S. P. Balasubrahmanyam
|S. P. Balasubrahmanyam|
S. P. Balasubrahmanyam in 2013
|Birth name||Sripathi Panditaradhyula Balasubrahmanyam|
4 June 1946 |
Konetammapeta, Nagari Mandal, Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh
|Origin||Andhra Pradesh, India|
|Occupations||Singer, actor, music director, film producer|
Sripathi Panditaradhyula Balasubrahmanyam ( pronunciation (help·info); born 4 June 1946) is an Indian film playback singer, actor, music director, voice actor and film producer. He is sometimes referred to as S. P. B. or Balu. He has won the Guinness World Records for recording the highest number of songs.   He won the National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer six times and the Nandi Awards in Telugu cinema 25 times from the Government of Andhra Pradesh.
He has sung over 40,000 songs in various Indian languages. He has won National Film Awards across four languages as well as a Filmfare Award, three Filmfare Awards South and numerous state awards from Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. He is a recipient of civilian awards such as Padmashri (2001) and Padma Bhushan (2011) from the government of India.
Early life and background
Balasubrahmanyam was born to S. P. Sambamurthy in Konetammapeta, Nellore district, near the Andhra Pradesh - Tamil Nadu border. Balasubrahmanyam's father was a Harikatha artiste who had also acted in plays. He has two brothers and five sisters, including singer S.P. Sailaja.
Balasubrahmanyam developed an interest towards music at an early age, studied notations and learned to play instruments such as the harmonium and flute on his own while listening to his father. He enrolled at JNTU College of Engineering Anantapur with the intention of becoming an engineer. He discontinued his studies early due to typhoid and joined as an Associate Member of the Institution of Engineers, Chennai.
He continued to pursue music during his engineering studies and won awards at singing competitions. In 1964, he won the first prize in a music competition for amateur singers organised by the Madras-based Telugu Cultural Organisation. He was the leader of a light music troupe composed of Anirutta (on the harmonium), Ilaiyaraaja (on guitar and later on harmonium), Baskar (on percussion), and Gangai Amaran (on guitar). He was selected as the best singer in a singing competition which was judged by S. P. Kodandapani and Ghantasala. Often visiting music composers seeking opportunities, his first audition song was "Nila Nerungadhe". It was rendered by veteran playback singer P. B. Srinivas, who used to write and give him multi-lingual verses in Telugu, Tamil, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Sanskrit, English and Urdu.
Early career: 1960s–1970s
Balasubrahmanyam made his debut as a playback singer in 1966 with Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, a Telugu film scored by his mentor, S. P. Kodandapani. The first Non-Telugu song that he recorded just eight days after his debut Telugu song was in Kannada in 1966 for the film 'Nakkare Ade Swarga' starring Kannada comedy stalwart T. R. Narasimharaju.  He recorded his first Tamil song "Eyarkai ennum illaya kanni" in the 1969 film Shanthi Nilaiyam starring Gemini Ganesan. He sang "Aayiram Nilavae Vaa" for M.G.R in the Tamil film Aadimai Penn. He was then introduced to Malayalam film industry by G. Devarajan in the film Kadalppalam.
He has the rare distinction of rendering most number of songs on a single day by any singer. He has recorded 21 songs in Kannada for the composer Upendra Kumar in Bangalore from 9.00 a.m. to 9.00 p.m. on February 8, 1981 and 19 songs in Tamil, 16 songs in Hindi in a day which is a notable achievement and a record. He established a prolific career. "There were days when I used to record 15–20 songs, but only for Anand-Milind. And I would take the last flight back to Chennai." In 1970s, he also worked with M. S. Viswanathan in Tamil movies for actors such as M. G. Ramachandran, Sivaji Ganesan and Gemini Ganesan. He recorded duets with P. Susheela, S. Janaki, Vani Jayaram and L. R. Eswari. Balasubrahmanyam's association with Ilaiyaraaja began in the late 1970s when the latter made his cinematic debut.
International recognition: 1980s
Balasubrahmanyam came to international prominence with 1980's Shankarabharanam. The film is considered to be one of the best films ever to emerge from Telugu film industry. Directed by K. Vishwanath, the film's soundtrack was composed by KV Mahadevan and led to an increase in usage of Carnatic music in Indian cinema. Not a classically trained singer, he used a 'film music' aesthetic in recording the songs. Balasubrahmanyam received his first National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer for his work. His first work in Hindi films was the following year, in Ek Duje Ke Liye (1981), for which he received another National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer.
