He married his childhood sweetheart Jyothi in 1991. As a family man, KK prefers to spend time with family when he is not working. Once he said, his family is what gives him the strength to cope with all the pressure of Bollywood, where one has to continuously carve one’s niche and hold on to it.
KK’s son, Nakul, sang a song “Masti” from his latest album Humsafar with his father. KK also has a daughter named Taamara.
As a child he wanted to be a doctor. KK gave his first stage performance when he was in second standard. KK switched from Hindi to English songs during his teens. His versatile voice was soon tapped by various as agencies in Delhi for jingles. He even formed a rock band with his friends and played drums for two other rock bands and did vocals. KK has been greatly influenced by the legendary singer Kishore Kumar and music director R D Burman. Since his early days, he grew up listening to them. After graduating from Delhi University in commerce, KK had a brief stint of eight months as marketing executive in the hotel industry. After few years, in 1994, he moved to Mumbai.
In 1994, he gave his demo tape to Louis Banks, Ranjit Barot, Shiv Mathur and Leslie Lewis to get a break in the music arena. It was in 1994, when his son Nakul was born, that things changed suddenly. The same day he was called by UTV and he sung a jingle for Santogen Suiting ad. In a span of four years, he has sung more than 3,500 jingles in 11 Indian languages. He got the first break in Mumbai from UTV to sing jingles and success followed soon. He considers Leslie Lewis as his mentor for giving him his first jingle to sing in Mumbai. Till now, KK has sung more than 250 songs in Hindi and more than 50 songs in Telugu, Tamil and Kannada languages in a short span. Down South, he has worked with well-known maestro Ilayaraja, Harris Jayaraj, Deva, Vidyasagar and Mani Sharma.
Noted film director Vishal Bhardwaj gave KK the much-needed break. He started his stint in Bollywood with hit song “Chhod Aaye Hum” in Maachis and went on to entertain audiences with many more popular numbers. Vishal Bhardwaj also gave him his first solo number in the as-yet-unreleased film Hum Paanchi Ek Daal Ke. But it was his soulful rendition of “Tadap Tadap Ke” in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam that catapulted him to fame.
In Bollywood he has notched up winners with songs such as “Tu Aashiqui Hai” from Jhankaar Beats, “Chand Ki Roshni Se” from Home Delivery, “Awarapan Banjarapan” from Jism, “It’s The Time To Disco” from Kal Ho Naa Ho and the smash hit “Dus Bahaane” (with Shaan) from the film Dus. His recent hit songs include “Tu Hi Meri Shab Hai” from the movie Gangster, “O Meri Jaan” from Life in a Metro, “Soniye Soniye” from Aksar, “Mera Pehla Pehla Pyaar” from MP3 – Mera Pehla Pehla Pyaar, “Alvida” from Life in a… Metro, “Ajab Si” from Om Shanti Om and “Kya Mujhe Pyaar Hai” from Woh Lamhe. His latest smash hit “Khuda Jaane” is from the film Bachna Ae Haseeno, released in August 2008, for which he won a Star Screen Award for Best Male Playback Singer. Thereafter he sang “Marjaani (Kilogram’s Balkan Mix)”, “Ae Aa O” from the movie Billu Barber, “Hai Junoon” and “Hai Junoon – Remix” from New york, “O Jaana”, “Kaisa Ye Raaz Hai” from Raaz – The Mystery Continues. He sang title track “Kambakkth Ishq” from Kambakkht Ishq, “Aaya Re” and “Nazreim Karam” are also hits from the movie Jashnn.
Albums and television
In the year 1999, Sony Music had just been launched in India and they were looking to launch a new artiste. KK was selected as the new artiste and he came out with a solo album titled Pal with Leslie Lewis composing the music. Pal was the first album released by KK under Sony Music for which he got the prestigious Screen award as best singer. On January 22, 2008, KK released his second album Humsafar after a gap of eight years. The songs “Aasmaan Ke”,”Yeh Kahaan Mil Gaye Hum” and “Rain Bhai[Maajhi]” are famous songs from this album, besides, KK had also sung an english Rock Ballad “Cineraria”. The title track, “Humsafar” is a mix of english and hindi lyrics.
KK appeared on television too. He was invited as jury member for a talent hunt show Fame Gurukul, but he is clear that he would not like to return to television as the medium restricts him. Unlike many composers and singers, who feel reality shows have made it easier for budding artists to enter Bollywood, KK feels every one still has to struggle to mark one’s presence in the film world.
KK has performed live concerts for Corporate giants like Hero Honda, Toyota, Glaxo, Seagram’s, IBM, Sun Microsoft, Microsoft, Nokia, Fidelity, Citibank, INFLS, LG, Sony Eriksson, Air Sahara, Ultra Tech Cement, JP Cement, Maruti Udyog and many more. He has also performed for schools, colleges and other educational institutes like IIT Kanpur, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee, IIT Madras, MDI-Gurgaon, IIMS-Lucknow, HT Youth Nexus and BITS Pilani.
A list of some concerts by KK:
- “Le Feistus 2009” of Jaypee University of Information Techonology, Waknaghat.
- “RIPPLE’09”, the annual cultural festival of University College of Medical Sciences, Delhi.
- “Incident 2008”, the annual cultural festival of NITK Surathkal.
- “Spring Fest”, the annual cultural festival of IIT, Kharagpur in January 2009.
- “YCCE Fest 9.0” at Nagpur at Yeshwant stadium on 1 February 2009.
- IIM Bangalore’s “Unmaad 2009” on 31st of January 2009.
- TVM, for the cultural & technical fest organised by P.A Aziz College of Engg. & Technology.
- “PAACET FEST” 09 at Nishagandhi auditorium on 8 March 2009.
- MGM College.
- JIIT college in 2008.
- Fidelity Investments Family Day 2007, Gurgaon.
- “RECSTACY 2007”, Annual Cult Fest Of NIT Durgapur.
- IIT Delhi’s “Rendezvous 2006” in September 2006.
- BITS Pilani’s “Oasis 2008” in October 2008.
- SCMHRD’s “NEEV” Management Fest in December 2008.
- Mount St. Mary’s, Delhi Cantt on April 25, 2009.
- Antaragni, the Cultural Fest of IIT Kanpur on October 25, 2009.
- BITS Pilani Goa Campus’s “Waves Winter 2009” on November 7, 2009.
- Dhaka Residential Model College’s “Nokia Music Carnival” on December 26, 2009