Movie Details of Jewel Thief
Music: S.D. Burman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri, Shailendra
Label: Saregama HMV
Director: Vijay Anand
Director Vijay Anand's 1967 investigative thriller is revered as much for its edge-of-the-seat storyline as for the spectacular music created for it by SD Burman. Working with Majrooh Sultanpuri (who stepped in when Shailendra excused himself from the movie after penning just one song), Dada Burman produced a fine assortment of songs that featured everything from intrigue to romance to sensuality to melancholy. Vijay Anand always did immense visual justice to the songs of his movie, and in Jewel Thief, with Sikkim's beautiful landscape to his aid, the director produced some of his best song visuals. High point of the man's work here was of course the tour de force called Hothon Mein Aisi Baat, with its astoundingly detailed and choreographed video. The composer's opulent orchestration was heavily folk-infused (some of the instruments even featured in the video) with extended percussion-led instrumental passages.
Best Song of Jewel Thief: A difficult pick once again, given that every composition in the movie is a gem, but I go with the melancholic Rula Ke Gaya Sapna, the only song written by Shailendra for the movie. The lyricist was apparently reluctant to write lyrics after his debut production Teesri Kasam bombed, and wrote this one piece on the director's insistence. And what a song it turned out to be. The hopelessness in the words are accentuated by SD Burman's soft arrangement (beautiful use of violins and guitar) and Lata Mangeshkar's soulful rendition. Shailendra unfortunately met with an untimely death (he was just 43) before the movie released, but the song lives on as an evergreen entry in his remarkable repertoire.
On a related note: The opening lines of Yeh Dil Na Hota Bechaara draw inspiration from the marching song Colonel Bogey March (made famous by its adaptation for the movie Bridge on the River Kwai). S D Burman originally composed this song for Guru Dutt's Bahaarein Phir Aayengi, but Dutt reportedly rejected the tune and went with OP Nayyar as the movie's composer.
The Jewel Thief Playlist:
Listen to the entire album of Jewel Thief here: