Comes the 60′s and then the 70′s and as fate would have it, successess accompanied Asha to greater heights.
In 1966, Asha’s performance in the duets from music director R D Burman’s first successful movie, Teesri Manzil won popular acclaim. Their collaboration produced numerous hits in the 1970s and resulted in a marriage. In 1960s and 1970s, she became the voice of Bollywood’s most famous dancer, Helen. It is said that Helen would attend her recording sessions so that she could understand the song better and plan dance steps accordingly. Some of the most popular Asha Bhosle-Helen numbers are Piya Tu Ab To Aaja (Caravan), O Haseena Zulfon Wali (Teesri Manzil), and Yeh Mera Dil (Don).
Ashaji was the only singer who was able to compete with Lata Mangeshkar, she won the filmfare award consecutively in 1967 & 1968 when Lata still used to accept the Filmfare Award. After 1969, with Lata giving up the Filmfare award the coast was clear for Asha Bhosle and she went on to win the award 7 times which is the maximum any female singer ever won. She gave up the award after 1977. Though Kishore Kumar won the maximum number of filmfare awards, it was because unlike the Mangeshkar sisters he never refused the award. So if we compare till 1977 Asha had won the maximum number of filmfare awards ( Male & Female).
1967 – Garibon Ki Suno [DUS LAKH]
1968 – Parde Mein Rehne Do [SHIKHAR]
1971 – Piya Tu Ab To Aaja [CARAVAN]
1972 – Dum Maro Dum [HARE RAMA HARE KRISHNA]
1973 – Hone Lagi Hain Raat [NAINA]
1974 – Chain Se Humko [PRAN JAYE PAR VACHAN NA JAYE]
1977 – Yeh Mera Dil [DON]
Incidentally the other top female playback singer to won the Filmfare Award for seven times, was Alka Yagnik
Alka had the most nominations for her songs numbering 37
Asha Bhosle and Alka Yagnik, with 7 wins each, hold the record for most awards in this category. Lata Mangeshkar, Anuradha Paudwal, Kavita Krishnamurthy and Shreya Ghoshal have won the award four times. Bhosle won the award in a record of four consecutive years (1972-75), followed by the three consecutive wins of Paudwal (1991-1993), Krishnamurthy (1995-1997) and Yagnik (2000-2002), respectively.
Two singers have achieved the feat of receiving all the nominations of this category in a particular year: Asha Bhosle was the single nominee in 1973, having all the three nominations to her credit, and Alka Yagnik was the single nominee in 1994, having all the four nominations to her credit, one of which she shared–and eventually jointly won–with Ila Arun. Yagnik’s four nominations in that year along with Bhosle’s four out of the five nominations in 1975 also give them the record for most number of Best Female Playback Singer nominations in a single year.
It must be noted that in 1971, Lata Mangeshkar made the unusual gesture of giving up the Filmfare Best Female Playback Award, in order to promote fresh talent. After receiving the award in 1979, Asha Bhosle emulated her elder sister and requested that her name not be considered for the nominations thereafter.