Whenever I think of Rangila, the comedian’s role as a singer, the name of music composer Kemal Ahmad comes to mind. The thought of Rangila singing songs was not really a plausible idea but when he sang for his films ‘Diya Aur Toofan’ and ‘Rangila’, his songs were liked by masses. His song from the film ‘Diya Aur Toofan’ “Ga Mere Manwa Gata Ja Re” was appreciated immensely. It was rendered in a straight tune like songs sung by tonga drivers. It was a success for Kemal Ahmad as well though he had entered the film industry in 1967 by composing music for the film ‘Nadira’ but he went unnoticed at that time. The second time I noticed Kemal was his use of Tassawar Khanum as a background voice in his films. Her song “Vei Sab Taun Soheya Haye Ve Mun Mohnia” became an instant hit from the film ‘Rangila’. Tassawur Khanum was famous on the small screen at that time when she used to give a twist to her nose while performing on television. Her song “Dil Main Ik Lehr Si Uthi Hai Abhi”, a Nasir Kazmi ghazal composed by Altaf Hussain was already a popular number. My opinion about Kemal improved when it was revealed that he was the disciple of music composer Rahman Verma who was a melodious music composer in his own right. Before proceeding further, I would like to quote few lines from my profile on Rahman Verma. Before Pakistan came into being, a jori (duo) became popular as music composers on the silver screen namely Verma Ji and Sharma Ji. The word ‘Ji’ stood for ‘Sahib’ (Mister) out of respect in Urdu/Hindi languages. Verma opted to stay in Pakistan and Sharma in India. Verma became a successful music composer of the Pakistani film industry and the latter became a highly successful music composer in the Indian film industry namely Khayyam. His outstanding score for the films ‘Footpath’, ‘Phir Suha Ho Gi’, ‘Shagun’, ‘Shola Aur Shabnam’, ‘Kabhi Kabhi’, ‘Noori’, ‘Khandan’, ‘Umrao Jaan’ and ‘Razia Sultan’ won him the Padam Bhushan Award. Both stated in their interviews at various times that they were pupils of famous music composer Baba GA Chishti. Film ‘Heer Ranja’ was their first movie as duo music composers in India. I woke to the talent of Verma with the song “Jadaun Teri Duniya Taun Payar Tur Jaye Ga” rendered by Noor Jahan and Mehdi Hassan for Iqbal Hassan-Naghma starrer Punjabi film ‘Sassi Punnoo’. As reiterated above, Kemal tasted success from the 1969 film ‘Dia Aur Toofan’. The other successful ventures with his musical score were ‘Rangila’, ‘Dil Aur Dunya’, ‘Doulat Aur Dunya’, ‘Bashira’, ‘Inteqam’, ‘Manji Kithay Dahnwan’, ‘Tere Mere Sapney’, ‘Dulhan Aik Raat Ki’, ‘Waada’, ‘Warrant’, ‘Ann Data’, ‘Ishq Ishq’, ‘Salakhen’, ‘Muthi Bhar Chawal’, ‘Prince’, ‘Behan Bhai’, ‘Dehleez’, ‘Ishq Nachaway Gali Gali’ and ‘Pyar Karn Tun Nein Darna’. As a sample we shall talk about his few films. Some of the films for which Kemal directed the music for were ‘Sar Kata Insan’, ‘Mr 420’, ‘Aandhi’, Nangi Talwar’, ‘Shehnshah’, ‘Yeh Kese Hua’, ‘Khan Dost’, ‘Accident’, ‘Bohat Khoob’, ‘Parakh’, ‘Aakhri Muqabala’, ‘Chor Sipahi’, ‘Ishq Ishq’, ‘Faraad’ and ‘Warrant’ ‘Tere Mere Sapne’ was released in 1975 with Shahid and Kavita as lead pair. Kemal used the voices of Naheed Akhtar, Rubina Badar, Mehdi Hassan and Masood Rana for his songs which are “Mujhe Teri Najarya Ne”, “Kabhi Tou Rukh Se Uthe Ga”, “Tere Ghar Doli Le Ke”, “Main Ho Gaee Dil Dar Ki”, “Bhaven Hove Laraee”, “Koi Mujhe Kehta Hai” and “Sab Kuch Khuda Se”. Another notable song was “Main Tau Na Boli”. ‘Dil Aur Duniya’ produced in 1971 starring Sultan Rahi, Asiya, Saiqa, Munnawar Zarif, Nanha and Rangila had melodious music by Kemal. Runa Laila sang “Champa Aur Chambeli Yeh Kaliyan Nai Naveli” in mellow tones. The lyrics were by Kalim Usmani and is filmed on Asiya. This was 1977 film starring Kaveeta, Nadeem, Ghulam Mohiduddin, Qavi, Talish, Bahar, Farzana, Hanif, Kamal Irani, Khalid Salim Mota, Saqi and Ilyas Kashmiri. This film was directed by Sangita and produced by Tayyab Rizvi. The story was written by director Syed Noor. The poetry was by Tasleem Fazli, Younis Hamdam. Singers were Akhtar, Mahnaz, Hassan and Ahmad Rushdi. Cameraman was Ameerullah Khan. The songs were “Aao Seenay Say Lag Kay Mar Jayen sung by Mahnaz and Hassan, penned by Tasleem Fazli, “Ho Mera Pagla Mann Lehray” sung by Mahnaz. “Ishq Sacha Hay Tou Phir Waada Nibhana Hoga” sung by Hassan and picturised on Nadeem, “Main Jawani Ke Pehle Hi Saal May” sung by Rushdi, penned by Fazli and filmed on Nadeem, “Naina Re Naina” sung by Hassan and picturised on Nadeem, “Tere Mukh Te Malayian Aayian” sung by Akhtar picturising Sangeeta, and “Tu Mera Geet Hi” sung by Mehdi and Mahnaz. ‘Salakhain’ was released on December 23, 1977, starring Babra Sharif, Muhammad Ali, Ghulam Mohiduddin, Qavi, Afzaal Ahmad, Talish and Nanha. This film was directed by Hassan Askari. It was produced by Tariq Masood Qureshi. Its song “Teray Meray Pyar Ka Aisa Nata” was penned by Riaz Arshad and singers were Mehnaz, Mehdi, A Nayyar and Asad Amanat Ali Khan. Its song “Pyar Ka Matlab Nahi Samjhati” was sung by Mehdi and picturised on Mohiduddin. The male version was filmed on Muhammad Ali. Some of the films for which Kemal directed the music for were ‘Sar Kata Insan’, ‘Mr 420′, Aandhi’, Nangi Talwar’, ‘Shehnshah’, ‘Yeh Kese Hua’, ‘Khan Dost’, ‘Accident’, ‘Bohat Khoob’, ‘Parakh’, ‘Aakhri Muqabala’, ‘Chor Sipahi’, ‘Ishq Ishq’, ‘Faraad’, ‘Warrant’, ‘Dekha Jaega’, ‘Shoukan Mele Di’, ‘Bashira, ‘Meri Muhabbat Tere Hawale’, ‘Mujram Kaun?’ ‘Dil Aur Duniya’, ‘Rangila’ and ‘Diya Aur Toofan’. Kemal was born in Gurgaun, Utter Pradesh, British India in 1937. He passed away in Lahore on July 22, 1997. The writer is the recipient of the prestigious Pride of Performance award. He can be reached at email@example.com Published in Daily Times, February 13th 2019.