Rediff.com  » Movies » The ULTIMATE Lata Mangeshkar playlist

The ULTIMATE Lata Mangeshkar playlist

Last updated on: September 28, 2019 11:52 IST

Nightingale of India.

Greatest Indian Singer ever.

Goddess Saraswati incarnate.

Hyperbole becomes Lata Mangeshkar.

No amount of praise is lavish enough to describe the supremacy of her voice as it enraptured generation after generation, year after year and song after song.

Lataji’s body of work is a deep sea of melody.

Every drop is a powerful ode to the Gods of music, moods and language.

To pick a favourite from such melodious abundance is an impossible task.

Truth be told even 100 chartbusters cannot highlight her songstress glory.

This is not a best-of list -- none will do justice -- but a well-meaning exercise to salute and savour her sweet, lilting voice and its everlasting imprint on my senses and memories.

On her 90th birthday, Sukanya Verma presents a playlist of 100 Lata Mangeshkar songs from different decades of Hindi films -- songs that make me sing, smile, sob and sigh.

 

IMAGE: Madhubala in Mahal.

1. Aayega Aanewala, Mahal (1949)

Music: Khemchand Prakash
Lyrics: Nakshab Jarchavi

Even when a young Lata’s personal style was still evolving, the sheer softness of her singing wasn’t lost on the discerning listener in this haunting beauty for the ages.

 

2. Mujhe Kisi Se Pyar, Barsaat (1949)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Jalal Malihabadi

The singer exuberantly conveys the pangs of first love in this Raj Kapoor-Nargis romance leading to the passionate embrace that inspired RK’s historic logo.

3. Seene Main Sulagte Hain Armaan, Taraana (1951)

Music: Anil Biswas
Lyrics: Prem Dhawan

If Madhubala and Dilip Kumar’s intense agony burns the screen, Lata Mangeshkar and Talat Mehmood’s heartfelt understanding of this pain lends it force.

 

4. Vande Mataram, Anand Math (1952)

Music: Hemant Kumar
Lyrics: Bankim Chandra Chatterji

Brimming with spirit, sentiment and strength, Lata Mangeshkar’s energetic call for patriotic participation in Anand Math is stuff of goose bumps.

 

IMAGE: Rediff Archives.

5. Yeh Zindagi Usi Ki Hai, Anarkali (1953)

Music: C Ramchandra
Lyrics: Rajinder Krishan

The playback queen finds a perfect balance between grand ardour and understated drama in the exquisite notes of Yeh Zindagi Usi Ki Hai.

 

6. Mann Mohana Bade Jhoote, Seema (1955)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Shailendra

If Lataji’s epic prowess in classical music here doesn’t take your breath away, you probably need new ears.

 

7. Jisse Tu Qubool Karle, Devdas (1955)

Music: Sachin Dev Burman
Lyrics: Sahir Ludhiyanvi

Lataji picks the desperation and devotion in Chandramukhi’s deep concerns for her unreciprocating beloved in her pitch-perfect delivery of a classic.

 

8. Jaa Jaa Re Jaa Balamwa, Basant Bahar (1956)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Shailendra

Lata trills and thrills in this tour de force from Shankar-Jaikishan’s magnum opus.

 

9. Aye Malik Tere Bande Hum, Do Aankh Baarah Haath (1957)

Music: Vasant Desai
Lyrics: Bharat Vyas

That shraddha bhav in Lata Mangeshkar’s rendition can turn believers out of sceptics. A quality she uses to great advantage for V Shantaram’s social reforms drama.

 

10. Chand Phir Nikla, Paying Guest (1957)

Music: Sachin Dev Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Chori Chori’s Rasik Balma and Chand Phir Nikla are almost soul sisters but the latter’s tune, turmoil and Lataji’s trademark touch gives it a bit of an edge.

IMAGE: Vyjayanthimala in Madhumati.

11. Chadh Gaye Re Paapi Bichua, Madhumati (1958)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Shailendra

Almost every song in the soundtrack showcases Lata Mangeshkar’s brilliance. But the quivering playfulness she lends to the folksy Bichua is something else.

 

12. Chal Mere Ghode Tik Tik, Chirag Kahan Roshni Kahan (1959)

Music: Ravi
Lyrics: Prem Dhawan

Full of curious adventures and fanciful enchantment, Lata Mangeshkar’s affectionate, animated storytelling of the childhood favourite, Chal Mere Ghode hasn’t lost an ounce of its charm.

