Alka Yagnik was born in Kolkata on March 20, 1966. She studied at Modern High School for Girls. At the age of six, she started singing for Akashvani. Her voice was first discovered by Raj Kapoor who later sent her to noted music director Laxmikant.
She has been one of the most prominent playback singers after the sister duo of Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle. Alka Yagnik has sung 2,482 Hindi songs in 1,114 films, making her the fifth most prolific Bollywood singer of all time after Asha Bhosle, Lata Mangeshkar, Mohammed Rafi and Kishore Kumar.
Her first song was for the film Payal Ki Jhankaar in 1980, followed by Laawaris in 1981 with the song ‘Mere Angane Mein’ and ‘Hamari Bahu Alka’ in 1982. She got her big break with the song ‘Ek Do Teen’ from the film ‘Tezaab’ in 1988. The song made her a star overnight and became a pop hit.
Apart from Hindi, she has sung in many languages like Urdu, Gujarati, Avadhi, Oriya, Assamese, Manipuri, Nepali, Rajasthani, Bengali, Bhojpuri, Punjabi, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, English and Malayalam.
In the 90′s, there was hardly any movie in Bollywood without Alka’s song. Her duet numbers with singer Kumar Sanu were highly successful. They are still enthralling the listeners with their melody.
She is a seven-time winner of Filmfare Award for Best Female Playback Singer, a two-time recipient of the prestigious National Film Awards. She was nominated record 35 times for Filmfare Award for Best Female Playback Singer.>