Sonu Nigam

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Sonu Nigam
Sonu Nigam121.jpg
Sonu Nigam in 2013
Background information
Born (1973-07-30) 30 July 1973 (age 41)
Faridabad, Haryana, India
Genres Pop Rock Singing, Classical Singing, Semi-Classical Singing, Ghazals Singing, Playback Singing
Occupations Singer, Musician, Music Composer, Actor, Music Director, Television presenter
Instruments Vocals
Labels Sony Music, T-Series, Tips, Saregama, Venus Records & Tapes
Associated acts Rahul Vaid, Nitin Zira

Sonu Nigam (born 30 July 1973)[1] is an Indian singer whose songs have been featured mainly in Hindi and Kannada movies. He has also sung many songs in other languages including Oriya, Tamil, Assamese, Punjabi, Bengali, Malayalam, Marathi, Telugu and Nepali movies. He has released Indian pop albums and acted in a few movies. He had changed the spelling of his last name from 'Nigam' to 'Niigaam' in accordance with numerology, but later reverted to the original spelling.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Sonu Nigam was born at Faridabad in a Kayastha family.[3][4] He began his singing career at the age of four, When he joined his father Agam Kumar Nigam on stage to sing Mohammed Rafi's song "Kya Hua Tera Vaada, Wo Kasam Wo Irada". From then on, Sonu accompanied his father on his singing appearances at weddings and parties. In his teenage years, he successfully participated in music. He moved to Mumbai with his father to begin his Bollywood singing career at the age of 19.[5] He was trained by Hindustani classical singer Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan.

Professional career[edit]

Playback Singing[edit]

Sonu Nigam recording a song in 2013.

His initial years in Mumbai proved to be a struggle, beginning by singing covers of Mohammed Rafi songs, mainly for a number of "Rafi Ki Yaadein" albums released by T-Series. T-Series promoter Gulshan Kumar gave him a chance to reach a larger audience. In these years Nigam's singing style was regarded by some to be a "Rafi clone". Nigam's first movie song as a playback singer was for Janam (1990), which was never officially released. He then began making radio commercials.

Nigam started hosting the popular TV show, Sa Re Ga Ma, in 1995 with the first episode airing on 1 May. The singing talent competition soon became one of the most popular shows on Indian television. Soon after, he sang "Accha Sila Diya" for the film Bewafa Sanam (1995).[5] His first major success was with the Anu Malik-composed song "Sandese Aate Hai" in Border (1997). Sonu's image as a 'Rafi clone' changed after his rendition of the Nadeem-Shravan-composed song "Yeh Dil Deewana" in Pardes in the same year. Sonu's Album "Deewana", with music directed by Sajid-Wajid, was released by T-Series in 1999, revealing his talent for singing romantic songs and it remains one of India's most successful albums. Since then, he has created a unique style of his own and has become a role model for emerging vocal talent in India.[5]

Over the years, Nigam became a major force in the Indian music industry. He provided playback singing for Hindi movies and won many awards, notably the title song of the film Kal Ho Naa Ho. He recorded romantic, rock, sad and patriotic songs. Nigam sang in many languages besides Hindi, including Kannada, Assamese, Bengali, Oriya, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, English, Bhojpuri, Urdu, Nepali, Chhattisgarhi, Malayalam and Marathi.[5]

With a career spanning over two decades, Nigam has recorded his voice for almost all top-rated music directors of India including A. R. Rahman, Ilayaraja, Anu Malik, Pritam, Jatin-Lalit, Nadeem Shravan, Mano Murthy, Vishal Shekar, Sanjeev Darshan, Aadesh Shrivastav, Anand Milind, Sajid-Wajid, V. Harikrishna, G. V. Prakash Kumar, Mani Sharma among others.

As Composer[edit]

Sonu Nigam composed the title track of the film Singh Saab The Great as a solo composer. He has also composed the music of films like Sooper Se Ooper and Jal in collaboration with percussionist Bickram Ghosh.

