Yesudas began his career in playback singing in the Malayalam movie Kaalpadukal and Kollywood movies in the early '60s (He sang for 'Bommai' first (Music : K.Balachandar), but the first released movie was 'Konjum Kumari'(Music : Veda))and by '70s he entered Bollywood.The first Hindi song was for the movie 'Jai Jawan Jai Kissan' (1971), but the first released movie was 'Chhoti Si Baat'. He has bagged seven National Film Awards for the best singer in the Indian film industry which is a record no singer has equalled, let alone surpassed. Yesudas is married to Prabha for more than 30 years. They have three sons, Vinod, Vijay and Vishal.
On 14 November 1999, Yesudas was presented with an honorary award by UNESCO for "Outstanding Achievements in Music and Peace" at the "Music for Peace" event in Paris, a concert held to mark the dawn of the new millennium and whose attendees included artistes such as Lionel Richie, Ray Charles, Montserrat Caballé, and Zubin Mehta.
Endowed with a "divine" voice and a penchant for hard work, it was a triumphant journey for him, becoming one of the most recorded artists ever. After recording over 40,000 songs and winning scores of accolades including the coveted Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan honours and seven national awards for the best playback singer, he is still enchanting music lovers the world over. He is the only singer who has been accorded the title Asthana Gayakan (Official singer) of Kerala State.
- National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer a record seven times by the Government of India.
- State Film Awards a record Twenty four times for the best Playback singer by the Government of Kerala.
- State Film awards Eight times for the best Playback singer by the Government of Tamil Nadu.
- State Film awards Five Times for the best Playback singer by the Government of Karnataka.
- State Film awards Six times for the best Playback singer by the Government of Andra Pradesh.
- State Film awards One time for the best Playback singer by the Government of West Bengal.
K. S. Chithra (Malayalam: കെ. എസ്. ചിത്ര, Tamil: கெ. எஸ். சித்ரா, Telugu: కే. ఎస్. చిత్ర, Kannada: ಕೆ. ಎಸ. ಚಿತ್ರ, Hindi: के. एस. चित्रा, Bengali: কে. এস. চিত্রা) often credited as Chitra, is a six time National Film Award winning playback singer who has made her mark in the Indian (film) music playback industry. Known as the Nightingale of South India, she has lent her voice to Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Oriya, Hindi, Assamese and Bengali films.
Born on July 27, 1963, in Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum), Kerala, into a family of musicians, Chithra’s talent was recognized and nurtured from an early age by her father, the late Krishnan Nair. He was also her first guru (teacher). Chithra received her extensive training in Carnatic music from Dr. K. Omanakutty, after she was selected for the National Talent Search Scholarship from the Central Government from 1978–1984. She is married to Vijayashankar, an engineer and businessman. Her only daughter Nandana, was born in 2002.
Chithra has recorded more than 25 thousands of film and non-film songs to date. During her illustrious career which is still continuing, numerous recognitions have come her way including six National Awards for best female playback singer.She is just behind K.J. Yesudas who has won 7 national awards as a singer. This is the highest number of national awards awarded to any female playback singer. She has won the awards for the following films:
2005 - Padma Shri - India's fourth highest civilian honours
National Film Awards:
2004 - Best Female Playback Singer - Autograph, Tamil Film (Song: 'Ovvoru Pookalume')
1997 - Best Female Playback Singer - Virasat, Hindi Film (Song: 'Payalein Chun Mun')
1996 - Best Female Playback Singer - Minsaara Kanavu, Tamil Film (Song: 'Maana Madurai (Ooh La La La)')
1989 - Best Female Playback Singer - Vaishali, Malayalam Film (Song: 'Indupushpam Choodi Nilkum Raathri')
1987 - Best Female Playback Singer - Nakhashathangal, Malayalam Film (Song: 'Manjal Prasadavum')
1986 - Best Female Playback Singer - Sindhu Bhairavi, Tamil Film (Song: 'Padariyen Padippariyen')
She has also received 15 awards for the best female playback singer from Kerala State Government, 7 awards from Andhra Pradesh State Government, 4 awards from Tamil Nadu State Government and 3 awards from Karnataka State Government. She is the only playback singer to be recognised by all the four state governments in South India for her contributions.
