Bappi Lahiri – India’s ‘disco-king’ passes away at 69

Mumbai: Veteran singer-composer Alokesh alias Bappi Lahiri – nephew of the legendary trio of late Ashok Kumar, Kishore Kumar, and Anoop Kumar – passed away around midnight due to multiple health issues, his family said here.

Wielding the baton from the age of 19, Lahiri, 69, and breathed his last at the Criticare Hospital, Juhu said the hospital Director Dr Deepak Namjoshi.

“He had been admitted to the hospital for a month… But his health deteriorated and his family called for a doctor to visit their home, after which he was brought to the hospital,” said Dr Joshi.

He suffered from several health complications and died due to OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) last night, the medico added.

Lahiri – who attained fame as India’s first ‘Disco King’ – is survived by his wife, Chitrani, daughter Rema and a son Bappa, who has taken to his dad’s musical career.

In a statement later, the Lahiri family said: “It’s a deeply sad moment for us. We are seeking love and blessings for his soul.”

The Lahiri family said that the music maestro’s cremation will take place after the arrival of his son Bappa from Los Angeles on February 17.

Born in West Bengal, Lahiri’s first composition was for a Bengali film, ‘Daadu’ (1972), followed by a Bollywood film ‘Nanha Shikari’ (1973).

He arrived on the musical scene in a crescendo with ‘Zakhmee’ (1975) for which he composed music and also sang, pushing him to upper echelons at a very young age of barely 22.

During his career, he directed top legends like Mohammed Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, his ‘Mama’ Kishore Kumar, Asha Bhonsle, Usha Uthup, and many more to create waves with soulful, racy, vibrant, and rhythmic music.

Lahiri created musical tsunamis with his compositions in ‘Chalte, Chalte’ (1976), ‘Suraksha’ with the pacy ‘Gunmaster G9’ becoming as popular as 007, and “Lahu Ke Do Rang” (both 1979).

Then followed ‘Manokaamna’ (1980) with several lilting numbers, ‘Wardat’ (1981), the raging music of “Disco Dancer” that had the nation dancing to his tunes with ‘Jimmy Jimmy, Aaja Aaja’, and ‘Namak Halal’ (both, 1982), the foot-tapping ‘Himmatwala’ (1983), ‘Sharaabi’ (1984) with the unforgettable ‘Log Kehte Hain, Main Sharaabi Hoon’, “Adventures of Tarzan” (1985) in which Kimi Katkar cavorted onscreen crooning ‘Tarzan, O My Tarzan’, ‘Dance Dance’ (1987).

In 1990, he took the industry by storm with superhit music for ‘Naakabandi’ like the ever-green ‘Naakabandi-Naakabandi’ sung by Usha Uthup and Bappi himself, ‘Ghayal’, ‘Aaj Ka Arjun’, ‘Thanedaar’, ‘Sailaab’.

Lahiri also composed extensively for regional films in Bengali, Telugu, Kannada, Gujarati, Tamil. Besides, he also composed English songs and flirted with politics briefly with the Bharatiya Janata Party. (Quaid Najmi/IANS)

President, PM hail the ‘matchless singer-composer’

New Delhi: “A matchless singer-composer” is how veteran musician Bappi Lahiri was remembered by President Ram Nath Kovind.

President Kovind said: “His songs found popularity not only in India but abroad. His diverse range included youthful as well as soulful melodies. His memorable songs will continue to delight listeners for a long time. Condolences to his family and fans.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed the sentiments of the music maker’s followers when he tweeted: “Shri Bappi Lahiri Ji’s music was all-encompassing, beautifully expressing diverse emotions. People across generations could relate to his works. His lively nature will be missed by everyone. Saddened by his demise. Condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti.”

Union Home Minister Amit Shah said: “Pained to learn about the passing away of legendary singer and composer, Bappi Lahiri Ji. His demise leaves a big void in the world of Indian music. Bappi Da will be remembered for his versatile singing and lively nature. My condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti!”

Bappi Lahiri with legendary singers Lata Mangeshkar and Kishore Kumar.

Images courtesy of (Photo courtesy: businesstoday.in) and (Photo courtesy: Presswire18).

Share this post