Talat Mahmood

Talat Mahmood, as a singer, has carved a name in the world of Indian music.  Though he acted in more than a dozen films with top heroines of his time (Suraya, Shyama, Nadira, Mala Sinha, Nutan), he came to the conclusion that his forte would be to concentrate on singing.


Talat Mahmood was born in Lucknow in 1924.  He trained in classical music from Pandit S.C.R. Bhat at Marris College of Music in Lucknow.  His singing career began when he was only 16 years of age.  In 1939, he began singing the ghazals of renowned poets, such as, Daag, Mir and Jigar in his voice, and he swiftly received popularity on All India Radio.


In 1944, Talat Mahmood’s song: Tasveer teri dil mera behela na sakegi became a hit.  From both the film centres of those times:  Calcutta and Bombay – he began to receive offers for acting and singing.  He starred in three regional movies which did well.  He recorded many Bangla songs, under the assumed name of “Tapan Kumar”.


In 1949, Talat Mahmood moved to Mumbai and began to sing for Mumbai film industry.  His popularity rose with the song:  Ae dil mujhe aisi jaghe le chal jahan koi na ho, composed by Anil Biswas for the film, Arzoo.  He sang duets with Suraya, Lata Mangeshkar, and picturised on the great Dilip Kumar.


Talat Mahmood’s voice was both expressive and original in character – the mellowness, the velvet like quality in his tone of delivery was special.  Talat Mahmood passed away in 1998.


The new era of fast music in the late 1960’s style compelled the singer to become reclusive as a singer.

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