It is the birth anniversary of Kishore Kumar, a day worth remembering for all lovers of music. Born 4th August 1929, Kishore was never a trained singer. His biopic mentions that he once got badly injured as a child, cried very loudly for several days, and that “opened” up his vocal chords! It is one of those injuries that changed Indian music forever!
He started his film career as a comic hero in many films, where his costar was Bhagwan. It was films like Chalti Ka Naam Gadi, Nayi Dilli and Hum Sab Ustad Hain that established him as a comic hero of some repute. But his heart was in singing and he dabbled in it, until he was finally discovered and established by Sachin Dev Burman as a playback singer. His early tunes were magical, and best when he gave voice to himself:
Or this one:
Or my favorite:
But of course he is most well known as a playback singer for providing the singing voice to Dev Anand in films like Jewel Thief, Guide. His teaming up with RD Burman led to both reaching unimagined heights of creativity and success. The voice of Kishore also provided impetus to the success of Rajesh Khanna as a hero in the 70s and then Amitabh Bachchan in the late 70s and early 80s.
Songs like Mere Sapnon ki Rani, Roop Tera Mastana, Yeh Dil Na Hota Bechara, Arre Yaar Meri Tum Bhi ho Ghazab, Mere Samne wali Khidki Mein, can create magic today just as much as they did when released. But for Kishore things came full circle when he composed and sang for Door Gagan Ki Chaoon Mein, a film he made:
Kishore, gone but never forgotten – I celebrate the happy day you came into all our lives!