Khemchand Prakash had a brief, decade-spanning career as a Hindi film music director in the 1940s. He was born in Sujangarh, Rajasthan in a musical family - his father, Pandit Govardhan Prasad was a court musician and also his guru. After serving as a musician and singer in various royal courts, Bollywood came calling and in 1935, he joined New Theatres, Calcutta as an assistant to composer Timir Baran and even tried his hand at acting.
In 1939, he found his true calling, when he move to Bombay and turned music director for the film "Meri Aankhen". "Tansen" (1943) was a major milestone in his career. It is one of the earliest Hindi films that made authentic use of Hindustani classical music. The hit music of "Tansen" made him one of the leading music directors of that time.
While he composed many beautiful songs in his short career, he is perhaps remembered more for the legacy he left than those songs themselves. It was Khemchand Prakash who took Naushad under his wings as an assistant and helped launch what would become a very successful career as a music director. He is also credited as the composer who tried and tested singers like Khursheed, Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar and made them the successful playback singers they went on to become. Of special mention is the blockbuster hit "Aaayega Aanewala" ("Mahal", 1949) that marked the beginning of Lata Mangeshkar's domination in Hindi film music.
Sadly, Khemachand Prakash did not live much longer to taste and build upon the success of the music of "Mahal". He passed away on August 10, 1950 leaving us to imagine what else he could have accomplished had he lived longer.