Google celebrates the 145th birth anniversary of Indian singer and dancer Gauhar Jaan.She was one of the first artists to record music in the country.Gauhar Jaan’s recorded music was released by the Gramophone Company of India in November 1902.
Gauhar Jaan was born on 26 June 1873 in Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh.Gauhar came of Hindu, Armenian Christian and British heritage, but embraced Islam and remained a devout Muslim throughout her life.Despite this, however, her compositions were replete with verses dedicated to Lord Krishna.
Gauhar Jaan was trained in Hindustani classical music and Rabindra Sangeet under the three founding members of Patiala Gharana: Kalu Ustad, Ustad Vazir Khan of Rampur, and Ustad Ali Baksh in Calcutta.She started performing at the age of 23 in Calcutta, and was called the “first dancing girl” in her records.Gauhar was so flamboyant and fiesty that her photograph adorned the cover of numerous postcards and products, including matchboxes.
Gauhar traveled across the country and performed in several cities.She received an invitation from Krishna Raja Wadiyar IV of Mysore, and moved to the southern city to live out her old age.She was appointed as a palace musician, but within 18 months of that, she breathed her last. She died on 17 January, 1930.