Lata Mangeshkar learnt music in Bhendi Bazaar gharana

Do you know where Lata Mangeshkar, the Nightingale of India, gets her singing style from? It is from the Bhendi Bazaar gharana in Mumbai. 

After her father, Pandit Dinanath Mangeshkar’s death in 1942, Mangeshkar and her family were looked after by family friend Vinayak Damodar Karnataki, popularly known as Master Vinayak, who owned Navyug Chitrapat movie company.

Lata Mangeshkar. Credit: Special arrangement
Lata Mangeshkar. Credit: Deccan Herald

In 1945, the family moved to Bombay, now Mumbai. Once in the entertainment industry, a young Lata started taking lessons in Hindustani classical music from Ustad Aman Ali Khan. The Bhendi Bazaar gharana was founded around 1890 by brothers Chhajju Khan, Nazir Khan and Khadim Hussain Khan in the Bhendi Bazaar area of south Mumbai.

Chhajju Khan’s son, Ustad Aman Ali Khan (1888-1953) and Anjanibai Malpekar (1883-1974), were the well-known exponents of this gharana. After Master Vinayak’s death in 1948, music director Ghulam Haider mentored her. 

Late Vasant Deshpande, Asha Bhosale, Mahendra Kapoor and Manna Dey were among the other disciples of Aman Ali Khan. 

The late Aman Ali Khan has brought several Carnatic ragas into Hindustani classical music. Aman Ali learnt Carnatic music under the guidance of Kalanidhi Bidaram Krishnappa, court musician of erstwhile Mysore State.

The locality close to the Fort area was referred to as “Behind the bazaar” by the British, which in local language came to be known as Bhendi Bazaar.

(Courtesy: Deccan Herald)

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