‘Versatility’ is the middle name of a popular female singer named Asha Bhosle. Belonging to a family possessing a ‘musical’ background, she has over the years proven her mettle in a variety of genres. In addition, she is the younger sister of the great Lata Mangeshkar, the ‘Queen of Melody’. Now, the question that should arise in your mind is, what makes this talented versatile singer so popular in the city of Mumbai? Here is then presenting you with few facts that will help answer the above question in depth.

a. Who Is Asha Bhosle?

‘Multifaceted’ is a word that perfectly describes this extremely talented singer. She has experimented with a variety of genres in music that includes pop, playback singing, ghazals, bhajans, Indian classical, folk songs, qawwalis, and Rabindra Sangeet.

She possesses four siblings which includes the illustrious Lata Mangeshkar. Her other three siblings include Hridaynath, Meena ,and Usha Mangeshkar. Furthermore, this singer and her entire have contributed in a immensely to the success of the Indian Music Industry. In addition, she has married twice, with the great composer RD Burman being her second husband. She also has three children from her first husband Ganpatrao Bhosle.

b. Where and when was Asha Bhosle born?

8th September 1933’ was when this legendary singer was born. She was given birth to by Deenanath Mangeshkar and Shevanti Mangeshkar in Maharashtra in a small city known as Sangli.

c. When did career of Asha Bhosle begin?

It was in the early 1950 and 60’s that this singer slowly began to make her presence felt in the music industry in Mumbai. She first began by  singing for vamps, or even for movies that were B grade. This was a period in the industry when best songs were being sung by either by the great Lata Mangeshkar or Geeta Dutt. However, the first official break to this singer was given by composer OP Nayyar in the 1956 Dev Anand movie C.I.D. The very next year in 1957 she tasted first success as a singer for the movie Naya Daur, for which the music was once again composed by Nayyar. It was towards the late 60’s for songs in movies such as ‘Teesri Manzil’ that she began getting popular. Some popular songs during this period included “O Haseena Zulfonwali” and  “O Mere Sona Re”.

d. What was the peak of Asha Bhosle’s Career?

It was the early 70’s, which saw the career of this great singer Flourish. With songs like ‘Dum Maaro Dum’, ‘Piya Tu Ab Toh Aaja’, and ‘Yeh Mera Dil’ to her credit she was at the top. However, gradually she began getting stereotyped and was getting offered songs belonging to either the ‘pop’ or ‘cabaret’ genre. And so, to avoid this she began singing ‘ghazals’ such as ‘In Aankhon Ki Masti’ and ‘Dil Cheez Kya Hai’. In fact, she became so good with this genre that she won a National Award for the song ‘Mera Kuch Saamaan’ for the movie Ijaazat released in 1987.

e. The 1990’s and Asha Bhosle’s Career:

It was in the 1990’s that this singer showed great versatility by singing for some really young actresses. For example, in the 1994 movie Rangeela, she sang some chartbusting songs such as ‘Tanha Tanha’ for a then upcoming actress named  Urmila Matondkar. This ability of the singer to adjust with time continued in the 2000’s as well with songs as varied as ‘Kambhakt Ishq’ and ‘Radha Kaise Na Jale’ becoming popular. She even ventured into composing pop albums. In fact, it was in 1987 that Gulzar, RD Burman, and this singer combined to produce an album ‘Dil Padosi Hai’. She also went on to collaborate with international artists such as Boy Geroge, Nelly Furtado, Australian cricketer Brett Lee etc.

f. The awards in Asha Bhosle’s Career:

In a career spanning over 60 glorious years she has won several  awards that includes 9 filmfare awards, 2 National Awards, and countless others. In addition, she has received the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke and the Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India. Furthermore, she was also the first Indian to be nominated for a Grammy Award for the album ‘Legacy’.

It is therefore this constant urge to experiment with music and her ability to adapt to all kinds of genre, is what makes Asha Bhosle one of Mumbai’s true popular icon.

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