Hema Sardesai, also known as Hemaa Sardesai, is an Indian playback singer and lyricist. Hema hails from the coastal state of Goa, in India, and was born in Mumbai. She shot to fame in 1997 with songs from movies like Sapnay, Biwi No. 1 and Jaanam Samjha Karo.[1]

Hema Sardesai
GenresIndian classical music, Folk, Indipop
Occupation(s)Singer, Playback singer, Composer, Lyricist
Years active1987–present

Early life edit

A young Hema Sardesai performing, c.1979

Hema Sardesai was born to Kumudini Sardesai (hailing from Parra) and Dr Kashinath Sardesai (hailing from Savoi-Verem, this doctor had previously been the cricket captain of Goa) and is the younger of their two daughters.[2] Her talent was first discovered at the age of six by her school teacher, Late Mrs. Sequiera. She is an alumnus of Sharada Mandir School, and was born and brought up in Boca de Vaca, a locality of Panaji. She made her stage debut at the age of 8 years, at a Navratri Festival, where the local Gujarati Samaj encouraged her.[3] She has accomplished the Sangeet Visharad in Indian classical music (with Pandit Sudhakar Karandikar as her first guru) and has always been passionate about Western Pop music.[4]

Career edit

Sardesai has sung several songs for Bollywood films, and has released several Indipop albums.[5] Sardesai is particularly known for singing "Aawara Bhawren Jo Hole Hole Gaaye" in the Hindi dubbed version of 1997 film Sapnay, which featured Kajol in the lead role. Some of her other famous songs include "Ishq Sona Hai" (Biwi No. 1), "Chali Chali Phir Chali" (Baghban) and "Badal Pe Paon Hai" (Chak De! India). She is the only Indian singer to win the Grand Prix at the International Pop Song Festival in Germany, has sung at the International UNICEF Concert in Europe and became the only female singer other than Lata Mangeshkar to perform at the celebrations for the 50th year of India's Independence day.[6][7]

In 2011, she digitised her music on artistaloud.com.[8]

In 2013, she wrote and sang three Konkani songs for the English film The Coffin Maker, starring Naseeruddin Shah. The film was based in a Goan village and was selected for the Indian Panorama section of IFFI 2013. It is about a coffin maker who learns about life in an unusual manner.[9] The film went on to win the Best Feature Film Award at the River to River. Florence Indian Film Festival in 2013.[10]

In 2017, she announced her debut in America, with her song "Power of Love", working with Mishal Raheja and Grammy Award winner Jared Lee Gosselin on the project.[11]

Discography edit

Studio albums edit

Year Album Record Label
1991 Love & Dance Music India
1993 Sargam Regional Music Centre
1996 Zubeenor Gaan NK Production
1997 Love-Ology Magnasound
1998 Call Me Eternity Padmini Music
Hindustani Gudiya[12] Ishtar Music
1999 Piya Se Milke Aaye Nayan Tips
2003 Saajna[4] Universal Music Group

Singles edit

  • "Power of Love" (feat. Mishaal) (2017)[11]

Soundtracks edit

Year Film Songs
1989 Goonj "Sama Ye Suhana"
"Jawani Ke Din Hai"
1994 Prem Yog "Chhodo Nasha"
"Nazro Me Aisi Basi"
1996 Tere Mere Sapne "Tere Mere Sapne"
1997 Sapnay (Dubbed version) "Awaara Bhawren"
1997 Pardes "Nahin Hona Tha"
"My First Day in USA"
1997 Gupt "Gupt Gupt (title track)"
1997 Aar Ya Paar "Hulle Hulle"
1998 Zor "Tere Pyaar Mein"
"Mein Kudi Anjaani Ho"
1998 Soldier "Hum Toh Dil Chahe Tumhara"
1999 Biwi No.1 "Ishq Sona Hai"
"Jungle Hai Aadhi Raat Hai"
1999 Mann "Kehna Hai Tumse Kehna"
1999 Jaanam Samjha Karo "Jaanam Samjha Karo"
"Mai Ladki Akeli"
2000 Astitva "Kitne Kisse Hain Tere Mere"
2000 Josh "Apun Bola Tu"
"O Maria"
2000 Hamara Dil Aapke Paas Hai "I Love You"
2000 Kunwara "Na Heera Na Moti"
2000 Tere Pyar Mein "Kal Thi Mohabbat"
2001 Aśoka "San Sanana"
2001 Yaadein "Eli Re Eli"
2001 Mujhe Meri Biwi Se Bachaao "Naach Meri Jaan"
2001 Koi Mere Dil Se Poochhe "Aawara Main Badal"
2001 Ittefaq "Tanana Dhir Tanana"
2003 Baghban "Chali Chali Phir Chali Chali"[6]
2003 Market "Khalli Valli"
2003 Qayamat: City Under Threat "Qayamat Qayamat"
2003 Khushi "Hai Re Hai Re"
2003 Zameen "Tere Sang Ek Simple Si Coffee"
2003 Asambhav "Asambhav"
2004 Musafir "Sun Suniyo"
2005 Garam Masala "Chori Chori"[13]
2007 Chak De! India "Badal Pe Paon Hai"[12]
2012 The Victim "Kallzam Amchim"
2013 The Coffin Maker "Mogachi Donuch Uttraan"
"Geli Birant"
"Maya Ya"[10]