 

13. Ajeeb Dastan Hain Ye, Dil Apna Aur Preet Parayi (1960)

Music: Shankar Jaikishan
Lyrics: Shailendra

Betrayal and blessings infuse Lata Mangeshkar’s crushing expression of heartbreak. Its poetic sting continues to inspire scenes, scripts and covers. Though nothing quite like the original.

 

14. Pyar Kiya Toh Darna Kya, Mughal-E-Azam (1960)

Music: Naushad
Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

When the voice of serenity becomes the voice of defiance, the message is loud and clear. Neither Madhubala nor Lata Mangeshkar miss a beat.

 

15. Sanware Kahe Mose, Anuradha (1960)

Music: Pandit Ravi Shankar
Lyrics: Shailendra

Champions of classical world unite to craft this soaring, stirring composition gracing the opening credits of Hrishikesh Mukherji’s compelling Anuradha.

 

16. Mere Mann Ke Diye, Parakh (1960)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Shailendra

Lata Mangeshkar’s wispy delivery of Shailendra’s moving verse in this Salil Chowdhary penned parable evokes awe.

 

17. Allah Tero Naam, Hum Dono (1961)

Music: Jaidev
Lyrics: Sahir Ludhianvi

Lata Mangeshkar paves the path to divinity and prays for humanity in her soulful rendition that tugs at the heartstrings like few bhajans can.

 

18. Jaa Re Jaa Re Ud Jaa Re Panchhi, Maya (1961)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

The sarcasm in Mala Sinha’s goodbye to Dev Anand finds embodiment in Lata Mangeshkar’s reliable vocals.

 

19. Woh Ek Nigaah Half Ticket (1962)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Shailendra

Kishore Kumar’s bouncy antics find an unlikely match in Lata Mangeshkar’s operatic sass. His fun, her flexibility, it’s the A to Z of wow.

 

20. Tera Mera Pyaar Amar, Asli Naqli (1962)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Shailendra

The dreamy quality to Lata Mangeshkar’s musings is tailor-made for Sadhana’s grace.

IMAGE: Sadhana in Woh Kaun Thi.

21. Kahin Deep Jale Kahin Dil, Bees Saal Baad (1962)

Music: Hemant Kumar
Lyrics: Shakeel Badayuni

Lata Mangeshkar’s anxiety in Kahin Deep Jale Kahin Dil hasn’t stopped haunting listeners since 1962.

 

22. Raat Bhi Hai Kuch Bheegi Bheegi, Mujhe Jeene Do (1963)

Music: Jaidev
Lyrics: Sahir Ludhianvi

Oomph and seduction trickle from every corner of this tantalising mujra powered by Lata Mangeshkar’s cham-cham cham-cham.

 

23. Mora Gore Ang Lai Le, Bandini (1963)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

The magnificent combination of SD, Gulzar and Lata blossoms in the tender aspirations of Mora Gora Ang.

 

24. Khuda-E-Bartar Teri Zameen, Taj Mahal (1963)

Music: Roshan
Lyrics: Sahir Ludhianvi

The historical romance of Taj Mahal is immortalised in Lata Mangeshkar’s acknowledgement but it’s her distress at man’s lust for war in Khuda-E-Bartar that hits the right chord.

 

25. Woh Jo Milte The Kabhi Humse, Akeli Mat Jaiyo (1963)

Music: Madan Mohan
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Trust Lata to pull at the heartstrings like only she can while conveying her disappointment over a soured romance in Akeli Mat Jaiyo.

 

26. Lag Ja Gale, Woh Kaun Thi? (1964)

Music: Madan Mohan
Lyrics: Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

Lata Mangeshkar’s delicate appeals against Madan Mohan’s fine creation evoke a haunting sensuality. No wonder it’s such an enduring favourite among contemporary filmmakers.

 

27. Main Ka Karoon Ram, Sangam (1964)

Music: Shankar Jaikishan
Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri

Few things sound as refreshing as Lata letting her hair down. Her pert gibes and playful protests pepper Shankar-Jaikishan’s fun track into a frolicking one.

 

28. O Beqarar Dil, Kohraa (1964)

Music: Hemant Kumar
Lyrics: Kaifi Azmi

Lata’s spirit soars high and heartily to embrace the strength in sorrow of Kaifi Azmi’s telling words.

 

29. Woh Chup Rahen Toh, Jahan Ara (1964)

Music: Madan Mohan
Lyrics: Rajinder Krishan

The dream combo of Lata Mangeshkar-Madan Mohan hit it out of the park yet again in this splendorous Jahan Ara creation.