Filmography As Composer :

Year Film Notes
2014 Chowky {Promotional song}
2014 Jal
2013 Singh Saab The Great {Title Track}
2013 Sooper Se Ooper

Pop albums and concerts[edit]

Sonu has released pop albums in Hindi, Oriya, Punjabi and Kannada. The most recent addition to his Hindi releases is Classically Mild, a semi-classical album.[6] He has released Hindu and Islamic devotional albums. Also, he has sung on the album, Buddha Hi Buddha Hai (part 1 and 2), which is based on Buddha's teachings and composed by Rajesh Dhabare; a couple of albums on Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in Marathi (Jiwala Jiwach Daan part 1 and 2) tuned on some of his hits numbers from series of Bewafa Sanam, as well as albums of Mohammed Rafi's songs. These are from the Rafi Ki Yaadein collection from his early years, which were re-released in September 2007 as a six-disc collection of 100 songs, titled Kal Aaj Aur Kal, in Rafi's memory.[7] In 2008, soon after releasing Classically Mild, he released a single Punjabi track called "Punjabi Please"[8] and Rafi Resurrected, a two-disc collection of Rafi songs with music by the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. He contributed to the lyrics of several songs and directed the music for his album Chanda Ki Doli. His last album was Neene Bari Neene in Kannada.

After the death of Michael Jackson, who influenced Nigam considerably (as is evident in his rendition of "Yeh Dil Deewana" in Pardes), Nigam released a song as a tribute to Jackson in collaboration with his fans on Facebook. The song made it to an 18-song global compilation of tribute songs, The Beat of Our Hearts.[9]

Nigam collaborated with Britney Spears on a remix of her "I Wanna Go" track.[10]

Sonu Nigam performing at a concert, 2013.

Over the years, Nigam has performed in many countries, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Russia, Afghanistan, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Caribbean|West Indies, Suriname, Mauritius, Nigeria and South Africa. In May/June 2007, he participated in a star-studded show in North America called "The Incredibles" with Asha Bhosle, Kunal Ganjawala and Kailash Kher. In September and October of the same year, he gave solo concerts titled "Simply Sonu" in Canada and Germany, becoming the first Indian singer to perform in the latter country.[11] In April 2008, he toured India promoting his Punjabi single "Punjabi Please".[12]

In November 2007, at the inauguration of Harvard University's 28th president, Dr. Drew Gilpin Faust, Nigam sang Mahatma Gandhi's favorite bhajan, "Vaishnav Jan To Tene Kahiye", with the Harvard College Sangeet.[13] In July 2008, he participated in a three-city tour of the United Kingdom, singing Rafi songs with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO).[14] This followed the release of these songs by the CBSO and the Indian music company Sa Re Ga Ma on Rafi Resurrected.[15]

Among several other concerts, he notably participated in a US tour with Sunidhi Chauhan in 2009 called "The Explosion 2009" tour and in a UK tour titled "All Izz Well" in November 2010.

2011,Sonu Nigam collaborated with Kakas Entertainment and Laxmikant-Pyarelal for "Maestros" Concert where he sang Mohammed Rafi songs.[16]

Other projects[edit]

Nigam was reported to be working on an English album called Spirit Unfolding.[17] and on a project called Time Travel, where his voice will be aligned with recordings of other singers in Hindi songs.[18]

Nigam has also sung a song produced by famous international house music producer David Guetta in collaboration with Jay Sean, the British singer-songwriter, rapper, beatboxer and record producer.

In 2014 Nigam released an online exclusive of his experimental "Trini Ladki" in a style that was a first for him. It has been well received and Nigam has confirmed on Twitter that he will focus on independent albums with songs from a similar genre.

He was ranked no 1 artist in the US Billboard Uncharted charts for two times (Sep 7 and Oct 5, 2013).[19][20]

In Kannada[edit]

Nigam’s first song in Kannada was "Yello Yaro Hego" in 1996 for the film Jeevanadhi starring Legendary Super Star Dr.Vishnuvardhan. The song's music was composed by Koti with lyrics by R N Jayagopal. Nigam has sung over 700 Kannada songs[21][22] and has received several awards for them. He became a sensation in the southern industry of Kannada and is called the The Golden Singer Of Karnataka.[23][24][25][26]

