Tuesday, 9 October 2012

swarnalatha biography

Swarnalatha (1973 – 12 September 2010) was a Indian playback singer. From 1987 onward, she rendered nearly 7,000 songs in many languages including TamilKannadaTeluguHindiMalayalamUrduBengaliOriyaPunjabi and Badaga.
She won the National Film Award for Best Female Playback Singer for her rendition of the song "Porale Ponnuthayi" from the film Karuththamma. The song was composed by A. R. Rahman, under whose musical direction she recorded many memorable songs. Her distinctive voice, which could effortlessly reach high octaves, quickly made her a name to reckon with in the playback music industry.

She was born in Athikkodu near
 Chittur, Palakkad, Kerala, to K. C. Cherukutty and Kalyani. Her father was a good harmonium player and singer. Her mother also had interest in music. Swarnalatha was trained on the harmonium and keyboard.Swarnalatha's family later moved to Bhadravathi (Paper Town) in Shimoga District, where she had her education. Born in a family of musicians (father K. C. Cherukutty was a singer and harmonium player, while sister Saroja was her music guru initially). Swarnalatha took to music when she was in her teens.Personal life and career

In 1987, she shifted to Chennai, where she met M. S. Viswanathan. M.S.V. introduced her to the film industry through a duet with K. J. Yesudas, "Chinnanchirukiliye Kannamma" from the filmNeethikku Dhandanai.Subsequently, many other music directors approached her to perform their songs. She was recruited by legendary musicians like Ilaiyaraaja and A. R. Rahman. She also recorded a few Hindi songs, the most notable one being "Hai Rama Yeh Kya Hua" from Rangeela along with Hariharan.
She was one of the most versatile singers of her times, as she was able to sing melodies like "Maalayil Yaaro Manathodu Pesa" from Chatriyan[2] or "Porale Ponnuthayi" from Karuthamma as well as Rahman's experimental songs like "Mukkabla" from Kadhalan or "Mottu Vittadha" from Pavithra. Swarnalatha was the first female playback singer to fetch the National Award in A. R. Rahman's music for the song "Porale Ponnuthayi". Once in an interview, she said that she was moved to tears when she finished the recording of this song and received praise from A. R. Rahman. She recorded many other memorable songs with music directors DevaVidyasagarHarris JayarajAnu MalikShankar-Ehsaan-LoyRaj-KotiYuvan Shankar RajaMani Sharma,Hamsalekha and many others.She had sung all the songs of Lata Mangeshkar and Shamshad Begum in the movie Anarkali(Tamil dubbed version of the Hindi movie mughal-e-Azam) and she was praised by the acclaimed Bollywood music director late Naushad Ali.


Swarnalatha died at a private hospital in Chennai at the age of 37 due to cardiac arrest followed by interstitial lung disease (lung infection) after being admitted because she had difficulty in breathing. The singer had been undergoing treatment for lung infection for over a year and had not recorded for films during the period.
Legendary music composer M S Viswanathan, who gave the then 14-year old Swarnalatha a break in films, described her as a very talented singer. She is believed to have approached him first, when she wanted to launch her career in film music. He gave her a chance in the film Needhikku Thandanai. "I was shocked on hearing the news. Swarnalatha was introduced to films by me, and was highly talented in music" he said.

[edit]Awards and recognitions

She got Kalai Maamani from Government of Tamil Nadu before she was 20 years old. She won a Filmfare Award in Tamil as well for ‘Mukkala Muqabala’. She won Cinema Express Awards four times.
National Award (Silver Lotus Award)-(Rajat Kamal)
Tamil Nadu State Awards
  • 1994- Kalaimamani Award by the Government of Tamil Nadu for her contributions towards Tamil music.
Other awards
  • 2002 - The song "Rakkama Kaiya Thattu" from the movie Thalapathi (1991) was among the songs listed in a BBC World Top Ten music poll. It was performed by S. P. Balasubrahmanyam and Swarnalatha