|Birth name||Kedarnath Bhattacharya|
|Also known as||Melody King of Bollywood|
|Born||20 October 1957|
Calcutta, West Bengal, India (present-day Kolkata)
|Instruments||Vocals, tabla, piano|
|Years active||1989 - present|
|Labels||Yash Raj Films, T-Series, Sony Music, Zee Music, Tips, Saregama, Venus Records & Tapes and Vishesh Films|
Kedarnath Bhattacharaya (born 20 October 1957), better known as Kumar Sanu, is an Indian playback singer. He is popularly known as King of melody in bollywood. He is famous for singing thousands of bollywood Hindi song. Apart from Hindi, he has also sang in other languages including Marathi, Nepali, Assamese, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Manipuri, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada, Tamil, Punjabi, Odia, Chhattisgarhi, Urdu, Pali, English and his native language Bengali, both in West Bengal and Bangladesh. He holds the record for winning five consecutive Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer (1990-1994) along with Arijit Singh. For his contribution to Indian cinema and music, he was awarded the Padma Shri in 2009 by the Government of India. Many of his tracks feature in BBC's "Top 40 Bollywood Soundtracks of all time".
Early life and career
Kumar Sanu's father, Pashupati Bhattacharya, was a vocalist and composer. His father's village was in Bikrampur (Now Munshiganj district), East Pakistan (Now Bangladesh). The two and Sanu's elder sister lived in the Sinthee area of Calcutta (now Kolkata) near Biswanath Park.
Kumar Sanu started his playback career, as Sanu Bhattacharya. In 1986, he got Bangladeshi film Tin Kanya, directed by Shibli Sadiq. Sanu had his first major Bollywood song in Hero Hiralal (1989).
In 1989 September 23, Jagjit Singh introduced Kumar Sanu to Kalyanji in Vimal Bunglow, Mumbai On their suggestion, he changed his name from "Kedarnath Bhattacharya" to "Kumar Sanu" because his voice and singing style were much influenced by Kishore Kumar. Sanu then relocated to Mumbai, where Kalyanji-Anandji gave him a chance to sing in the film Jaadugar.
For the 1990 film Aashiqui, music directors Nadeem-Shravan got Sanu to sing all but one of the songs. He won the first of his record five consecutive Filmfare Awards as Best Male Playback Singer. His next Filmfare Awards came for songs in the movies Saajan (1991), Deewana (1992), Baazigar (1993) and 1942: A Love Story (1994). He won 5 back to back Filmfare awards for singing, between 1990 and 1994.
Kumar Sanu got his major break when Gulshan Kumar with music directors Nadeem and Shravan gave him chance to sing most of the songs of movie Aashiqui (1990), songs were recorded earlier for an album and later movie was made around the songs. The movie as well as the songs were a grand success. Thereafter, they worked together in many films, including Apmaan Ki Aag (1990), Saajan (1991), Phool Aur Kaante (1991), Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahin (1991), Sadak (1991), Pyaar Ka Saaya (1991), Saathi (1991), Jaan Ki Kasam (1991), Deewana (1992), Dil Ka Kya Kasoor (1992), Jaan Tere Naam (1992), Sapne Sajan Ke (1992), Anaam (1992), Paayal (1992), Panaah (1992), Bekhudi (1992), Kal Ki Awaaz (1992), Dilwale Kabhi Na Hare (1992), Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke (1993), Sainik (1993), Junoon (1992), Balmaa (1993), Waqt Hamara Hai (1993), Rang (1993), Dil Tera Aashiq (1993), Tadipaar (1993), Sangraam (1993), Shreeman Aashiq (1993), Dhartiputra (1993), Kaise Kaise Rishte (1993), Aadmi Khilona Hai (1993), Divya Shakti (1993), Damini (1993), Dilwale (1994), Stuntman (1994), Aatish (1994), Salaami (1994), Chhoti Bahu (1994), Ekka Raja Rani (1994), Saajan Ka Ghar (1994), Kranti Kshetra (1994), Andolan (1995), Gaddar (1995), Barsaat (1995), Anokha Andaaz (1995), Saajan Ki Baahon Mein (1995), Zamaana Deewana (1995), Raja Hindustani (1996), Agnisakshi (1996), Majhdhaar (1996), Himmatvar (1996), Jeet (1996), Saajan Chale Sasural (1996), Pardes (1997), Naseeb (1997), Aa Ab Laut Chalen (1999), Sirf Tum (1999), Dhadkan (2000), Kasoor (2001), Hum Ho Gaye Aapke (2001), Ek Rishtaa: The Bond of Love (2001), Yeh Dil Aashiqanaa (2002), Ansh (2002), Haan Maine Bhi Pyaar Kiya (2002), Dil Hai Tumhaara (2002), Tum Se Achcha Kaun Hai (2002), Dil Ka Rishta (2003), Qayamat (2003), Footpath (2003), Andaaz (2003), Indian Babu (2003), Hungama (2003), Sheen (2004), Hatya (2004), Gumnaam (2004), Barsaat (2005), Mere Jeevan Saathi (2006), and Sanam Teri Kasam (2009) . He has sung his most songs for them (293 songs).
