A rare image courtesy of DownMelodyLane.com.
I had stopped writing about the Kishore vs Rafi (or Rafi vs Kishore, as the Rafians might like calling it so) debate in 2008, thus hoping to put an end to the ongoing feud in my own weblog, at least. However, this severely handicapped my ability to speak anything about the Hindi movie songs from the bygone era, something I couldn’t think of living without. So, I disown my own resolution in 2009 now. Much better to have a Kishore vs Rafi feud in my weblog than not having anything to speak about, or carrying a fake diplomatic face around… 🙂 I can see the barrage coming from both the Rafians and KK-fans after this, and also the tough moderation job ahead for my peace loving soul here!
But, there is a better reason why I decided to take this Kishore vs Rafi plunge this time. Surely much better than boasting about one’s favorite singer (KK in my case). Hope to see readers making useful observations as this debate builds up. The crux of my today’s post is that the two warring sides in the Rafi vs Kishore feud mostly belong to two contrasting schools of thought. The element of contrast involves not just in the music they might be listening to, but also in the societal, cultural and political backgrounds they might be coming from. They would always fall in two broadly-defined human categories because of this separation. In fact, one could even predict about their individualities depending on whom they liked listening to more, Kishore Kumar or Mohammed Rafi!
Who Are Kishoreda Fans?
They are anti-traditionalists and anti-status-quoists, as far as my assessment says. They are the ones in a society who love watching the barriers of cultural inhibitions and social norms being pulled down. They won’t mind taking to the rooftops and throwing stones from there, if that brought in a redeemed world order. They hate living in a hierarchy and being burdened with undue etiquette and red-tapism. They could be emotionally very strong and susceptible as well in the same proportions. This brings out their positive and negative aspects in equal terms.
Pros About Kishore Kumar Fans
They can easily connect with a wide range of emotions and music genres, without awaiting for the others to start approving them. They can directly connect with a language of art, and appreciate art forms and artisans without awaiting for the world to acknowledge them first. They seem to love a fusion of ideas in music and life in equal measures. Purity is the last concern for such diehard music fans! They live informal lives and do it so wholeheartedly. So much so that when it comes to appreciating the various genres of arts and music, none other will be able to beat them ever. Of course, you must have all such qualities and more in a globalized world, anyway.
They Can Be Ignorant About Their Own Heritage
Since they can appreciate any form of music, does not mean they would easily be pleased by any musical work or genre. Some of them can be hard nuts, in this way. Besides, their defiance of norms would obviously lead them into a disconnect from their own historical and cultural heritage. They can be impulsive, emotional and susceptible to provocations, thus resulting into the roadblocks for their lives.
Kishore Kumar Bulldozed And Redefined Traditions… Some examples based on the inherent moods of his songs…
Main Hoon Jhumroo
Dekha Naa Haaye Re Sochaa Naa
Roop Teraa Mastaana
Jaane Jaan Dhoondhtaa
Jai Jai Shiv Shankar
Khullam Khulla Pyaar Karenge
O Meri Sharmilee
Tere Chehre Mein Vo Jaadoo
Haan Pehli Baar
Main Hoon Don
Khaike Paan Banaras Wala
Who Are Rafi Fans?
Traditionalists and status quoists, I would say! They will be the last ones to rise against their own establishments. They would not mind following etiquette and proven legacies. Newer ideas will have to wait and push harder for getting their approvals. They would always enjoy living under a hierarchy. This would again lead into the positives and negatives of their lives in equal measure.
Can boast to have a vast resource of proven ideas and music to rely on. Will have a greater knowledge-base to put forth their views. They can claim to occupy the soul of Indian society and its heritage. Rafi sang the classical Indian romance and its emotions, anyway.
Outdated ideas. Out of synch from the contemporary world and their own common sense… Couldn’t stop myself from donning a KK-mask here 🙂 With the neutrality over now, let us have the Kishore vs Rafi war started started yet again…and in the due course hope to receive some intelligent comments from the Rafians as well.
Mohd Rafi Sang His Indian Heart Out… Some very obvious examples…
Chaudhvin Ka Chand Ho
Bahaaron Phool Barsaao
Madhuban Mein Radhika
Ke Aaja Teri Yaad Aai
Ye Reshmee Jhulfein
Mujhe Teri Mohabbat Kaa
Tum Mujhe Yoon Bhulaa Na Paaoge
Kya Huaa Tera Vadaa
Likhe Jo Khat Tujhe
Khoya Khoya Chaand
Tere Dar Pe Ayaa Hoon
Chaahungaa Main Tujhe
PS – Exceptions can and do also take place in the real life. My late father was a pukka traditionalist, and a Kishore Kumar admirer as well. Read my above observations with this aspect in mind, for the same reason.