 

30. Zara Si Aahat Hoti Hai, Haqeeqat (1964)

Music: Madan Mohan
Lyrics: Kaifi Azmi

Falling in love finds a voice in Lata’s hopeful musings and gentle desires as she wonders Kahin yeh woh toh nahin?

IMAGE: Sharmila Tagore in Anupama.

31. Saiyaan Be-imaan, Guide (1965)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Shailendra

Goosebumps galore as you feel the seething anger and angst in Lata’s intensity resulting in one of the most potent songs of S D Burman and Shailendra’s classic soundtrack.

 

32. Aji Roothkar Ab Kahan, Arzoo (1965)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri

The singer’s incredible calibre is once again highlighted in how she makes a convoluted tune sound deceptively easy around this flirtatious Arzoo ditty.

 

33. Sayonara, Love in Tokyo (1965)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri

Lata Mangeshkar’s whimsical side comes to light in a rare display of hilarious spontaneity in the inflections and inanities of Sayonara.

 

34. Dil jo na keh saka, Bheegi Raat (1965)

Music: Roshan
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Lilting tune, luscious poetry, lovely Lata -- everything about Dil jo na keh saka spells sorcery.

 

35. Tu Jahaan Jahaan Chalega, Mera Saaya (1966)

Music: Madan Mohan
Lyrics: Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

The title song of Mera Saaya didn’t have to wait for decades to become a classic. Its overwhelming emotionality and Lata Mangeshkar’s extraordinary expression of the same knew it all along.

 

36. Kuch Dil Ne Kaha, Anupama (1966)

Music: Hemant Kumar
Lyrics: Kaifi Azmi

Composed like a whisper, a secret, a heartbeat, a veil of gossamer envelops Lata’s singing to convey its hushed ardour exactly in the spirit it is meant to.

 

37. Tumhe Yaad Karte, Amrapali (1966)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Shailendra

Lekh Tandon’s costume drama pays rich ode to Vyjayanthimala’s beauty and Lata Mangeshkar’s silky vocals. The two reach its zenith in Tumhe yaad.

 

38. Aaja Piya Tohe Pyaar Doon, Baharon Ke Sapne (1967)

Music: Rahul Dev Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

The singer exudes a moving mix of sympathy and hope in the ‘Main bhi jeeyun tu bhi jeeye’ suggestions of Aaja piya.

 

39. Woh Hain Zara Khafa Khafa, Shagird (1967)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Wouldn’t it be nice if every kiss-and-makeup sounded like Lata’s coy appeasing and coquettish oh-ho-hos with an enamoured Mohammad Rafi for company?

 

40. Rula Ke Gaya Sapna, Jewel Thief (1967)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Shailendra

Melody and melancholy linger on in Lata’s lilting lamentations of a broken heart -- phir bhi na aaya lootera.

IMAGE: Waheeda Rehman in Prem Pujari.

41. Chandan Sa Badan, Saraswati Chandra (1968)

Music: Kalyanji-Anandji
Lyrics: Indeevar

There’s much to love about the popular Mukesh version but Lata’s solo rendition of its National-award winning score is no less compelling.

 

42. Bhai Battur, Padosan (1968)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Rajinder Krishan

Bath songs are an actual subgenre in Bollywood, courtesy Lata’s kittenish celebration of ‘nazuk jawani’ off screen and elfin Saira Banu on it.

 

43. Aa Jaane Jaan, Intaqam (1969)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Rajinder Krishan

Whatever doubts one may have had about Lata’s scarcity of sensuality are dispelled for good following her smouldering turn for the memorable Helen cabaret.

 

44. Humne Dekhi Hai Un Aankhon, Khamoshi (1969)

Music: Hemant Kumar
Lyrics: Gulzar

Gulzar's penmanship finds an outlet in Lata Mangeshkar’s mithaas and thairaav.

 

45. Main Na Miloongi, Pyar Ka Mausam (1969)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Lata has a ball mocking the hero to Majrooh’s colourful slurs and RD’s effervescent tune.

 

46. Kis Liye Maine Pyar Kiya, The Train (1970)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Elegant, effortless, easy breezy, every aspect of this sweet Lata number from The Train is win-win.

 

47. Rangeela Re, Prem Pujari (1970)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Neeraj

A flawless Lata brings out the betrayed, vulnerable vibe of SD’s graceful music and Neeraj’s words.