Balasubrahmanyam began to record more songs in Tamil especially for Ilaiyaraaja with Janaki, the trio considered to be highly successful in the Tamil film industry from the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s in Telugu films based on classical music like Saagara Sangamam (1983), for which both Ilaiayaraaja and S.P.B won National Film Awards, Swathi Muthyam (1986) and Rudraveena (1988) which again won National Awards for Ilaiyaraaja and Balasubrahmanyam.
In 1989, Balasubrahmanyam was the playback singer for Bollywood actor Salman Khan in the blockbuster Maine Pyar Kiya. The soundtrack for the film was very successful and he won a Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer for the song Dil Deewana. For much of the next decade, Balasubrahmanyam continued as the 'romantic singing voice' on the soundtracks of Khan's films. Notable among these was Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! which became the highest-grossing Bollywood film of all time Balasubrahmanyam's duet with Lata Mangeshkar, Didi Tera Devar Deewana, was so popular that Mangeshkar was awarded a Filmfare Special Award. This solidified Balasubrahmanyam as one of the biggest playback singers in India.
Balasubramanyam's association with Hamsalekha began after the latter's successful venture Premaloka in Kannada. Balasubramanyam sung the most number of songs for Hamsalekha in Kannada. He received his 4th National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer for the song "Umandu Ghumandu" from the Kannada film Ganayogi Panchakshari Gavayi (1995), which was a Hindustani classical music based composition by Hamsalekha.
Balasubrahmanyam recorded three songs for A. R. Rahman in his debut film Roja. He had a long time association with Rahman right from Roja, the latter's debut film. Other popular songs include "July Maadham" from Pudhiya Mugam, which also marked the debut of singer Anupama, "Mannoothu Manthayilae" from Kizhakku Cheemayile which was a folk number and he almost sang all songs in the musical love story Duet and "Thanga Thaamarai" from Minsara Kanavu which fetched his sixth and latest of his National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer till date.One thing that stands apart is Dr Rajkumar- the superstar of the south sang for SPB in the movie Muddina Mava(Kannada).This is the only instance where someone else sung for SPB.
In 2013, Balasubrahmanyam recorded the popular title song for Chennai Express – "Nikal Na Jaaye Chennai Express", singing for the lead actor Shahrukh Khan, under the music direction of Vishal-Shekhar. He returned to Bollywood music after being away from it for 15 years.
Balasubrahmanyam accidentally became a dubbing artist with Kamal Hassan's film Manmadha Leela, the dubbed version of Manmadha Leelai. He has also provided voice-overs for various artists, including Kamal Haasan, Rajinikanth, Salman Khan, K. Bhagyaraj, Mohan, Anil Kapoor, Girish Karnad, Gemini Ganesan, Arjun Sarja, Nagesh, Karthik and Raghuvaran in various languages. He was assigned as the default dubbing artist for Kamal Hassan in Telugu dubbed versions of Tamil films and vice versa. For the Telugu version of Dasavathaaram he gave voice to 7 characters (including the female character) out of 10 characters played by Kamal Hassan. He was awarded Nandi Award for Best Male Dubbing Artist for the films Annamayya and Sri Sai Mahima.
