32 comments on “Padmini: The Hindi Films (Tom’s new compilation DVD)

  1. Oh, Thank you, Thank you to Tom and to Richard for providing the platform.

    I’ve waited patiently for another of Tom’s treats, and in the form of Padmini it was definitely worth the wait.

    I haven’t even read the rest of the post, Richard. Was too eager to express my joy. :)

  2. Oh its out now. I really enjoyed doing translations of her songs. Padmini’s glory was fading when I was growing up, and I did not think much of her at that time. Because I had to play the videos over and over again to get the words and check my translations, I got to appreciate what a good dancer and actress Padmini was. And beautiful too. If I had to pick an all time favorite, it would doubtlessly be Na Dir Dim, which showcases her perfectly.

  3. Pacifist, you are very welcome, and I am happy to have provided news for you that quite understandably brought you joy. :)

    Ava, thank you so much for playing those videos over and over to get the translations just right! (It must have been quite a bit of work…but very pleasant work, I imagine. :) ) And I’m glad that you grew to appreciate Padmini so much more…

    Among the Hnidi film dances, “Na Dir Dim” has to be “up there” for me too. (Plus the quality of that one is great, and such beautiful music by Anil Biswas/Lata…) Though as to whether it would be number one… Well, it is so difficult to pick my favorite!

    But right now, for the Hindi films, I think it would have to be “Tu Hai Mera Prem Devta,” because it is the best showcase for Padmini-Ragini. (What’s even better than a dance by Padmini? Why, a dance by Padmini and Ragini! That is, if it is one of their best dances…) Also, as mentioned before, it is so nice and unusual to have two great male singers (Rafi and Manna Dey) do vocals for these two women dancing, plus we get a great classical number by…O.P. Nayyar(?!)…

    But then, wow, there is “Aaja To Aaja”… :)

  4. Just downloaded and browsed through Tom’s Padmini DVD. Great stuff! Thanks to Tom and all involved in the making of the DVD. I recommend that everyone grab a copy!…especially for the mind blowing dance-off from Raj Tilak between Pamini and Vyjayanthimala!!!

  5. Thanks, Mister Naidu. Yes, I mention in the PDF that there are three numbers that really stand out for me. But if I had to pick just one (and as Richard mentioned, it’s difficult), it would have to be Aaja To Aaja. Even at nine minutes long, I just can’t get enough if it.

  6. Really nice of him to make such a collection. This is also a comprehensive resource for Padmini fans. Thanks a lot for informing all of us.

    By the way, Iam launching a rare songs website where I will share many audios (mp3s) – http://indianvintagesongs.blogspot.com/

    Hope you enjoy downloading songs – requests and contributions adhering to the 3 rules I have mentioned in my first post are welcome. Have a great time!

  7. Hi, Vidur. Sorry it took so long for me to get back to you on this comment, but I wanted to say, you are very welcome. :)

    Thanks for letting us know about your new site, too – it looks good!

  8. Lovely post – I’m playing catchup on all the posts I’ve been meaning to read and comment on lately. :)

    I’m wondering – Are the videos available by download at the mediafire link better quality or a larger size than what’s on YouTube? I usually prefer to download from YouTube and avoid downloading anything from sharing sites (just wiped my computer from a scary virus!), but I know that YouTube does degrade the quality somewhat and fits it in its own window.

    Richard, I always love how thorough you are in your posts, covering every conceivable detail someone might want to know. I’m going to go home tonight and leave another comment here listing all of the South Indian work I have of Padmini. I’ve been so focused on Kamala Lakshman, but I know that I have a four-vcd-set of classical dances in tamil films that has Padmini ones as well as a DVD I got at AnyTamil dedicated only to Padmini dances (Tamil-only if I remember correctly). I simply haven’t taken the time to upload many of them yet, and would be happy to help contribute to this cause (especially since Tom is very good at getting old videos to look good, a skill which I still struggle with due to the funky aspect ratios).

    I had no idea that someone was helping with the English translations and they weren’t on the source DVD/VCD- that is wonderful! I love how we’re all dedicated to this work. :)

  9. “Are the videos available by download at the mediafire link better quality or a larger size than what’s on YouTube?”

