Legendary musician Bappi Lahiri passed away last night. The artiste shared a very close bond with eminent Bangladeshi singer Kumar Bishwajit.
Kumar Bishwajit reminisces about fond memories of their friendship, and much more, with us.
The two first met in London. "I was with Ayub Bachchu and celebrated actor Mithun Chakroborty was also present," recalls Kumar Bishwajit. "Bappi Da accepted and welcomed me with open arms and always treated me like his younger brother. I gave him the place of a friend and an elder brother. He inspired me."
Their bond, filled with love and kindness, remained the same for decades. "I have countless memories with him, from shows we have done together to evening hangouts, and special occasions we have celebrated like family," shares a nostalgic Kumar Bishwajit.
The two last performed together in Japan where they lived in neighbouring hotels.
Bappi Lahiri was very serious about his live performances. However, during casual meetings or celebrations, he was very open-minded and fun to be around, mentioned Kumar Bishwajit.
"Bappi Da taught me the value of professionalism and dedication towards work, and also demonstrated ways to enjoy life to the fullest," he adds.
Bappi Lahiri's love for music was unconditional. "He thoroughly enjoyed singing and composing songs," mentions Kumar Bishwajit. "Bappi Da had a heart of gold and was blessed with a tremendous ability to draw people towards him."
Kumar Bishwajit was also close to Bappi Lahiri's family. "His wife, Chitrani Lahiri always treated me like family and his son has picked up after his father, taking a keen interest in the music industry," he says.
Bappi Lahiri's association with music goes back into his childhood. He was acquainted with music through his father, the "Hazar Boshor Pore Abar Phire Eshechi" famed Aparesh Lahiri and his mother, noted singer Bansari Lahiri.
"I spoke to him over the phone many times, and he always invited me to visit his house in the US," shares Kumar Bishwajit. "I never could make time and this is one regret I will never overcome or forget."
He mourned the loss of three musical legends. "We lost the nightingale Lata Mangeshkar a few days ago, then Sandhya Mukhopadhyay yesterday and today we said goodbye to Bappi Lahiri. I am finding it very difficult to cope up with it all," shares an emotional Kumar Bishwajit.
"They were musical institutions and their shining voices contributed a lot to Bangla music," he concludes.
Translated by Ashley Shoptorshi Samaddar