Image Courtesy: Google Doodle
K. L. Saigal (11 April 1904 – 18 January 1947), was an Indian singer and actor who is considered the first superstar of the Hindi film industry, which was centered in Calcutta (Kolkata) during Saigal’s time.
Life and Career
He was born on 11 April 1904, in Jammu, in present-day Jammu and Kashmir. He is considered one of the greatest singers in the history of Indian cinema.
Saigal started his career in the early 1930s and quickly gained a reputation as a singer with a unique and soulful voice. He sang in several languages, including Hindi, Bengali, and Urdu, and his songs ranged from romantic ballads to devotional hymns.
Saigal’s popularity skyrocketed after his debut film “Puran Bhagat” in 1933, in which he played the lead role and also sang several songs. He went on to act in many more films and was known for his powerful performances and his ability to convey deep emotions through his singing and acting.
Some of his most famous songs include “Babul Mora,” “Jab Dil Hi Toot Gaya,” “So Ja Rajkumari,” and “Karun Kya Aas Niras Bhayi.” His style of singing and his unique voice inspired many future generations of Indian singers, and he is still widely revered as a musical icon.
In addition to his career as a singer and actor, Saigal was also a talented composer and songwriter. He composed and sang several of his own songs, and his musical contributions have had a lasting impact on the Indian film industry.
Sadly, Saigal died at the young age of 42 on 18 January 1947 due to cirrhosis of the liver. His premature death was a great loss to the Indian film industry and to his fans around the world. His final film Parwana (1947) was released posthumously.
Despite his short career, Saigal’s legacy has endured, and he is still considered one of the greatest singers and actors in Indian cinema history. His powerful voice, unique style, and ability to convey deep emotions through his music and acting continue to inspire and delight fans around the world.
Award and Legacy
K. L. Saigal’s contributions to Indian cinema and music have been recognized with several posthumous awards and honors. Here are some of them:
- In 1995, a postage stamp was issued by the Indian government to commemorate his legacy and contributions to Indian music and cinema.
Saigal’s influence on Indian music and cinema has been immense. He is credited with popularizing the concept of playback singing, in which actors lip-sync to pre-recorded songs. He was also a pioneer in the use of classical Indian music in film songs, and his unique style of singing and his ability to convey deep emotions through his music set a new standard for playback singing in India.
Saigal’s legacy has endured long after his death, and he continues to inspire generations of Indian singers and actors. Many of his songs have been remade and covered by contemporary artists, and his influence on Indian music and cinema can still be felt today. He is remembered as a true icon of Indian music and cinema, and his contribution to the industry will always be celebrated and cherished.
On 11 April 2018, Google celebrated K. L. Saigal’s 114th Birthday with a doodle.