Her voice is husky and sensual, very different from that of
the singing legend Lata Mangeshkar, but playback singer Rekha
Bharadwaj still considers the nightingale of India her idol
and describes Lata as Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of learning.
"Lataji is my Saraswati. I am very fortunate that I got
a chance to see Lataji's recordings and the way she prepares
for a song. She is something else. Nobody can be her. We cannot
reach that level," Rekha told IANS.
The singer says every song by Lata is a lesson in itself. "Whenever
I need to learn something, I listen to her songs and see where
she breathes out, where she breathes in, etc," she said.
Rekha feels that such was Lata's talent that she used to lift
even mediocre compositions with her voice.
"Even at that time there were some mediocre compositions,
but when someone like Lataji used to sing it she used to take
it to some other level altogether - such is her talent."
Rekha, who is married to filmmaker-composer Vishal Bharadwaj,
has musical roots that lie in Sufi, folk and classical genres.
She released her first album "Ishqa Ishqa" in 2004
to critical acclaim. However, it was her song "Namak ishq
ak" in her husband's directorial venture "Omkara"
that really won her accolades.