After 14 years, Lata Mangeshkar recently recorded a song for composers Nadeem-Shravan for producer Boney Kapoor's Bewafaa. The ambitious multi-starrer features Anil Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Akshay Kumar, Lara Dutta, Manoj Bajpai and Sushmita Sen.
Says director Dharmesh Darshan, "I learnt direction by listening to her [Mangeshkar's] voice."
Composer Nadeem Saifi is no less moved. Speaking to me from London, he said, "I can't believe Latadidi has sung for me after all these years. She sang for me just once in Hisaab Khoon Ka. The song had the lines Door nahin jaa sakti tujhse paas bhi main na aaoongi/ Rahungi main nazron ke saamne phir bhi nazar na aaoogni. It almost seems symbolic of my relationship with Latadidi. Though she hasn't sung for me, her presence is all-pervasive."
How did this collaboration come about?
"I was discussing the music for Bewafaa with Boney and Dharmesh. When I played the song Kaise piya se main kahoon to them, we felt only Latadidi could do justice to it. It will be picturised on Kareena Kapoor. Latadidi's singing for me signals a new beginning for my life and career."
"I feel 2002 was a very special year for me," he adds. "Besides hits like Yeh Dil Aashiqana and Dil Hai Tumhaara, I also had the biggest musical success of the year -- Raaz."
"Raaz," he says, "did for the music industry in this millennium what our music for Aashiqui did 12 years ago. The songs in Raaz made a small film a huge success. Had the music of Devdas been scored by me, it would have been a historical film. I would have turned it into another Mughal-e-Azam. The music of Devdas failed to do justice to the director's vision and grandeur."
Nadeem is confident of conquering the charts in 2003. "My first score for 2003 is Yeh Dil. I have even sung a song in the film."