‘Koi Lauta De Mere Beete Huye Din’, We remember Kishore Kumar on his death anniversary

Today is the 33rd anniversary of the legendary Kishore Kumar. The actor-singer died of heart attack on October 13, 1987

It is the 33rd death anniversary of Abhas Kumar Ganguly aka Kishore Kumar. The legendary singer-actor died on October 13, 1987 following a heart attack in Bombay (now Mumbai) at 4:45 in the evening, an event that sent shockwaves through the country. Indians, especially the ones from the Hindi belts, were unable to come to terms with the fact that their beloved singer was no more. Others, that connected more with the actor Kishore Kumar, were equally heartbroken. Kishore Kumar’s voice suited Rajesh Khanna so much that he went on to sing as many as 245 songs for him, the highest he ever sang for an actor. Besides Khanna, Kumar also crooned for big stars such as Jeetendra, Dev Anand and Amitabh Bachchan. During the Emergency, Kishore Kumar was asked – rather ordered – to sing for an Indian National Congress (INC) rally in Mumbai, which he denied. Until the Emergency lasted, his songs were banned from playing on national broadcasters, All India Radio and Doordarshan.

The exceptionally talented singer that he was, Kishore Kumar sang in both male and female voices for the song Aake Seedhi Lagi Dil Pe from the film Half Ticket. Kishore Kumar and eccentricities walked hand in hand. Unbelievable, as it may sound, he had put a sign board outside his flat that read ‘Beware of Kishore.’ Once, well-known producer-director HS Rawail, father of Rahul Rawail, visited Kumar’s house to clear his dues. After taking the money, Kumar unexpectedly put Rawail’s hand in his mouth. When the filmmaker asked what Kumar was doing, he said, “Didn’t you see the sign?”

Kishore Kumar was particular about payments and strictly followed the policy of ‘no pay, no work.’ While working on a film, he had once turned up on the sets with half the make-up done on his face. He had got to know that the producer had not paid him fully. On being asked by the director about his half make-up, he had responded saying, “Aadha paisa toh aadha make-up.”

Kishore Kumar had recorded his final song, titled Guru Guru, a day before he passed away. The song, composed by Bappi Lahiri, was a duet with Asha Bhosle for the film Waqt Ki Aawaz.

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