Aaja Mausam Hai Rangeen” and more recently, this phrase was also used in the film ‘Tezaab’ (1988) – the famous Madhuri Dixit song “Ek Do Teen Chaar Paanch Chhe Saat Aath Nau Das Gyaarah Baarah Terah”. In the film ‘Taqdeer’ he sang “Thank You Mention Not’ and “I Am Very Very Sorry”. These two also became popular. There was a time when Charlie drew more salary than even Prithviraj Kapoor !

He did about 100 films in all. He was the hero opposite Swarnalata in ‘Chaand Taara’ (1945), hero opposite Leela Chitnis in ‘Ghazal’ (1945) and also opposite Chandraprabha (Saraswati Devi’s sister) in ‘Dulha’ (1946).

After partition he opted for Pakistan. In Pakistan, he worked in 6 Urdu, 2 Sindhi and 1 Punjabi films there but was not popular. He came back to India in 1960, but by then here too the position had changed. He worked in 3 films here. Due to visa problems, he had to leave India. He went to USA to live with his son, who had a dairy farming business. He had 6 sons and 6 daughters. Only 1 son – Latif Charlie became an actor in Pakistan. (Latif died on 19-7-2011). Charlie came back to Pakistan when his wife expired, but later he himself passed away in Karachi on 30-6-1983.

If he had not gone to Pakistan, who knows he would have prospered here. Mehmood and Johnny Walker consider him as their Guru, and have copied his actions in films many times. Raj kapoor and Guru Dutt were also his fans. His film ‘Manorama’ (1944) was remade here as ‘Manchala’ in 1953 with Agha in his role. ‘Thokar’ (1939) was remade as ‘Mai Baap'(1957) and ‘Taqdeer’ (1943) was remade as ‘Duniya Ka Mela’ (1974) with Mehmood in Charlie’s role.

When he died in Pakistan, no film personality from Pakistan Film industry attended his funeral. He died unsung !

In film ‘Chaand Taara’ (1945), Swarnalata was the heroine of Charlie. Swarnalata married the actor, producer and director Nazeer Ahmed Khan. Nazeer’s production studio “Hind Pictures” was burnt in his presence during the 1947 partition riots in Bombay. While going to Pakistan, Nazeer borrowed money from people, took negatives of his films and quietly left India, with Swarnalata.

Swarnlata was born on 20-12-24 in a Siyal Jat Sikh family in Rawalpindi. She came to Delhi to complete her education and then joined the Academy of Music and Arts, at Lucknow. She lost her parents early and lived with her elder brother. She was spotted at a hostel in Lucknow, and was given an an offer to act in films. Her initial reaction was to refuse outright but the director, who had spotted her, convinced her brother who in turn convinced her and soon Swarnlata found herself in Bombay.

Swarnlata made her film debut in 1942 with ‘Awaaz’. After ‘Awaaz’ came films like ‘Tasveer’ (1943) and ‘Raunaq’ (1944) opposite Motilal and ‘Ishara’ (1943) with Prithviraj Kapoor before she hit the big time with ‘Rattan’ (1944). Old timers still fondly recall the image of her running after Karan Dewan, who is seated on the tonga, ‘singing’ the most popular song of her career in India and imploring him – “Akhiyaan Mila Ke Jiya Bharma Ke Chale Nahin Jana“. Rattan was a huge success, and it gave a much needed fillip to the career of music director Naushad. Ironically, this tale of two young lovers separated when the woman is married off elsewhere was thought to be a commercially risky venture and the original distributor re-sold the film rather cheaply fearing the worst. The rest as they (always) say is history as Rattan became the biggest hit of the year. Another extremely popular song of the film was “Saawan Ke Baadalo“.

Swarnlata played leading lady to Dilip Kumar in his second film, ‘Pratima’ (1945), made at Bombay Talkies. The same year saw the release of ‘Preet’ and ‘Laila Majnu’ where Swarnlata was cast opposite Nazir in both films. The two fell in love and Swarnlata got married to Nazir and converted to Islam taking on the name Sayeeda Bano. However, she continued to retain her screen name for her films as an actress though she did give her Islamic name as producer. Following her last film ‘Ghar Baar’ (1948) in India, Nazir and Swarnlata migrated to Pakistan. Recalling the shift, Swarnlata said it was no big deal. Nazir decided they should go to Pakistan so they did! The first film they produced there, ‘Heer Ranjha’, ended in tragedy as whatever they shot was out of focus. The entire stock had to be rubbished and the film had to be shelved.

