S P Balasubramaniam

    Born on 04 Jun 1946 (Age 75) Nellore, Andra Pradesh

    S P Balasubramaniam Biography

    Sripathi Panditaradhyula Balasubrahmanyam is a prolific Indian singer and actor. He is also known as S. P. B. and Balu in the media.

    Early Life And Background

    Balasubrahmanyam was born into an orthodox Telugu Brahmin family in Konetammapeta near Nellore, Andhra Pradesh. He is the second son in a family of three sons and five daughters. His father S. P. Sambamurthy was a well-known exponent of Harikatha and his sister S.P. Sailaja is a former actress-singer in Tollywood, married to Subhalekha Sudhakar. He has a daughter, Pallavi and son, S. P. B. Charan.


    Balusubrahmanyam took to singing as a hobby during his childhood. He developed an interest in music very early in his life, and had studied notations and learnt to play instruments such as harmonium and flute on his own while listening to his father. His father wanted Balu to become an engineer; this brought him to Ananthpur, where he enrolled for the Engineering course in JNTU. Later, he discontinued the course due to typhoid and then joined AMIE. Meanwhile, he also pursued his hobby and won awards at many singing competitions. There, he was identified as a good singer in annual college programmes. Some friends recommended him to sing in Madras and provided him with referrals.

    In 1964, a Madras-based Telugu Cultural Organisation, organized a music competition for amateur singers. Balu won the first prize, and that proved to be a turning point in his life. Music director SP Kodandapani took him under his wing. Offers then poured in from Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam movies.


    Before he became a full-fledged cinema singer, SPB was the leader of a light music troupe that comprised of:

    * Anirutta, who was working in Corporation and was the harmonium artist.

    * Ilaiyaraaja who joined the group as a Guitarist and then moved over to harmonium after Anirutta and became busy in his regular job.

    * Baskar, Ilaiyaraaja's brother who was in charge of Percussion.

    * Gangai Amaran another brother of Ilaiyaraaja who was the Guitarist after Ilaiyaraaja moved over to Harmonium.

    Playback Singing

    Balasubrahmanyam made his debut in film music as a singer in Dec 15, 1966, with Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, a film scored by his mentor Kodandapani. He has sung more than 40,000 songs since then in more than 5 different Indian languages, including Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi and Malayalam. He holds the world record in the Guinness Book of World Records for having sung the most number of song recordings by any singer (the record for a female singer is held by Lata Mangeshkar).

    A gifted singer, he is highly regarded for his incredible vocal range, deep rich voice, and mastery of style, technique and control. These qualities allowed him express across various genres of Indian music, and he has been highly sought-after by many of India's film music composers. His approach to singing is methodical; he perseveres to understand the full meaning of the songs that he sings (many of which are very poetic) and the settings in which these songs are couched in order to make it most effective. S.P.B., though was very young, started singing for many different language films. As he became very busy, at times, he used to sing even 17 songs in 12 hours at the recording theatre. He has also sung in Sanskrit and some regard his pronunciation of this language to be very good. Most of the introduction songs in Chiranjeevi and Rajinikanth films are sung by SPB. Most people feel that Balasubrahmanyam's voice most suits Kamal Haasan. Sometimes, people cannot even figure out if it is Kamal singing or Balu singing or even Kamal talking or Balu talking.

    He virtually monopolised playback singing for more than 30 years in the Telugu, Kannada and Tamil cinema industries. His contemporary Dr. K.J.Yesudas monopolised the Malayalam music industry. SPB sang only a few songs in Malayalam. Although Yesudas' voice was regarded more suitable for sad songs in Tamil, SPB has also sung some evergreen sad songs in Tamil such as 'Naanum unthen uravai','Nenjukkulle' and 'Kuyilappudichu'. He has hosted popular TV shows in Telugu called Paadutha Theeyaga on E-TV, Paadalani Undi on MAA-TV , and a kannada show Ede Thumbi Haaduvenu on 'E-TV Kannada' and Tamil show 'Ennodu Paattu Paadungal' on JAYA-TV.


    * Has recorded over 38,000 plus songs in a span of 40 years, which include film songs and devotional numbers recorded by various recording companies of the country. It's a world record which will be soon entering into the Guinness Book of World Records

    * Has recorded 21 songs in Kannada for the composer Upendra Kumar in Bangalore from 9.00 a.m. to 9.00 p.m. on February 8, 1981, which is a record.

    * Has recorded 19 songs in Tamil in a day, and 16 songs in Hindi in a day, which is a notable achievement.

    He has also acted in several movies in full-fledged protagonist roles or in cameo roles. And is also an anchor for a Telugu TV programme by name "Paaduthaa Theeyaga". On Maa TV, he hosted a children's singing show called 'Paadalanivundhi', which gained a lot of popularity and brought talent from all over Andhra Pradesh.

    He is now preparing for another TV show in Telugu named 'Sunaadha Vinodhini' on Bhakthi Channel, where he will be exploring more into the devotional side.

    Dubbing Career

    Subrahmanyam has also given voice for various artists like Rajinikanth, Kamal Haasan, Salman Khan, Bhagyaraj, Mohan, Girish Karnad, Gemini Ganesh, Nagesh, Karthik, Raghuvaran, Vinodkumar, etc. SP. Balasubramanyam was the default dubbing artist for Kamal Hasan's Telugu movies, dubbed from Tamil.


    On 5th August 2020, S P Balasubrahmanyam got admitted at MGM Healthcare Hospital in Chennai, after testing positive for coronavirus and he recovered from COVID19 but he died on 25th, September 2020 at 1:04PM.

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