His songs include "Cheluve Yeke Bande" from the film Majnu composed by Gurukiran; "Usire Usire" from Huccha composed by Rajesh Ramnath,"Titanic Heroine nee nanna cheluve" from the film Snehaloka; the title track from the film Monalisa composed by Valisha Sandeep;[27] "Hamsave Hamsave" from the film Gatti mela composed by Hamsalekha, "Kannale Kannale" from the film Aham Premasmi composed by V.Ravichandran[28] and "Baaninda Baa Chandira from the movie Kanti composed by Gurukiran. The 2006 film Mungaru Male created a sensation and several records, mainly in Karnataka.[29][30] The songs not only set records of highest sales and downloads, the film also set a national record on 29 December 2007 of having completed an entire year at the PVR Cinemas Bengaluru, the first time an Indian language film to do so.[31][32][33]

The songs Mungaru Maleye and Anisuthide were composed by Mano Murthy and written by Yogaraj Bhat and Dr.Jayanth Kaikini respectively. Nigam became a sensation in the South and was called the Golden Singer of Karnataka. Nigam says that he finds Kannada songs more fulfilling than the Hindi numbers.[34] Sonu Nigam, in a recent interview to the Deccan Herald news paper has said ‘Kannada songs make me feel positive’.[35] He said, "I highly respect the musicians of Karnataka and many of my favorite songs are in Kannada. I consider Bangalore as my second birth place. Even if someone requests me to sing a Kannada song while I’m performing in the West Indies, I will sing it for them".[22]

With the same Mungaru Male combination, music director Mano Murthy, lyricist Jayant Kaikini and Nigam got together for a Kannada album Neene Bari Neene produced by Ashok Kheny. The songs Neene Bari Neene and Baa Nodu Gelathi were shot on the outskirts of Bengaluru featuring Nigam and model Madhuri Bhattacharya in the lead.[36][37] Sonu Nigam also composed a theme song for the Karnataka Bulldozer's team in the Celebrity Cricket League. The song was sung by Sonu Nigam, Kunal Ganjawala and Sowmya Raoh, who also penned the lyrics.[38]

List of Kannada Songs[edit]