Chithra was also honoured with the Kalaimamani title from Tamil Nadu Government in 1997, the K. J. Yesudas Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004, Kalaiselvam title from the South Indian Nadigar Sangam in 2002, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from Global Malayalee Council in London in 2003. She has also received numerous mainstream awards like MTV Video Music Award, Screen – Videocon Award, Film Fans Association Awards, and Cinema Express Awards. She has in her credit, private albums in Hindi, namely Piya Basanti and Sunset Point. Her first ghazal album with Masterio Ghulam Ali and Asha Bhosle is ready for release. She recently released an album in dedication to Smt.M.S.Subbulakshmi named My Tribute. It is a collection of krithis and bhajans dedicated to Smt.M.S.Subbulakshmi. Sony is planning to release a solo album soon owing to success of Piya Basanti. Recognising her contribution to the music world, Smt. Chithra has been conferred the Padma Shri title by the Government of India in 2005.
S. Janaki was born into a Telugu brahmin family in Pallapatla, Repalle village, in the Guntur District of Andhra Pradesh. Janaki started singing at the age of 19. She started her career in movies by singing songs composed by T. Chalapati Rao in the Tamil movie Vidhiyin Vilayattu in 1957. Subsequently, she performed in the Telugu movie MLA. Janaki went on to become one of the most favourite singers of Ilayaraja.
She also wrote many songs for Tamil and Telugu movies. She has sung more than 30,000 songs[Films,Non Films], in all languages in South India, as well as in Hindi, Sinhalese, Bengali, Oriya, English, Sanskrit, Konkani, Tulu, Saurashtra, Baduga, Japanese and German. A devotee of Lord Krishna and Shirdi Sai Baba, she has also recorded Hindu devotional music on Meera.
Her contemporaries include Ghantasala, Dr.Rajkumar, P. Susheela, Vani Jayaram, K J Yesudas, L R Eeswari, P. Jayachandran, P. Leela, K. S. Chithra, Sujatha, Jency, P B Srinivas and of course S P Balasubramanyam. She is the inspiration for many upcoming female playback singers. S. Janaki married V.Ramprasad. She is now settled in Chennai, lives with her son Murali Krishna.
- In 1956, second prize in competitions held by AIR (All India Radio) from the former Indian President Dr. Rajendra Prasad.
- In 1986, Kalai Mamani by Government of Tamil Nadu
- In 1987, Sur singar award
- In 2002 , Cinema 'Achiever Award' by the government of Kerala
- In 2005, Special Jury Swaralaya Yesudas Award for outstanding performance in music.
- National Film Awards Four times for the best Playback singer by Government of India
- State Film awards fourteen times for the best Playback singer by Government of Kerala
- State Film awards seven times for the best Playback singer by Government of Tamil Nadu
- State Film awards ten times for the best Playback singer by Government of Andra Pradesh
- State Film awards four times for the best Playback singer by Government of Karnataka
- 2009, Honorary doctarate by Mysore university for her tremendous contribution to Kannada Film songs background singing.
M.G. Sreekumar made his debut in the Malayalam movie "Poochakkoru Mookkuthi". He has sung more than 3000 songs across a number of films in Malayalam, Tamil, Hindi and Telugu.
He became a Music director in Malayalam films such as Achaneyanenikkishtam (2001), Chathurangam (2002), and Thandavam'(2002). Sreekumar's latest movie as music director is Priyadarshan's Kanchivaram,Mohanlal's Alexander The Great and Oru Naal Varum. He will also do the music for Paraya Paraya Pattanam and another Tamil film to be produced by Seven Arts. He was working in Middle East before starting his career as a singer. He is the youngest son in his family. His elder brother M.G. Radhakrishnan is a renowned music director who have won many awards in his area of specialization. His elder sister is a renowned classical music vocalist and a lecturer in Kerala Music Academy.
- 2002 - Best Male Playback Singer - Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njanum (Song: Chanthu Pottum)
- 1991 - Best Male Playback Singer - His Highness Abdullah (Song: Nadha Roopini)
- 1992 - Best Play Back Singer - Different Films
- 1991 - Best Play Back Singer - Kilukkam (Song: Kilukil Pambaram) and Thudarkkadha (Song: Aathiravaravayi)
- 1989 - Best Play Back Singer - Kireedam (Song: Kanneer Poovinte) and Vadakkunokkiyantram (Song: Mayamayooram Peeliveeshiyo)
- 2008 - Best Male Playback - Innathe Chintha Vishayam
- 2005 - Best Male Playback - Thanmathra, Ananthabhadram
- 2003 - Best Male Playback - Manassinakkare
Susheela was born in Vijayanagaram, Andhra Pradesh, India.
She has won the First national award presented to the Female Singer catagory in 1969 by Indian Govt.
- Mrs. P. Susheela was awarded the 'Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in January 2008.
- She received the National Film Award for Best Female Playback Singer five times
- In 2005, she achieved Special Jury Swaralaya Yesudas Award for outstanding performance in music.
