Sadhana Sargam (Marathi: साधना सरगम ; Tamil: சாதனா சர்கம் ; Hindi: साधना सर्गम ; Telugu: శాతనా సర్గం ; Gujarati: સાતના સરગમ) (Birth name Sadhana Ghanekar) is one of the top Indian playback singers.
Early life and Family
Sadhana Sargam is of Maharashtrian origin. She was trained in Indian classical music by her mother, Mrs. Neelatai Ghanekar at an early age, and then by Pandit Jasraj. Her mother introduced her to a composer by the name of Anil Mohile, which later resulted in her involvement with the children's choir. In 1982, she released her first single for the film "Vidhaata".
Sadhana recently sang a single from Dasavathaaram (Mukundha Mukundha), which contains an accompaniment by Kamal Hasan. She has also sung 'Om Zaarare' from the Rajinikant performer Kuselan, along with Daler Mehndi and K. S. Chitra. She sang several songs in Hindi and Oriya for music director Kajol-Saroj.
She has won several awards throughout her career including the Indian national award for best female playback singer in 2002 for a Tamil song "Pattu Solli" from the movie Azhagi, composed by Ilayaraja. In the recent 55th Filmfare Awards 2007 for South Indian films, Sadhana Sargam won the awards for the best playback singer female in both Tamil and Telugu. In Tamil, she won it for "Akkam Pakkam" from Kireedam composed by G. V. Prakash Kumar. In Telugu, she won it for her song "Manasa" in the film Munna.
She is the only singer from outside of South India, either male or female, to have won an Indian national award for any of the South Indian (Tamil) language song.
National film award for best female singer
In her early days as a singer, her voice at high octaves was thought to be similar to that of Lata Mangeshkar while her low octave voice was that of Asha Bhosle. However, as time passed Sargam developed her own distinct style. It is believed that Sadhana Sargam was unwittingly responsible for the rift between music greats Kalyanji-Anandji and Lata Mangeshkar when the duo compared Sargam with Mangeshkar.Mangheskar thought the comparing herself with a much junior teenage singer was unacceptable. Regardless of the above said incident, both singers have mutual respect for each other.
Contribution to classical music
In 2006, Sargam was among the singers who took part in a classical concert to mark Dinanath Mangeshkar's 100th birthday celebrations and earned praise from Hirudhayanath Mangeshkar for her performances in Hindustani classicals.
Sargam's contribution to devotional music is well appreciated by many senior singers like Usha Mangeshkar. Sadhana Sargam is one of the prominent forces along with Pandit Jasraj and Jagjit Singh to keep this form of music alive.
Dominance in the South
Sadhana Sargam was well received in Tamil Nadu. She is very busy in the Tamil music field. Among the Bollywood singers males or females, Sargam sang the most number of songs in Tamil music field. 132 songs of Sargam was listed as of August 2008
In an interview in May 2007 while touring in the USA, the most celebrated composer of the Indian music industry, Mr. A. R. Rahman, complimented Sadhana Sargam, calling her the only Indian singer who could surpass his imaginations and expectations in her renditions of songs.