SP Balasubrahmanyam: From SPB’s first songs in various languages to many lesser known facts
Renowned singer SP Balasubrahmanyam passed away on September 25 (Friday) in Chennai. The legendary singer has over 40,000 songs to his name in various Indian languages
Awarded the Padma Shri in 2001 and the Padma Bhushan in 2011, SPB has won over 25 national awards in his singing career including Nandi and Filmfare awards. The legendary singer breathed his last on September 25.
SPB’s firsts in various languages:
SPB’s first playback song in Sri Sri Mryada Ramanna: Emi Ee Intha Moham
His first Kannada song Nagabeku was from the movie Nakkare Ade Swarga
His first Tamil song Iyarkai Ennum Ilaiya Kanni was from the movie Shanthi Nilayam
His first song in Malayalam Ee Kadalum Marukadalum was from the movie Kadalpalam
His first song in Hindi was Ek Duje Ke Liye from the movie Ek Duje Ke Liye
SP Balasubrahmanyam had lent his voice to songs of MGR, Kamal Hassan, Vishnuvardhan, Shankar Nag, Gemini Ganesan and even Salman and Shah Rukh Khan.
SPB is most famous as the voice of Kamal Hassan, not only singing for him but also dubbing Kamal’s Tamil movies in Telugu. SPB dubbed for the Telugu version of Dasavataram and lent his voice to seven characters in the movie.
Among Bollywood, he was known as the perfect voice for Salman Khan after the songs of Maine Pyar Kiya won hearts across India. He went on to sing for Salman Khan in blockbusters like Hum Apke Hain Kaun and Saajan.
He became the favourite voice of film industries. He has a Guinness record for recording the highest number of songs in a day. He recorded 21 songs in Kannada for composer Upendra Kumar in February 1981.
SPB has been long associated with music legends like AR Rahman, KV Mahadevan and Anand-Milind, Hamsalekha. But interestingly, he was associated with Maestro Ilayaraaja at a time when they were both unknowns. For example, Ilayaraja played the guitar and harmonium when SPB was a singer in a programme organised by the Telugu Cultural Organisation in 1964.
Here are some of his most iconic songs:
Pudhu Vellai Mazhai from the movie Roja, Music by AR Rehman
Mandram Vantha song from the movie Mouna Raagam, Music by Ilayaraaja
Jotheyali, Jothe Jotheyali song from the movie Geetha, Music by Ilayaraaja
Dil Deewana Bin Sajna Ke from the movie Maine Pyar Kiya fetched SPB a Filmfare award; Music by Raamlakshman
Didi Tera Dewar Deewana from the movie Hum Apke Hain Kaun; Music by Raamlakshman
And the latest one is for Shah Rukh Khan with Nikal Na jaye Chennai Express from the movie Chennai Express; Music by Vishal-Shekhar