S P Balasubrahmanyam is still considered to be one among the best musicians in the past three decades, in spite of the surge of various new comers. This legendary singer is reputed for his intense voice, profound knowledge of music, and a style of singing which is appreciated even today. SPB, as he is fondly called, has given his voice for more than 30000 songs. His name is recorded in the Guiness Book of World Records for singing several songs in a short span of time. He has sung the most in Telugu, the next being Tamil. He has also given his beautiful voice for Sanskrit slokas.
Other than Telugu and Tamil SPB has sung in Hindi, Malayalam and Kannada too. SPB also tried his luck as music director in Telugu film industry (he had composed one film Sigaram in Tamil too).
A south Indian singer becoming successful in Bollywood is quite a feat, but SPB achieved that. In fact, he was the regular for some of Salman Khan’s films including, the musical blockbuster Hum Aapke Hain Kaun. With his imminent voice, he also shined as a dubbing artist.
Hailing from Andhrapradesh, SPB comes from a traditional Telugu Brahmin origin. SPB tested waters even in acting. His sister SP Sailaja is also a noted singer. Born on 4th June 1946, SPB gained interest in music very early. He got to know about the flute and harmonium by his own interest. He nevertheless followed the wish of his father and did an AMIE course. During his engineering days SPB took part in various singing competitions and garnered several awards. Music composer S P Kodandapani introduced SPB into singing for films, since he was attracted towards SPB’s voice.
Sri Sri Sri
, a Telugu film, is the debut film (as a singer) of SPB which had music scored by S P Kodandapani. SPB made his foray into acting with the 1969 Telugu flick Pellante Noorella Panta. He worked in character roles in Telugu and Tamil. SPB worked as the dubbing artist for
in most of his Telugu movies which were dubbed into Tamil. It is no wonder that SPB has several awards to his credit including, the Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri and 6 National Awards.