Lata Mangeshkar and AR Rahman led the Indian music industry in paying tribute to legendary singer SP Balasubrahmanyam, who passed away on Friday at the age of 74. The singer had been at MGM Healthcare in Chennai since August 5 after he tested positive for coronavirus. The official statement from MGM Healthcare said that despite maximal life support measures, the singer died of a cardio-respiratory arrest. Balasubrahmanyam breathed his last at 1.04 pm today.
Sharing a throwback picture with Balasubrahmanyam, Rahman tweeted, “#RipSPB… Devastated." Calling Balasubrahmanyam “an amazingly versatile" artiste, Asha Bhosle said, “This year has seen a lot of unfortunate events. And the news of SP Balasubramaniam’s demise that I have heard just now makes me even sadder. His first songs after South, in Hindi with Lakshmikant Pyarelal were amazing. His duet with Lata didi was very memorable. Balu sang a lot of songs for RD Burman and was his friend. He had helped me a lot with my Tamil pronunciation in my song for Ilayaraja. The loss of such a great artiste has left a huge void in the music world. I wish his soul to rest in peace in this musical journey to be one with the almighty. RIP Balu."
Pratibhashaali gayak,madhurbhashi ,bahut nek insan SP Balasubrahmanyam ji ke swargwas ki khabar sunke main bahut vyathit hun.Humne kai gaane saath gaaye,kai shows kiye.Sab baatein yaad aarahi hain.Ishwar unki aatma ko shanti de.Meri samvedanaayein unke pariwar ke saath hain.— Lata Mangeshkar (@mangeshkarlata) September 25, 2020
Known fondly as SPB, the renowned singer was admitted to the hospital with mild symptoms in early August. Back then, he had posted a video on social media saying he was “perfectly all right”. On August 13, he was moved to the intensive care unit as his oxygen saturation level dropped. He had been connected to life support since then.
Balasubrahmanyam worked across Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi and Malayalam film industries and rendered thousands of ever-green songs. Even though he worked with several legendary music directors like V. Kumar, Vijaybaskar and Shyam, SPB’s career graph ascended with the arrival of Ilayaraja and superstars like Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan.
Balasubrahmanyam is survived by his wife, a son and a daughter — both are playback singers.