Year Song Name Film Composer Co-Singer(s)
1996 Yella Yaaro Hego Jeevanadhi Koti
1999 Titanic Heroein Snehaloka Hamsalekha
2000 Kanasali Haduva Hudugi Sparsha Hamsalekha Kavita Krishnamurthy
2001 Jum Jum Romanchana Chithra Gurukiran
Usire Usire Huchcha Rajesh Ramanath
Premi No 1 Premi No 1 Gurukiran Sowmya,
Antu Antu Super Star Hamsalekha Nanditha
Preethi Neenillade Baava Baamaida Hamsalekha KS. Chithra
Aha Yellellu Habba Premi No 1 Gurukiran
Hamsave Hamsave Haadu Baa Gattimela Hamsalekha KS. Chithra
Once Upon A Time Yekangi Ravichandran V
2002 Moriya Moriya Nata Deva Soumya,
Aasege Saavira Ropa Ninagoskara Chaithanya Archana
Prethyali Haaduve Ninagoskara Chaithanya
Preethiyali Haaduve Ninagoskara Chaithanya Nandita
2003 Endu Naanu Ninna Roopa Lankesh Patrike Babji-Sandeep Soumya
E Balu Thalikattuva Shubhavele Robin Gurang
Rome Rome Paris Pranaya Prayog Shreya Ghoshal
Ammamma Shaku Shaku Rowdy Aliya Kumar SA Sowmya
Cheluve Nanage Neenu Preetisle Beku Chaithanya Nanditha
Happy Day Game Babji-Sandeep
2004 Baaninda Baa Chandira Kanti Gurukiran
Monalisa Monalisa Valisha-Sandeep KS. Chithra, Vasundara Das
Aare Jamu Jamu Love Anu Malik
Sooryana Kirana Kanchanaganga Rajkumar S A Vaishali,
L O V E ge Love Anu Malik
2005 Masthana Masthana Shri Valisha-Sandeep
Serithu Mana Serithu Namma Basava Gurukiran Shreya Ghoshal,
Good Morning Gelayere Chappale RP Patnaik
Nee Sheetala Siddhu RP Patnaik KS. Chithra,
2006 Kannale Kannale Aham Premasmi .Ravichandran
Mungara Maleye Mungaru Male Mano Murthy
O Gunavanta Jothe Jotheyali V. Harikrishna , Shreya Ghoshal
Anisuthide Mungaru Male Mano Murthy
2007 Ninindale Milana Mano Murthy
Matte Matte Shivani Sakaleshpur
Once Upon A Time Ekangi .Ravichandran
Male Ninthu Hodha Mele Milana Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Neenu Banda Mele Krishna V. Harikrishna Nanditha,
Maatu Nannavalu Gaja V. Harikrishna Shreya Ghoshal,
Kanaso Idu Cheluvina Chiththara Mano Murthy Sunidhi Chauhan,
Ninna Ee Preethige Hani Hani Chinna S Shreya Ghoshal,
Soundarya Soundarya Soundarya Hamsalekha KS. Chithra
Ee Sanje Yakaagide Geleya Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Alli Nodu Alli Nodu Soundarya Hamsalekha Shreya Ghoshal, Nandini Hamsalekha
Ade Bhoomi Ade Baanu E Bandana Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Minchaagi Neenu Gaalipata V. Harikrishna
Ninindale (Remix) Milana Mano Murthy
Belakininda Baanella Banna Soundarya Hamsalekha
Jeeva Kaleva Gaalipata V. Harikrishna
2008 Manasa Gange Payana V. Harikrishna
Kan Kan Salige Navagraha V. Harikrishna
Yenaytho Idho Vamshi RP Patnaik
I Love You (Bit) Moggina Manasu Mano Murthy
Balle Balle Arjun V. Harikrishna Shreya Ghoshal
Ninna Nodalento Mussanjemaatu Sridhar V Shreya Ghoshal,
Dheem Dheem Accident Ricky Kej Mahalakshmi Iyer,
Chinna Hele Hegiruve Bombat Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Dil Dhadak Dhadak Paramesha Panwala V. Harikrishna Anuradha Bhat
Odi Bandenu Haage Summane Mano Murthy
O Nanna Manave Moggina Manasu Mano Murthy
I Love You Moggina Manasu Mano Murthy
Gap Chip Payana V. Harikrishna Suma Shastry
Haage Summane Haage Summane Mano Murthy
Baa Maleye Baa (Club Mix) Accident Ricky Kej
Aakasha Neene Ambaari V. Harikrishna
Maatinalli Helalarenu Bombat Mano Murthy
Manase Manase Rocky Venkat-Narayan