Personal life edit

Family edit

Sardesai was married to Xavier D'Souza, who was an investment banker hailing from Cunchelim.[3] He had previously been a hockey player for the Nehru Cup.[2] He died in 2020 of cardiac arrest.[14]

Community work edit

Sardesai is active in many social causes, such as:

Reception edit

In 2017, Sardesai led a group of singers and artistes in a campaign against Sadhvi Saraswati, who had publicly requested the government to "hang those who consumed beef".[21] In response to this, Sardesai launched a protest march in July 2016.[22]

Also in 2017, Sardesai resigned from the position of the special icon for the 2017 Goa Legislative Assembly election, upon allegations of previously supporting ex-Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar by advocate and social activist Aires Rodrigues.[23]

In 2019, she defended singer Anu Malik, who was facing allegations of sexual abuse and harassment, which led to her criticism by singer Shweta Pandit.[24]

Awards and accolades edit

  • 1989 – 16th International Pop Song Festival, Grand Prix in Germany[6]
  • 2006 – All India Woman's Conference, Gomant Tejaswini Award for her outstanding achievements in the music field.[25]
  • 2015 – On 9 Oct 2015, Hemaa was honoured with the Icon of the Year award at the 35th Brands Academy Awards evening.[25]
  • 2015-In March 2015, Hemaa was also honoured with the Woman of the Year award, by Very. The event honours a leading lady of substance every year, for her unparalleled contribution to society across various fields.[25]
  • 2015-In March 2015, Hemaa was selected for the Karmaveer Puraskaar award held in New Delhi for her able activity to many a social cause, above all for her silent contribution to the causes.[25]
  • 2014-In August 2014, Hemaa was honoured with the PHD Excellence award in New Delhi.[25]
  • Hemaa was awarded the Hiramanek award titled International Women Achievers award, for her achievements.[25]
  • Hemaa is also the recipient of the International Achievers Award at the International Women's Conference of Art of Living.[25]
  • MTV Immies nominated Hemaa as 'Best Female Singer', for her song 'Qayamat' from the film Qayamat.[26]

References edit

  1. ^ "People in the industry expected sexual favours from singer Hema Sardesai". Zee News. 23 April 2013. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  2. ^ a b "No room for vulgar and obscene movies: Hema Sardesai". DNA. 23 September 2007. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  3. ^ a b Britto, Misha (28 December 2014). "Striking the right note, on and off the stage". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  4. ^ a b Paul, John L. (25 August 2002). "An unassuming singer". The Hindu. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  5. ^ "Hema Sardesai". Veethi.com. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  6. ^ a b c Sayed, Nida (11 December 2017). "Singer Hema Sardesai to make American debut". The Times of India. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  7. ^ "Hema Sardesai Joins Forces with Hollywood Producer for Her New Single". India West.com. 14 December 2017. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  8. ^ Bhatti, Sharin (21 February 2011). "I will never do an item song". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  9. ^ "'The Coffin Maker' will take Konkani to global stage: Hema Sardesai". Indian Express. 21 October 2013. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  10. ^ a b "The Coffin Maker nails it at Florence". The Times of India. 29 November 2013. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  11. ^ a b "Hema Sardesai goes international again". The Hindu. 22 December 2017. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  12. ^ a b c Mazumdar, Ranjib (10 June 2010). "Singer Hema Sardesai talks about her passion for the social cause and her music". DNA. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  13. ^ "Hema Sardesai". Hungama.com. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  14. ^ "Goa CM Expresses Pain Over Demise of Hema Sardesai's Husband". United News of India. 22 November 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2023.
  15. ^ D'Costa, Maria. "Hema Sardesai | innGOA.com". inngoa.com. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  16. ^ "Book highlighting gender bias launched at Campal". Viva Goa. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  17. ^ "Hema Sardesai joins protest against SEZs in Goa". Rediff.com. 23 November 2007. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  18. ^ "Hema threatens Goa govt to go on fast until death". The Economic Times. 17 June 2008. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  19. ^ Singh, Vijay (13 September 2012). "Singer Hema Sardesai supports eco-friendly Ganesh idols". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  20. ^ "Hema Sardesai pitches for job priority for locals". The Times of India. 4 July 2019. Retrieved 7 November 2019.
  21. ^ "Who is Sadhvi Saraswati?". The Indian Express. 15 June 2017. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  22. ^ "Singer Hema Sardesai condemns Sadhavi Saraswati's beef remarks". The Hindu. 20 June 2017. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  23. ^ "Goan playback singer Hema Sardesai quits as Assembly poll icon". India Today. 25 January 2017. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  24. ^ "Shweta Pandit slams Hema Sardesai's defence of Anu Malik: 'Are child abuse, rape victims also involved in getting abused'". Hindustan Times. 7 November 2019. Retrieved 7 November 2019.
  25. ^ a b c d e f g "Awards". Archived from the original on 2 June 2010.
  26. ^ "Hema Sardesai – Marathisanmaan". Marathisanmaan.com. 3 September 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2018.

External links edit