Mehmood was most popular as a comedian but he also assayed serious (Beti Bete) as well as negative roles (C.I.D.). A good number of classical numbers have been picturized on him, many with vocals by his favourite, Manna Dey. He is also credited with introducing R D Burman as a music director in his first home production, Chote Nawab. Later in his career almost all songs picturized on Mehmood were with a comic strain.

FiveSongs – Solos picturized on Mehmood

#1 Song: Hato Kahe Ko Jhooti
Singer: Manna Dey
Year: 1960
Movie: Manzil
Director: Mandi Burman
Lyricist: Majrooh Sultanpuri
Composer: S D Burman
Playing a paanwaala, Mehmood enacts a mujra right in his shop. His histrionics are hilarious, but might cause one to miss the movie’s hero Dev Anand, in the beginning of the song.

#2 Song: Piparwa Ke Patwa
Singer: Mohammad Rafi
Year: 1963
Movie: Godaan
Director: Trilok Jaitley
Lyrics: Anjaan
Composer: Pandit Ravi Shanker
Mehmood plays younger brother to Raaj Kumar in this screen adaptation of Munshi Premchand’s Godaan. On his way back to his village, he sings this song amongst fields and village paths.

#3 Song: Aao Twist Kare
Singer: Manna Dey
Year: 1965
Movie: Bhoot Bangla
Director: Mehmood
Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri
Composer: R D Burman
Mehmood produced, directed & starred in Bhoot Bangla opposite Tanuja, the second movie from his production house & R D Burman’s second movie as a music director. This song was a lift off from the 1960 Chubby Checker song “The Twist”. The main ‘twist’ in the song however was Manna Dey, who was known for his classical based songs. R D Burman reportedly asked him to listen to the Chubby Checker version and persuaded him to sing this song for the movie.

#4 Song: Ilahi Tu Sunle
Singer: Mohammad Rafi
Year: 1961
Movie: Chote Nawab
Director: S. A. Akbar
Lyricist: Shailendra
Composer: R D Burman
Chote Nawab was the first movie from Mehmood’s production house and R D Burman debuted as a music director. Mohammad Rafi sings for a childlike “chote nawab“, played by Mehmood, who in turn sings for his ailing father.

#5 Song: Maine Rakha Hai
Singer: Mohammad Rafi
Year: 1964
Movie: Shabnam
Director: Aspi Irani
Lyricist: Jawed Anwar
Composer: Usha Khanna
Mehmood plays the swashbuckling hero opposite southern star L. Vijayalaxmi in Shabnam. Usha Khanna was one of the few female music directors, who managed to make their mark in Bollywood.