This Nazir was an actor, producer and director. He was the maternal uncle of K Asif, the maker of ‘Mughal e Azam’ (1960). In his struggling days, Asif stayed with his mama. That time Nazir’s wife was Sitara Devi, who eloped with K Asif to Delhi. Nazir divorced her and then married Swarnlata.

Some other films of Swarnlata include ‘Inkar’ (1943), ‘Us Paar’ (1944), ‘Shyam Savera’ (1946), ‘Maa Baap Ki Laaj’ (1946) and ‘Abidah’ (1947) in India. In Pakistan, she worked in ‘Nauker’ (1955) – a remake of the Indian film ‘Aulaad’ (1954) and ‘Khatoon’ (1955).

When Swarnlata acted in film ‘Ishara’ (1943), she was cast opposite Prithviraj Kapoor, who was then almost 45 years in age. Suraiya played the role of the ‘other’ woman. At this time she (Suraiya) was just about 13-14 year old. Thus she acted with Prithviraj Kapoor who was 45 years old, and later, she also was the heroine of his sons Raj Kapoor and Shammi Kapoor. For giving playback to Swarnlata, a singer from Lucknow named Gauhar Sultana, was brought to Bombay.

Swarnalata passed away in Lahore in Pakistan on February 8, 2008.

The story of film ‘Chaand Taara’, as it appeared in a film review in the Film India magazine of that year, was given by our Sadanand ji when he discussed another song from this film on 11-3-2016. The reviews of Film India were generally highly critical and in my opinion, highly biased. Additionally, the review did not give details about films which Baburao Patel did not like, while films which he liked were given a detailed review.

In case of this film (which I also have seen ), Film India missed out on the essence of the film. The story was by Nanu Patel, dialogues by Pt. Indra and direction by the veteran Manibhai Vyas. When Raju, the hero, faces the charges of cheating people and committing a crime, he boldly tells the king, “Huzoor, I was cheating people and making money in your kingdom for such a long time, right under your nose, but you never came to know about it and you never stopped me doing that. Is it not your failure and a crime against your people who trusted you ? If I am guilty, so are you equally in this case.” In today’s national scenario, this is a highly pertinent observation. When scams of thousands of crores of rupees were being made, what was the Government doing? Like those who tolerate injustice are equally guilty, so are Governments who allow such crimes.

This is only the third song of the film to be discussed. There were 10 songs and Charlie had sung 2 solos and 4 duets with Ameerbai Karnataki. Today’s song is a wonderful parody of the famous marching song from film ‘Sikandar’ (1941) – “Zindagi Hai Pyaar“. It was originally sung by Paresh Banerjee, Rafiq Gaznavi, Khan Mastana and Sheela.

Enjoy this parody in the voice of Noor Mohammed Charlie.


Song – Zindagi Fareb Hai Fareb Se Nibhaaye Ja (Chaand Taara) (1945) Singer – Noor Mohammed Charlie, Lyrics – Swami Ramanand, MD – Gyan Dutt
Chorus

Lyrics

left right left
left
left
left
attention

zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja
zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja

public ho ya daulat waala
shaana ho ya himmat waala
apna maqsad saamne rakh kar
ullu tu banaaye jaa..aa..aa
apna ullu seedha kar
chaahe koi jaaye mar
us ka tu kuchh gham na kar
ooncha rakh tu apna sar
ishq kar harees hai
husn chaar sau bees hai
aath sau chaalis ban kar tu
apna rang jamaaye jaa

zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja

duniya hai ye aani jaani
duniya hai ye aani jaani
lautegi na phir se jawaani
lautegi na phir se jawaani
karta kyon hai khoon ka paani
karta kyon hai khoon ka paani
bhool ja saari pichhli kahaani
bhool ja saari pichhli kahaani..ee..ee

