1933 – One of India’s most versatile playback singers of Hindi Film Industry, Asha Bhosle was born.
Asha sang her first film song for the Marathi movie ‘Majha Bal’ (1943) at the age of 10 while her first Hindi song for a movie happened in 1948 with ‘Saawan Aaya’ for Hansraj Behl’s ‘Chunariya’. At a time when singers like Geeta Dutt, Shamshad Begum and elder sister Lata Mangeshkar were the prominent names that lent their voices to the female lead, not much came her way. However, after a long wait it was with ‘Sangdil’ (1952) that she received recognition which was followed by Bimal Roy’s ‘Parineeta’ (1953) and Raj Kapoor’s ‘Boot Polish’ (1954).
It was in 1957 that she achieved major success with B.R. Chopra’s ‘Naya Daur’ in which she sang all the songs for the film’s female lead Vyjayanthimala. The songs ‘Maang ke Saath Tumhara’, ‘Saathi Haath Badhana’, ‘Ude Jab Jab Zulfein Teri’ that were duets with Mohammad Rafi, were hits. Her association with renowned composers like O.P. Nayyar, S.D. Burman and Ravi were highly successful.
In 1966 she teamed up with popular music director R. D. Burman. Together they churned out hit dance tracks like ‘Aaja Aaja Main Hoon Pyar Tera’, ‘O Haseena Zulfonwali Jaane Jahan’ and ‘O Mere Sona Re Sona Re’ (all duets with Mohammad Rafi from ‘Teesri Manzil’). She also gave hits in the form of ‘Piya Tu Ab Toh Aaja’ (Caravan) and ‘Yeh Mera Dil’ (Don).
Asha proved her versatility when she sang ghazals for Rekha in ‘Umrao Jaan’ (1981). ‘Dil Cheez Kya Hain’ gave Asha Bhosle her first National Film Award while she received her second National Film Award for ‘Mera Kuch Saamaan’ from the 1987 release ‘Ijazzat’. Asha also collaborated with Academy Award winning composer A.R. Rahman and recorded for ‘Rangeela'(1995), ‘Lagaan'(2001).
Her private albums with national and international artists have also been quite popular. She has recorded with international stars like Boy George, Michael Stipe, Nelly Furtado, Sarah Brightman etc.
In 1997 she became the first Indian singer to receive a Grammy nomination for her album with Ustad Ali Akbar Khan called ‘Legacy’. In 2000, she was awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in recognition of her contribution to Indian Cinema. She won the Filmfare Award seven times. The Government of India honoured her with the Padma Vibhushan in 2008.
1986 – Star shuttler and Olympian, Parupalli Kashyap was born. Kashyap began training at the age of 11 with S.M. Arif and then moved to join the Padukone Academy, Bangalore. During a medical test he was diagnosed with asthma. It was a setback for a promising talent like him. However, he was determined and with proper medication he overpowered the condition. Kashyap later trained with former All England Open Badminton Champion Pullela Gopichand.
In 2005, he won the National Junior Open Badminton Championships representing Andhra Pradesh. He started featuring in international competitions fromm 2006 and in the very same year caused an upset by defeating Przemyslaw Wacha of Poland who was then world number 19. He again defeated Wacha in their next meeting at the Bitburger Open to advance into the semi-finals. Kashyap regularly won matches against higher-ranked opponents which also helped him jump from 100 to 64 in World Rankings.
He also defeated Chetan Anand, the national champion at the 33rd National Games and won the Gold medal for Andhra Pradesh. Kashyap has been making regular appearances in semi-finals and finals of some of the major tournaments around the world. He was the semi-finalist at the Dutch Open in 2008 and the Singapore Super Series 2009 while he featured in the finals of the Thailand International, Spanish Open and Toulouse Open in 2008. In 2010,Kashyap won the Bronze medal at the XIX Commonwealth Games held in New Delhi.
In June 2012 he overcame World No.3 Chen Long in the Quarter-finals of the Djaram Indonesia Open. He reached the Quarter-finals of the the 2012 Summer Olympics at London becoming the first Indian man to reach this stage in the Olympics where he eventually lost to top seed Lei Chong Wei of Malaysia.
2008 – Eminent violinist Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan passed away. Dextrous and subtle, he was a master violinist. At an early age, he had the opportunity to perform with well known musicians like A.R. Iyengar, S.S. Iyer and Maharajapurm Santhanam. Vaidyanathan was quite innovative and experimented a lot. This led to his association with ‘Thawil’ vidwan Valayapatti Subramanium with whom he performed in more than 3,000 shows.
His contribution to Tamil devotinal music is also sizeable. For years he conducted the ‘Tyagaraja Aradhana’ when he held the post of Secretary of ‘Thyagabrahma Sabha’. He also composed for movies like ‘Vaa Raja Vaa’, ‘Agathiyar’ and ‘Raja Raja Chozhan’ that went on to become hits. In 1993 the ‘Sangeet Natak Akademi’ conferred upon him the ‘Sangeet Natak Akademi Award’ and he was also honoured by the Government of India with the Padma Shri.