- In 2001, Andhra Pradesh Government honored her with the Raghupathi Venkaiah Award for lifetime achievement to Telugu Cinema.
Jayachandran was born in 'Bhadralayam', Ravipuram, Ernakulam, and later his family moved to Irinjalakkuda. Jayachandran graduated from Christ College, Irinjalakuda. He was a student of the Irinjalakuda National School from where he received many prestigious prizes for playing the Mridangam and light music in the State School Youth Festival Jayachandran met Yesudas in 1958 when he participated in the state youth festival. Yesudas won the Best Classical Singer award and Jayachandran got the best Mridamgist award in the same year.
Jayachandran got his first state award in 1972 for the song Neelagiriyude ('Suprabhaatham')... for the film Panitheeratha Veedu. Its music was done by M. S. Viswanathan. The year 1978 brought him another state award. The song was Ragam Sreeragam for the film Bandhanam and the music director was M. B. Sreenivasan. He received a prestigious national award in 1985 for Sivasankara Sarva Saranya Vibho..., a Gurusthuthi song for the film Sree Narayana Guru. The song Prayam Nammil.. from the film Niram brought him a third state award in 1998. In 1975, he sang for the Malayalam movie Penpada (with music by R. K. Shekhar)a song Velli then Kinnam Pol, regarded as the first composition of 9 year old Dileep Kumar, now known as A. R. Rahman.
- 1986 - Best Male Play Back Singer for the song Shivashankara Sharva Sharanyavibho in the film Sree Narayana Guru
- 1972 - Best Male Play Back Singer for the song Suprabhatham in the film Pani Theeratha Veedu
- 1978 - Best Male Play Back Singer for the song Ragam Sreeragam in the film Bandhanam
- 1999 - Best Male Play Back Singer for the song Prayam Nammil in the film Niram
- 2004 - Best Male Play Back Singer for the song Neeyoru Puzhayaay in the film Thilakkam
Vani Jayaram was chosen for the Indian President's National Film Award for Best Female Playback Singer of 1975, for her work in M. S. Viswanathan's Apoorva Raagangal. Shankarabharanam (Telugu), the film scored by K.V. Mahadevan, gave Vani Jayaram her second National Award as Best Playback Singer of 1980. Once again, she was awarded her third National Award for Best Playback Singer of 1991 for K.V. Mahadevan's Swathi Kiranam.
Her songs in the Pandit Ravi Shankar scored film Meera brought her the Film World (1979) Cine Herald (1979) and Filmfare Award (1980) for Best Playback Singer for "Mere To Giridhar Gopal".
She is also the youngest artiste to be awarded the Sangeet Peet Samman.
In 1948 she sang 'paaduka poonkuyile' for the Malayalam movie Nirmala. Balan, made in 1938, was the first Malayalam "talkie" with a sound track. Mr.T.R Sundaram produced this film for Modern theatres, Salem, with S. Nottani as the director. The film starred Mr.K. K. Aroor, Mr. Alleppy Vincent, Smt. M. K. Kamalam. Mr. Muthukulam Raghavan Pillai wrote the screen play. The film ‘Balan’ produced by T. R.Sundaram was a melodrama with more Tamil influence than Malayalam.
Some of hit songs of Madhuri
- Innenikku Pottukuthan
- Himashaila Saikatha
- Kasturi Thailamittu
- Priyasakhi Gange
- Prananathan Enikku
- Kalyani Kalavani
- Thambran Thoduthathu
- Chakravarthini Ninakku
- Chandrakalabham Charthi
Sujatha was shot to fame in the seventies as Baby Sujatha, the schoolgirl who regularly used to sing with K. J. Yesudas in his stage shows all over the world. She recorded her first song Kannezhuthy Pottuthottu when she was in sixth standard. The song was composed by M. K. Arjunan for the 1975 Malayalam movie "Tourist Bungalow". She recorded songs for Shyam in "Kamam Krodham Moham" and Salil Chowdhury in "Aparadhi". Around this time composer M. G. Radhakrishnan got her to record many non-film songs, the biggest hit among them was Odakkuzhal Vili.
She debuted in Tamil films soon through the song Kaadhal Oviyam Kandein but it was not included in the film. Her first released song in Tamil was Kalai Paniyil from the Tamil film "Gayathri" (1977), starring Sridevi and Rajinikanth with music by Ilaiyaraja. She sang for Ilaiyaraaja in "Johnny", "Kavikuyil" and "Ilamai Kolangal". After her marriage in 1981, she took she took a sabbatical from playback singing. She made a successful comeback in 1988 through "Kadathanadan Ambadi", followed by the superhit "Chithram".
