Early Life of Manabendra Mukhopadhyay
Manabendra was born on 11th August 1931 in Kolkata. His father was Atulchandra Mukhopadhyay. His initial musical training started from his uncles Sidheshwar Mukherjee and Ratneswar Mukherjee in Indian Classical, Kirtan, Bhajan and Bhakti Geeti.
Career of Manabendra Mukhopadhyay
Manabendra Mukhopadhyay released his first album in the year 1953 titled ‘Nai Chondon Lekha Sriradhar Chokhe Nai Nai Shyamo Rai’. Then he released two other records ’Phire Dekho Na’ and ‘Janina Tumi Kothay’ in association with HMV. The lyrics of the songs were written by Sidheswar Mukhopadhyay. The songs of this album were ‘Kirtanango’ (songs based on Kirtan style). Gradually, his albums started to get fame especially the songs ‘Emni Kore Porbe Mone’ and semi classically composed ‘Ghumayona Saheli Go’. Manabendra’s versatile voice quickly started to catch the attention of erstwhile popular music directors like Salil Chowdhury, Sudhin Dasgupta, Nachiketa Ghosh, Satinath Mukherjee, Abhijit Banerjee, Himangshu Dutta, Gyan Prakash Ghosh etc. Some of his associations with them, which resulted in great musical creations, are ‘Ami Parini Bujhite Parini’and 'Jodi Jante' composed by Salil Chowdhury; ‘Mayur Konthi Ratero Nile’ and ‘Tari Churite Je Rekhechhi Mon Shona Kore’ by Sudhin Dasgupta; ‘'Jodi Amake Dakho Tumi Udashi' and 'Sei Chokh Kothai Tomar' by Abhijit Banerjee; ‘Bone Noy Mone Mor’ and ‘Aha Na Roy Na’ by Dr. Nachiketa Ghosh etc.
Manabendra Mukhopadhyay made his debutant playback in Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen starrer ‘Sharey Chuattor’ in 1953. In that film he did a cameo role as well along with Shyamal Mitra. In 1954 he worked in Uttam Kumar’s film ‘Chapadangar Bou’ as a music director. In this film, he brought the flavour of Mahadev’s Gajan with the song ‘Shibo He Shibo He’. These kind of songs are performed in villages of West Bengal. In an interview, Manabendra said, he went to Tarashankar Bandhopadhyay’s house to give an audition as a music director.
In the year 1958, he did playback singing in the film ‘Lalu Bhulu’ in association with the composer Robin Chattopadhyay. In ‘Nilachale Mahaprabhu’ he sang Kirtans among which ‘Jagannath Jagat Bandhu’ was the most popular one. He composed songs in several Bengali films as well. Due to Manabendra's classical potential music composers composed several songs in pure classical mould in Bengali films like 'Rajoni Pohale Sojoni Kothay' by Anil Bagchi in the film 'Shashibabur Sangsar' (1960), 'Andhare' by Gyan Prokash Ghosh in the film Basant Bahar (1958). In 1980’s Manabendra concentrated on singing Nazrul Geeti and Bag Bajarer Gaan. Bag Bajarer Gaan includes the writings of Bhola Moira, Khirod Prasad, Girish Chandra Ghosh in the late 18th century. He exhibited the singing style, which was performed 100 years back in the shore of Ganges in Kolkata.
Popular Songs of Manabendra Mukhopadhyay
Some of the most popular songs sung by Manabendra Mukhopadhyay are:
• ‘Ei Neel Nirjan Sagore’
• ‘Birohini Chiro Birohini’
• ‘Tomar Pother Prante Moner Monideep Jele Rekhechi’
• ‘Tumi Phiraye Diyechho Bole’
• ‘Jar Hiya Akasher Nil Nilimay’
• ‘Dukho Amar Shesh Kore Dao Probhu’
• ‘Surjo Tomar Sonaar Toron Kholo’
• ‘Dukher Pothe Naai Jodi’
• ‘Ei Pran Jharona Jaglo’
• ‘Ore Mon Majhi’
• ‘Ei Ganga Ei Padda’
• ‘Halka Megher Palki’
• ‘Hajar Jonom Dhore’
• ‘Oi Moushumi Mon Shudhu Rong Bodlai’
• ‘Bagbajarer Sidheswarir Annopurnar Ghat’
• ‘Bandhona Torikhani’
• ‘Jaigo Oi Bajae Bashi Pran Kemon Kore’
• ‘Ki Diye Pujibo Bolo Ki Achhe Amar’
Filmography of Manabendra Mukhopadhyay as Composer
Manabendra Mukhopadhyay composed songs in numerous Bengali films, which are enlisted below:
Personal Life of Manabendra Mukhopadhyay
Manabendra Mukhopadhyay got married to Bela Mukhopadhyay. The couple had a daughter, who is also a singer named Manasi Mukhopadhyay. She was born in 1966. Manabendra Mukhopadhyay died on 19th January 1992.