Next Score View the next score

    Manna Dey, Bollywood playback singer; at 94

    Manna Dey received a film award in New Delhi in 2009.
    Manish Swarup/Associated Press
    Manna Dey received a film award in New Delhi in 2009.

    NEW DELHI — Famed playback singer Manna Dey, who recorded nearly 4,000 songs and can be heard in scores of Bollywood films, died in a Bangalore hospital early Thursday at 94.

    Mr. Dey was hospitalized in May and was being treated for a kidney infection when his organs failed, said K. Vasuki, an official of the Narayana Institute of Cardiac Sciences.

    Mr. Dey’s deep voice and mastery in singing classical music-based songs enthralled millions of music lovers. He started his singing career in 1942.


    He sang primarily in Hindi and Bengali and his peak period was 1953-1980. He also sang songs in several Indian regional languages — Bengali, Assamese, Gujrati, and Malayalam.

    Get Today's Headlines in your inbox:
    The day's top stories delivered every morning.
    Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

    He can be heard on scores of Bollywood films and soundtracks, and his stage shows were popular across India.

    His death was being mourned by millions of fans. Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan tweeted his condolences, saying, ‘‘Strange how we connect events of our life with his songs.’’

    President Pranab Mukherjee said that India ‘‘has lost a veteran playback singer, a versatile artist of extraordinary ability, and a creative genius who mesmerized listeners with his enchanting voice.’’

    The Indian government honored Mr. Dey with the top civilian Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 2007.