Song Sketch

When Pancham created music with a pat on the back

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R D Burman is known for creating unconventional music through some unfamiliar and experimental sounds. Some of these bizarre sounds have created the best ever songs and melodies in the music world. His fans are accustomed with many such stories about him and his distinctive music. Amrutrao Katkar, one of his musicians, who is a tabla player and majorly a reso reso player in Pancham’s band, recalls one such incident. Trotting along his past days in Pancham’s band, he says the incident happened when they recording for Dev Anand’s film “Darling Darling” (1977). Amrutrao was a big built man and everyone called him “pehelwan”. Pancham pointed him out and asked him to strip off his shirt and sit in the singer’s cabin. Initially, he thought it was one the many Pancham pranks. But when Pancham insisted him, Amrutrao said, “Dada itne saare logon ke saamne kapde kaise utaaru ?” And Pancham retaliated with, “Arrey ..saare kapde nahi..sirf shirt…..”

Moments later, Panchamda walked in and started slapping and patting his back in a perfect rhythmic pattern. He played tabla like piece on his back for the interlude of the song. This back-slapping was used in the song ‘Raat Gayi Baat Gayi’…..from Darling Darling, as the claps. The recording was done in very first take. The quick witted Pancham then said to Amrutrao, “Yeh mere taraf se peeth peechhe shabaashi hai”!!!

Hear for the claps picturised on Zeenat Aman in the song!!

Avid music lover and Dev Anand fan

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