After partition of India in 1947, two diamonds came from Pakistan to Ludhiana, Punjab. Their names were Lal Chand Yamla and Chandi Ram Chandi. They came into music industry at the same time. Both took place in the hearts of audience with their brilliant singing skills.
Lal Chand Yamla was born on March 28, 1914 to Khera Ram and Harnam Kaur. He belonged to ‘Chanjotra’ clan of Batwal Community. His birth place was Lyallpur District of Pakistan. He was trained in vocal singing by Pandit Dyall Ji and Chaudhry Majid and his writing skill was honoured by Sundar Das Aasi.
Chandi Ram Chandi also belonged to Batwal Community but his clan was ‘Kaith’. He was born to Sarda Ram and Fatti at village Challi Chak Sargoda of Pakistan. He started singing from a childhood age. He was introduced first to Inderjeet Hassanpuri and later to Sajan Rai Koti who wrote a number of songs for him and made him increasingly popular in the Punjab as well as outside the Punjab. ‘Na Ja Burma Nu’, ‘Chitte Kurte Te Phull’, Mitran Da Challa’, ‘Lai De Challia’, ‘Pana Dane’, ‘Rang Cho Ke Parat Wich’, ‘Bhul Ke Tere Naal Punana’, ‘Bari Barsin’, ‘Masiya Nu Jaan Wallliye’, ‘Charheyan Di Nazar Buri’, ‘Chandi Dian Jhanjaran’, ‘Meri Sass Ne Makki Da Tuk’, ‘Sass Chandri Pehave Chakian’, ‘SasseTera Putt Vech Ke’, ‘Ve Tu Sehar Di Kudi’ and ‘Mera Na Kasoor Sasiye’ were his hit songs. He started the first duet song with Shanti Devi of Chandigarh in the Punjabi Music Industry. After that duet songs became really popular in the Punjab.
Chandi Ram Chandi had five brothers Faqir Chand, Karam Chand, Hari Chand, Sadhu Ram and Babu Ram and a son Sanjeev Kumar from his second wife Poonam Devi. Before Sanjeev Kumar;s birth he had adopted his brother Babu Ram’s son Om Parkash. He died on January 23, 1996 at village Partap Singh Wala in Ludhiana.
Lal Chand Yamla released 11 albums many of which produced some of the best loved songs of his generation. His most popular songs include ‘Das Mein Ki Pyar Wichon Khatya’, ‘Satgur Nanak Teri Leela Nyaari Ae’, ‘Satguru Nanak Aja’, ‘Jag Deya Chanana Tu’, ‘Chitta Ho Giya Lahoo’, ‘Jewani Meri Rangili’, ‘Sacha Souda’, ‘Jodi Vech Ke’, ‘Mukh Tera Chann’, ‘Aar Tanga Paar Tanga’, ‘Jorhi Rab Ne Mila’ and ‘Whisky Di Botal Wargi’. The album which gained the most recognition was ‘Khedan De Din Chaar’. He recorded duet songs with Mohinderjit Kaur Sekhon who was a recording artist with All India Radio, Jalandhar. He also popularised singing of Dulla Bhatti, Shahni Kaulan and Puran Bhagat. His first recording was with HMV in 1952 and till last he remained with HMV. He performed all over the world and many times performed with the late great Alam Lohar. They were also good friends. He also popularised Tumbi, a traditional North Indian instrument. He was awarded Gold Medal by the then Indian Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru in 1956 and a lifetime contribution award in 1989 by National Academy of Dance, Drama and Music, Delhi.
Lal Chand Yamla was married to Ram Rakhi in 1930, with whom he had two daughters and five sons. His eldest son is Kartar Chand and younger one is Jasdev Chand. He died on December 20, 1991 at Jawahar Nagar Camp in Ludhiana.
Both Lal Chand Yamla and Chandi Ram Chandi are regarded as Punjab’s iconic performers who still remain popular in the Punjab.
R. L Kaith
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