Mukesh Chand Mathur (22 July 1923 – 27 August 1976) was an Indian playback singer popularly known for being the voice of actors Raj Kapoor, Manoj Kumar, Feroz Khan, Sunil Dutt, and Dilip Kumar. Being the sixth in a family of ten children, Mukesh would listen to his sister’s music teacher from the adjoining room. He left school after the 10th grade and worked briefly for the Department of Public Works. He experimented with voice recordings during his employment in Delhi and gradually developed his singing abilities as well as his musical instrumental skills. Mukesh’s voice was first noticed by Motilal, a distant relative, when he sang at his sister’s wedding. Motilal then took him to Mumbai and arranged for singing lessons by Pandit Jagannath Prasad. During this time, he was offered a role as an actor-singer in the Hindi film, Nirdosh. His first song in the film was ‘Dil Hi Bujha Hua Ho To’ as an actor-singer for the film. He got his big break as a playback singer for actor Motilal in 1945 in the film Pehli Nazar. The first song that he sang for this film was ‘Dil Jalta Hai To Jalne De’. Throughout his life, Mukesh was such a fan of singer K. L. Saigal that in his early years of playback singing, he used to imitate his idol. In fact, it is said that when K. L. Saigal first heard Mukesh’s song ‘Dil Jalta Hai To Jalne do” He believed that song was his own and couldn’t recall when he sang it. Later in his career, Mukesh created his own singing style with the help of musical director Naushad Ali. Naushad gave him songs for the film Andaz. Initially though, Mukesh was the ghost voice of Dilip Kumar in this movie. Then, he went on to deliver many hits for Naushad in films like Anokhi Ada, Mela, Andaz, etc. In 1974, Mukesh received the National Film Award for best Male Playback Singer as well as several Filmfare Awards for songs such as ‘Kai Baar Yuhi Dekha Hai’, ‘Sab Kuch Seekha Humne’, ‘Sabse Bada Naadan Wahi Hai’, etc. In total, Mukesh has sung over 1300 song in his career, before passing away from his worsening heart problem.
The CHDS Radio Dil Se team would like to invite you to listen to our Mukesh daily special today from 10 am – 11 am and 5 pm – 6 pm EST.