Geeta Dutt is one of the most celebrated female playback singers of Indian cinema. She was born Geeta Ghosh Roy Chowdhuri in Faridpur, modern day Bangladesh. In 1942, her family moved to Bombay, which is where composer Hanuman Prasad heard her singing, took her under his wing and trained her. The first time she sang was in the chorus for the film “Bhakta Prahlad” (1946).
Her singing caught S.D. Burman's attention and he roped her in for “Do Bhai” (1947). The song “Mera Sundar Sapna Beet Gaya” became an instant hit and she soon became one of the most sought after female singers in Hindi films. She sang for all the big names of that time including C. Ramchandra (“Roshni”, “Sawariya”, "Sipahiya") and Hansraj Behl ("Chakori", "Kaneez", "Raat ki Rani") among others.
Geeta Dutt scored another ace with "Baazi" in 1951, when “Tadbeer Se Bigadi Hui Taqdeer” became an overnight rage. It was during the recording of "Baazi" that she met the Guru Dutt, the film's director. They fell in love and got married in 1953.
She worked with O.P. Nayyar for the first time for the film "Asmaan" (1952). While the film had some unforgettable solos of Geeta Dutt like “Dekho Jaadoo Bhare More Naina”and “Cham Cham Ghunghar Baaje”, it was more significant because it was the beginning of a very successful partnership between music director and singer. By 1954, while Geeta Dutt was at the peak of her career, O.P. Nayyar had not had great success. He was thinking of moving back to his hometown but Geet Dutt supported him and recommended him to Guru Dutt for the score of "Aar Paar". "Aar Paar" ended up becoming a run-away success and even the songs, seven featuring Geeta Dutt, out of which four were solos, became immensely popular.
While O.P. Nayyar and S.D. Burman, utilized Geeta Dutt's sultry vocals the best, she also worked with othe music directors and continued to hold her own against Lata Mangeshkar's rise to the position of the premier diva of Hindi films.
1957 would be a watershed year in Geeta Dutt's career. While she would continue to sing for many years to come, she would not be able to match her past glory. In the year 1957, she was to be the lead for Guru Dutt's home production “Gowri”, which was supposed to be launched as India’s first Cinemascope film, but the film was shelved almost as soon as it started. It was also during this time that Guru Dutt started an affair with his lead actress in "Pyaasa", Waheeda Rahman. A heart-broken Geeta chose to water down her sorrow with alcohol. Also, she started getting fewer and fewer offers as her main collaborators started working almost exclusively with her competitors - S,D. Burman with Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle and O.P. Nayyar with Asha. Her problems were componded by the fact that Guru Dutt restricted her singing to his home productions.
Despite all these problems, Geeta Dutt managed to continue singing some memorable songs for "Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam"(1962), "Half Ticket" (1962), "Pareeksha" (1963) and "Ziddi" (1964).
In 1964, Guru Dutt attempted suicide for the third time, after having been rebuffed by Waheeda Rahman, and passed away. His loss aggravated Geeta Dutt's already sensitive nervous and financial condition and she was reported to have suffered a nervous breakdown. After a few odd songs here and there, she stopped singing by 1967. She made a comeback of sorts for Basu Bhattacharya's "Anubhav" (1971) but her life problems and drinking had taken their toll and she died of liver cirrhosis on July 20, 1972.