November 2008


Kishore Kumar was born in a Bengali family in a small place known as Khandwa. This place is situated in the state of Madhya Pradesh. He was youngest among his siblings with two elder brothers and a sister (Sati Devi). Both of his elder brothers ventured into acting and established their names in a big way. The eldest one, Ashok Kumar is known for giving numerous hits. Right from his childhood, he was interested in becoming a playback singer. To follow his dreams, he too soon shifted to Mumbai and started living with his brothers.

 

Kishore Kumar had no formal training in music. Knowing that, it feels even more wonderful to see his repertoire. He was a great mimic and his favorite singer was K L Saigal. He always imitated Saigal with perfection. He took his own sweet time to develop his natural style of singing. He continued trying for work and also started to refine his voice. He is credited to give a style known as ‘Yodeling’ which was his signature style. Yodeling is basically an Austrian style which he perfected to the hilt and used it in his various hits. A complete natural, he kept on experimenting with new voices and often non-sensical terms in his songs.

 

His famous hit songs belong to films like, Sharabi, Aaradhana, Kinara, Kasme Vaade, Don, Hum Kisi Se Kum Nahin, Dream Girl, Anurodh, Mr. Natwarlal, Gol Maal, Dostana, Manzil, Padosan, Shalimar, Khatta Meetha, Ghar, Muqaddar Ka Sikandar, Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi, Dilli Ka Thug etc. His combination with Rajesh Khanna and R D Burman is legendary. He gave the maximum hits for these two. He also produced several hits for Dev Anand and Amitabh Bachchan. He won several awards for his remarkable singing. On October 13th 1987, Kishore Kumar suffered a major heart attack and breathed his last. It was a great loss for all of India. But, his eternal songs will keep on lingering in our mind and hearts for many lifetimes.

kishoreIndian music world would have been very poorer without the name of Kishore Kumar. A true genius, he gave numerous hits, still sung and hummed by new generations. This comes as no surprise to know that most of the remixed songs in new age have been actually sung by him. They say, imitation is best form of flattery and that way remixed songs are nothing but a great tribute to this legend. He was born on 4th august 1929 as Abhas Kumar Ganguly. His siblings Ashoke Kumar and Anoop Kumar have also managed to make their marks in entertainment industry. Kishore Kumar was a risk taker and multi-dimensional personality. How many personalities can claim to dabble in field as diverse as acting, singing, composing, directing, producing, script writing and lyrics writing? He did it all. A great maverick, he succeeded in whatever he attempted. He is one of the most enduring celebrities ever witnessed by Indian public. He was a great comedian. His films like Padosan, Chalti ka Naam Gaadi etc can not be forgotten in hurry.

 

Also known as Kishore Da, he was one of the few singers who dared to deviate from the norm and charted his own destiny. He took risks and experimented with different genres and in the process made himself immortal in the annals of Indian music industry. He was equally brilliant in expressing every emotions including, love, sadness, melancholy, romance, naughtiness, philosophical, Qawwali etc.

The first movie song sung by Mohammed Rafi was in 1944 for the Punjabi movie named Gul Baloch. This song proved to be a hit and that led to him getting several offers. His popularity started soaring with the songs, “Tera Khilona Toota Balak” and “Yahaan Badla Wafa Ka”. These two songs gave real impetus to his career. He also acted in two movies named Laila Majnu (1945) and Jugnu (1947). His rising graph amongst top music directors of that era went up with the movie ‘Baiju Bawara’. Songs of this movie broke all records and he went on to become one of the most demanded playback singer of India.

 

his famous movies include names like; Tere Ghar ke Saamne (1957), Pyaasa (1957), Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959), Guide (1965), Aradhana (1969) and Abhimaan (1973) etc. he became the voice of movie stars like Dev Anand, Rajendra Kumar and Shammi Kapoor. One could not imagine any other singer singing for these actors. He gave numerous hits for them and was a crucial factor in their box office success. He was a favourite of music director, O.P. Nayyar and together they produced several melodies which are still etched in the memory of Indian public.

 

Despite the emergence of Kishore Kumar and some great contemporaries of his, his aura remained intact and even during the 1970’s, he gave hits like Amar Akbar Anthony (1977), Sargam (1979), Karz (1980), Laila Majnu (1976), Apnapan (1978), Qurbani, Dostana (1980) and The Burning Train (1980). Termed as king of melody and versatility, he sang with almost all the great music directors of that era. He also won several filmfare and national awards. July 31st, 1980 was the day when Mohammad Rafi left us because of massive heart attack. But his songs will always remain in the memory of Indian public.


Born on December 24th, 1924, Mohammad Rafi is one of the greatest musical talents ever produced by India. He was a numero uno in diverse style of music. One can find many melodious, religious, romantic and nostalgic songs sung in his divine voice. Every style of music was blessed by his voice. One still gets a goose bump while listening to classical songs of great hit Baiju Bawara. His songs were perfect blend of class, melody, style, energy and emotions. His contribution to bollywood is incomparable. Even to the date, he is extremely popular amongst old and young alike and that shows his true talent and timelessness.

 

He was born in a small place called Kotla Sultan Singh located near Amritsar in the then undivided Punjab. Born to Hajji Ali Mohammad, his nick name was “Pheeko”. Right from his childhood, he showed an inclination towards music. His family also supported him and sent him to learn nuances of music from great musicians of that era. He learned Hindustani classical music from great talents like Ustad Abdul Wahid Khan, Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Firoze Nizami and Pundit Jiwanlal Matto.

 

At a young age of 13, he gave his first public performance. His entry into annals of bollywood is credited to a chance encounter with musical legends like K.L. Saigal and composer Shyam Sundar. They identified his huge talent and invited him to Mumbai. Since then, he never looked back.

Mukesh is best known for his melodramatic and melancholic voice. He was just too good at songs of this genre. His speciality was the perfect tone and diction he used while singing the songs. His clarity of voice and emotions also added that extra appealing factor to his songs. He is the best singer when it comes to singing sad songs. He had this inherent pain in his voice which was inimitable. He was a darling of top music composers of that time. His professional as well as personal conduct made him a favourite in the film industry. His songs were a delicate mix of hidden anguish as well as joy and compassion. He was greatly adored by masses as well. Mukesh’s cadence, pronunciation and inflexion made him a legend among legends. Who can forget songs like, Chaand si mehbooba, Dost dost na raha, Chandan sa badan and many others.

 

His singing career took a final turn from movies Mela (1948) and Andaaz (1949). That period saw him giving unforgettable songs like; Jhoom Jhoom ke Naacho Aaj, Hum Aaj Kahin Dil Kho Baithe, Tu Kahe Agar, Toote Na Dil Toote Na etc. thereafter he never turned back. That was also the time, he first sang for Raj Kapoor for his movie Aag. It was year 1948 and since then both established a ‘made for each other’ combination. The pain in Mukesh’s voice ably complemented the vulnerability often portrayed onscreen by Raj Kapoor. This pair continued with each other till 1975. Together they gave us magical hits like, (1951), Shri 420 (1955), Parvarish (1958), Anari (1959), Sangam (1964), Mera Naam Joker (1970) and Kabhi Kabhi (1976).

 

Mukesh breathed his last while on a concert tour to Detroit, U.S because of a massive heart attack. It was a great loss for movie industry as well as the nation. A true legend, Mukesh will always be remembered as an icon in playback singing.