Sanu has sung songs of various genres with Anu Malik. It was Malik who made Sanu sing his first western-style song "Yeh Kaali Kaali Aankhe", from the film Baazigar (1993). Some other achievements of the combo are Chamatkar (1992), Phir Teri Kahani Yaad Aayee (1993), Sir (1993), Imtihaan (1994), Vijaypath (1994), Main Khiladi Tu Anari (1994), Naaraaz (1994), Yaar Gaddar (1994), Hum Hain Bemisaal (1994), Aa Gale Lag Jaa (1994), Naajayaz (1995), Gundaraj (1995), Hulchul (1995), Akele Hum Akele Tum (1995), Diljale (1996), Sapoot (1996), Daraar (1996), Chaahat (1996), Virasat (1997), Hamesha (1997), Dil Kitna Nadaan Hai (1997), Judwaa (1997), Tamanna (1997), Duplicate (1998), Kareeb (1998), Soldier (1998), Iski Topi Uske Sarr (1998), Hum To Mohabbat Karega (2000), Ajnabee (2001), Aan: Men at Work (2003), Ishq Vishq (2003), Fida (2004) and No Entry (2005). In 2015, they were again back with songs in Dum Laga Ke Haisha
Sanu started his work with Jatin Lalit on the 1992 film Khiladi. From then on he provided his voice for hit movies including Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman (1992), Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa (1993), Boy Friend (1993), Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995), Khamoshi (1996), Yes Boss (1997), Jab Pyaar Kisise Hota Hai (1998), Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998), Pyaar To Hona Hi Tha (1998), Ghulam (1998), Dil Kya Kare (1999), Khubsoorat (1999), Sangharsh (1999), Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan (1999), Vaastav (1999), Sarfarosh (1999) and Flames- Term 2 (The Timeliners Originals) (2019). He has sung a total of 137 songs for them.
Sanu worked for Himesh Reshammiya, for all title tracks of TV serials which Reshammiya produced. All the title tracks were sung by Sanu, and then in his debut film as a music director, Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya and further for many other films such as Kurukshetra, Yeh Hai Jalwa, Humraaz, Kahin Pyaar Na Ho Jaaye, Hello Brother, Bandhan, Dulhan Hum Le Jayenge, Jodi No.1, Uljhan, Footpath and Taarzan: The Wonder Car.
Beginning with "Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaye" in the movie Jurm (1990), Sanu's collaboration with Rajesh Roshan produced one hit after another. Significant movies include Karan Arjun (1995), Sabse Bada Khiladi (1995), Papa Kehte Hai (1996), Dastak (1996), Koyla (1997), Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai (2000), Kya Kehna (2000), Karobaar: The Business of Love (2000) and Aetbaar (2004). Kaun Sachcha Kaun Jhootha 1996
Kumar Sanu has rendered his voice for some of Viju Shah's greatest compositions. Vishwatma (1992), Mohra (1994), Tere Mere Sapne (1996), Gupt (1997), Aar Ya Paar (1997), Beti No. 1 (1999), Bulandi (2000), Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat (2001) and Kasam (2001) are some of their notable albums. Ravan Raaj: A True Story
Kumar Sanu has recorded over 150 songs with Anand-Milind. Breaking away from his romantic image, he has sung peppy numbers for the duo, his most famous ones being for actor Govinda. He worked with the duo and successfully delivered hits such as Trinetra (1991), Jigar (1992), Bol Radha Bol (1992), Insaniyat Ke Devta (1992), Ek Ladka Ek Ladki (1992), Suryavanshi (1992), Hasti (1992), Giraft (1992), Platform (1992), Raja Babu (1994), Suhaag (1994), Jai Kishan (1994), Coolie No 1 (1995), Hero No. 1 (1997), Gair (1998), Chal Mere Bhai (2000), Army (1996), Lootere (1993), Gopi Kishan (1994) and Rakshak (1996).