    Much better quality. I’m not exactly sure what you mean by ‘a larger size’. If you’re asking if the file size is larger, then yes, it’s nearly a full DVDR, 4.35GB. The crummy 480p YouTube downloads probably total 500MB or so. If you value these dances, you’ll want the full DVD. MediaFire is safe and won’t infect or otherwise harm your computer.

  10. Thanks Tom – Never mind my larger size question as I was mixing up what standard def is on DVDs (I had hoped maybe they’d be 1280×720!). I always hate how small the resolution is on VCDs.

    OK! My Padmini-only songs DVD was indeed Tamil and has a whopping 41 songs! Some of them are very cute and run the gamut from her standard folksy numbers to songs when she was in her 50s or 60s to gaudy color mass dances to dances with lalitha/ragini… though there are quite a few songs where she is just standing around to melodic Tamil music (looking beautiful, of course). :)

    Here’s a scan of the cover with names of all songs (and beautiful padmini pics): http://i595.photobucket.com/albums/tt39/MinaiMinai/MOre/padmini.jpg

    I have have a few of hers on VCD but most I’ve already uploaded.

    Willing to help out, but not sure how. Feel free to contact me. :)

  11. Minai, I appreciate your compliment about the thoroughness of my posts and I’m sure it could apply to a some of my posts out there :) , but ironically, you chose to give me the compliment for a post in which most of the details had been provided by someone else… That is to say, I was a bit low on energy that week, and so I asked Tom to go ahead when he offered to send me a description with everything he wanted to be known about the compilation. That’s why I said above that it was a “slightly modified version of Tom’s description.” I did put in hyperlinks for a few items that Tom hadn’t asked to link to, and I did give some compliments to Tom himself that his e-mailed description hadn’t contained (and it would have been rather funny, actually, if it had:) )… But really, Tom should get the credit for most of the thoroughness in the description here.

    Regarding the Mediafire site, sometimes when I’m going to Mediafire, my Norton anti-virus will tell me that it’s stopping an attack attempt, but Tom insisted that I pay no mind to such “false positives,” and as far as I know, I haven’t gotten any computer illnesses from any of the files on his share site that I have downloaded. (I’m mentioning this just in case you have a similar experience – don’t panic!)

    Anyway, wow, that Tamil DVD that you linked to looks wonderful! And I love the cover too – it could be header or sidebar-widget material for this blog sometime, if you don’t mind. :)

  12. Oh, I see – I’ll give most of the thoroughness credit to Tom (nice work!), and my compliment still stands in general because you always write your posts with such attention to detail. Thanks for the Mediafire tips, and you are more than welcome to use the DVD image for your blog- it is great, isn’t it (except for the pesky DVD9 logo). :)

  13. Only recently have I discovered the charm of classic Hindi cinema, and even more recently this “dance-off” segment from Raj Tilak. I was mesmerized from the first when I viewed it on Youtube – positively spellbound.

    Tom has truly spent his time well in contributing to the resoration of this genre of Hind Cinema – it has been quite neglected, but this achievement brings out its singular sparkle like nothing else. Absolutely stunning and endearing at once!

    When I found out that the movie Raj Tilak was unavailable but that there was at least a DVD (free!) including that dance sequence, I was ecstatic. But that changed to as much disappointment when I realized that the DVD is only available as a download using specific software.

    I am without a personal computer, and to download such files upon a staff computer at work is unthinkable.

    Here, then, is a quirky favor sent into the cyper realms: are there any of you out there who have made this DVD who would be willing to make a copy and sell it to me? If so, please send a reply to Donald at the email stayandwhisper@gmail.com, and I will be all too eager to pay you for your time and thoughtfulness. I would be gratefulness complete.

    Again, a wonderfully restored sequence – thank you Tom for your work, and Richard for your thorough broadcast of the event.

  14. You’re welcome, Donald, and thank you for your comment. You have inspired me to write a comment that is probably much longer than you expected. :)

    It is less than five years since I became fully acquainted with classic Indian cinema myself. (Even at the beginning of this blog, I was not fully educated in the area – hence the preponderance in the early entries of “global” music and contemporary artists who, at best, sampled classic Indian film music – stuff that seems completely incongruous with everything else here. :) ) But once I started to delve into this area fully, I could not leave it – I was completely mesmerized as well.

