His timeless songs and enchanted voice secretly fluttered to those standing on the verge of destruction. This maverick bird of music is a legend of musical world. He is Bhupen Hazarika, a legendary singer of the Indian subcontinent. Today is his 7th death anniversary. On this day of 2011, he died in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. He played an important role in introducing Assamese and northeast folklore and culture in Indian cinema.
This playback singer who is also a lyricist, musician, singer, poet and film-maker altogether was born on 8 September, 1926 to Nilakanta and Shantipriya Hazarika in Sadiya, Assam. Hazarika earned his PhD from New York`s Columbia University in 1952 after completing his BA (1944) and MA (1946) in Political Science from Banaras Hindu University.
Hazarika involved himself with music from his early childhood. He started composing at the age of just 10 years. He debuted as a child artist in Assamese movies. In 1939, when he was only 12 years old, he sang a song titled `Biswo Bijoyi Naujawan` in the movie `Indramalati` that was the second film in Assamese language directed by Jyotiprasad Agarwala. He wrote his first song, `Agnijugor Firingoti Moi` at the age of 13 and he was well on his way of becoming a lyricist, composer and singer. Later he became a director of Asamiya Film.
Bhupen Hazarika got immense popularity in Bangladesh, Assam and West Bengal. In addition to the Assamese language, he was equally skilled in Bengali and Hindi and sang many songs. Of course, many of these songs have been translated into Bengali from the original Assamese. Humanitarianism, nature, Indian socialism, life related thoughts got reflected in his songs. He has always been been vocal against exploitation, oppression and torture.
Bhupen Hazarika was honored with several awards for his outstanding contribution to music. He received the National Film Award in 1975, Sangeet Natak Academy Award (1987), Padmashri (1977), Padmabhushan (2001), Dada Saheb Phalke Award (1992), Sangeet Natak Academy Fellowship (2008).He was posthumously awarded the Padma Vibhushan, India`s second-highest civilian award, in 2012.
He is the first Indian to win the Best Music Director Award for Rudaali at the Asia-Pacific International Film Festival held in Japan.