Kumar Sanu has worked with almost all composers of his generation along with the composers of earlier and later era - Naushad, Kalyanji-Anandji, Laxmikant-Pyarelal, Sardar Malik, R.D.Burman, Jagjit Singh, Ram-Laxman, Ravindra Jain, Usha Khanna, Bappi Lahiri, Hridaynath Mangeshkar, Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Ilaiyaraaja, A. R. Rahman, Aadesh Shrivastava, M.M.Keeravani, Vishal Bhardwaj, Uttam Singh, Dilip Sen-Samir Sen, Nikhil-Vinay, Sajid-Wajid, Sandeep Chowta, Raju Singh, Altaf Raja, Sanjeev-Darshan, Ismail Darbar, Anand Raj Anand, Daboo Malik, Sukhwinder Singh and Vishal-Sekhar - to name a few of them.
Sanu has composed music for various Indian films. Utthaan and Yeh Sunday Kyun Aata Hai are most remarkable among them. Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Anuradha Paudwal, Sapna Mukherjee, Alka Yagnik, Sonu Nigam, Sadhana Sargam, Sudesh Bhonsle, Shaan, Shreya Ghosal, Hema Sardesai, Sunidhi Chauhan and many more lent their voices for his music. "Yeh Kaisa Utthhan Hai" (sung by Asha Bhosle and Sonu Nigam in two different versions) and "Jisne Sapna Dekha" (sung by Sanu himself) are critically acclaimed. He sang the title song for the TV show Yeh Duniyan Gazab Ki, with singer Udit Narayan.
In 2017, Sanu along with Sadhna Sargam sung for the title track of 19s Story based TV Series "Yeh Un Dinon Ki Baat Hain" and also appeared as a part for cameo in it. In 2019, he made a little singing for the Star Plus's "Kulfi Kumarr Bajewala".
Other than singing and composing music for films, he has also shown interest in producing films. In 2006, he produced his first Hindi film Utthaan. Currently, he is working with a fellow producer, Rakesh Bhhatia on a new project named Yeh Sunday Kyun Aata Hai. The film is based on the lives of four children who live in the streets of Mumbai and polish shoes at a train station in order to earn their livelihoods. The film will feature Mithun Chakraborty in a leading role. Recently, Sanu sang for a Bangladeshi Bengali film Hason Raja, which was directed by a UK-based filmmaker Ruhul Amin. This movie was never released. He also has composed for some Bengali movies; Amrita and Tobu Aporichito.
Sanu was on the panel of judges on Sony TV for Waar Parriwar, a reality show based on the bringing together of a singing gharana (family of singers) and on Zee Bangla TV in a music reality show called Sa Re Ga Ma Pa - Vishwa Sera. In 2012, he judged the Zee Bangla musical reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa – Gane Gane Tomar Mone. At present, he is one of the judges on the Bengali version of the popular musical reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa L'il Champs.
Recently he recorded an album named Hum aur Tum. He also recorded a Spanish song for an album. He has also the record for the most recordings of songs in a single day, 28 songs. He also made special appearances as an actor in the movies Hum Aapke Dil Mein Rehte Hain (1999) and Dum Laga Ke Haisha (2015).
Sanu is a trustee and Brand Ambassador of Bishwa Bandhan, a foundation for cerebral palsy.
Work with other singers
Sanu had multiple hit duet numbers with singers Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Anuradha Paudwal, Alka Yagnik, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Sadhana Sargam, Alisha Chinai, Sunidhi Chauhan, Sapna Mukherjee, Poornima, Sapna Awasthi, Hema Sardesai, Shreya Ghoshal, Akriti Kakkar, Monali Thakur, Neha Kakkar, and others. Sanu also multiple duets with his daughter Shannon K, pop singer and songwriter, who has launched her career in the United States in 2017.
