Mahendra Kapoor was born in Amritsar, but soon moved to Mumbai. He was inspired by Mohammed Rafi and won the All-India singing competition, which lead to his debut as a playback singer in V. Shantaram’s Navrang in 1958, singing Aadha Hai Chandrama Raat Aadhi, under the music direction of C. Ramchandra.
He sang many hit songs of yesteryear’s most notable being those for B.R. Chopra‘s Films (Dhool Ka Phool, Gumrah, Waqt, Hamraaz, Dhund etc.) and for actor / producer Manoj Kumar (Upkaar, Purab Aur Paschim etc.)
Mahendra Kapoor is well known in the Marathi movies for being the playback singer for Dada Kondke in all his movies. In spite of being associated with Dada Kondke’s colloquial style his singing for Marathi movies was not limited to Dada Kondke’s movies only. His son Rohan Kapoor was an actor in a few films in the 1980s such as Yash Chopra’s Faasle (1985) and Love 86 (1986), and later his stage shows along with his father.
He holds the credits of bagging Filmfare Award for his enchanting songs, ‘Chalo Ek Baar Phir Se’ in Gumrah, again churned out by Chopra in 1963 and one more for ‘Neele Gagan Ke Tale’ in Humraaz.
Mahendra Kapoor conducted the most popular reality TV show Antakshari along with his son, actor turned anchor Rohan Kapoor.
On September 27, 2008, he died following a cardiac failure, and had not keeping well and suffering from heart ailment for long, he was survived by his wife, three daughters and a son.