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M.S. Subbulakshmi


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Madurai Shanmukhavadivu Subbulakshmi (popularly known as M.S. or M.S.S./M.S. Maami) (1916 -2004) was a renowned Carnatic vocalist. She was the first musician ever to be awarded the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honour.

Subbalakshmi was born in the temple town of Madurai on 16th September 1916, to veena player Shanmukhavadivu. Her grandmother Akkammal was a violinist. Her father, a lawyer by profession, was a music lover. Her first guru Madurai Srinivasa Iyengar died early, but she kept practising on her own, and having a musician mother helped a lot. Her first recording was at the age of ten, when she recorded a couple of songs for HMV in Madras.

She started giving concerts when young, first accompanying her mother and then as a solo vocalist. She has given concerts all over the world like the ones at Edinburgh festival and at the United Nations, Carnegie Hall as the the inaugural concert at the festival of India in London in 1982.

In 1940 she married Sadasivam, a well known figure in the Madras Congress circle, and a protege of Rajaji. They had met four years earlier and with his wide connections in the journalistic and political world, he became instrumental in the continued success of her already flourishing career. She started acting in films too, in 1938. Her films were quite successful and her final film Meera released both in Hindi and Tamil was a hit. After that she gave up films to concentrate solely on music. The money from films went into the magazine Kalki.


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  • AdityaGarimella

    hey gogosago go F**** urself

    8 Aug 2012 Reply
  • Raghurama

    Please don't ruin the sanctity that is her music ,with you're ignorance , and contempt for the utter perfection that is her voice.

    23 Jan 2011 Reply
  • astro1_rohit


    23 Dec 2008 Reply
  • Sagittarius18

    Truly Healing music, One of my favorite Carnatic vocalists. The Rasikas have shared a lot of her live and radio recordings. Here are some more names of Carnatic vocalists you may like: Smt Radha & Smt Jayalakshmi, Sri KV Narayanaswamy, Sri TV Sankaranarayanan, Sri DK Jayaraman, Sri MD Ramanathan, Sri OS Thyagarajan, so many more and they are all great! Try putting rasikapriya in you browser and see where you go, somewhere good i'm sure. Namaste, -Me

    19 Nov 2008 Reply
  • -tgt-

    What a wonderful voice! I'm so glad i discovered her music.

    21 Jan 2008 Reply
  • gogosago

    Dude, she sucks.

    4 Nov 2006 Reply
  • MysticBliss

    M.S.Subbulakshmi has got a divine voice with lots of passion and affection....towards the music...her voice itself has got veena instrument. Love and craz to have her music collection plz do consider...thx

    9 May 2006 Reply

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