Modada Olage Payana V. Harikrishna
Ee Tudita Neenyaare V Manohar
Lahari Madesha Mano Murthy
Pisugudale Circus Emil Naresh Iyer
Enaagali Mussanjemaatu Sridhar V
2009 Nee Endare Junglee V. Harikrishna
Yaako Eno Abhay V. Harikrishna
Neenendare Nanage Raam V. Harikrishna Nanditha,
Nijaana Naanena Cheluvina Chilipili Mickey J Meyer
Aaramaage Iddenaanu Gokula Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal
Koncha Reshime Olave Vismaya Veer Samarth Archana Ravi
Muddhada Ee Naguvige Iniya Sridhar V Nanditha
Aaramaage Iddenaanu (Remix) Gokula Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal
O Priyatama Cheluveye Ninna Nodalu V. Harikrishna Sunitha Goparaju
Ee Bisileli (Remix) Bisile Gagan-Hari
Yenu Helabekku Yendu Maleyali Jotheyali V. Harikrishna
Ati Aparoopa Januma Janumadallu Mano Murthy
Chalisuva Cheluve Ullasa Utsaha Prakash Kumar
Janumada Jodi Cheluveye Ninna Nodalu V. Harikrishna Sunitha Goparaju
Nee Sanihake Bandare Maleyali Jotheyali V. Harikrishna
Maleya Haniyalli Januma Janumadallu Mano Murthy
Neene Helu Nannadaavudu Gokula Mano Murthy
Summane Yaake Bande Jeeva Gurukiran Shruti
Obba Hudugana Manassu Preethi Nee Shashwathana Kalyan K , Shreya Ghoshal
Gelathi Neenu Male Barali Manju Irali Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Ello Maleyaagideyandu Manasaare Mano Murthy
Onde Ninna Manasaare Mano Murthy
Maleyali Jotheyali Maleyali Jotheyali V. Harikrishna
Sagamapaanisa Premism Hamsalekha
Noduba Cheluvae Hrudayadi Idenidu Dharmaprakash
Ee Bisileli Bisile Gagan-Hari
2010 Hrudayavu Ninnadhe Uyyale Ricky Kej
Lola Lola Telo Ee Antharathma Giridhar Divan
Nudisale Kicha Hucha V. Harikrishna Anuradha Sriram
Gaaliye Nodu Baa Sanchari Arjun Shreya Ghoshal
Inthi Ninna Preethiya Aenoo Onthara V. Harikrishna Shreya Ghoshal,
Kannaliddare Kanasu Naanu Nanna Kanasu Hamsalekha
Jagadellu Kanisada Jothe Antharathma Giridhar Divan
Bhoomi Sutthodu Sanchari Arjun KS. Chithra
Eradu Jadeyannu Jackie V. Harikrishna Shreya Ghoshal
Udisuve Belakina Seereya Pancharangi Mano Murthy
Mundoduva Dinavo Idu Naanu Nanna Kanasu Hamsalekha
Hrudayave Bayaside Ninnane Krishnan Love Story Sridhar V Vidyashree
Maneyanu Kattona Nooru Janmaku Mano Murthy Shruti Pathak
Dilkhush Aenoo Onthara V. Harikrishna Shwetha
Ille Ille Ello Chirru Giridhar Divan Shreya Ghoshal
Putta Putta Naanu Nanna Kanasu Hamsalekha
Mella Mella Ee Preethi Nanjanagoodu Nanjunda Ravichandra KV , Shreya Ghoshal
Ninna Kannallide Chirru Giridhar Divan
Makkaligagi Appu And Pappu Hamsalekha
Beladhingala Hori Renukumar
2011 Nenapina Aantharya Giridhar
Paravashanadenu Paramaathma V. Harikrishna
Ondhe Samane Aata Sadhu Kokila
Hetthavalalla Avalu Jogaiah V. Harikrishna
Onde Samane Aatta Sadhu Kokila Shreya Ghoshal
Avarivara Jothe Jaraasandha Arjun Janya Anuradha Bhat
O Parijatha Parijatha Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal,
Sanju Mattu Geetha Sanju Weds Geetha Jessie Gift
Nenapina Malehani Aantharya Giridhar Anuradha Bhat
Ninna Gungalle Lifeu Ishtene Mano Murthy
Ondhe Samane Aata Sadhu Kokila Shreya Ghoshal
Sanjeya Kanchana Rishikesh Hari Anuradha Bhat
Ninninda Aatta Sadhu Kokila Shreya Ghoshal
Naa Barede Ninna Swayam Krushi Abhimann Roy
Midiva Ninna Raajadaani Arjun Shreya Ghoshal
