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Published on 19 Aug 2015 | over 2 years ago

Best remembered as "The King of Ghazals", Talat Mahmood was one of India's foremost singing stars that gave India a perfect golden voice. A popular Bollywood playback singer, and a little lesser known actor, Talat Mahmood ruled the Indian music industry for nearly four decades through his soft and mellow voice. With a stunning and acclaimed career to his credit, this celebrated legend was honored with several nicknames, such as 'Velvet Voice of India', 'Man with the Golden Voice', and a 'Perfect Gentleman'. Apart from being a highly-artistic singer, Talat was quintessentially romantic that revealed through his gentle looks, chivalrous manners, and quiet reclusivity. With over 800 songs to his credit, his fans love to listen to his songs till date with the same amount of interest and passion as they were when the songs released on the first day. Early Life Talat Mahmood was born in an exceptionally highly cultured and conservative family in Lucknow. He was one amongst the six children born to father Manzoor Mahmood. Music struck him from the time when he was a child, since his father and sisters were talented singers. With this, Mahmood had just two options: either he should maintain a low profile and remain in the background, or embark a movie career. But he chose to become a singer. He began learning music from a very young age and spent nights listening to the renowned celebrities in classical Indian music of those days. Due to his conservative family background, he did not receive much appreciation and support. However, after a decade, post his much-acclaimed success in the music and acting industry, his family accepted him. Singing Career Mahmood's music training began at Morris Music College, under the guidance of Pandit S.C.R. Bhat in the 1930s. At a young age of 16 in 1939, he delivered ghazals on All India Radio in Lucknow. The famous amongst them included Daag, Mir, and Jigar that caught the attention of thousands of listeners due to his distinct quality of voice from other similar singers. His talent was first noticed by HMV that offered him a contract for his first disc "Sab Din Ek Samaan Nahin Tha" in 1941. His 1944 hit "Tasveer Teri Dil Mera Behela Na Sakegi" sold over 10,000 copies and Talat Mahmood became a national star. This was just the first step towards name and fame. Soon, Mahmood received an offer in acting from the Calcutta film industry, the premier hub of film production in the 1940s. He acted in three movies, namely, "Rajlaxmi", "Tum Aur Main", and "Samapti", which were regional hits. He even recorded several Bangla songs under the name "Tapankumar", most of which were super hits and are still aired on All India Radio as old song reminisces.Read more at www.iloveindia.com/indian-heroes/talat-mahmood-biography .
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