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Singer Shamshad Begum is dead

Indo Asian News Service
24 April 2013

Mumbai, April 24 (IANS) Renowned playback singer Shamshad Begum, who gave voice to classics like "Mere piya gaye rangoon" and "Kabhi aar kabhi paar", has died here, family sources said Wednesday. She was 94.

Shamshad Begum, who had been ailing for the past few months, died Tuesday evening. A widow since 1955, she lived with her daughter Usha Ratra.

The funeral ceremonies were conducted Tuesday night at a small, private affair with a few friends and admirers in Andheri east.

Amongst the first woman playback singers in the Hindi film industry, Shamshad Begum was born in April 14, 1919 in Amritsar, Punjab. Interested in singing from a young age, she got her first break with Peshawar Radio, Lahore, in December 1947.

Later, her voice with a nasal tinge became a hit and she sang for top heroines of the era, leaving behind a rich legacy of her soulful tunes.

Some of her famous songs include "Kajra mohabbat wala", "Leke pehla pehla pyar", "Kahinpe nigahen, kahinpe nishaana", "Chhod babul ka ghar", "Saiyan dilme Aana re" and "Teri mehfil me kismat ajmaa kar hum bhi dekhenge".

She was a favourite of music directors like Naushad Ali and O.P. Nayyar.

Besides Hindi, Shamshad Begum also sang in Punjabi, Bengali and other Indian languages.

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