Melody queen Lata Mangeshkar, who has lent her golden voice for over seven decades, turns a year older today as she celebrates her 86th birthday. The Bharat Ratna recipient has not only sung Hindi songs but has also recorded songs in regional and foreign languages.
Starting her career in 1942 with Marathi songs, Lata first ventured into Hindi movies with the song ‘Paa lagoon kar jori’ for Vasant Joglekar’s movie ‘Aap Ki Seva Mein’ in 1946.
Two years later, composer Ghulam Haider gave Lata her first major break with the song ‘Dil mera toda’ in ‘Majboor’ and after that, there was no looking back for the ‘Nightingale of India’ as she is fondly called.
She has worked with all the major composers of the bygone era and mesmerised the current lot too. The versatile singer has covered all genres of music, be it romantic songs or bhajans. The popularity of Lataji and her songs is unparalleled.
Here’s a tribute to the legendary singer who is ‘true to her name’.
Lata was born in Sikh Mohalla in the princely state of Indore
At the age of five, she began working as an actress in her father’s musical plays
The Mangeshkar family’s last name used to be Hardikar. Lata’s father, Deenanath, changed it to Mangeshkar
Asha Bhosle, Lata’s sister, has been officially recognised by Guinness as the most recorded artist in music history. The record was held by Lata earlier
Mohammad Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar did net got along during their career. According to Lata, they fought over royalty rights and vowed not to work with each other. She also claimed that the matter was resolved following a written apology by Rafisaab, a statement challenged by his son Shahid Rafi
Against the backdrop of the Sino-Indian War in 1963, Mangeshkar sang the patriotic song ‘Aye Mere Watan Ke Logo’, which moved then PM Jawaharlal Nehru to tears
Naushad (music director) and Lata’s combination was magical. Their association resulted in memorable songs in ‘Baiju Bawra’ (1952), ‘Mughal-E-Azam’ (1960) and ‘Kohinoor’ (1960). ‘Pyar Kiya To Darna Kya’ from ‘Mughal-E-Azam’ has achieved cult status
‘Gata Rahe Mera Dil’ from ‘Guide’ (1965) remains among her most popular duets with Kishore Kumar
Even though she was nominated as a member of Rajya Sabha in 1999, Lata Mangeshkar did not attend the sessions regularly which invited of wrath of many members of the House. Lata stated ill-health as the reason for her absence
She has sung songs in over thirty-six regional Indian languages and foreign languages
Her first Hindi song was ‘Mata Ek Sapoot’ for the Marathi film ‘Gajaabhaau’ (1943)
‘Kyun Yahan Hota Hai’, a song sung by Lata Mageshkar from ‘Heroine’ (2012), was actually recorded for ‘Corporate’ in 2006, but not used in the latter
‘Aayega Aanewaala’ from Mahal (1949), which was picturised on Madhubala, was among Lata’s first major hits
RD Burman and Lata made for a formidable composer-singer duo during the 1970s. Their popular works include ‘Raina Beeti Jaaye’ from ‘Amar Prem’ (1972), ‘Chadhti Jawaani’ and ‘Kitna Pyara Wada Hai’ from ‘Caravan’ (1971), ‘Aaj Na Chodenge’ from ‘Kati Patang’ (1971) and many memorable songs from ‘Aandhi’ (1975)
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