Rammyageeti (All India Radio Bengali song recordings)
All India Radio, Kolkata recorded songs composed by well-known composers from the '50s and broadcast these songs regularly mostly in Medium Wave (MW). Only lately (post 2010) they have started broadcasting them in FM. All the other regional AIR stations did the same. AIR, Kolkata always had their own recording studio and own group of musicians. Besides songs they also recorded many well-known instrumentalists, including famous Sitarists, Sarod players, Flute players etc. These recordings were never released commercially. This is why these songs are so rare.
Salilda composed nearly 40 such songs. A couple of other composers also composed songs based on his lyrics. Exact numbers are difficult to find since there have never been any publications from AIR about these recordings. These Bengali songs were regularly broadcast under various categories viz: "E Maaser Gaan"(Song of the Month), Rammyageeti ("Songs to enjoy"), "Akashbaanir Gaan" or "Radior Gaan"(Radio songs), "Sangeetanjalir Gaan"(Song offering) etc. Over the last 30 years I have been pain stakingly and patiently collecting these songs from various sources. People have helped me by recording them while they were being played and shared with me. I have used software to clean the songs and tried to improve the quality. The list is definitely not complete ! I know there are many other songs composed by Salilda but I have not received them yet.
Thanks to Ranabir Neogy a lifelong collector of Salil's records had been collecting these songs for years. My initial collection started with what he gave me. After this two other music lovers named Debopriyo Chakraborty and Amit Mukherjee also helped me to add to my collection.
But each one of them had to depend on others to find these songs.
Satyaki Sarkar, a young man with a passionate love for old Bengali songs contacted me a few years back and told me about his love for Salil's music. He had been collecting second hand records for years and has built up a sizeable and priceless collection. Fortunately All India Radio in Kolkata started broadcasting some of the rare Rammyageeti's recently and Satyaki had been tirelessly recording them. Without his help some of these songs would never be available to all of us.
The year of recording given may or may not be correct - that is because the radio announcers rarely gave such details. I have not included the category for the same reason. Please note that I have not managed to get all the songs in this list - yet.
Quite a few songs were released commercially by HMV or Inreco but majority of these songs were never released. All India Radio is a large beaurocratic organisation and always had quite strict rules regarding commercial distribution. Salilda had a special relationship with the management and he managed to get some of his songs released by often changing the lyrics or the music arrangement just to circumvent the law !