News

This page contains a list of interesting information and news on Salil I have managed collect from various sources.

- One of the Salil admirers informed me and said that he met the producer of a film called 'Kusumkali'(1980). He was from Patna. After a few years I received an email form the producers nephew and eventually I met the producer Rishi Sharma. It turned out that "Kusumkali" title was changed to "Atmadaan" and it was finally made for National Panorama. Details of this film is here.

- Another Salil admirer told me about another film called 'O Baba Jaan' starring Dilip Kumar. It was to be produced by Dilip Kumar's brother. Songs for 'O Baba Jaan' were recorded by Yesudas and Antara.

- Details of the film 'Ek Akeli' starring Ashok Kumar and Nimmi was published in a newspaper in the early '60s. It was produced by Nimmi's husband Ali Reza and directed by Dulal Guha.The songs were recorded but according to Dulal Guha's son Gautam Guha the film was never made. I saw several photographs about this film.

- Newspaper article in Nov '59 about Kwality Pictures second offering. A film with Guru Dutt and Waheeda Rahman. Producer - R.S.Tara, Story - C.J.Pavri. MUsic director was Salil Chowdhury but was later replaced by N. Dutta.

- '65-'66 - Newpaper article about film "Chhote Admi". Director - C.P.Dixit. Starring - Dharmendra,Sharmila Thakur and Kishore Kumar.

- Salil was signed for the technicolour film "Veeran" (09-76) to be produced by Dinesh Ball of Ball Arts International. It was to be directed by M. Sanket. The story and screenplay was to be by Roshantara Kumar, the dialog by Dolly Thakkar and the lyrics by Yogesh.

- "Rimjhim"- '90s. A Basu Bhattyacharya Film. Has songs by Amit Kumar and Shailendra. Could it be the it changed its name to "Mera Damad" (1995)? This film does have a song by Amit Kumar and Shailendra.

- Discovered a film called "Manohar" (1954) which is basically a dubbed version of a Tamil film "Manohara". The Hindi version has two songs composed by Salil. Details here.

- Salil composed one song 'Naach re dharti ke pyaare' in the film 'Heeramoti'. The music Director was Roshan.This song is based on one of Salil's very early Bengali compositions 'O aayre poushali bataashe' (see Mass songs page) and was used in his first Bengali film 'Rikshawaala'.

- '69 - Read about an Assameese film "More Molua" made with the NEFA background.
- Salil composed music for a Nepali film - the first Indian Music Director to do so.

Jingles and Commercials

Strange as it may sound but Salil wrote the lyrics and composed the music of several 'jingles'. Well, in the '50s and '60s they were not called jingles, rather they were songs that were recorded to promote products or give important message. Salil composed some songs for Rexona Soap, Lipton Tea, Hamam Soap, Cookmi cooking powder, Paludrin tablets and Dulaaler Taal Michhri (Palm Sugar !) etc. He also composed a song warning villagers about Malaria and asking them to take Paludrin ! A couple of record collectors have managed to discover these old 78rpms. Seems like they are from '67-'68. I have managed to get some details about these recordings:
- 'Ato rang roop mayaa' - Sabita for Hamaam Soap
- Hindi, Gujarati and the Marathi versions of the Hamaam Soap was sung by Geeta Dutt.
- Geeta Dutt also sang the well-known jingle for Rexona soap - "Rexona sabun ke gandh se milaa hai". This song has four versions. Although the song is in Hindi the versions have commentaries in Hindi, English, Tamil and Bengali. The record was released in a 78 record and was specially made by Gramophone company of India for Hindusthan Lever Ltd. It was a Lintas record (QC1710).

* 'Chaa bono bihaarini' - song for Lipton Tea sung by Tarun Bannerjee and Supriti Ghosh and directed by Asit Sen. Was released on a 78rpm record. There is also a Hindi version of this song, also releaseed on a 78rpm record.

* A song about the anti-malaria medicine "Paludrin" warning the villagers about Malaria and advicing them to take Paludrin. There is also a Hindi version.

* A friendly but quite informative and educative song to the visitors to the big city Calcutta about the menace of pickpockets on the buses and streets. The song "Kono ak pocketmaarer kaahini shonaai shono" was based on Salil's classic "Kono ak gaanyer bondhu" and a 78rpm record was released.

* Salil composed part of the background music of Bimal Roy's 'Devdas'. The music director was in fact S.D.Burman.

* In 1978 Hrishikesh Mukherjee made a film called 'Naukri' starring Rajesh Khanna and Zahira and also Raj Kapoor ! Although the MD was Rahul Deb Burman, the backgound score was composed by Salil. It's actually acknowledged in the credits but not mentioned in Hamraz's Hindi Film Kosh. I have since learnt that the story is also by Salil.

* I have been told that Salil composed the background music only of 'Anokhi Raat' (around 1959) directed by Asit Sen. The music Director was Roshan.

* Besides composing all the songs and the orchestration in a film, Salil also composed the background score. In fact he was so good at composing the background music that he composed only the background music for around 20 Hindi,Bengali and Malayalam films (see the page backgroundonly). Other music directors used him as well for that. See item#2 above.
There are, however, two exceptions. Salil did not compose the background music of the Bengali Film Raat Bhore and his last Hindi Film Swami Vivekananda.

* Salil wrote the lyrics of about 10 Beatles songs in Bengali and recorded them. Antara,Sabita and Sanchari sang the songs. I have heard the songs and I must say that Salil was absolutely faithful to the original sheet music. He did mention that he found their compositions very interesting. I do remember mentioning to him once that he should think twice before releasing these songs. In the end he didn't.