She used to sing ad jingles in the late eighties for A. R. Rahman which all became big successes(one such was Remanika Sarees ad). Then, Rahman got her to sing Pudhu Vellai Mazhai from Mani Ratnam's 1992 film "Roja", which became one of the biggest hit songs in India. The backing vocals for the song Kadhal Roja was also given by Sujatha. She has had other hit songs, most of them with Rahman from films including "Pudhiya Mugam" (1992), "Gentleman" (1993), "Jeans" and "Minsaara Kanavu" (1997). She has also recorded some songs in Hindi including Dil Hai Sanam (Hindi version of highly acclaimed Thee Thee) from "Chor Chor (Thiruda Thiruda)" Ishq Bina from "Taal", Hai Jaana from "Pukar" and Ishwar Allah from "Earth" and provided backing vocals for the song Tum Ho Meri Nigahom from "Kabhi Na Kabhi", all of them , composed by A. R. Rahman. She has had most of her notable and successful songs along with A.R.Rahman.
- 1993 Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Female Playback - Netra Illathe Mattram from Pudiya Mugam
- 1996 Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Female Playback - Poo Pookkum Oosai from Minsara Kanavu
- 1996 Kerala State Film Award for Best Singer - Pranayamanithooval from Azhakiya Ravanan
- 1999 Kerala State Film Award for Best Singer - Varamanjaladiya from Pranayavarnangal
- 2001 Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Female Playback - Un Samayal Arayil from Dhill
- 2001 Asianet Film Awards Best Female Playback -Perariya from Soothradharan
- 2004 Asianet Film Awards Best Female Playback -Kandu Kandu from Mambazhakalam
- 2008 Kerala State Film Award for Best Singer - Bansuri from Rathrimazha
- 2009 Swaralaya Yesudas Award
- Film Critics Award For Best Female Playback - 11 times
- Cinema Express award
- Dinakaran award
- She was a hot contender for National Film Award for Best Female Playback Singer in the years 1997 for Poo Pookkum Oosai(Minsara Kanavu) and 2007 for Thattam Pidichu(Paradesi) but missed by a whisker.
An ardent devotee of `Ammavaru', the awe-inspiring singer released many a music album with bhajans and devotional songs. Eswari's album on Swamy Ayyappa was a hit with the devotees of the God of Sabarimala. A National award and a Nandi award are only some of the feathers in her cap. Her unique voice is more suited for peppy numbers in the movies be it a dance tune or devotional tune.
G. Venugopal is a postgraduate in Literature and Journalism from the Kerala University where he was the Sarva Kalaa Prathibha for five consecutive years from 1980 to 1985. He resides in Trivandrum with his wife Reshmi and 2 children Arvind and Anupallavi. Sri. G.Venugopal is one of the judges in Munch Star Singer Junior musical reality show
- Kerala State Government Award in 1988 - for the song unarumee gaanam.
- Kerala State Government Award in 1990 - for the song Thaaney poovitta moham.
- Kerala State Government Award in 2004 - for the song- aadedee aadaadedee.
- Kerala Film Critics Award in 1987 - onnaam raagam paaadi.
- Kerala Film Critics Award in 1989 - mainaagapponmudiyil and pallitherundo.
Even before his foray into films he had already made a mark in devotional music. He began by singing tracks for the established singers , but his talent was so obvious he was soon rendering his own devotional songs; he cut his first solo album in 1992 a full year before his induction into film s. He has sung for Hindu, Christian & Muslim albums, the most popular being ‘Archanapoo’, ‘Devageethangal’, ‘Padmatheertham’ etc. He has lent his voice to drama & TV serial songs as well. He won the best Male Singer Singer in the State Drama Awards & the Critic’s Award for the title song in the serial Kayankulam Kochunni.
Unni Menon was born on August 12, 1957 at Guruvayoor, a temple town in the Thrissur district of Kerala to V. K. S. Menon and Malathy. He did his schooling in Guruvayoor and B.E.M. High School, Palakkad. Later, he attended the Government Victoria College, Palakkad from where he graduated with a degree in Physics.
Unni Menon is basically a Malayalam film playback singer. He was a track singer and after listening to his tracks for the film, Kadathu, KJ Yesudas asked to the music director, Shyam, to make it straight. And after the huge success of the Kadathu songs (Olangal Thaalam Thullumbol, Punnaare Poonthinkale, etc), Unni became a regular singer for the hit music director, Shyam. Shyam has given him a good number of popular songs like Maanathe Hoori Pole (Ee Naadu), Valakilukkam Oru Valakilukkam (Munnettam), Kaayampoo Korthu Tharum (Aarorumariyaathe) and the melodious Thozhuthu Madangum Sandhyayumetho (Aksharangal).