duniya ki kya parwaah karna
pehle paakit apna bharna
paisa ho to sab kuchh apna
himmat ho to phir kya darna
zindagi sharaab hai
whisky lajawaab hai
thoda husn daal kar
ye jaam pilaaye ja
zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja
zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja

zindagi hai left right
left right left
left right left
left
left
attention
zindagi hai left right
sar pe joota paanv mein hai
march kar raha hoon main
tu bhi march gaaye ja
zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaaye ja
zindagi fareb hai
fareb se nibhaaye ja
jitna tujhse ho sakey
apna daav chalaa..aaye ja..aa
(apna daav chalaaye ja)
———————————————————
Hindi script lyrics (Provided by Sudhir)
———————————————————

लेफ्ट राइट लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट
अटेन्शन

ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा
ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा

पब्लिक हो या दौलत वाला
शाना हो या हिम्मत वाला
अपना मक़सद सामने रख कर
उल्लू तू बनाए जा॰॰आ॰॰आ
चाहे कोई जाए मर
उस का तू कुछ ग़म ना कर
ऊंचा रख तू अपना सर
इश्क़ कर ह्रीस है
हुस्न चार सौ बीस है
आठ सौ चालीस बार कर तू
अपना रंग जमाये जा

ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा

दुनिया है ये आनी जानी
दुनिया है ये आनी जानी
लौटेगी ना फिर से जवानी
लौटेगी ना फिर से जवानी
करता क्यों है खून का पानी
करता क्यों है खून का पानी
भूल जा सारी पिछली कहानी
भूल जा सारी पिछली कहानी॰॰ई॰॰ई

दुनिया की क्या परवा करना
पहले पाकिट अपना भरना
पैसा हो तो सब कुछ अपना
हिम्मत हो तो फिर क्या डरना
ज़िंदगी शराब है
व्हिस्की लाजवाब है
थोड़ा हुस्न डाल कर
ये जाम पिलाये जा
ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा
ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा

ज़िंदगी है लेफ्ट राइट
लेफ्ट राइट लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट राइट लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट
लेफ्ट
अटेन्शन
ज़िंदगी है लेफ्ट राइट
सर पे जूता पाँव में है
मार्च कर रहा हूँ मैं
तू भी मार्च गाये जा
ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चलाये जा
ज़िंदगी फरेब है
फरेब से निभाये जा
जितना तुझसे हो सके
अपना दांव चला॰॰आये जा॰॰आ
(अपना दांव चलाये जा)

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5 Responses to "Zindagi Fareb Hai Fareb Se Nibhaaye Ja"

Yes, there are some particular individuals who are purposefully uploading only partial versions of rare songs. I have not received responses from those, and it persists, which is a shame in itself.

It states here that this film was seen by the author. Is this film available anywhere?

I had seen it in early 50s….may be around 51-52.
The quoted dialogue may not be verbatim, but is approximate, what I had noted down.
Film may not be available now.
Shalin ji, you are doing a great job by uploading rare songs in full. The music lovers are indebted to you. Thanks.

Yes, there are some people who deliberately upload only part of the song. I have stopped clicking on the songs uploaded by such people.

Another very informative write-up, Arunji. Got to know so much from it.

I’ve seen just one film of Noor Mohammad Charlie – Akeli Mat Jaiyo (1963). Of course, by then he wasn’t the same – this film is not representative of the man. Now I need to see earlier movies, which showcase him better. I do remember Johny Walker referring to him in an interview.

I didn’t know anything about Swarnlata till I read this post. I only knew her from “akhiyan milaake” (Rattan) but nothing else. Now I know much more. Thank you. 🙂

“Then there are others who believe that they are the only one who have this song, and they simply want to show off, but not to share the whole song.”

Arunbhai, that reminds me that during 50s to 70s we few friends of similar liking for Golden period melodies, used to search for such songs in ‘Chor Bazaar’ as well as gramophone records dealer. One gentleman, whose name I will NOT mention here, used to call us at his home and will play 78 RPM rare records. But before two third of the song was played, he will say “now listen to this beauty” and will change the record on the gramophone. I have NEVER heard a single song complete at his place.!!

Your above sentence describes such persons to the letter ‘T’.

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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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