Unni Menon is a veteran playback singer who had enthralled the audiences with his melodious voice. He has sung in many Indian languages and he was one of the best classical singers who had a good combination with A R Rahman. He was born in Temple town of Guruvayoor in a middle class family. He had done schooling in Guruvayoor and went to Palakkad to continue his degree. Although this singer had shown a great enthusiasm in signing right from his childhood days, it was just a co-incidence that brought him to Indian film industry.
This god-gifted singer might not have hoped to become a singer at all although he used to sing right from he was young. As a commoner, he also did find a job in a vehicle factory in Chennai. Nothing was pre-planned. Neither, he had a formal training in singing nor any godfather, but his journey as a playback singer in Malayalam and Tamil movies were really path-breaking one. He had a journey of three decades in playback singing which even surprises him at times, but he considers it as total coincidence, as he grew up hearing songs of K.J. Yesudas and M. Jayachandran. He was never too ambitious to achieve a glory in playback singing. That makes him a total different from other singers of his era. He had done 26 songs for A R Rahman. His career too had benefitted from association with Rahman. Many of Rahman songs from films like ‘Roja’ still remain in minds of his audiences. Unni Menon has never been too ambitious but whatever he has achieved in his life makes him a very happy and satisfying person.
The only regret he has in the new generation music world that technology has taken over the music industry so much that quality level has gone down. This singer had always wanted to do quality work and he is indebted to all kinds of help he received from maestros of music world such as A R Rahaman or even Ilaiyaraaja. It was Kunjunni, a violinist in camp of music director Ilaiyaraaja who had introduced him to B. A. Chidambaranath, a music director, and Unni's musical career got launched in 1981–82.
If in Tamil movies he had a good combination with Rahaman, in Malayalam cinema, he had a good track with music director Shyam. Unni also turned music composer for the movie’ Sthithi’(2003), which still remains deep in the heart of music lovers even after a decade even. The good quality in his voice that it had deep melody and his pronunciation is always very much perfect. Whether it is for Ilaiyaraaja for 'Oru Kaidhiyin Dairy' or A R Rahaman for ‘Roja’, every song that he had got to sing, he had done full justice to it. He was born on December 2, 1955, and quite obviously this year (2015) turns out to be his 50th anniversary too. A remarkable feat indeed!
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