- 2002 - Best Male Playback Singer - Varushamellam Vasantham (Song: Enge Antha Vennila) and Unnai Ninaithu (Songs: Ennai thalatum and Yaarindha Devathai)
- 1996 - Best Male Playback Singer - Minsara Kanavu (Song: Ooh lalala)
He shot into fame with the song "Amme Amme" from the film "Vaalkannadi" in 2002 which got him a Kerala Government State Award. Some of his hits include "Kuttanadan Kaayalile" from "Kazhcha" in Malayalam , "Konchaneram Konchaneram" a duet with Asha Bhosle from "Chandramukhi" the Rajnikanth starrer, "Kanakandenadi Sharade" from "Aptamitra" in Kannada. He has also lent his voice for the much acclaimed Ilayaraja album, Thiruvasagam. He also lent his voice in bala's movie "Naan Kadavul" for the super hit song "Pichai pathiram". Recently he has sung the title song for the Malayalam Serial "Swamy Ayyappan", which has become a great hit in almost all Hindu house holds. The song "Sabarimaamala vazhum Ayyappa" is one of the best devotional songs on Lord Ayyappa released recently.
His first solo hit came in the movie Prema Pasam in which he also sang a duet with P. Susheela.
He is fluent in eight languages (Telugu, Kannada, Tamil, Malayalam, Hindi, Urdu, English & Sanskrit) and has penned several ghazals in Telugu. Sreenivas sang duets and triplets with Geeta Dutt, Shamshad Begum and Jikki apart from leading a chorus song.
Born in September 22, 1930 in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh, he has completed college with a Bachelor of Commerce degree.
- Madhavapeddi Satyam award by the Siva Foundation
- Vocational Excellence Award for his fifty years of dedication to music
- Vidwath Siromani Puraskaram
He was born in 1930 in Thiruvattar in Kanyakumari Dist.
Although she started her career in Malayalam Cinema with the song "Valakilukkam Kettedee" from the film "Pranayamani Thooval" in 2002, she shot into the limelight with the song "Sughamanee Nilavu" from the film "Nammal" after which she has had a very busy professional singing career. Till now she has sung in almost 130 movies including Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu. She also has lent her voice for 200 albums. Some of her other hits include ”Karuppinazhagu” from "Swapnakoodu", "Melleyonnu" from "Manassinakkare", "Meheruba" from "Perumazhakkalam" etc. Some of her latest films include "Classmates", "Pothen Vava", "Don", "Notebook" and "Janmam".
His first play back singing happened for the movie, Valyettan. Later on we given an opportunity by Berny Ignatius in the film Kalyanaraman. He has sing two songs in Kalayanaraman Kai thudi thalam and Thinkale which was a male duet with M.G. Sreekumar. His hits includes Rakshasi from Nammal, Ishtamalleda from Swapnakoodu, “Meharuba” From Perumazhakalam.
Since her début, she has worked with the likes of Ramesh Narayan, Ilayaraaja, M. G. Radhakrishnan, Kaithapram Viswanathan, Vidyasagar, M. Jayachandran, Yuvan Shankar Raja and the late Raveendran. She has also sung for albums such as Balabhaskar's Mazhayil Aaro Oral. She has over 40 Tamil and Malayalam films and several albums to her credit.
Manjari won the Kerala State Film Award for the best female singer twice; the first one was in 2004, for the song Mukilin makale in the film Makalku and the second came in 2008 for the song Mullulla Murikkinmel in Vilapangalkappuram. Manjari married Vivek Prasad, a fighter pilot in the Indian Navy on April 11, 2009 at Subrahmaniam hall in Thiruvananthapuram.
Kerala State Film Awards:
- 2008 - Best Playback Singer - Makalkku ('Mukilin Makale')
- 2004 - Best Playback Singer - Vilapangalkappuram ('Mullulla Murikkinmel')
- 2006 - Best Female Playback - Rasathanthram ('Attinkara')
A M Rajah was an accomplished music director and may be the only successful composer-singer of south Indian films. Even in Hindi one can not find any successful singer composer like him may be with an exception of Hemant Kumar. Most of the songs composed by A M Rajah reached the peak of popularity though they all were uncompromising melodies.
