10 comments on “Delightful songs of Suraiya singing for Mehtab (soon to be known as Sohrab Modi’s wife)

  1. Thank you for these delightful clips, Richard. Suraiya’s voice didn’t change much over the years, I must say. I mean this in a positive way, in the sense it remained fresh and young and sweet for a long time. I like the first song very much.
    The prints are so sharp and clear for a 1943 film.
    I knew Sohrab Modi’s wife was a Mehtab, but this is the first time I’ve seen her. Pretty. But I don’t care for her love interest in the film. Who’s he?

    FRIENDS are being mean and unfriendly again.

  2. Lovely songs, never heard them before. The girl is pretty, no wonder Sohrab fell for her. I notice she is repeating her blouses. In Sharabi Madhubala goes through most of the movie in a single sari. Quite different from these days where the costumes change almost mid-scene.

  3. Pacifist, you are welcome. It’s true that Suraiya’s voice remained fresh and sweet. (I was listening to her songs for hours yesterday, and it’s far from the first time I’ve done that. :) ) And I agree that the first song is the best. That’s the one I knew and was watching/listening to for a while before I discovered the others and did this post.

    The love interest’s name is Noor Mohammed Charlie. (I wonder if the last part of his name was a tribute to Mr. Chaplin(?)… It appears that there were Charlie Chaplin fans in Hindi films long before Raj Kapoor.) Apparently, NMC was a comedian in ’30s-’40s Hindi films who moved to Pakistan after Partition. Some text that I saw in a search referred to him as “legendary,” but I couldn’t find much info about him. Anyway, no, there’s nothing spectacular about him, but he can be amusing. I admit, I found him pretty funny sometimes, especially in the third clip.

    Ava, yes, I can see why Sohrab was charmed by her. And that is observant of you regarding the repeated blouses… It seems to me that these Naushad-scored films of the ’40s didn’t really pay as much attention to clothing as they did to opulent indoor decor. :)

  4. Richard, I ‘re-discovered’ Suraiya once I grew out of my teens (until then, hearing her and Shamshad on my father’s LPs used to irritate me :) ). As pacifist says, she is one singer whose voice remained fresh twenty years into her career. In an interview, Naushad had commented that he had tried to persuade her to sing again (after she retired), and she wouldn’t.

    Thanks for the clips.

  5. I am now in a sort of monastery cum university where many of these are blocked and will have to wait until next month. I do not remember many of these. But this is a good place for atheists like me to do mathematics and meditate.

  6. Richard ji,
    Here is some more info about Noor Mohd.Charlie.
    NMC was a young man who was almost in love with Charlie Chaplin and had developed his own style,incorporating some mannerisms of Chaplin,including the typical moustache.He used to do private comedy show in lahore and got his first break in Pak Daman-1932.His catchline of “palat…tera dhyan kidhar hai” from this film became a rage and producers insisted that he repeated in his all films later.Despite existing comedians like Yakoob,Ghori,Dixit and others,NMC became very poplar in the 30s and 40s.
    Some of his films are,Chandrahas,Zarina,pagal premi,Nadra,Farzand e Hind,Toofan Mail,College girl,Raat ki rani,Secretary,Thokar etc.
    He migrated to Pakistan but was not that successful.He came back to India and acted in zameen ke taare-60,Zamana badal gayaa-62,and Akeli mat jaiyo-63.
    When India refused to extend his Visa,he went to USA to stay with his son.He returned to Pakistan only to die on 30-6-83.
    He was Swarnalata’s Hero in Chaand Tara,Leela Chitnis in Gazal and Chandraprabha in Dulha.
    His son Latif Charlie was a famous character artist in Pakistan.He too died 0n 19-7-2011 at 75 yrs of age.
    -Arunkumar Deshmukh

  7. Thank you, Arunkumar ji! That is a lot of information! Why couldn’t all the Web sites that are supposed to be informative about such matters tell me any of this? Well, I am glad that you did. Oh, and your kind words are also much appreciated. :)

  8. I am Noor Mohammed Charlie’s son, Anwar Charlie. Google and Youtube has a lot about him. Taqdeer was one of many hits which was Nargis Dutt’s first movie. Bollywood in 2003 nominated him and Noor Jehan as the top 100 stars of Indian cinema. I can goon and on the number of artists he introduced. From wikipedia to other places says Noor Mohammed Charlie
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Noor Mohammed Charlie (1911–1983), popularly known as Charlie was an actor born on 1 July 1911 in Ranavav village, Porbandar, Saurashtra, India.[1][2] Best known for his comedy roles, he was the first ‘star’ comedian and has been referred to as India’s first comedy king.[3] He acted with several top actresses of those days as a comic hero.

    India’s 1st comedy king
    Saeed Khan, TNN | Jul 1, 2012, 06.03AM IST

    AHMEDABAD: Noor Mohammed Memon was the first comedy star of Hindi films. He introduced Charlie Chaplin’s style to Indian cinema, which was later adopted by Raj Kapoor.

    Hailing from Ranavav village of Porbandar, Noor Mohammed was a big fan of Chaplin. His adaptation of Chaplin was so popular in those days that he came to be known as Noor Mohammed Charlie. He stood out among the band of comedians of the era — Nazir Mohammed and Manohar Dixit. And, his popularity and stardom made him charge even more than Prithviraj Kapoor at one point.

    “Noor Mohammed developed a style of comedy of his own, which influenced great comedians like Johnny Walker and Mehmood,” says film historian Harish Raghuvanshi. “Not only was his method followed, but his films also spurred remakes by other comedians later.”

    His son Latif Charlie, Daughter in law Masooma held their own in Pakistani movies and television. His grandson Dino Ali can be seen on youtube with his own hit songs and another grand son who is a regular in Hollywood.

    His biggest mistake was to leave India for Pakistan.

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