T. K. Murthy
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|T. K. Murthy|
Hamid Ansari presenting the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship-2010 to the Mridangam vidwan T. K. Murthy, at the investiture ceremony of the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowships and Sangeet Natak Akademi Awards-2010
|Also known as||TKM, Chittu, Krishna Murthy|
|Born||13 August 1924|
|Website||T K Murthy|
Murthy was born on 13 August 1924 to Thanu Bhagavathar and Annapurni. At age eight, without any training, Murthy started playing mridangam. When the doyen of mridangam Thanjavur Vaidyanatha Iyer visited his place, he found Murthy playing the instrument without any training. So Vaidyanatha Iyer decided to train him in mridangam. Vaidyanatha Iyer took Murthy to Tanjore, where Palghat Mani Iyer and Thambuswami, brother of T. M. Thiagarajan, were also undergoing training.
Murthy's family was full of court musicians and he is the fifth generation of musicians. The family has been in music continuously for 7 generations now. His son T.K. Jayaraman was a music composer at All India Radio and grandson Karthikeya Murthy is a film music composer. 
Murthy made his debut at the age of eleven, at Coimbatore, in a concert of Musiri Subramania Iyer with Karur Chinnaswami Iyer on violin and Tanjore Vaidyanatha Iyer on mridangam. That was the start of an illustrious career in which he has accompanied in more than 15,000 concerts so far. He has accompanied eminent artists over five generations, including Harikesanallur Muthiah Bhagavatar, Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar, Chembai Vaidhyanatha Bagavathar, Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer, M. S. Subbulakshmi, Madurai Somasundaram, D. K. Jayaraman, M. Balamuralikrishna, Kunnakudi Vaidyanathan, Lalgudi Jayaraman, T. V. Sankaranarayanan, Mandolin U. Srinivas and others. Although Murthy is a staunch follower of the Thanjavur style of mridangam, he was highly influenced by the artistry of the legendary Palani Subramaniam Pillai of the Pudukottai school of mridangam playing. This blend of the Thanjavur and Pudukottai schools has become the hallmark of T.K.Murthy's special style. His style also incorporates highly calculative patterns delivered with striking clarity and suddenness.
Murthy has received honors and awards including the following:
- Laya Ratnakara from Sivananda Saraswati, Rishikesh,
- Kalaimamani from the T.N. Iyal Isai Nataka Mandram,
- Mridanga Bhoopathy from Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavathar,
- Mridanga Bhooshanam from Sri Sankaracharya of Kanchipuram,
- Sangeet Natak Academy Award in 1987,
- Palghat Mani Iyer Award by Percussive Arts Centre, Bangalore,
- Tala Vilas Award by Sur Singar Samsad, Bombay,
- Kerala Sangeet Nataka Academy Fellowship,
- Sangeetha Kalanidhi of The Music Academy.
- Sangeet Natak Academy Fellowship, 2010 (See List of Sangeet Natak Akademi fellows § List of fellows
He was the Asthana Vidwan in Trivandrum Palace. He is a graded "National Artiste" of Prasar Bharathi.
On 25 January 2017, the Government of India announced that Murthy won the Padma Shri award for his contribution towards art and music. 
- "PadmaAwards-2017" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2017-01-29.
- "Achievement worth its weight in platinum". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 3 July 2009.
- "Anniversary fete". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 20 March 2009.
- "Zakir Hussain, Vinayak Ram praise mridangam maestro's contributions". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 10 July 2009.
- "Saying it rhythmically". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 24 July 2009.
- "Mridangam vidwan to be felicitated". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 3 July 2009.
- Video on YouTube