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|1969||Pellante Noorella Panta||Telugu||Muthyala Subbaiah|
|1971||Mohammed Bin Tuglaq||Telugu||Cho Ramaswamy||Guest role in a song|
|1980||Pakkinti Ammayi||Telugu||K. Vasu||A. Sarathy||Bala Raju|
|1982||Baalondu Chaduranga||Kannada||Dore Bhagavan|
|Malle Pandiri||Telugu||Jandhyala||Challa Venkatramaiah||Sheik Moses Murthy|
|Tirugu Bhana||Kannada||K. S. R. Doss|
|1987||Manathil Uruthi Vendum||Tamil||K. Balachander||Kavithalaya Films||As a doctor|
|1988||Prema||Telugu||Suresh Krishna||As an advisor to Venkatesh|
|Vivaha Bhojanambu||Telugu||Jandhyala||Guest role as a police|
|Kallu||Telugu||M. V. Raghu|
|1990||Keladi Kanmani||Tamil||Vasanth||A. R. Rangaraj|
|Palai Vanna Ragangal||Tamil|
|Sigaram||Tamil||Ananthu||Kavithalaya Films||As a music director|
|Thalai Vaasal||Tamil||Selva||As a college principal|
|1992||Koteswaran||Tamil||Father of hero|
|Parvataalu Paanakalu||Telugu||Muthyala Subbaiah||V. Vijay Kumar Varma||Lead role Paanakalu, and friend of Parvathalu (Dasari Narayana Rao)|
|1993||Thiruda Thiruda||Tamil||Mani Ratnam||S. Sriram||Lakshmi Narayanan CBI|
|Muddina Maava||Kannada||Om Sai Prakash||K. Prabhakar||Ramayya|
|Kadhalan||Tamil||Shankar||K. T. Kunjumon||As Father of Prabhu Deva – Policeman|
|1995||Raja Hamsa||Telugu||As doctor, family friend|
|Kadhal Desam||Tamil||Kathir||K. T. Kunjumon||Tabu's father|
|Minsara Kanavu||Tamil||Rajeev Menon||M. Balasubramaniam, M. Saravanan, M. S. Guhan||Thangadurai|
|Nandini||Tamil/Telugu||As himself / Friend of Prakash Raj|
|Pavitra Bandham||Telugu||Muthyala Subbaiah||Venkatesh's Father|
|Avvai Shanmughi||Tamil||K. S. Ravikumar||R. Ravindran, K. P. Hari||Guest role as a doctor|
|Kandaen Seethayae||Tamil||Balachandra Menon||Raveendran (Wig Maker Ravi)||As a Police officer|
|1997||Devullu||Telugu||Kodi Ramakrishna||Haribabu Chegondi, Rambabu Karatam||Lord Vinayaka|
|Pellivaramandi||Telugu||K. Veeru||V. Jayasri, A. Prakash||As hero's father|
|Ullaasam||Tamil||J. D. and Jerry||Amitabh Bachchan||As a bus driver – Ajith Kumar's father|
|Ratchagan||Tamil||Praveen Gandhi||K. T. Kunjumon, Francis Joseph||LIC Padmanabhan, Nagarjuna's father|
|Rakshakudu||Telugu||Praveen Gandhi||K. T. Kunjumon, Francis Joseph||LIC Padmanabhan, Nagarjuna's father|
|Wife of V. Varaprasad||Telugu||Vamsy||Ram Gopal Varma||As Vineeth's grandfather|
|Uyala||Telugu||S. V. Krishna Reddy||As a doctor|
|Pelladi Chupista||Telugu||As himself and mentor of Roja|
|Mangalyam Tanthu Naanena||Kannada||Ravichandran's father|
|1999||Aaro Pranam||Telugu||K. Veeru||Father of hero (Vineeth)|
|Deergha Sumangali Bhava||Telugu||S. V. Krishna Reddy||As a family friend to Dasari's family|
|Mechanic Maavaiah||Telugu||As a scientist|
|Paaduta Teeyaga||Telugu||Father of heroine(Heera)|
|2000||Goppinti Alludu||Telugu||E. V. V. Satyanarayana||Nandamuri Rama Krishna||Balakrishna's father|
|Manasu Paddanu Kanni||Telugu||As father of Rasi|
|Priyamaanavale||Tamil||K. Selvabharathi||C. Venkata Raju, G. Sivaraju||Vishwanath|
|2001||Chirujallu||Telugu||Shriram Balaji||G. V. G Raju||As father of Richa|
|2002||Indra||Telugu||B. Gopal||Vyjayanthi Movies||As Himself|
|Padharella Ammayi||Telugu||Krishna Mohan Reddy|
|April Maadhathil||Tamil||S. S. Stanley||V. Gnanavelu, V. Jayaprakash||As himself|
|2003||Magic Magic 3D||Malayalam||Jose Punnoose||Navodaya||Acharya|
|Fools||Telugu||Dasari Narayana Rao||Ravindra Babu||Guest role|
|2006||Mayabazaar||Telugu||Mohana Krishna||RKK Films Banner||As Lord Kubera|
