K L Saigal

In the initial days, K. L Saigal worked as a time keeper with Punjab railways and thereafter as a salesman before carving his niche in the world of Indian music. One of his earlier recorded songs was “Jhulana Jhulao” in Dev Gandhar raga and it became a huge hit. Since then, there was no looking back for this great singer. He not only started singing but acting as well in Indian movies. Films like Subah Ke Sitare, Zinda Laash and Mohabbat Ke Aason announced his arrival whereas his initial songs hits were Premnagar Mein Basoongi Ghar Main, Tadapat Beeti Din Rain and Prem Ki Ho Jai etc. he had an enigmatic voice which completely managed to floor the audiences.


He was destiny’s chosen child. His moment of immortality came with movie ‘Devdas’ released in the year 1935. He not only performed the role of a heartbroken lover with perfection and ease but also rendered his melancholic voice to few immortal songs. He sung songs like Balam Aaye Baso and Dukh Ke Ab Din from the movie and became the darling of the masses. He perfected several forms of music including Bandish, Ghazals, Khayal, Geets, Bhajans, Hori and Dadra etc. He is also credited to sing in many languages including Urdu, Hindi, Pushto, Punjabi, Bengali and Tamil.


He gave many hit movies like Tansen, Bhakta Surdas, Kurukshetra, Omar Khayyam, Tadbeer, Shahjahan etc. his major hit songs are; Parwana, Jagmag, Rumjhum Rumjhum Chaal Tihari, Baag Laga Doon Sajani, Chah Barbaad Karegi, Ai Dil-e-beqarar Jhoom, Gham Diye Mustaqil and the famous Jab Dil Hi Toot Gaya. He died at the age of just 42 on January 18th, 1947. No doubt, he was the harbinger of golden period of Indian music.


K.L Saigal is known as one of the first superstars of film industry. He is credited to rule the industry long before people even heard of Dilip Kumar, Rajesh Khanna or Amitabh Bachchan. Young generation of India is not much aware of his achievements and contributions to Indian entertainment industry. But to the curious, he is still the biggest inspiration and undoubtedly India‘s first superstar. He was born in Jammu on April 11th, 1904. Not for nothing he inspired India’s other jewels like Kishore Kumar and Mukesh.  These legends initially imitated his style before creating their own signature tones. Mr. Saigal has given many hits and we can still find old generations humming his songs.


K.L Saigal started learning about music from a very young age. He was son of Amarchand Saigal and his mother used to take him to Sufi-Pir Salman Yousuf for music. His first song was a Meera Bhajan at the age of just twelve at the court of the king where his father used to work. Though, his father did not like his choice of singing as a career, K L Saigal still persisted with his choice. Since the age of 13, he vigorously practiced singing for three years and refined his voice. He was immensely helped by other great singers of that period like, Faiyaaz Khan, Pahari Sanyal and Pankaj Mullic. His determination can be gauged from the fact that, he never received any official training in singing and cultivated his own signature style which was greatly appreciated and accepted by one and all.