    In terms of films, the first ones that really caught my attention were the ’50s and early ’60s films of Raj Kapoor, for their great combination of music, dance, and a real social message (a combination that is certainly unusual in western cinema, especially the relatively recent kind). But the first individual performer who mesmerized me was Padmini. That’s why my own obsession with “Bollywood” actually was initially an equal an obsession with Tamil cinema – because I would look for anything online that I could find which included Padmini, whether it had subtitles or not. :)

    Tom and I wrote back and forth about Padmini over a couple of years, and so I guess I was one of his main “consultants” on this project. Unfortunately, when the time came to “broadcast” the arrival of the compilation DVD, my time and energies were divided elsewhere (I was actually moving back and forth between two towns – or one town and one big city), and so I was not able to put sufficient time into reviewing this great compilation in my own words. So, the “broadcast” that you see here is just an edited version of instructions that Tom sent me himself.

    I also actually never downloaded the compilation myself. I, too, have had great difficulties with getting these things online, either because of limitations in my technological abilities and patience or because of problems with my computer and connection. In recent times, it has been the computer and connection, which have conked out on me a lot whenever I triied to embark on time-consuming downloads. So, I also have depended on the generosity of other people who would send me stuff in DVD form.

    One reason I didn’t download the compilation is because I knew where to get Tom’s versions of all these dances on YouTube, and I had actually uploaded some of them to my own YouTube site. I also have many of the movies represented in this compilation (in fact, I sent Tom some of them, and I even have DVD copies of his improved versions of some of them).

    Now that Tom’s been kicked off of YouTube again we have no idea (as of this writing) if/when he’s coming back, maybe I’ll finally get the final ingredient (i.e., file) to put this compilation DVD together. However, I am very wary of trying to do that sort of thing with this computer – and have been for a while – because it has developed quite a few problems and might be on its proverbial last legs. But in the meantime, maybe other people out there seeing your request would be happy to help you out. ;-)

  15. I was sure I was sending my voice into a cyber vacuum that would never resound again. You’ve restored my faith – if faith in such things is worthy – in the sense of blogs. Thank you sincerely for your response.

    I so share your fascination with this art form of Hindi cinema – meaning, for me, only those films from the 40s through early 60s. What a dynamic visual and audio feast! And those black and white images – such analogous bliss!

    I give the credit for my fascination to Madhubala when I saw her in Sangdil, which is loosely based on the Jane Eyre tale. That film set off a thrill like no other film did for me, and effectively began the obsession. It also outdistanced all the other versions of that movie like nobody’s business.

    Yes, I’m beginning to find out that Tom is no longer with Youtube; the reference above to the contents of the Padmini film being viewable on Youtube is now defunct.

    Somehow I don’t think I will receive much of a actual response to my offer. But it is enough to have seen that dance sequence, and to have received your response, which is disarming in its open and detailed explanation. An interesteing collaboration between you and Tom, to be sure.

    That said, I’m still keeping a glimmer of hope within me yet…

  16. You are welcome – and I am very happy to have restored your “faith”!

    As I mentioned above, I did add some of Tom’s videos to my own YouTube site, and some of those match the videos in the compilation, though others are just earlier versions of the ones that finally landed on that compilation and on Tom’s site. (I have the dance from Raj Tilak, but it’s not the final version.) You can find all of these in my Padmini playlist. You can also find some of Tom’s Padmini videos, etc., at his Dailymotion site.

    You can see the dance from the original/Tamil version of Raj Tilak – i.e., from Vanjikottai Valiban – in a number of places on YouTube including Mr. Naidu’s site, and you can read an excellent comparison of the Tamil version vs. the Hindi version, which includes parallel videos, at Minai’s blog.

  17. Ah, Richard, my desperation is now complete. Thank you very much.

    Did I say in my previous comment that it was enough to have seen the “dance-off” sequence? No, it is not enough. It is not enough to see Padmini on a computer; she must be seen larger, on a screen, on a wall, on the sky…

    I’ve been perusing your Padmini playlist and I see there some of the most luscious and exquisite images that I think I will ever see in my life. Magical, fascinating, hypnotic, graceful……beautiful by nearly every definition of the word – this is Padmini in dance.

