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A song changed this man's life

Here's how 'Papa kehte hain' launched Udit Narayan's career

Sonal Pandya

Singer Udit Narayan who turns 60 on 1 December, 2015 first burst onto the playback scene with the 1989 mega blockbuster Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak which launched Aamir Khan and Juhi Chawla. Today, he is well-known as a three-time National Award winner and one of the respected playback singers of the Indian film industry. But back in the 1980s, Narayan was far from the first choice as a lead singer for music composers. He had sung for a handful of songs for composers Rajesh Roshan and R.D. Burman in films like Unees Bees (1980) and Bade Dil Wala (1983).

His big opportunity came through the composer duo, Anand-Milind, who were getting a chance to score the music for first time director, Mansoor Khan, in Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak. The duo were the offspring of noted music composer, Chitragupta, and Khan, the offspring of the legendary filmmaker Nasir Hussain. Narayan had previously worked on a song for the duo on Tan-Badan (1986) and with this new film, he was present on practically on the songs on the album along with Alka Yagnik.

One of those songs was 'Papa kehte hai' penned by the illustrious lyricist of yesteryear, Majrooh Sultanpuri. The song became a bona fide hit, embraced emotionally by collegians at graduation and sung tearfully at christenings. Anand-Milind won the Filmfare Award for Best Music Director and Udit Narayan, the Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer, his first ever major award.

Since then, he has lent his voice to Aamir Khan and countless other actors for many melodious hits, but he will forever be associated with his first major hit, 'Papa kehte hai', a song he has sung along with his own son, Aditya Narayan, an aspiring singer himself.