|Roommates||Telugu||AVS||Visu Films Pvt Ltd||As himself|
|2007||Yen Uyirinum Melana||Tamil||K. R. Jaya||N. Thirumuragan|
|Astram||Telugu||Suresh Krishna||Raju Hirwani|
|Kalyanothasava||Kannada||Retired army captain|
|Hetthare Hennanne Herabeku||Kannada||Sai Prakash||Sukku||Dr.Dasari Narayana Rao|
|2010||Naanayam||Tamil||Shakthi S.Rajan||S. P. B. Charan||CEO Viswanath|
|2011||Shakti||Telugu||Meher Ramesh||C. Ashwini Dutt||Mahadevaraya's father|
|2012||Devasthanam||Telugu||Janardana Maharshi||Ammanni Narayan||Sambamurthy|
|2012||Mithunam||Telugu||Tanikella Bharani||Anand Muvida Rao||Appa Dasu|
|Nadhi Enge Pogiradhu||Tamil||Serial|
|Vaanam Paadi||Tamil||Music show|
|Paadutha Theeyaga||Telugu||Music show|
|Paadalani Undhi||Telugu||Music show|
|Ennodu Pattu Paadungal||Tamil||Music show|
|Edhe Thumbi Haaduvenu||Kannada||Music show|
As music composer
|1977||Kanya Kumari||Telugu||Dasari Narayana Rao||Sarigama Arts|
|1979||Captain Krishna||Telugu||K. S. R. Das|
|Ra Ra Krishnayya||Telugu|
|Thoorpu Velle Railu||Telugu||Bapu|
|1980||Hum Paanch (Background Score)||Hindi||Bapu||S.K. Films|
|1981||Ohamma Katha||Telugu||Vasanta Sen|
|1983||Thudikkum Karangal||Tamil||Sridhar||K. R. Gangadharan|
|Uranta Sankranti||Telugu||Dasari Narayana Rao|
|1984||Bharyamani||Telugu||Vijaya Bapineedu||Srinivasa Productions|
|Mantri Gaari Viyyankudu||Telugu||Bapu|
|Seetamma Pelli||Telugu||Bapu||Muddu Art Movies|
|1985||Bangaru Chilaka||Telugu||Maheswari Movies|
|Jockey||Telugu||Muddu Art Movies|
|Kongumudi||Telugu||Vijaya Bapineedu||Raghavendra Cine Creations|
|Mayuri||Tamil||Singeetam Srinivasa Rao||B.R. Creations in association with ushakiran movies|
|Mayuri||Telugu||Singeetam Srinivasa Rao||Usha Kiran Movies|
|Muddula Manavaralu||Telugu||Jandhyala||Muddu Art Movies|
|Maghadeerudu||Telugu||Shyam Prasad Arts|
|Naach Mayuri||Hindi||Lakshmi Productions|
|Padamati Sandhya Ragam||Telugu||Jandhyala||Gummaluri Sastry, Meer Abdulla|
|1987||Gouthami||Telugu||Radha Madhava Films|
|Lawyer Suhasini||Telugu||Vamsy||Jayakrishna Combines|
|1988||Chinnodu Peddodu||Telugu||Relangi Narasimha Rao||Sridevi Movies|
|Kallu||Telugu||M. V. Raghu||Mahashakthi Films|
|Neeku Naaku Pellanta||Telugu||Jandhyala||J.J. Movies|
|Oh Bharya Katha||Telugu||Mouli||Ushakiron Movies|
|Ramanna Shyamanna||Kannada||B. Subbarao||Vasu Chitra|
|Vivaaha Bhojanambu||Telugu||Jandhyala||J.J. Movies|
|Jaitra Yatra||Telugu||Sravanti Movies|
|1992||Belliyappa Banagarappa||Kannada||Poorna Prajna||Madhu Bangarappa|
|Ksheera Saagara||Kannada||Singeetam Srinivasa Rao|
|1993||Muddina Maava||Kannada||Om Sai Prakash||Vijaya Sridevi Combines|
|2003||Unnai Charanadaindhen||Tamil||Samuthirakani||Capital Cine Works|
Awards and nominations
- "Friday Review Hyderabad / Events : The stars shimmered bright". The Hindu. 8 August 2008. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
- "SPB to be honoured". Sify.com. 24 March 2009. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
- "Entertainment Hyderabad / Events : In honour of a legend". The Hindu. 3 February 2006. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- Staff Reporter (11 June 2012). "Singer S.P. Balasubrahmanyam honoured". The Hindu. Retrieved 22 July 2013. "According to the citation of the award, the singer who had won Padma Sri and Padma Bhushan had sung over 40,000 songs in four languages. He had also won six national awards. He had directed music for over 40 films, and had worked as a dubbing artist, television anchor and even produced movies."
