Celebrating REKHA-TOBER with Madam X Comic Strip

Madam X

It is late October, and although I would have very much liked to have done this at the beginning of the month, due to various stupid reasons and my laziness, I couldn’t. What am I talking about? REKHATOBER of course – the birth month of only the best actress ever – Rekha. A few summers back, me and many other Bollywood bloggers, lead by Beth, decided upon doing this monthly feature every year to celebrate Rekha’s birthday. [For more on it, go here for all the posts on Rekhatober].

This year, I cranked up the gear, and went digging into the deep abyss of the internet, to find a 90’s gem called Madam X. So, hit the jump for more on Madam X, our podcast on it, and the awesome Comic Strip to blind your eyes with its sheer awesomeness.

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Saturday Soundtrack: Jaanu Meri Jaan – Shaan (1980)

Shaan - Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor: Jaanu Meri Jaan
Shaan was a game changer for the 1980’s brand of movies. Ramesh Sippy’s 2nd movie after the massive hit – Sholay, this was Bollywood’s take on the many Roger Moore and Sean Connery Bond movies. With larger than life villains and their lairs filled with sharks, gas chambers, sidekicks in uniforms and revolving chairs, Shaan had it all. A Bollywood version of all those elements meant that a smashing soundtrack had to accompany this yummy dish. And Panchamda’s wicked menu offers flavours of Banjara dhinchaak – Yamma Yamma, the diva cabaret – Pyar Karne Waale, the Bond themed – Doston se Pyar Kiya, the  nautanki track – Dariya mein Jahaaz, and the Mazhar Khan green screen extravangza – Naam Abdul Hai Mera. But the one track that cracks the soundtrack open with its insane arrangement of crazy instruments that only Panchamda could’ve brought it together, is – Jaanu Meri Jaan.

And I dedicate my Saturday Soundtrack to this immortal track, which brings many fond memories of my childhood associated to it.
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Tumse Achcha Kaun Hai – R.I.P. Shamsher Raj “Shammi” Kapoor

Shammi Kapoor RIP

As I sit down to write about one of the most vibrant and exuberant actors of Indian cinema, I feel the weight of sorrow on my shoulders, and the tears in my eyes hinder my vision. Shamsher Raj “Shammi” Kapoor, or as we knew him lovingly as Shammi jee, left for his heavenly abode on Sunday morning, 14th August 2011.

He ‘is’ a man who will always remain in my heart and soul as a source of liveliness and an icon that oozes out positive energy, an icon that is ageless in every aspect of the word. From being the naughty and rebellious dancing romantic in numerous 60’s movies to the new age tech aficionado, Shammi jee, I salute you.

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Rewind – Yeh Dil Tum Bin (Izzat – 1968)

The one constant thing that keeps me sane in this stressed out world filled with complexities, is the music of the yesteryears – the Golden era of Hindi films. I try to recapitulate these melodic gems every now and then, and thank goodness for the Indian music channels that still air them. One such gem that I have playing constantly over the last couple of days is – Ye Dil Tum Bin Kaheen Lagta Nahi – from the movie – Izzat.

Ye Dil Tum Bin - Tanuja

Released in 1968, this movie starred Dharmendra in a double role, and Tanuja, alongside the supporting cast consisting of Manmohan Krishna, Lalita Pawar, Balraj Sahni, Jayalalitha and Mehmood.

This track probably features in my list of the most brilliant work of Laxmikanth Pyarelal, and is very unlike the sort of composition they did during the 80s and the 90s. It could be very easily mistaken to a Madan Mohan composition, and the ethereal lyrics penned by Sahir Ludhianvi spell magic, and equally beautiful are the vocals of the lead pair – Mohd. Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar.

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