Mano(Telugu :మనో) is an Indian playback singer. He sings in Telugu, Malayalam, Tamil, Kannada and Hindi.
Mano's original name is Nagur Babu; he was rechristened Mano by Ilayaraja. He learnt Carnatic music from the leading vocalist Nedanuri Krishnamurthy.
He has acted in several stage plays and has done 15 Telugu films including Rangoon Rowdy and Kethu Gadda. In 1979, he was doing a Telugu film for which S. P. Balasubramaniam was to do playback singing for him. While the recording team was waiting for S. P. Balasubramaniam, the music director M. S. Viswanathan's assistant (who knew Mano's father) asked Mano to sing. Mano sang a few ghazals, which were appreciated by the audience. M. S. Viswanathan was impressed and asked him to come to Chennai. After completing that film, Mano abandoned his studies and worked with M. S. Viswanathan for two and half year, as his assistant.
He shot to fame with Shenbagame from Enga Ooru Paattukkaran. He followed with superhits like Mukkala Muqabla from the film Kaadhalan, composed by A. R. Rahman, Thillana from Muthu and Azhagiya Laila from Ullathai Alli Tha.
In 1982, Mano went to Telugu music director Chakravarthy, to introduce his brother (a tabla player) to the music director. He ended up working as Chakravarthy's assistant. As a music assistant, Mano used to render the dummy versions of the songs before the singers mixed their voices. In 1984, he got a chance to sing along with S. P. Balasubramaniam and Susheela in the film Karpoora Deepam, when a third voice was required. Later, he sang for a Kannada film Hamsalekha (1985). In 1986, he sang Anne Anne in Poovizhi Vasalile for Ilayaraja, which was followed by other hits such as Enga Oor Paatukaran (Shenbagame', Madurai Mari Kozhundu Vaasam) and Velaikaran (Vaa Vaa Kanna Vaa, Velayillathavan etc.). Mano then requested Chakravarthy to relieve him, and started concentrating on his singing career. He made himself very popular after acting in a Tamil movie singaravelan
Mano also loves listening to and singing ghazals by Mehdi Hasan and Ghulam Ali. He has also done a few semi-classical numbers such as Athma Varaiyo. He has also sung a few Hindi film songs for Gulshan Kumar in Aaya Sanam, Aaja Meri Jaan, Kasam Theri Kasam, and Chor Aur Chan.
Mano has sung almost 22000 songs in 14 Indian languages. He received the prestigious "Kalaimaamani" Award from the Government of Tamil Nadu and the Best Singer Nandi award for many songs from the Government of Andhra Pradesh in 2000. He has also been awarded by many popular cultural associations in India. He received the Gold Bracelet and "Gana Samrat" from APNA foundation Atlanta, USA on April 14, 2008.
Mano has done more than 3000 Live shows around the world
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