Do you know that Asha Bhosle won the Filmfare Best Singer award of 1974 for a playback song that did not figure in the movie at all?
The award was for Chain se hum ko kabhi aap ne jeene na diyaa, the last song she sang for composer O P Nayyar which was supposed to be used in the movie Pran Jaye Par Vachan Na Jaye but was not done.
This interesting fact figures in music historian Raju Bharatan’s new book Asha Bhosle: A Musical Biography, published by Hay House.
Also soon after her marriage to Bhosle, Asha wanted to give up singing and just be a housewife.
"All that I sought, the, was to keep house and play the mother to my first-born: Hemant. But my husband would not hear of my giving up the mike. He forced me to continue singing.
Left to myself, I would have definitely quit," the author quotes Asha as saying.
On the Filmfare award thing, he says, "In fact I don’t think that this feat of hers has been matched by any singer in the world."
He terms the song as a torch song recorded as we were set to move into the Asha-OP ‘cut-off’ month of August 1972.
"It was recorded during an hour in which both Asha and OP knew that they were through. Yet, at the end of it all, there was always in this remorse that you could not retrieve…," he writes.
Soon Asha and Nayyar parted ways after an association of 15 years.
The song, penned by S H Bihari, was first played in November 1973 on Radio Ceylon and the film which was supposed to picturise it was released on January 18, 1974.
And when the Filmfare awards ceremony came to be held in March 1975, Asha had no motivation left to receive her prize.
Bharatan cites another anecdote connected with the episode.
Anticipating Asha’s absence, Nayyar in a "malicious manoeuvre calculated to rile her" telephoned the Filmfare editor to say that he would be happy as the song’s composer to receive the award on "behalf of his best lady singer ever".
Bharatan’s book is woven mainly around Asha’s musical journey with Nayyar, S D Burman and R D Burman. .