Number of songs sung - 1

Sreenivas Paruchuri (
Wed, 21 Jan 1998 12:13:02 +0100 (MET)

 Pardon me for posting some messages which have nothing to do with
Ghantasala, but talk about Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bho.sle. But in
the next few days you would see the reason behind posting these 4-6 
mesages. One is my followup on the Usenet news group:
(popularly known as RMIM), and the others by very knowledgable nettors in
matters; Hindustahni film and film music. Hope you find them interesting.

I repeat that, basing on these cross-postings I would like to start a fresh
discussion on the "number games" in Telugu film field as well, esp. IRT

Regards,                --Sreenivas

From: Ketan(
Subject: Re: No. of songs sung by Asha ,Lata etc
Date: 20 Jan 1998 09:58:06 -0800

In article <69oo3i$dkv$>, says...

>   I think Asha Bhonsle is in the Guinness book of world records 
>for singing maximum no. of songs(about 30,000)and Mehdi Hassan
>closely follows.Lata and Rafi are in the 20,000's.Surprisingly
>Mukesh has sung only about 1000 songs.I recall this stuff from
>an article i read long back and does anybody have exact figures.
Just finished going over Vishwas Nerurkar's book on Lata last night, in the
company of the illustrious Mr. Dhareshwar. (By mentioning his name as an
accomplice, Ashok now can't challenge the facts--Ha!) :) This book lists all the
Hindi songs of Lata from 1945 till 1989--solos, duets, triplets, quadruplets
etc. Over the strains of a Hansraj Behl, Mukesh-Lata duet (a song which has
become a must-hear for me on every trip to Ashok's house), we analyzed the
book's statistics.

The discussion started with me mentioning Lata's quote in Raju Bharatan's book.
When Raju Bharatan asked Lata why she had not included a single Anil Biswas song
in her silver jubilee special release, Lata brushed it off by saying that it was
because she had not sung that many songs for AnilB. That prompted Ashok to bring
out the V.Nerurkar book and we found that she has sung for 30 movies which had
AnilB as MD, and has sung a total of 123 songs, 90 of which are solos.  Makes
you wonder what could have made Lata say that.

Anyway going down the list we came across some interesting facts some of which I
am listing here. It's from memory and since then I have literally "slept over
it" so by and large they are exact figures, but not absolutely exact, yet are
within range.

The MD for whom she has sung the maximum # of songs is L-P with a total of 666
songs (remember the book lists songs only till 1989).  S-J follow next with 450
odd songs. RDB comes third with 360 odd songs.  (As an aside, Asha has sung over
800 songs for RDB which includes Hindi, Bengali and non-film).  CR has 240+ with
Lata, SDB 182, Salil 108(60 of them solos), Roshan 146, Sajjad has 15 songs(14
of them solos). If I remember right,  MM has 200-210 songs, and Chitragupt has
over a 100, while Ravi has some 70 odd songs and Naushad has 155. She has 16
songs with G.S. Kohli (OPN's assistant) and 14 with Khemchand Prakash. The
figures for Hemant Kumar, Shyam Sunder, Husnlal-Bhagatram, Hansraj Behl, K-A and
others have slipped my mind at this moment. Interestingly she has sung only one
song under Kishore Kumar in Hindi films, a 70's film Zameen Asmaan. I do have
Bengali songs which she has sung under KK's music direction. KK on the other
hand has atleast 2 Bengali songs under Lata's music direction with "Ami nei ami
mei"(Lyrics by Mukul Dutt) being one. Is this a film or non-film song? This
would therefore be the third instance of each singer singing under the baton of
another singer after Mukesh-MannaD, and KK-HemantK. (We do have a case of CR
singing under the baton of Roshan, but not vice-versa)

Among lyricists, the writer whose songs she has sung the most is Anand Bakshi
with 500+ songs. Next in line we have Majrooh with 460 odd. Third is Rajinder
Krishan with 360+. Fourth is Shailendra with 320+ and fifth is Hasrat with 280+.
Sahir is 6th with 220+ and if I am not mistaken Shakeel was 7th. Gulzar has 55
songs and Kaifi Azmi has 48. Raja Mehdi Ali Khan had a figure in the 60's and
the poet Neeraj had 18. I would say that Neeraj therefore would have the highest
song to hit ratio. I can think of 3 movies--Prem Pujari, Sharmilee, and Tere
Mere Sapne(the Dev Anand one), with Neeraj as lyricist, which would take care of
a large number out of those 18.

Among male co-singers, she has 450 odd songs with Rafi at the # 1 position, and
340 odd with KK. Third is Mukesh, 4th Manna and 5th Talat. (Sorry, but memory
error here). She has only 48 duets with Hemant Kumar.

Among female co-singers she has the maximum with Asha(73) and then with
Usha(nearly 60). Shamshad comes third with 29 and Geeta 4th with 27. She has
only one duet with Suman--I take it this is the one from Chand(MD: HemantK). She
is in the double digits with Kamal Barot and Sudha Malhotra.

All of this brings us to the original question--How many songs has she sung? 
Well the figure listed by Vishwas Nerurkar (and I would say he is accurate) is
5041 songs from 1945-1989.  By the late 80's she was down to singing 30 odd
songs every year, so if we add the period '89-'97 to include 250 odd songs or
so, we would still have Lata singing approx 5300 Hindi songs. Ashok felt that
her non Hindi film output(Bengali, Tamil, Gujarati etc and all non-film) songs
would be about half as much if one took a conservative estimate.  Take the
liberal view and say it is as much as the Hindi film output. Even then we have
Lata just over the 10,000 mark. That is a more realistic estimate.

I shall end this with a mini-quiz. The highest # of songs sung by Lata in any
year is 225. What year was this? Answers can be e-mailed to me or posted.


A Burman fan(atic)