Usha Uthup was supposed to sing Dum maro dum, but…

It’s a story that has been whispered about for years. But on a recent TV talk-comedy show, singer Usha Uthup revealed to host Kapil Sharma why she didn’t sing Dum maro dum from Hare Rama Hare Krishna. The lady with the power-packed vocals was slated to sing the song along with Asha Bhosle in 1971, she recalled, but at the last moment, she was dropped. She told that story on The Kapil Sharma Show, saying that the number was originally planned as a duet between the two singers, but something mysteriously changed. They had spent a lot of time practicing the song and rehearsing together, but “On the day of recording, I wasn't called in. So I ended up calling RD Burmanji to confirm the schedule for the recording of the final song.”

To her shock and amazement Usha Uthup found that she had been eliminated from the entire story. RD Burman told her that the song would be sung solo by Asha Bhosle. The lady showed immense dignity and poise, “It kind of upset me, but I was definitely not angry, as I believe, 'Gaane gaane pe likha hai gaane wale ka naam (each song has the name of the singer written on it)'."

But the duet idea itself was used later in the same film. RD Burman had Ashaji and Ushaji come together for the title track, Hare Rama hare Krishna. Have you heard it?

  • Hare Rama hare Krishna
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  • Dum maro dum
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  • And of course, there was the much reviled newer version, sung by Anushka Manchanda for the movie Dum Maaro Dum. Seen it?
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Which version do you prefer? Tell us!