 

48. Tum Mujhe Yun Bhula Na Paoge, Pagla Kahin Ka (1970)

Music: Shankar-Jaikishan
Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri

Jab kabhi bhi sunoge geet mere, sang sang tum bhi gungunaoge -- truer words were never sung.

 

49. Tu Chanda Main Chandni, Reshma Aur Shera (1971)

Music: Jaidev
Lyrics: Balkavi Bairagi

Tu chanda’s evocative metaphors and mercurial composition hit new levels of greatness against Lata Mangeshkar’s masterful rendition.

 

50. Dilbar Dil Se Pyaare, Caravan (1971)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Juggling rhythm and seduction, all in a day’s work, for the one and only Lata Mangeshkar.

IMAGE: Meena Kumari in Pakeezah.

51. Megha Chaye Aadhi Raat, Sharmilee (1971)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Neeraj

Only a heart of stone would remain unmoved by the hard-hitting heartache in Lata’s rendition of this Sharmilee gem.

 

52. Jiya Lage Na, Anand (1971)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Gulzar

Lata Mangeshkar sparkles with Jiya lage na in a predominantly Mukesh-heavy soundtrack.

 

53. Kitne Din Aankhein Tarsengi, Naya Zamana (1971)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Lata lends a stirring voice to the socialist dream of Anand Bakshi’s verse in the title track of Naya Zamana.

 

54. Jaise Radha Ne Mala Japi Shyam Ki, Tere Mere Sapne (1971)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Neeraj

The singer’s ‘bina jatan, bina yatan’ glory celebrates the marriage of romantic idealism and unflinching devotion.

 

55. Chalte Chalte, Pakeezah (1972)

Music: Ghulam Mohammed
Lyrics: Kaifi Azmi

Lata Mangeshkar achieves a feat in how she lends a flesh and blood quality to the trance-inducing Chalte Chalte.

 

56. Raina Beeti Jaaye, Amar Prem (1972)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

If RD reserved his wild experiments for better half Asha Bhosle, he knew he could always fall back on sister-in-law Lata Mangeshkar for his more classical creations like Raina beeti.

 

57. Beeti Na Bitai Raina, Parichay (1972)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Ditto for Beeti na bitai, which won the singer her first National award.

 

58. Ab toh hai tumse, Abhimaan (1973)

Music: S D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Abhimaan is all about a woman’s superior talent overshadowing her husband’s and hurting his ego. And the art and agony in Lata’s beautiful voice conveys it significantly.

 

59. Rajnigandha Phool Tumhare, Rajnigandha (1974)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Yogesh

Lata Mangeshkar underscores the power of simplicity in Rajnigandha’s heartfelt confessions.

60. Tu Kya Jaane Wafa, Haath Ki Safai (1974)

Music: Kalyanji-Anandji
Lyrics: Gulshan Bawra

Lata’s velvety fury gorgeously complements Kalyanji-Anandji groovy score.

IMAGE: Hema Malini in Kinara.

61Tere Bina Zindagi Se, Aandhi (1975)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

RD’s ageless music and Gulzar’s insight for relationships and regrets acquire feeling in Lata Mangeshkar and Kishore Kumar’s impeccable rendition.

 

62. Do Naino Main Aansoo Bhare, Khushboo (1975)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Lata’s sentimentality shoulders the unbearable sadness of Gulzar’s poetry in Khushboo.

 

63. Na Jaane Kyun Hota Hai, Chhoti Si Baat (1975)

Music: Salil Chowdhary
Lyrics: Yogesh

The feeling of missing a potential special someone is elegantly captured in Lata Mangeshkar’s musings.

 

64. Mere Naina Saawan Bhadon, Mehbooba (1976)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Mehbooba’s reincarnation romance may not have made much of an impression but Lata’s (as well as Kishore Kumar’s) sublime, solo rendition of RD’s haunting melody is a masterclass in cadence.

 

65. Kabhi Kabhie Mere Dil, Kabhi Kabhie (1976)

Music: Khayyam
Lyrics: Sahir Ludhianvi

The irony of singing the song written for her by the man she loves to the man she marries comes alive in the poetry and passions of the eternal favourite, Kabhi Kabhie.

 

66. Baahon Mein Chale Aao, Anamika (1976)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

It’s as much as a song as it’s a whispering invite in how Lata Mangeshkar teases and titters to the saucy beats of Baahon mein.

 

67. Naam Ghum Jayega, Kinara (1977)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

‘Meri awaaz hi pehchaan hai... gar yaad rahe.’ ‘Nuff said.

