Legendary Lata Mangeshkar
Lata Mangeshkar is one of the best-known playback singers in the Hindi film industry with a career that has spanned over six and a half decades. She sang in over a thousand Bollywood movies and has sung songs in over twenty regional Indian languages, but primarily in Hindi.
Born to a Marathi family, she was originally named “Hridaya”. Her parents later renamed her Lata after a female character, Latika, from one of her father’s plays. Her father was a classical singer and theater actor and she received her first music lesson from him. At the age of five, she started to work as an actress in her father’s musical plays. Though Lata had no formal education, great things were to come her way. She started her career as a singer and actress with the help of Master Vinayak, one of her father’s close friends. Her first Hindi song was Mata Ek Sapoot Ki Duniya Badal De Tu for the Marathi film, Gajaabhaau in 1943. Her first major break was with the song “Dil Mera Toda,” from the 1948 movie Majboor. But it was Aayega Aa newaala from the popular movie Mahal that gave her a ticket to stardom. The dedicated singer had taken Urdu lessons to improve her accent when singing Hindi/ Urdu songs.
The multi talented Mangeshkar had composed music and produced a few films as well. The Guinness Book of World Records featured her from 1974 to 1991 for having made the most recording in the world. According to the 1987 edition, she recorded about 30,000 songs between 1948 and 1987. She has also received the highest civilian honor like the Bharat Ratna, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan. She has won several National and State Film Awards as well. She received the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993.