Ninnanne Noduttha Mr Duplicate Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal
Neeli Baanina Sihi Mutthu V. Harikrishna Anuradha Bhat
Yaru Kaanaduru Jogaiah V. Harikrishna , Shreya Ghoshal
Maayaavi Mayavi Lifeu Ishtene Mano Murthy Shreya Ghoshal
Thirugi Thirugi Modala Minchu Ashley Mendonca, Abhilash Lakshmi
Sanju Mattu Geetha Sanju Weds Geetha Jessie Gift
Ninninda Aata Sadhu Kokila , Shreya Ghoshal
Ee Janmavu Ondhe Saladhu Krishnan Marriage Story Shridhar V Sambhram , Shreya Ghoshal
Ellavannu Keluvase Johny Mera Naam Preethi Mera Kaam V. Harikrishna , Rangayana Raghu
Yaava Seemeya Johny Mera Naam Preethi Mera Kaam V. Harikrishna
Karedaaga AK 56 Abhimann Roy Shreya Ghoshal, Rajesh, Reeta
Ee Sanje Krishnan Marriage Story Shridhar V Sambhram , Anuradha Bhat
Neerali Sanna Hudugaru V. Harikrishna
Ondhe Samane Aatta Sadhu Kokila
Ommomme Premachandrama V. Harikrishna
Noduthaa Kool V. Harikrishna
Ondooral Dandam Dashagunam V. Harikrishna
2012 Mynaa Mynaa Mynaa D. Imman
Modala Maleyanthe (Duet) Mynaa D. Imman
Buddhi Illa Galaate Jessie Gift
Athee Aathura Ale Mano Murthy
Chendutiya Pakadali Drama V. Harikrishna
We Are Ok Prasad Mano Murthy
Modala Maleyanthe Mynaa D. Imman
Badapayi Hrudayake Snehitharu V. V. Harikrishna
Thumba Thumba Killadi Kitti Jassie Gift Sunitha
Malla Malla Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna Yashovardhan Anuradha Bhat
Kalli Ivalu Prem Adda V. V. Harikrishna , Shreya Ghoshal
Yenendu Hesaridali Annabond V. Harikrishna Shreya Ghoshal
Neenu Nanna Saviganasu Jaanu V. Harikrishna
Yaarivano Yaarivano Yaarre Koogaadali V. Harikrishna Karthik, Anuradha Bhat
Olavina Rajinikanth Arjun Janya , Archana Ravi
Yenella Helona Bangari Neel AM Shreya Ghoshal
Hoovina Santhege Lucky Arjun Janya , Shreya Ghoshal
Jum Jumka Katari Veera Surasundarangi V. Harikrishna , Sunitha Boparaj
Neenyare Neenyare Pade Pade Satish Aryan
Nannede Veene Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna Yashovardhan , KS. Chithra, Prakash Sontakke
Modhale Sigalilla Sagar Gurukiran
Manadha Havamaana Ale Mano Murthy
2013 Jagadalliro Bul Bul V. Harikrishna
Free Ideera Sakkare V. Harikrishna Nanditha
Kanna Minche Victory Arjun Janya
Elli Adagithu Sadagara V Sridhar
Kannali Kannidu Barfi Arjun Janya
Idhdhalliye Sakkare V. Harikrishna
Soundharya Samara Kaddipudi V. V. Harikrishna
Kanna Minche Two Arjun Janya
Chaltha Chaltha Raja Huli Hamsalekha
Athi Aparoopa Athi Aparoopa Mano Murthy
Hegaadaru Ondagali - Sonu Jeethu Vikas Vashishta
Manave Hesarenu Hello Madam Excuse Me Pleaseee Vijay Prakash
Yaaranu Kelali Yaaranu Bedali Huchudugru Joshua Shridhar
Hegaadaru Ondagali - Duet Jeethu Vikas Vashishta
Manave Sweety Nanna Jodi Arjun Janya
Maleya Haniyelli Athi Aparoopa Mano Murthy
Andaje Siguthilla Tony-Ek Din Ka Sultan Sadhu Kokila , Sunidhi Chauhan
Baanali Badalago Remix Simple Aag Ond Love Story Bharath B J
Baanali Badalago Simple Aag Ond Love Story Bharath B J
Naguva Mogava Shravani Subramanya V. Harikrishna , Nanditha
Sadha Ninna Kannali Bachchan V. Harikrishna
Neenirade Googly Joshua Sridhar
Oh Mahiyave Barfi Arjun Janya
Ninna Nodo Shravani Subramanya V. Harikrishna
E Khaali Hrudaya Love Is Poison Sai Kiran
Yaare Yaare Barfi Arjun Janya
2014 Manasinalli Niranthara Abhinetri Mano Murthy
kannale kannale ambareesha V.Harikrishna shreya ghoshal

