Legendary singer SP Balasubrahmanyam aka SPB breathed his last on 25 September due to illness. He had turned 74 on 4 June this year. In the first week of August, SP Balasubrahmanyam, fondly called SPB, tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Since it was a mild case of COVID-19, SP Balasubrahmanyam was asked to quarantine himself at home. He chose to get himself hospitalised as his family members were concerned. His condition deteriorated on 23 September and he was deemed extremely critical.
His son, SP Charan, addressed the media and said, “My dad breathed his last at 1:04 pm. Thank you everyone for your prayers. My dad will live long till his fans remember him.”
Director Venkat Prabhu, who is close to SP Charan and his family took to Twitter to share the sad news with the world. SP Balasubrahmanyam breathed his last at 1:04 PM on 25 September.
SP Balasubrahmanyam is survived by wife Savitri and his two children ― daughter Pallavi and son SP Charan. His last rites will be performed by his son, Charan.
After testing positive for the novel coronavirus, SP Balasubrahmanyam was in good condition till 13 August. His condition worsened that night after which he was put on ventilator. For over a month, he was on ECMO and ventilator support. On 13 September, he tested negative for the novel coronavirus.
The death of SP Balasubrahmanyam has come as a huge shock for the southern film industry. Celebrities and fans are shocked to know that the singer with an infectious smile is no more. They have been taking to social media to share their grief.
SP Balasubrahmanyam was a multi-talented person. He had worked as a singer, actor, music director, dubbing artist and film producer in multiple languages. In his career spanning five decades, he had recorded over 40,000 songs in several languages in 16 Indian languages. He holds the Guinness World Record for recording the highest number of songs by a singer.
SP Balasubrahmanyam made his debut as a playback singer on 15 December 1966 with Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, a Telugu film scored by his mentor, SP Kodandapani.
SP Balasubrahmanyam came to international prominence with the 1980 film Sankarabharanam. The film is considered one of the best films ever to emerge from the Telugu film industry.
When Laxmikant-Pyarelal was told they should rope in SP Balasubrahmanyam as Kamal Haasan’s voice in Ek Duuje Ke Liye, the composer duo was sceptical due to the heavy south Indian accent with which the singer rendered the lines. Filmmaker K Balachander persuaded the musicians by telling them the character that the singer would lend his voice to was a Tamilian.
Years after Kamal Haasan, SP Balasubrahmanyam became the regular voice of Salman Khan in Hindi films until the Muslim actor went for an image makeover in the last decade.
In his long career, SP Balasubrahmanyam had won several awards and accolades for his mellifluous voice. He had been conferred the Nation Award for Best Male Playback Singer six times and had bagged Nandi Awards in Telugu cinema 25 times.
SP Balasubrahmanyam was conferred with Padma Shri Award in 2001 and Padma Bhushan in 2011.