India Entertainment
Some rare bhajans in Lata's rarer voice
May 5, 2007 - 1:37:17 PM

Mumbai, May 5 - Lata Mangeshkar's fans are in for a rare treat. A 17-year-old private recording done by the singing legend for a temple has been unearthed by a quirk of fate. The album, 'Sumiran', is set for an early release.

Lata has always had a soft spot for devotional songs. And singing for her brother Hridayanath has been a special challenge for her.

'By god's grace, all my albums with my brother have been perennially popular. My first non-film album with Hridayanath was 'Mogra Phulela' recorded 25 years ago. And that's still selling,' Lata told IANS.

'Hridayanath is very particular about the way I sing. And I like that. He makes me sing until I achieve the quality he desires. My brother always says, 'In a recording room there are only 10 people to hear you. Once the song is recorded 100 million people will hear it. So who loses face? People will say Lata doesn't sing the way she used to.''

Lata added that her brother is equally particular with every singer.

'He's just as particular with Asha or Usha. Hridayanath has the knowledge to achieve high quality in recording. He not only has a sound base in classical music but he also listens to the old songs of my father - and uses them as a foundation for some of his compositions.

'I'm always on tenterhooks singing for him. My album of 'Meera Bhajans' with Hridayanath is an all-time favourite of mine.'

Another devotional recording by Lataji in today's times seems like a miracle.

'It's divine intervention, no less. A very old friend happened to locate a recording of holy shlokas - done for a temple. There was just one tape of that recording. It was rescued and made technically sound. Otherwise, think of what Lataji's fans would've lost,' said a source.

The Nightingale's devotional albums like 'Ram ratan dhan payo', 'Chala vahi des' and her rendition of the Bhagavat Gita are all-time sellers.

'We want to give this album the marketing spin that would take it to Lataji's millions of fans. This is a 17-year-old gem we've discovered. And Lataji sounds like a goddess rendering the mantras and shlokas,' said a source from HMV.

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