Sanu is also credited with the highest number of version songs and male duet hits with the finest singers of 1980s and 1990s. Some of the notable songs are as follows:
|Song||Film||Other version sung by singer(s)|
|"O Priya Suno Priya"||Arjun Pandit (1999)||Hariharan|
|"Dil Ka Aalam"||Aashiqui (1990)||Nitin Mukesh|
|"Dil Ka Rishta"||Dil Ka Rishta (2002)||Udit Narayan and Babul Supriyo|
|"Kajal Kajal"||Sapoot (1996)||Amit Kumar|
|"Raja Ko Rani Se"||Akele Hum Akele Tum (1995)||Udit Narayan|
|"Pardesi Pardesi"||Raja Hindustani (1996)||Udit Narayan and Suresh Wadkar (sad version)|
|"Aakhon Main Base ho Tum"||Takkar (1995)||Abhijeet Bhattacharya|
|"Tum Dil Ki"||Dhadkan (2000)||Abhijeet Bhattacharya|
|"Dil Ne Yeh Kaha Hai Dilse"||Dhadkan (2000)||Sonu Nigam, Udit Narayan|
|"Woh Aankh Hi Kya"||Khuddar (1994)||Sonu Nigam|
|"Jeeye Toh Jeeya Kyse"||Saajan (1991)||Pankaj Udhas and S. P. Balasubrahmanyam|
|"Dil kya kare"||Dil Kya Kare (1999)||Udit Narayan|
|"Janam meri janam"||Mr. Bechara (1996)||Udit Narayan|
|"O Dil Tod Ke Hasti Ho Mera"||Bewafa Sanam (1995)||Udit Narayan|
|"Is Tarah aashiqui ka"||Imtihaan (1994)||Amit Kumar|
|"Dil Mera Churaya Kyu"||Akele Hum Akele Tum (1995)||Udit Narayan|
|"Cahaton Ka Silsila"||Shabd (2005)||Udit Narayan|
|"Jis Ghadi Tujhko"||Prithvi (1997 film)||Udit Narayan|
|"Salma Pe Dil Aa Gaya"||Salma Pe Dil Aa Gaya (1997)||Udit Narayan, Asha Bhosle and Amit Kumar Aaina Aaina Dil ko Ravan Raaj: A True Story Pulan Visaranai|
He joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2004 in a ceremony headed by then Party President Venkaiah Naidu, but he later resigned to concentrate on singing. He rejoined BJP on 2 December 2014, inducted by Amit Shah.
Kumar Sanu returned to playback singing in 2012. He made a comeback at the urge of composers Sajid–Wajid. Sajid-Wajid gave him "Chammak Challo Chhail Chhabili" - Rowdy Rathore, a wedding song with Shreya Ghoshal. In 2015, Kumar Sanu replaced Lata Mangeshkar as the background voice of Yash Raj Films logo for the film Dum Laga Ke Haisha. This was the first time in YRF's 60-year history that Lata Mangeshkar's voice was replaced.
- Filmfare awards — 1991-1995
- Padma Shri (2009)
- Screen award for Best Male Playback
|2001||31 March - Kumar Sanu Day: first Indian singer to achieve such honour in America||Michael R. Turner, Mayor, Dayton, Ohio, U.S.|
|2001||Doctorate (honorary)||University of America|
|2009||Padma Shri: India's 4th highest civilian honour||Government of India|
|2012||Dr. Ambedkar Awards||People Education Society|
|2014||Maharashtraratna Awards||Government of Maharashtra|
|2014||Mahanayak Samman Lifetime Achievement: as Bengali Playback Singer||Government of West Bengal|
|2015||Sangeet Samman Lifetime Achievement Award||Government of West Bengal|
|2017||Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Nobel Award||International Human Rights Council|
|2018||Felicitation at the UK Houses of Parliament, along with Anuradha Paudwal for contribution in Indian Music and also social services.||Indo-British All Party Parliamentary Group|
|2019||Bishesh Sangeet Mahasanman||Government of West Bengal|
|1990||"Ab Tere Bin"||Aashiqui||Nadeem-Shravan||Sameer|
|1991||"Mera Dil Bhi Kitna Pagal Hai"||Saajan|
|1992||"Sochenge Tumhe Pyaar"||Deewana|
|1993||"Yeh Kaali Kaali Aankhen"||Baazigar||Anu Malik||Dev Kohli|
|1994||"Ek Ladki Ko Dekha"||1942: A Love Story||R.D. Burman||Javed Akhtar|
|1993||"Baazigar O Baazigar"||Baazigar|
|1994||"Kuch Na Kaho"||1942: A Love Story|
|1995||"Tujhe Dekha To"||Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge|
|1995||"Tu Mile Dil Khile"||Criminal (1995 film)#Hindi Version|
|1997||"Do Dil Mil Rahe Hain"||Pardes|
|1998||"Ladki Badi Anjaani Hai"||Kuch Kuch Hota Hai|
|1999||"Aankhon Ki Gusthakiyaan"||Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam|
|2003||"Sanam Mere Humraaz"||Humraaz|
|2004||"Kisise Tum Pyar Karo"||Andaaz|
- 2016: 8th position on "Google most searched Indian singers in last 10 years"
- 2003: Bollywood Music Award For "Best Artist of the Decade"
- 2001: Channel V Award For Best Male Playback for "Chand Sitare" - Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai
- 2000: Hero Honda Award For Best Playback Singer (Male) for "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 2000: Kalashree Award For Best Male Playback for "Chaand Sitare" - Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai
- 2000: Nomination: IIFA Award for Best Male Playback for "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 2000: Nomination: MTV Award for "Dil ne yeh" with Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik
- 1999: Mohammed Rafi Memorial Award for Best Playback Singer For "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 1999: Nomination: MTV Award for "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" With Kavita Krishnamurthy - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 1999: Zee Gold Awards for "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 1999: Kalakar Awards for "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 1999: Stardust Award for Best Playback Singer For "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan" - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam
- 1999: Anandalok Awards for Best Playback Singer (Male) Kumar Sanu for Ami Sei Meye
- 1998: Lions' Club Gold Award For Best Playback Singer "Ladki Badi Anjani Hai" - Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
- 1998: Anandalok Awards For Best Playback Singer (Male) Kumar Sanu for Gane Bhuban Bhoriye Debo
- 1997: BFJA Award for film Lathi
- 1996: BFJA Award for film Kencho Khurte Keote
- 1995: Channel V Award For Best Male Playback "Tujhe Dekha To Yeh Jaana Sanam" - Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge
- 1995: Ashirwad Award For Best Male Playback "Ek Ladki Ko Dekha" - 1942: A Love Story
- 1995: Screen Award for Best Male Playback for "Ek Ladki Ko Dekha" - 1942: A Love Story
- "Notes to note from the melody king of the Bollywood, Kumar Sanu". The Hindu. 31 August 2017. Retrieved 28 July 2021.
- Parande, Shweta (23 September 2014). "Kumar Sanu birthday special: Listen to the Bollywood singer's mesmerising songs in the jukebox". India.com. Retrieved 6 September 2018.
- Srivastava, Pranati (20 October 2018). "Kumar Sanu birthday: Some intriguing facts about Bollywood's melody king". Times Now News. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
- BBC. "BBC - Asian Network - Top 40 Soundtracks of All Time". www.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 14 August 2020.
- "A Singer Acts". The Indian Express. Archived from the original on 19 April 1997. Retrieved 13 November 2018.
- Khole, Purva (23 September 2013). "Kumar Sanu, happy birthday". Bollywoodlife.com. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
- India-West, R. M. VIJAYAKAR, Special to. "Kumar Sanu Makes Cameo Appearance in 'Yeh Un Dinon Ki Baat Hai'". India West.
- "BishwaBandhan: PURPOSE". 20 March 2016. Archived from the original on 20 March 2016. Retrieved 26 October 2018.
- "Kumar Sanu Vidya Niketan - An NGO for underprivileged children". kumarsanuvidyaniketan.org. Archived from the original on 26 October 2018. Retrieved 26 October 2018.CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
- "Singer Kumar Sanu opens school for the underprivileged.. - Bollywood.com News". Retrieved 23 August 2016.
- "Interview with talented Pop Singer Shannon K". CreativInn Art Mag.
- "Kumar Sanu will "sing" for BJP". The Hindu. 17 March 2004. Archived from the original on 4 April 2004. Retrieved 6 November 2013.
- "Bollywood singer Kumar Sanu joins BJP". Times Of India. 2 December 2014. Retrieved 3 December 2014.
- "Lata Mangeshkar Replaced By Kumar Sanu For Ayushmann Khurrana's Dum Laga Ke Haisha". Retrieved 23 August 2016.
- "Day tripper: Kumar Sanu goes global". Filmfare. July 2001. Archived from the original on 30 August 2004. Retrieved 5 March 2016.
- "International Human Rights Council Honours Dharmendra With Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Nobel Award". indiatimes.com. Retrieved 20 April 2017.
- "Bappi Lahiri, Kumar Sanu given Lifetime Achievement awards". 14 December 2015.
- "Kumar Sanu and Anuradha Paudwal honoured at UK Houses of Parliament". 8 July 2018. Retrieved 26 October 2018.
- "Salman Khan, Sunny Leone are Google's most searched Indian actors of last 10 years". 15 July 2016. Retrieved 29 July 2016.
Media related to Kumar Sanu at Wikimedia Commons