Anand Bakshi - Bollywood’s First Superstar Lyricist - Part I

Aadmi musaafir hai, aataa hai, jaataa hai

Aate jaate raste me, yaade chhod jaataa haiman….

Apt words because truly Man is a traveller and he keeps on travelling, in his travails he leaves behind lots of memories. Today Anand Bakshi, who penned the above lyric, may be no more but his memory is still fresh like a blossoming flower.

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Anand Bakshi gave over 650 films and around 3500 songs. Remember some of the most unforgettable lyrics like Pardesiyon se na aakhiyaan milna, Chinagaari Koi Bhadke...; Mere Sapanon Ki Rani Kab Aayegi Tu ..; Yeh Sham Mastani ..., Dum Maro Dum... Tujhe dekha toh ye jaana sanam…etc.

In fact Anand Bakshi was such a popular lyricist that he was highest paid poet and was regarded as Bollywood first superstar lyricist.

Anand Bakshi was born, in Rawalpindi on July-21, 1930. Since childhood he had intense passion for cinema. His favorite actor was John Cawas and Fearless Nadia. He loved their stunt action moves and used to dream of becoming an actor in Bollywood. His passion for movies resulted in his poor studies as he would abandon school and did acting in local Ram Leelas and Nautankis in his village dramas. This affected his studies hence he failed twice in class VIII and thus was removed from school. His father gave him a job in army. He worked for few years but young Bakshi run away to Mumbai to try his luck in movies.

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In interview Anand Bakshi said, “When I landed in Mumbai I had no godfather nor I had a place to live. I slept many times on the railway platform. Early in the morning I used to start wandering in Mumbai studios. Initially I tried to be an actor but after several rejections I realized acting was not my cup of tea. However I had another passion to pen poems, which film folks used to encourage and asked me to try luck as a film lyricist.”

He continued, “I used to keep a dairy in which I had written many songs. One day a friend of mine happened to read my dairy. He was impressed by my lyrics and recommended my name to eminent actor Bhagawan, who was making a movie BHALA AADMI. It was a small budget movie, Bhagawan dada loved my songs and offered me break and gave me Rs 150.” He added, “When got my first remuneration I had tears in my eyes and smile on my lips thinking I had made a dint in Bollywood.”

But what seemed to be an opening in Bollywood soon dwindled as the movie was a flop and Bakshiji had to start his struggle afresh

1. Aadmi Musafir Hai Happy

2. Pardesiyon Se Na Ankhiyan Milana Happy

3. Chinagaari Koi Bhadke

4. Mere Sapnon Ki Rani

5. Yeh Shaam Mastani

6. Dum Maro Dum

NOTE: In the next issue read how Anand Bakshi landed his first major hit film JAB JAB PHOOL KHILE