In Malayalam[edit]

Malayalam was one of the rare Indian languages in which Sonu Nigam did not sing. This condition continued until 2011, when he sang a song 'Chakkaramavin Kombathu', from the movie Bombay March 12. Sonu had earlier sung a song in the movie Kandahar, but the song, 'Aye Janani', was a Hindi song, and the former is his first Malayalam song.He again topped the hit charts by singing in the movie 8.20, a romantic song thoomanjin kulirilo.


Nigam was the host of Sa Re Ga Ma from the start of the show till 1999.[39] He returned on Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L'il Champs International as a judge with Suresh Wadkar in October 2007. Nigam was a celebrity judge on the Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Mega Challenge grand finale on 12 December 2009 which marked the 1000th episode.

He hosted the TV show Kisme Kitna Hai Dum on Star Plus in 2002.

Nigam appeared as the judge for Indian Idol in seasons 1 (October 2004 – March 2005) and 2 (November 2005 – April 2006). He was a celebrity judge in seasons 3 (17 August 2007) and 4 (16 January 2009 and 6 February 2009).

He appeared as a celebrity judge on Amul STAR Voice of India in August 2007 (Season 1) and in December 2008 (Season 2) and on the grand finale of music reality show Jo Jeeta Wohi Super Star on 12 July 2008.

Nigam was a judge/mentor on Chhote Ustaad - Do Deshon Ki Ek Awaaz (July – October, 2010) with Rahat Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan.

Nigam provided the voice for the lead character, Aladdin in the Hindi translated version of Aladdin.[40]

He was a judge/mentor on the first season of X Factor (India) (29 May – 2 September 2011) along with Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Shreya Ghoshal.[39]

Acting career[edit]

Nigam's acting career[41] started as a child in films including Betaab (1983). As an adult, he acted in films such as Jaani Dushman: Ek Anokhi Kahani, Kash Aap Hamare Hote, as the male lead opposite Juhi Babbar, and Love in Nepal. None of the films did well at the box office, although his acting was much better appreciated in his last venture. He has not returned to acting since Love in Nepal, but was recently said to be involved in Ankhon Ankhon Mein, about a blind singer.[42]


In 2006, Nigam hosted Life Ki Dhun with Sonu Nigaam on Radiocity 91.1 FM, where he had the opportunity to interview musicians, including Lata Mangeshkar in the episode aired last.[43]

Dubbing Roles[edit]

Nigam voices certain roles in Hindi for foreign films, especially Hollywood films.

On February 2013, An announcement has been made that Sonu is assigned to lead his voice in a Hindi dubbed version of a Japanese anime film, The Mystical Laws.[44]

International Singles[edit]

In December 2012, Sonu released a single in collaboration with Avicii, a Swedish dance producer.[45] The song was an Indian version of the hit Avicii track Levels (Avicii Song). It was pulled from YouTube and other music players shortly after release due to harsh criticism of the version.

Animated Films[edit]

Film title Original Voice Character Dub Language Original Language Original Release Dub Release Notes
Disney's Aladdin[46] Scott Weinger
Brad Caleb Kane (Singing)
Aladdin Hindi English 1992 2005 Gave both the speaking and singing voice to Aladdin in this film. Aired on Disney Channel India.
Rio Jesse Eisenberg Blu Hindi English 2011 2011

Anime Films[edit]

Film title Original Japanese Voice Character Dub Language Original Release Dub Release Notes
The Mystical Laws[47] Hindi 2012 2013[48]

Personal Life and Volunteer Work[edit]

Sonu Nigaam during a Peace Rally in Mumbai on 20 November 2011

Sonu married Madhurima, who is from a Bengali family, on 15 February 2002.[49] They have a son, Nevaan, born in 2007.[50]

Sonu Nigam practices fitness and yoga exercises, and has trained in Taekwondo.[1] He claims to be spiritual rather than religious.[51]

Nigam has done work for various charities in India as well as abroad for the Dignity Foundation, for various organizations working in the fields of cancer, leprosy, blindness and women's welfare, and for families affected by the Kargil war and earthquakes. He also sponsors a child from the organization "Crayon".[1]

Awards and nominations[edit]




Nigam has acted in various films.

Film Title Character Year
Pyaara Dushman manish khadnya 1995
Kaamchor Sonu (Rakesh Roshan's nephew) 1982
Ustaadi Ustaad Se Raju (Young Mithun Chakraborty) 1982
Betaab Sunny (Young Sunny Deol) 1983
Hum Se Hai Zamana Shiva (Young Mithun Chakraborty) 1983
Taqdeer Shiva (Young Shatrughan Sinha) 1983
Krishna Krishna Sudhama 1986
Jaani Dushman: Ek Anokhi Kahani Vivek Saxena 2002
Kash Aap Hamare Hote Jai Kumar 2003
Love in Nepal Abby 2004
Navra Maajha Navsacha Guest appearance as himself in a song sequence 2005


  1. ^ a b c "Sonu Nigam Biography". Retrieved 20 January 2012. 
  2. ^ "It's Nigam, not Niigaam, Says Sonu". The Times of India. 8 September 2010. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  3. ^ "Sonu Nigam: My mother was my best ally - The Times of India". The Times Of India. 
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