 

68. Mata Saraswati Sharda, Alaap (1977)

Music: Jaidev
Lyrics: Rahi Masoom Raza

The singing legend invoking the Goddess of music in Mata Saraswati to Jaidev’s pristine composition is as surreal as it gets.

 

69. Aaj Kal Paon Zameen, Ghar (1978)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Lata Mangeshkar exudes the pure elation and starry-eyed impulses of a woman in love for this beauty from yet another RD-Gulzar soundtrack.

 

70. Salaam-E-Ishq, Muqaddar Ka Sikandar (1978)

Music: Kalyanji-Anandji
Lyrics: Anjaan

The larger-than-life flamboyance of Kalyanji-Anandji’s chartbuster finds a dazzling expression in Lata Mangeshkar’s incessant pleas.

IMAGE: Rekha in Silsila.

71. Sheesha Ho Ya Dil Ho, Aasha (1980)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Words of wisdom on the matters of heart acquire heft under her songstress touch.

 

72. Thodisi Zameen, Sitara (1980)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Her bewitching voice does its thing and then some. That spontaneous laugh accompanying Gulzar’s quirky ‘kauve udayenge’ suggestion is a wonderful example of the same.

 

73. Neela Aasman So Gaya, Silsila (1981)

Music: Shiv-Hari
Lyrics: Javed Akhtar

Hurt and honey coalesce in Lata’s gorgeously, gloomy lullaby for the sleepless in the forlorn follow-up to the Big B’s Neela aasman.

 

74. Tere Liye Palkon Ki, Harjaee (1981)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Nida Fazli

Quite a few ingenious RD creations were wasted in obscure releases, like Lata Mangeshkar’s recital of Nida Fazli’s vision.

 

75. Tere Mere Beech Mein, Ek Duuje Ke Liye (1981)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Amazing how Lata does all sorts of tricky things with her pitch in this popular track and yet sound deceptively simple.

 

76. Dikhayi Diye Yun, Bazaar (1982)

Music: Khayyam
Lyrics: Mir Taqi Mir

Even her worst critics will concede to her artistic supremacy on hearing her spectacular delivery of the Mir Taqi Mir ghazal.

 

77. Aye Ri Pavan, Bemisal (1982)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

It’s quite possible that you will feel a gust of breeze kiss your face even when there’s none while listening to Lata sing songs about the same. Such is the legend’s hold.

 

78. Humne Sanam Ko Khat, Shakti (1982)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Even after years of dizzying success and adoration, Lata’s commitment and detailing to every song shows she never took it for granted. It’s evident in how she elevates this fairly straightforward Shakti song to another level of terrific.

 

79. Aye Dil-e-Nadan, Razia Sultan (1983)

Music: Khayyam
Lyrics: Jan Nisar Akhtar

Of the many gems -- Jalta hai badan, Khwab bankar -- she’s sung for Khayyam in Razia Sultan, the ethereal Aye dil-e-nadan is said to be Lata Mangeshkar’s personal favourite.

 

80. Aaj Kahin Na Jaa, Bade Dilwala (1983)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Lata Mangeshkar’s power of persuasion plays out in full glory while Kishore Kumar duly reciprocates in Aaj kahin na ja’s syrupy exchange of affection.

IMAGE: Madhuri Dixit in Ram Lakhan.

81. Zindagi Pyaar Ka Geet Hai, Souten (1983)

Music: Usha Khanna
Lyrics: Saawan Kumar

Many a times Lata Mangeshkar and Kishore Kumar have performed an individual version of the same song. Often they’re both fabulous and offer unique perspective of a well-rounded theme and thought. Ditto for Zindagi pyaar ka geet hai.

82. Aao Manayein Jashn-e-Mohabbat, Doosra Aadmi (1983)

Music: Rajesh Roshan
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

They’re equally killer at duets. You just can’t miss the duo’s superb synchronisation in this pleasing Rajesh Roshan melody.

 

83. Nindiya Se Jaagi Baahar, Hero (1983)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

Lata becomes one with nature for debutante Meenakshi Sheshadri in the awestruck impressions of Nindiya Se.

 

84. Jaane Kya Baat Hai, Sunny (1984)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

The Queen of restraint taps her spirit and marvel at young romance in one of RD’s more leisurely tunes.