- 26 January 2011 DC Correspondent New Delhi (26 January 2011). "SPB wins Padma Bhushan, no Bharat Ratna this year". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- C. Narayana Rao (13 March 2008). "Rice-rich but no major industry". The Hindu. Retrieved 2009.
- Suganthy Krishnamachari (26 August 2010). "Arts / Music : Motivating, musically". The Hindu. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "Kerala / Thiruvananthapuram News : S.P.Balasubramaniam shares memories with music buffs". The Hindu. 5 December 2005. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "SP.Balasubrahmanyam's 67th Birthday". 4 June 2013. Retrieved 22 July 2013. "Today, S.P.Balasubrahmanyam is celebrating his 67th birthday. The man was born on June 4th 1946 into a Brahmin family in Nellore. Balasubrahmanyam started singing from a very young age. After dropping out from an engineering program in JNTU, SPB got his first break in 1966, when he sang for 'Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna' and he has sung over 40,000 songs. The State Government of AP presented the Nandi Award to Balasubrahmanyam 25 times. The Govt. of India honoured him with a 'Padma Bhushan' in 2011 and also presented him with six National Awards."
- Dinathanthi, Nellai Edition, 11 August 2006, p. 11.
- "SP Balasubrahmanyam". Artistopia.com. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
- "S. P. Balasubramanyam – Photos and All Basic Informations". Networkbase.info. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
- "Arts / Music : An unsung genius". The Hindu. 23 September 2010. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- "Unnai Charan Adainthaen". The Hindu. 19 September 2003. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "The cup of joy called friendship". The Hindu. 13 January 2004. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "Metro Plus Madurai / Events : A medley of sorts". The Hindu. 26 November 2009. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- "Andhra Pradesh / Ongole News : Telugu will thrive forever, says Balu". The Hindu. 14 April 2011. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "Andhra Pradesh / Hyderabad News : Raja-Lakshmi award for S.P. Balasubrahmanyam". The Hindu. 15 August 2006. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- "Metro Plus Kochi / Columns : KADALPAALAM 1969". The Hindu. 12 July 2010. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- Thakkar, Mehul S (24 May 2013). "Salman’s voice now belongs to Shah Rukh". Mumbai Mirror. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
- T. Krithika Reddy (8 January 2010). "Life & Style / Metroplus : Swinging sixties". The Hindu. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- "Directorate of Film Festival". Iffi.nic.in. Retrieved 1 January 2013.
- [dead link]
- Dalmia, edited by Vasudha; Sadana, Rashmi. The Cambridge companion to modern Indian culture. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 248. ISBN 978-0521736183.
- "Metro Plus Visakhapatnam / Music : Balu live and lively". The Hindu. 6 March 2010. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- Kadam, Prachi (25 February 2010). "I knew Rahman as a toddler: SP Balasubrahmanyam". DNA India. Retrieved 22 July 2013.
- "HindustanTimes-Print". Hindustan Times. 26 April 2007. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- "The Biggest Blockbusters Ever in Hindi Cinema". Box Office India. Retrieved 4 October 2012.
- "The Beat". The Beat (University of California: Bongo Productions) 11: 71. 1992.
- "Balasubramaniam returns with Chennai Express title track". India Today. 23 May 2013. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
- email@example.com (26 March 2009). "Chit chat with S. P. Balasubramaniam – Andhravilas.com -Telugu Cinema, Telugu Movies, India News & World News , Bollywood , Songs :". Andhravilas.com. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
- Chit chat with S. P. Balasubramaniam – Andhravilas.com -Telugu Cinema, Telugu Movies, India News & World News , Bollywood , Songs :. Andhravilas.com (26 March 2009). Retrieved 7 January 2012.