The world renowned songs bird or the Nightingale of South Asia, Asha Bhosle was here in the country to record songs with young talented musicians Bathiya and Santhush-BNS.
One of the most versatile South Asian singers with more than 12000 songs to her credit was here to do two songs in Sinhala and Hindi with Bathiya and Santhush.
The seventy-six year old singer has sung a Sinhala song titled ‘Dedunnakse’ penned by well-known lyricist Nilar N. Cassim together with BNS. The Hindi version of popular ‘Pethu Pem Pathum’ of BNS is the other song sung by Bhosle with BNS. The two songs will be out soon for both the Sri Lankan and Indian markets.
“I have sung in many languages and this is the first time I tried in Sinhala,” said Bhosle who has the record of singing over 14 languages including Assamese, Hindi, Urdu, Telugu, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi, Tamil, English, Russian, Czech, Nepali, Malay and Malayalam.
“The visit to Sri Lanka reminds me of my home town the small hamlet of Goar in Sangli, Maharashtra. The climate, food and trees in Sri Lanka are all just like those in my own village,” Bhosle told the media at ‘Cinnamon Lakeside’ last Tuesday.
Having started her career at the age of 10 years in 1943, Bhosle has been singing for the last six decades over 1000 films winning many awards. Starting from 1967 Asha Bhosle has won seven Filmfare Best Female Playback Awards out of 18 nominations even competing with her own sister Lata Mangeshkar on two occasions. In 1969 Mangeshkar asked not to consider her for the award nominations in order to promote new talents and emulating her sister, Bhosle too requested not to nominate her name from 1979 onward. Bhosle also was the first Indian singer to be nominated for the Grammy Awards.
However initially Bhosle’s breakaway from conventional traditional music was not welcomed by some of the Indian audience and the authorities. She boldly took up the challenge to sing pop and rock music for films proving her prowess to sing different music styles other than ghazals, bhajans, traditional Indian Classical music, folk songs, qawwalis, Rabindra Sangeets and Nazrul Geetis.
“To survive in the industry I had to do something different but this was not accepted by the traditional India. I was not given films and my songs were not played over the radio,” Bhosle said reminiscing her past.
However over the years India accepted that her decision was correct and the music world had welcomed her singing. Bhosle was honoured with the prestigious Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India in 2008.
“It was a real dream come true to sing with a world renowned singer like Asha Bhosle,” said Santhush speaking on behalf of BNS. “What ever the stature she has achieved the underlying reasons for her success we think are her simplicity and humility,” they added.
“This is a big achievement not only for us but to the whole music industry and it would inspire the younger generation to break away from the islanders mentality and go out to the world,”.