A M Rajah was the only male singer who was equally successful in Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam. He entered Malayalam cinema with the film Lokaneethi in 1952 under the baton of the famous composer V.Dakshinamurthy. Though A M Rajah hailed from Andhra Pradesh and had pronunciation problems with certain Malayalam syllables, Malayalees accepted him as Kerala's own singer. In Malayalam he achieved super star status in the 1960s, mainly as the singing voice of the great actor Satyan.
A M Rajah’s melodious songs in Malayalam films continue to charm. Be it the scenic ‘Periyaare’ from Bharya, or the oh so romantic `Paalanu thenanen’ from Umma or the soft lullaby `Kannum pootti uranguka' from Snehaseema or the moonlit melody `Thazhampoo manamulla’ from Adimakal or the song with a feel of eternity ‘Aakasagangayude Karayil’ from the film Omanakkuttan, there is a sweet freshness, which makes A M Rajah an all time favourite of Malayalam music listeners.
A M Rajah also acted in some films. A small-time role in the Nageswara Rao starrer bilingual Devadas to an important role of a singer in the Telugu movie ‘Pakka inti ammaayi’ come to mind. Weird are the ways of the film world! ‘Pakka inti ammaayi’ was later re-made in Hindi as Padosan which re-made into Telugu again as ‘pakka inti ammaayi’, years later! In the first movie, A M Rajah played the role which Kishore Kumar did in Hindi. In the second pakka inti ammaayi, S P Balasubramanyam played the role first played by A M Rajah.
A M Rajah was active on stage singing till the last day of his life. While returning in train from a music concert in Koottalumoodu, a hamlet in Kanyakumari district, he was worried and tensed about a helper boy in his troupe who missed the train. Just one false step proved fatal while boarding back to the moving train at Valliur railway station in Tirunelveli district on April 8th 1989. He slipped and fell between the track and platform even as Jikki sat inside the train and watched helplessly.
Vasantha’s first song in Tamil films was a duet. The song ‘Aasai vantha pinne….’ (‘Konchum Kumari) was with K.J. Yesudas who was also making his debut in Tamil. This pair then went on to sing some of the best duets in Malayalam.
“Pukazhenthi was assistant music director to Mahadevan. It was through him that she got her first Malayalam film. The film ‘Muthalali’ (1965) also marked Pukazhenthi’s debut in Malayalam,”. She also composed music for a Kannada and Telugu film. The song that made people sit up and notice her voice was ‘Karthikavilakku kandu…’ (‘Kayamkulam Kochunni’). Then followed the classic duet ‘Nadikallil sundari Yamuna…’ (‘Anarkali’).
Vasantha has been conferred the Kalaimamani Award and the Ugadi Award instituted by the Tamil Nadu and Andra Pradesh governments respectively. But Kerala has still not given this singer due recognition.
S. P. Balasubrahmanyam
Balasubrahmanyam made his debut in film music as a singer on 15 December 1966 with Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, a film scored by his mentor S. P. Kodandapani. He has sung in more than five different Indian languages including Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi, Malayalam and Marathi.
He has performed both the popular and classical music of India. For example, the songs he performed in the films Sankarabharanam, Sagara Sangamam, and Rudra Veena were based on Carnatic classical music, and the song "Umandu Ghumandu" in the movie Ganayogi Panchakshari Gavayi was based on Hindustani classical music.
He hosts many TV shows in Telugu called Paadutha Theeyaga on E-TV, Paadalani Undi on MAA-TV, a Kannada show Ede Thumbi Haaduvenu on E-TV Kannada , Tamil shows Ennodu Paattu Paadungal on JAYA-TV and Vaanampaadi on Kaliagnar TV. He also anchors a music show called Sunada Vinodini in TTD Channel.
He entered The Guinness Book of World Records for recording the most number of songs by a male singer. He is the only South Indian singer to make a strong mark in the Hindi film industry. Balasubrahmanyam has also given voice for various artists like Kamal Haasan for dubbing movies. Suman, who plays role of Lord Venkateswara, in the movie Annamayya.
- 2001 Padma Sri President of India K. R. Narayanan
- 1999 Doctorate Pottisreeramulu University (A.P.) Presented by Governor C. Rangarajan
- 2009 Doctorate Sathyabama University (Tamil Nadu) presented on 18 April 2009
- 2009 Kalaprapoorna (honorary doctorate) Andhra University (A.P)
- 1996 Minsaara Kanavu "Thanga Thamarai" Tamil
- 1995 Sangeetha Sagara Ganayogi Panchakshara Gavai "Umandu Ghumandu Ghana Gar Je Badara" Kannada
- 1988 Rudraveena "Cheppaalani Undi" Telugu
- 1983 Saagara Sangamam "Vedam Anuvanuvuna" Telugu
- 1981 Ek Duje Ke Liye "Tere Mere Beech Mein" Hindi
- 1979 Shankarabharanam
He made his debut into movies with 'Paadamudra' in which he sang while in class IV. He graduated from Mar Ivanios college, where he was the Art Club Secretary. He won the "Voice of the Year" award in a music competition conducted by Asianet TV at the age of 17.
