Listen to the voice that soothed India for decades

Pitch perfect.
Pitch perfect.
Image: Reuters/Sherwin Crasto
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Choosing her most important songs is surely one of the most hazardous tasks involved in writing about Lata Mangeshkar—the first is describing her voice and its influence.

Quartz, nevertheless, is giving it a shot. The legendary singer who died this morning in Mumbai has left behind a body of work that itself could take years to sieve. But for those who are yet unacquainted with her voice, here’s a good place to start (we are not even getting into her duets with playback giants like Mohammad Rafi, Kishore Kumar, and Manna Dey):

“Aayega aanewala,” Mahal (1949)

Composer: Khemchand Prakash
Lyricist: Nakhshab Jarchavi

“Ye zindagi usi ki hai,” Anarkali (1953)

Composer: Chitalkar Ramchandra
Lyricist: Rajendra Krishan

“Rasik balma,” Chori chori (1956)

Composer: Shankar-Jaikishen
Lyricist: Hasrat Jaipuri

“Aaja re pardesi,” Madhumati (1958)

Composer: Salil Chowdhury
Lyricist: Shailendra

“Haaye re wo din kyun na aaye,” Anuradha (1960)

Composer: Pandit Ravi Shankar
Lyricist: Shailendra

“Sansar se bhaage phirte ho,” Chitralekha (1964)

Composer: Roshan
Lyricist: Sahir Ludhianvi

“Naina barse,” Woh kaun thhi? (1964)

Composer: Madan Mohan
Lyricist: Raja Mehdi Ali Khan

“Suno sajna,” Aaye din bahar ke (1966)

Composer: Laxmikant-Pyarelal
Lyricist: Anand Bakshi

“Raina beeti jaaye,” Amar Prem (1972)

Composer: RD Burman
Lyricist: Anand Bakshi

“Piya bina,” Abhiman (1973)

Composer: SD Burman
Lyricist: Majrooh Sultanpuri