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The period of 1951 to 1975 was characterised by melodious music and songs in Hindi films. Music directors like Hemant Kumar, Naushad, Madan Mohan, S.D.Burman, C.Ramchandra, Shankar Jaikishen, Roshan, Lakshmikant Pyarelal and R.D.Burman produced tunes of eternal melody and sooth, which are difficult to replicate. Their compositions were rendered soulful by legendary singers like Mohammad Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, Kishore Kumar, Talat Mehmood, Hemant Kumar, Manna Dey, Mahendra Kapoor, Asha Bhonsle, Surraiya, Shamshad Begum and Mukesh, who were followed by the later singers like Yesudas, Bhupinder, Shailender Singh, Nitin Mukesh and Mohammad Aziz. Through Radio Ceylon and later Vividh Bharati, the Hindi film songs became a strange pan-Indian link, cutting across geographical and psychological barriers. The Binaca Geet Mala (later Cibaca Geet Mala) of Radio Ceylon (Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation), which was presented by Amin Sayani, became part of every day life for an average Indian. 

Over the years, the melody got lost and the songs became raunchier and vulgar, being often studded with double entendres. The song-and-dance routine is now more systematized and more regular in its patterns. The emphasis seems to be to titillate the audiences with pelvic movements and uninhibited display of curvatures. Melody and purity of music have always been a strength of Indian cinema. Films like  Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, 1942 - A Love Story, Hum Aap Ke Hain Kaun, Dilwale Dulhanya Le Jainge, Bombay, Roja, Raja Hindustani, Pardes, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Taal and Kaho Na Pyaar Hai which have produced several memorable tunes. Illayaraja and A.R.Rehman have produced captivating tunes in the recent times. In fact, Illayaraja is the only Asian to compose symphony for the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. A.R.Rehman's rendering of Vande Mataram in a fresh, new tune has kept the Indian people fascinated.

A.R.Rahman won the Oscar for Best Score and Best Original Song and Gulzar for Best Song (lyrics) for the film ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ (2008).

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