 

85. Dushman Na Kare, Aakhir Kyon? (1985)

Music: Rajesh Roshan
Lyrics: Indeevar

Alternating between emphatic and subdued, Lata Mangeshkar is all stings, scorn and scars in her power packed delivery for Smita Patil’s long-harboured indignation.

 

86. Din pyaar ke aayenge re, Saveray Wali Gaadi (1986)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri

Who can resist the exuberant optimism of Lata’s hope for ache din bubbling in this cheerful song of an utterly flop movie?

 

87. Phir Kisi Shakh, Libaas (1988)

Music: R D Burman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Although the Gulzar film never got an official release, the soundtrack full of peak Lata, is nothing short of gold.

 

88. Bada Dukh Dina, Ram Lakhan (1989)

Music: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

From Madhubala to Madhuri Dixit, Lata Mangeshkar showed her grasp on the spirit and sensibility of every decade’s leading lady.

 

89. Dil Deewana, Maine Pyar Kiya (1989)

Music: Ram-Laxman
Lyrics: Asad Bhopali

An entire generation grew up listening to this love anthem on the loop. Maine Pyar Kiya may not have aged well but Lata’s lovesick wishes haven’t lost their retro appeal.

 

90. Mere Haathon Main Nau Nau Churiyan, Chandni (1989)

Music: Shiv-Hari
Lyrics: Anand Bakshi

There was a time in the 1990s when you could skip the saat pheras but not Lata Mangeshkar’s tall tales about her nau nau churiyan at any desi wedding.

IMAGE: Tabu in Maachis.

91. Suniyo Ji Araj, Lekin.. (1990)

Music: Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar
Lyrics: Gulzar

I can never finish this transcendent Lata Mangeskar tour de force without a lump forming in my throat. Can you?

 

92. Chithiye, Henna (1991)

Music: Ravindra Jain
Lyrics: Naqsh Llyalpuri

Llyalpuri’s dramatic despair and the pain of separation is effectively articulated in Lata’s plaintive crooning.

 

93. Tumse Jo Dekhte Hi, Patthar Ke Phool (1991)

Music: Raam Lakshman
Lyrics: Ravinder Rawal

Lata is upbeat as ever playback singing for a teenage Raveena Tandon in this super fun ode to Mumbai neighbourhoods (quite a few renamed since) from her debut movie.

 

94. Dil Hoom Hoom Kare, Rudaali (1993)

Music: Bhupen Hazarika
Lyrics: Gulzar

Hazarika’s brooding, folksy tune, Gulzar’s quaint intimacy and Lata’s singing prowess -- plenty to hoom and hum about this one.

 

95. Yeh Raat Khushnaseeb Hai, Aaina (1993)

Music: Dilip Sen-Sameer Sen
Lyrics: Sameer

An underrated song for everyone associated, Lata’s tempered form does every bit of justice to Sameer’s moody blues and Dilip Sen-Sameer Sen’s mellow tune.

 

96. Khud Se Baatein, Maya Memsaab (1993)

Music: Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar
Lyrics: Gulzar

Adapting a song (Kajal rateen odhun nela) Pandit Hridaynath Mangeshkar composed for a Marathi film (Ha Khel Savalyancha), Gulzar finds the right words that fit well with the composer’s refined aesthetics and showcase Lata Mangeshkar’s vocal range. Interestingly, the Marathi original was sung by their sister, Asha Bhosle.

 

97. Joote Dedo Paise Lelo, Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! (1994)

Music: Ram-Lakshman
Lyrics: Ravinder Rawal

Lata Mangeshkar and S P Balasubramanium’s chemistry shines through as they haggle over rasmalai, joote and paise no less entertainingly than Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit on screen.

 

98. Paani Paani Re, Maachis (1996)

Music: Vishal Bhardwaj
Lyrics: Gulzar

Vishal’s minimalist touch allows the listener to feel the sting of Gulzar’s grim poetry as well note his confidence in the singer to carry a tune.

 

99. Jiya Jale, Dil Se.. (1998)

Music: A R Rahman
Lyrics: Gulzar

Lata Mangeshkar teams up with Mozart of Madras and the outcome is Dil Se’s delectable fusion of assorted themes and styles.

 

100. Lukka Chuppi, Rang De Basanti (2006)

Music: A R Rahman
Lyrics: Prasoon Joshi

At 77, Lata Mangeshkar proves she’s still capable of a surprise and several tears in her guaranteed-to-bring-on-the-waterworks alliance with composer and co-singer Rahman.

SUKANYA VERMA
SHARE THIS STORYCOMMENT