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Ghazal king Jagjit Singh dies at 70
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#1

Renowned ghazal singer, Jagjit Singh, 70, passed away at 8 am at Lilavati Hospital, Mumbai, where he had been admitted to on September 23 after suffering from a brain hemorrhage. It was a voice that mesmerized a nation with a deep brooding sadness and the lyricism of Urdu. Along with his wife, Chitra Singh, he made a name for himself in the 70s and 80s as a leading ‘non-filmi’ voice in the recording industry. However, Bollywood did import his skills selectively over the years. One that comes to mind is Tum Itna Joh Muskura Rahi Ho from Arth. The image of a recently-divorced Shabana Azmi holding back her tears on returning to a cold apartment, while Raj Kiran strums a guitar and breaks into a song became a theme song of sorts for the bittersweet tribulations of urban life.


Jagjit Singh is survived by his wife, Chitra Singh, and though the couple saw meteoric heights, it also experienced dark personal tragedies. Their only son, Vivek, died in a car crash in the early 90s; his stepdaughter from Chitra Singh’s first marriage, Monica, who was a tarot card reader, committed suicide in 2009. Known as the ‘Ghazal King,’ Jagjit Singh’s personal tragedies gave his atmospheric, depressive soul-searching ghazals an emotional edge. Singh was also the recipient of the Padma Bhushan award. He sung in several other languages including Hindi, Punjabi and Nepali. He also collaborated with Lata Mangeshkar for the album ‘Sajda’ which went on to break records for a non-Bollywood album. However, what made him a national sensation was his quintessential single, ‘Hoto Se Choon Lo Tum’, a ghazal that would send his fans into a frenzy at the many concerts he performed at.

His other popular ghazals include Meri Zindagi Kisi Aur Ki, Mere Naam Ka Koi Aur Hai, Apni Marzi Se Kahan Apne Safar Ke Hum Hain, Wo Jo Hum Mein Tumme qaraar tha, Patta-patta Boota-boota Haal Hamaara Jaane Hai, Hoshwalo Ko Khabar, etc. He has also sung for popular movies like Sarfarosh and Tarqeeb.
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