Though 'Paadamudra' was his first movie, his real break came with 'Devadasi', a 1999 movie in which he sang "Pon Vasantham." He became popular after singing a fast youthful song,"Shukriya" in the 1999 Malayalam movie, 'Niram'. He got offers from many movies with young heroes like Dileep, Kunchacko Boban, and Prithviraj. Vidhu Prathap trained under the music director Devarajan for four years. He also got an opportunity to train under another music director, Perumbavoor G. Ravindranath. In 2002, Illayaraja introduced him to Tamil through 'Solla Marantha Kathai'. He also sang "Ka Kaake" set to music by the late maestro Raveendran.
- Asianet Film Awards 2002 - Best Male Playback - Nammal
- Asianet Voice of the Year (1997)
- Kerala State award, Best male playback singer (2001) For "Kalame Kaikolluka nee.." from 'Sayahnam'.
Over the years Lathika also has had the “good fortune” to sing in the debut films of some of the most famous composers in Malayalam including Ravindran Master (‘Choola'), Ouseppachan (‘Kathodu Kathoram') and S.P. Venkatesh (‘Rajavinte Makan'). For instance, K.S. Chitra is often credited for the songs in ‘Kathodu Kathoram,' ‘Pulare Poonthoniyil…' (‘Amaram') and ‘Sayam Sandhya' (‘Eagle').
Santha P Nair
Born into the famous Ambady family in Trissur, one of the five children of Vasudeva Poduval and Lakshmi, Santha P. Nair showed her potential at a very young age. She entered Malayalam films through Thiramala (1953); her first song 'Ammathan thankakudame' (by music director Vimal Kumar) was a lullaby.
She sang in hundreds Malayalam films from 1951 to 1967 and immortalised many songs including 'Unarunaroo Unikkanna', 'Kadavathu Thoniyaduthappol', 'Poove nalla poove,' `Kuruvikalai uyaraam' and 'Kadavathu thoni aduthapol' with her mellifluous voice. She was equally proficient in Carnatic music and held many concerts, which she used to end with light music. Singer Latha Raju is the daughter in law of Santha P Nair.
Her biggest hit is Masam masam from Aparichithan, a peppy number which she sang with Jyotsna. Unfortunately, some of her good songs such as Ammayyenna Vakku from Po nmudipuzhayoram went unnoticed.
Some of his duets are listed below
1.Varika nee vasanthame...(with Janaki, film - Pambaram)
2.Enne jnane marannu....(with Janaki, film - Nayattu)
3.Dhoore neelavanam...(wiht Vani Jayaram, film-Ormakale Vidatharoo)
4.Shanghumukham kadalpurathoru...(with Vani Jayaram, film-Pathivrutha)
5.Sundara surabhila ....(with Vani Jayaram, film-Seemanthini)
6.Kanni pennininnu kalyanam...with Susheela, film-Lorry)
7.Nalla mannennum ponnane ....with Jency, film-Muthuchippikal
8.Verukal dhahaneer...with Jency, film-Ammayum makalum.
Vineeth recently won the AMMA Best Male Singer Award 2008 for his songs "Mampullikkavil" and "Jillu Jillu" and also the Best Male new face of the year 2008 by Asianet, for his role in Cycle. Vineeth is currently scripting a new movie which he will direct with seven new young actors.
Mani was born in Chalakudy, Kerala. He started his career as a mimicry artist in Kalabhavan, Kochi. He started his acting career in the Malayalam film Aksharam as an auto driver. Since then, he has acted in several movies as a comedian. His first serious role was in the film "Vasanthiyum Laksmiyum Pinne Njanum". He has acted in more than 80 films in Malayalam and more than 20 films in Tamil.
He is also a professional playback singer and a singer of Nadan Paattu (folk songs). His first album was Kannimanga Prayathil. He has since established a parallel industry of 'Nadan Pattukal', selling a record number of releases. He has also released a few religious songs and Mappila Pattukal.
