Sachin Dev Burman or famously known as S. D. Burman is a legendary singer and music director of Bollywood. He is popularly attributed as ‘Burman Da’ and is regarded as one of the prominent composers of the Indian Music Industry. He is known as the ‘Grand old man of music’ in the Indian Music Industry.
S. D. Burman (Sachin Dev Burman) was born on Monday, 1 October 1906 (age 69 years at the time of death) in Comilla, Tripura, British India. His zodiac sign is Libra. He did his schooling from Kumar Boarding in Agartala, Tripura and Yusuf School, Comilla. He completed his graduation in arts from Victoria College, Comilla.
Height (approx.): 6′ 0″
Eye Colour: Black
Hair Colour: Black
Family, Caste & Wife
He was born in the royal family of Tripura. His father was ‘Mahamanyabar Rajkumar Nabadwipchandra Dev Burman’ and mother ‘Nirmala Devi’ was the royal princess of Manipur. He had 6 siblings- four brothers (all elder) and two sisters. When he was two years old, his mother died.
In 1930, he started a music school ‘Sur Mandir,’ and ‘Meera Dasgupta’ was one of his students. Burman liked her simplicity and fell in love with her. On 10 February 1938, they both got married. Reportedly, there were some complications after their marriage. She was from a well-educated family but not from a royal family. Therefore, Sachin’s family did not accept her as their daughter-in-law, this made Sachin very upset and he decided to break all the ties with them.
On 27 June 1939, they were blessed with a baby boy ‘R. D. Burman (Rahul Dev Burman),’ the renowned veteran Bollywood singer and music composer. He is the only son of Sachin Dev Burman. Later, Rahul got married to the legendary singer ‘Asha Bhosle.’
Sachin got initial training in music from his father. From 1925 to 1930, he got professional training in singing from K. C. Dey. Later, he was trained under Bhishmadev Chattopadhyay, Khalifa Badal Khan (the sarangi maestro), and Ustad Allauddin Khan, the sarodist.
In the late ‘20s, he started working as a radio singer in the ‘AIR Calcutta.’ In 1932, his first record was released with Khamaj, ‘E Pathey Aaj Eso Priyo’ on one side, and the folk ‘Dakle Kokil Roj Bihane’ on the reverse side with the Hindustan records.
In 1934, he sang Thumri at the ‘All India Music Conference’ and Bengal Music Conference, Kolkata, which was inaugurated by Rabindranath Tagore.
He composed music for the Bengali plays ‘Sati Tirtha’ and ‘Janani.’ His first film as a music director was ‘Rajgee’ (1937), a Bengali movie. In 1944, Sasadhar Mukherjee invited him to Mumbai to give music for the movie- Shikari (1946) and Aath Din (1946). Burman was disappointed with the materialism in the Indian music industry, so, he decided to return to Calcutta. The veteran actor Ashok Kumar (brother of Kishore Kumar) insisted him to stay back and direct the music for the movie Mashaal (1950). It was a big hit and later, he worked with Dev Anand’s Nav Ketan Productions in Taxi Driver (1954), Nau do Gyarah (1957), and Kala Paani (1958).
He also worked in epic movies like Pyaasa (1957), Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959), and Devdas (1955). He lent his voice in some movies as a bardic commentator.
Some of his other hit movies are Guide (1965), Tere Mere Sapne (1971), Sharmeelee (1971), Abhimaan (1973), Prem Nagar (1974), Sagina (1974), Chupke Chupke (1975), and Mili (1975). After rehearsing the song “Badi Sooni Sooni” (sung by Kishore Kumar) for the film ‘Mili’ S. D. Burman went in a coma. The song went on to become one of the favourite songs of Kishore Kumar.
Sachin had a fight with the singer ‘Sahir Ludhianvi.’ The issue was whether lyrics is more creative or the music in a song. This fight became so big that they had never worked with each other again.
He was a strict music director and could not take the starry tantrums of the legendary singer ‘Lata Mangeshkar.’ So, he decided not to work with her. Later, on the request of ‘R. D. Burman,’ they started working together.
