One of the best-known playback singers in the Hindi film industry, Lata Mangeshkar's career started in 1942 and has spanned over six and a half decades. She sang in over 980 Bollywood movies and has sung songs in over twenty regional Indian languages. She was featured in the Guinness Book of World Records from 1974 to 1991 for having made the most recordings in the world. The claim was that she has recorded no less than 25,000 solo, duet, and chorus-backed songs in 20 Indian languages between 1948 to 1974 (30,000 songs between 1948 and 1987, according to 1987 edition.) At 79, she still sings for young actresses like Katrina Kaif and Kareena Kapoor.
Lata Mangeshkar has won several awards and honors, including Padma Bhushan (1969), Padma Vibhushan (1999), Dada Saheb Phalke Award (1989), NTR National Award (1999), Bharat Ratna (2001), three National Film Awards, and 12 Bengal Film Journalists' Association Awards. She has also won four Filmfare Best Female Playback Awards. In 1969, she made the unusual gesture of giving up the Filmfare Best Female Playback Award, in order to promote fresh talent. She was later awarded Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993.