    More of a Goddess incarnate than human being, watching her is dream-like and to finish a sequence is as though awakening from a trance. Her film presence is powerful, sublime and captivating all at once.

    Forgive the gushing of a new convert. My exposure to this genre began no more than six months ago, and it has been only days since watching Padmini for the first time, led by my interest in Vyjayanthimala. And now Padmini carries the flame triumphant!

    Thank you, Richard. The quality of your responsiveness in electronica is unique, and I am indebted for it. Wathcing Padmini has become for me an unexpectedly inspiring and joyful experience, and I now see that your involvement in the compilation was much more than significant. My appreciation for it all is great.

  18. I wanted to get in touch with you Richard. In the absence of any e-mail link, I took this course. This is my second attempt. Please e-mail me. This is NOT a spam!

  19. OK, Richard. So you have spam-phobia. I wish you knew how to deal with spam.

    You don’t have to e-mail me. It is too late for my purpose anyway.
    Please just delete this and the previous posting as these have nothing to do with your current blog.

    Shoban Sen

  20. Shoban, there has been no spam phobia. I recognized you and your Website right away, but I have been busy and stressed. You, or at least others, might have noticed that I have been slower in answering comments this week. For instance, it’s a couple of days since I got all these wonderful comments on the Nimmi post, but I have yet to address them properly. But, there are other bloggers who can take much, much longer to answer comments or requests for personal e-mail, and that is perfectly OK. I have left you waiting a total of three days, and now you are accusing me of spam phobia and telling me to forget about it. And now you are asking that I delete these comments. But since people have already seen you accusing me of spam phobia, I am going to leave them up for a while, with my response.

    I think the issue was that you wanted to link to my blog(?)… That’s very nice, but usually, one doesn’t need personal permissions to do such a thing.

    But I am curious as to why you have this sudden interest in my blog when three years ago, you seemed eager to distance yourself from it.

    I recall what happened then… I had written to your Vyjayanthimala tribute site, praising it, and I thought we’d made a friendly blogging connection. But something caused you shortly thereafter to decide that my blog wasn’t for you, because from what I gather, you found it too intellectual or esoetric or something like that?

    I looked at the old comment, and this is what you said:

    “By the way, I am a Hindi film lover, not a critic. So I do not want to go into furhter discussions in the line that you are involved in.”

    And at some point you asked to “cancel” your “subscription.”

    Some day, if you have time, I would like to know why you reached that conclusion in 2009 and why you seem to have changed your mind since then.

    But, anyway, sorry to others (especially Tom) for this strange digression under this post. :)

  21. Dear sir

    The greatest work done for our enjoyment. It was a great experince seeing the PArdesi song. I have never seen something like this in my life( though I have collection of thousands of Audio and Videos). The quality is amazing. It is beyond my capacity to just say thanks to all who have contributed


  22. Thanks for the kind words, Deepak. Yes, if all you’ve been exposed to for Indian classic films is the lousy Indian home media company DVDs and VCDs, then it’s a revalation to see a decent DVD of an Indian film. That song came from the Russian DVD graciously supplied to me by Shalini. Compare it to the atrocious black and white and 4:3 VCD which is all the Indian companies could do for this fine film. Unfortunately, other songs on the Padmini DVD are more typical of the garbage we see in the Indian DVDs and VCDs, and defied my best efforts to try and improve them.

  23. Richard,
    Are videos from Malliga (Mallika) 1957 available? I saw some from the Hini version Payal remixed with Tamil songs but not the original Tamil versions. Thanks.

  24. no print of mallika is available. The music of the film was excellent and it was padmini’s wish before death to watch the film atleast once

  25. I introduce myself as Subhalakshmi, a housewife 67years old.I am an ardent fan of Padmini.I have a good collection of her videos in Tamil. .I don’t have a website nor I have much computer knowledge.As I studied in a Malayalam medium school, I am not fluent in English.So, I am unable to translate. the songs.I think all the songs are in the vcd format.If you are interested I can send you some vcds.I don’t know whether it will be useful to you.But I trust you will surely enjoy the videos as you too are a fan of Padmini.If you send your postal address I can despatch them to you.
    Thanking you,
    Yours friendly,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s