Kochi: Ayodhya of 1975 had Kishore Kumar singing the one and only song of his lifetime in Malayalam. ‘ABCD chettan kedi, aniyan pedi’ goes the song sung by Prem Nazir on the screenplay backed by Kishore Kumar who passed away this day in 1987 when only 58.
The song was a hit for its attractive tune and variety. Born on August 4, 1929, as Abhas Kumar Ganguly, Kishore Kumar, had no formal training in music. He had said it in an interview that he did not learn classical music. Growing up under the pampering of eldest brother and great actor Ashok Kumar, Kishore was attracted to the industry due to him.
Youngest among the four siblings, Kishore started as a chorus singer at Bombay Talkies, where his brother worked. He first appeared in Shikari in 1946, in which Ashok Kumar played the lead role. Inspired by singer K L Saigal, Kishore imitated his style in his early films. Kishore idolised Saigal, Hollywood actor-singer Danny Kaye, and Rabindranath Tagore and revered them every day.
Kishore was tremendously influenced by playback singer Ahmed Rushdi. Yodeling was the hallmark of Kishore Kumar which probably no one has done in the industry. Yeh dil na hota bechara, Zindagi ek safar hai suhana, and Chala jata hoon are some of his songs popular for yodelling.
He did some memorable roles in Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi (1958), Half Ticket. Kumar acted in and composed the music for Jhumroo in 1961, and wrote the lyrics for the film’s title song, “Main Hoon Jhumroo”. Later, he produced and directed Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Mein (1964).
Padosan 1968 was a real treat by Kishore in which “Mere Saamne Wali Khidki Mein” and “Kehna Hai” are evergreen.
Aradhana 1969 sent him to the top of popularity for rendering songs like “Mere Sapnon Ki Rani”, “Kora Kagaj Tha Ye Man Mera” and “Roop Tera Mastana”.