Monsorate Brothers’ concert took the audience down musical memory lane to Bollywood’s golden era.

The third edition of The Hindu Friday Review ‘November Fest 2013’ in Kochi concluded with a sensational show by Monsorate Brothers and Troupe – ‘Geet Gaata Hoon Mein - An Evening with Kishore Kumar’.

There were many tapping feet and clapping hands, a few wistful faces and some impromptu dancing by members of the audience as the Monsorate brothers and troupe took them down memory lane with some of Kishore Kumar’s iconic songs.

The Monsorate brothers are sons of the late Peter Monsorate, a trumpeter, who was also known as the Harry James of India. Peter Monsorate was, probably, the Hindi film industry’s first trumpeter. All seven of his sons are musicians. Kochi got to see four of the seven brothers – Ronnie (piano), Bosco (trumpet), Rex (drums) and Blasco (trombone) – in action. The eldest, Joseph, was also scheduled to perform but was unable to make it to Kochi for the fete. The show was put together by Light Infotainment. The singers were Ajit Deval, Sandeep Shah, Kiran Shembekar and Ananya Bhowmick.

The troupe presented close to 25 songs by Kishore Kumar for actors such as Dev Anand, Rajesh Khanna, Amitabh Bachchan and Rishi Kapoor.

Gleaming saxophone, shining trombone and trumpets too… it was a treat watching the brothers perform live. It was also a reminder of how film music today is mostly electronic, devoid of such varied sounds. The evening began with ‘Pal pal dil ke paas…’ rendered by Ajit, which had the audience hooked.

The songs were a mix of moods – there was the boisterous ‘Ek Chatur naar…,’ the peppy ‘Eena Meena Deeka…,’ the romantic ‘Dil kya kare jab…,’ and the brooding ‘Aane wale pal jaane wala hai…,’ to name a few. The troupe played songs such as ‘Dilbar mere kab tak mujhe aise tadpaoge…’ for which Bosco had played the trumpet (in the original). The numbers were as representative of Kishore Kumar’s repertoire as of the troupe’s.

The songs chosen were those which focussed on brass arrangements, especially songs such as ‘Jahaan teri yeh nazar hai meri jaan mujhe khabar hai…’ sung by Kiran. What tribute to Kishore Kumar could be complete without the signature ‘yodelling number’? Sandeeep Shah had the audience eating out of his hands with ‘Chala jaata hoon…’

The evening was peppered with nuggets of information, provided by Ronnie, such as how Anthony Gonsalves (in ‘My name is Anthony Gonsalves…’) was not an imaginary person but a known music teacher who taught Joseph and Bosco the trumpet and violin, respectively. He was also Pyarelal’s violin teacher (the music directors for the song were Laxmikant-Pyarelal).

As the evening drew to a close there were requests for songs, there were even requests for the show to be extended. But all good things have to come to an end and so did the show with ‘Lekar hum deewana dil’ and ‘Hum kissi se kam nahin.’