What strikes you the most about Lata Mangeshkar, 87, is her soft demeanour coupled with her ability to speak her mind without mincing words. The nightingale of India breaks into a childlike giggle when you ask her if she is bombarded with song requests from family and friends even today. The singing doyen was 12 when her father, Pandit Dinanath Mangeshkar, passed away in 1942, but his values and principles have left a deep impact on her. On the occasion of her father's 75th death anniversary yesterday, the Bharat Ratna awardee talked to BT about his teachings and why she isn't keen on playback singing anymore.
I sing even today, it's just that I don't sing for films. I prefer devotional songs. Today's Bollywood music doesn't suit my singing. People like it and I don't want to comment on it or criticise it, but I don't think I'd be able to do justice to it. However, I ensure that I do my riyaaz often if not every day.