Awards & Honours
National Film Awards
- 1970: Best Male Playback Singer- ‘Safal Hogi Teri Aradhana’ from Aradhana
- 1974: Best Music Direction- ‘Zindagi’ from Zindagi
- 1969: For contribution to the music industry
- 1954: Best Music Director Award for Taxi Driver
- 1973: Best Music Director Award for Abhimaan
BFJA (Bengal Film Journalists’ Association Awards)
- 1965: Best Music (Hindi Section) for Teen Devian
- 1966: Best Music (Hindi Section) for Guide
- 1966: Best Male Playback Singer (Hindi Section) for Guide
- 1969: Best Music (Hindi Section) for Aradhana
- 1973: Best Music (Hindi Section) for Abhimaan
On 1 October 2007, in Agartala, on his 101st birth anniversary, the Indian Postal Department released a commemorative postage stamp.
- Sport(s): Football, Tennis, Cricket, and Hockey
- Attire: White Kurta Pyjama
- Music Composer(s): Madan Mohan and Khayyam
- Actor(s): Dev Anand and Guru Dutt
After a stroke, he went into a coma and died on 31 October 1975, in Bombay.
- Sachin’s fans used to call him by different names. People from Kolkatta called him ‘Sachin Karta,’ Mumbai people called him ‘Burman Da’ and for Bangladeshi’s, he was ‘Sochin Deb Burman.’
- After his father’s death, he used to roam in jungles and learnt more about Bengali folk music from the localities.
- He was a sports lover. He used to play cricket for the YMCA club. He also played Tennis and was a popular footballer too where he was a centre forward player. He used to support East Bengal, a football team. He used to cry and stop eating whenever his favourite team lost the match. When he was hospitalised before his death, his son gave him the news that his favourite team had won, Sachin opened his eyes and nodded. This shows how much he loved sports.
- In 1958, he was awarded the ‘Sangeet Natak Akademi Award,’ and he is the only music director to receive this award.
- Apart from being a legendary music director, he has also lent his voice for some iconic songs including ‘Wahan Kaun Hai Tera…’ from the film Guide (1965).
- Some of the famous singers who were trained by Sachin Dev are- R. D. Burman, Nasir Hussain, and Anuradha Paudwal. He helped Asha Bhosle, Kishore Kumar and Hemant Kumar and actor Danny Denzongpa to become a better singer.
- Many books have been published on the life of S. D. Burman. In 2011, the English biography, ‘Incomparable Sachin Dev Burman’ by H. Q. Chowdhury was published.
- In the book, ‘SD Burman: The World of His Music,’ by author SK Raychaudhuri, many lesser-known facts about S. D. Burman have been revealed. One such event is related during the recording of the song ‘Dum Maaro Dum,’ when he became so upset with R. D. Burman’s style of music that he left the studio.
- Sachin was very fond of Kishore Kumar and regarded him as his second son. Kishore Kumar had even paid a visit when S. D. Burman was hospitalised after a stroke. Kishore consoled Mr Burman by saying-
Dada, please don’t worry, your recording is after three days, you just see how well it goes.”
- He was a ‘Paan lover,’ and his favourite paan vendor was at Khar Station (his bungalow) “The Jet.”
- Reportedly, Sachin’s wife Meera was shifted to an old age home called ‘Sharan’ by her daughter-in-law ‘Asha Bhosle.’ Meera decided that she would never leave ‘Sharan’ even she was not happy there. On 15 October 2007, she died in that old age home.
- Interestingly, Sachin Tendulkar is named after S. D. Burman; as his grandfather was a big fan of S. D. Burman.
- As per the sources, in 2012, Bangladesh’s Prime Minister ‘Sheikh Hasina’ declared that the ancestral property of S. D. Burman would be converted into a folk cultural institute-cum-museum.
- In 2018, a full-length statue of veteran singer and music director ‘S. D. Burman’ was installed along with the legendary singer ‘Kishore Kumar.’ The statues have been installed near to ‘R. D. Burman’s’ statue in South End Park in Kolkata, where Sachin used to live before coming to Mumbai. It was inaugurated by ‘Amit Kumar‘- son of Kishore Kumar.