Mehaboob / Mehboob
So famous did he become in Cochin, that Muthaiah, the actor quickly recommended him to Dakshinamoorthy the music director who was looking for a new voice in the early 50’s. Would you believe that the two of them hunted for the truant Mehaboob all over Cochin and it was only a few minutes before Murthy’s train was leaving the platform that Mehaboob landed up at the station? Well, it was at the station, with the steam engine starting its departure whistle that he sang his first ‘voice test’ lines and Murthy decided that he had found his man. From that point Mehaboob started to get noticed in the film world. He sang of course, for P Bhaskaran and Baburaj in many hit movies between the 50’s and 70’s, but they were to a large extent comedy songs.
Some of his famous songs are
- Manennum vilikkila, mayilennum vilikkila Manathe pachakiliye (Neelakuyil – K Raghavan)
- Kathu sookshiochore kasthuri mampazam kakka kothi (Nair pidicha pulival – K Raghavan)
- Pandu pandu nine kanda nalilla (Rarichan oru pauran – K Raghavan)
- Halu pidichoru puliachhan pulivalupidichoru nairachan– (Nair pidicha pulivalu – K Raghavan)
- Naya paisayilla ( Neeli Sali – K Raghavan)
- Zindabad Zindabad swantham karyam zindabad ( Kandam bechoru kottu - MS Baburaj)
- Vandee pukavandi, vandi vandi ninne pole vayaril enikkum theeyanu (Doctor - G Devarajan)
- O Rickshawalla ( Odayil Ninnu – G Devarajan)
- Vandikaran beeran kaka randam kettinu poothim bechu (Vandi karan beeran kakka )
- Kozhikodangdeele koyakkande kadayilu koyinde kariyude charu (Thanka kudam – MS Baburaj)
- Kandam bechoru kottanu athu mammad kakede kottanu ( Kandam bechoru kottu - MS Baburaj)
After securing the first rank in BA and MA degree (music) examinations, she received her PhD in music from Kerala University. Revamma was the first to get PhD in music from Kerala University. Later, she lectured at the Women’s College in Thiruvananthapuram, where she became the head of the department of Music. Revamma also served as principal of the Thrissur Government College and retired as deputy director, Collegiate Education.
Revamma lent her voice for songs in about 20 Malayalam films in 1950s, including such musical hits as Jeevitha Nouka, Navalokam, Neelakuyil, Sasidharan, Ponkathir and Chechy. Her duet with A M Rajah mesmerised listeners with classic numbers like Nee en chandrane, njaan nin chandrika and Anputhan ponnambalthil from the movie Avan Marannu. Revamma later concentrated on teaching and research in music.
A holder of Ganabhushanam from the Thiruvananthapuram Music College, she also served as a member of the Board of Studies of Kerala, Calicut and MG universities. She taught at different colleges of the state. She conducted her postdoctoral studies in ethno-musicology at UCLA with a Fulbright scholarship. Revamma also served as a visiting professor at various universities in the United States.
Revamma is credited with more than 2000 concerts inside and outside India.The awards conferred on her include Kerala Sangeeth Nataka Academy Award (1975), 'Kalaratnam' title by the Devaswom Board, Kerala, and the Award for the year 1972 by the Kerala Religious Endowment Committee for the best performer in Classical Music.
Jassie Gift is a Malayalam trend setting film music composer and singer from Thiruvananthapuram, India. He was shot into fame after his song Lajjavathiye in the film 4 the people become a superhit.
Jassi Gift’s first composition was for the movie Saphalam. He became popular in Kerala with his song Lajjavathiye in the movie 4 the people. His innovative music contributed heavily to the success of "4 the People” which became 2004's biggest blockbuster in Malayalam. All the songs Jassie composed for the movie especially "Lajjavathiye", became hit in Kerala. It was later remade into Tamil, and also as Malliswarive into Telugu The song was successful in all languages.
He also composed a music album, Rain, Rain Come again that is mixture of Indian and western music. He gives the mixture of melody and western beats in the Hudugaata (Kannada) film and three songs – Eno Onthara… Mandakiniye ... and Ommomme Heegu..., have become rage today in Karnataka.
Jassie Gift is a postgraduate in philosophy from the prestigious University College of Kerala, Trivandrum, where he used to hang out with friends, practising his music.
She entered the films through 'Pantulamma'. Besides singing, she played a role in the film. However, she preferred singing and took it as her profession. Her voice was so melodious and it not a flattery that there would be no film without her song during those days. Though well settled as a playback singer, she was fond of giving stage shows and gave hundreds of shows not only in India, but also abroad like Sri Lanka, America, England and Malaysia. Later, she fall in love with music director A M Raja and got married in 1958.
She sang over nearly 10,000 songs in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi and Sinhala languages