Jaan pehchaan ho – Mohammad Rafi – Shankar-Jaikishan | Gumnaam (1965)

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Movie: This song appeared in 1965 Prithvi Pictures’ hit suspense thriller Gumnaam (Anonymous or Unknown) produced by N N Sippy and directed by Raja Nawathe. The movie starred Manoj Kumar, late Nanda, late Pran, Helen, late Mahmood, late Dhumal, Manmohan, late Madan Puri, late Tarun Bose, etc.

A man is murdered and Asha (Nanda) is told about it by phone. Before the man completes the call, he is also murdered. The next shot is of a club, where several dancers are performing this song.

Song: The music of this song was composed by Shankar-Jaikishan and the lyrics were penned by Shailendra.

The gist of the song is, “Let us know each other and live easily. O heart stealers, don’t avoid us. Tell us your names.”

Video: Cinematography is by K H Kapadia. Dance choreography is by Herman Benjamin-Surya Kumar-P L Raj-Satyanarayan.

The video opens with the shot of the main gate with the name of the club – Princes Club. The door opens and activity is detected inside. People, with eye masks, are walking toward the dance floor. Musicians begin to play the drums. Lakshmi Chhaya also joins the male dancers wearing an eye mask.

Some female dancers with eye masks join them. A man wearing contrasting white suit and eye mask begins to sing into the mike near the masked musicians. Lakshmi Chhaya throws away her eye mask. Sometimes the choreography becomes hilarious, what with the dancers shaking like monkeys! The music rises to a crescendo and the video ends with the end of the dance.

Artists: The playback of this song was sung by Mohammad Rafi and the onscreen performances are by Lakshmi Chhaya and others.

Cultural Influence: This typically filmi song showcases the era of shakes and twists and dance type. Mohammad Rafi Sahab is fantastic. The song and the artists are good. The video is watchable.

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