T.R. Mahalingam was born in Tiruvidaimarudur, Tanjavur district, Tamil Nadu, to Ramaswami Iyer and Brahadambal. His parents named him after Mahalingaswami, the deity of the nearby Hindu temple. He had an elder sibling Devaki and started learning to sing from his maternal uncle, Jalra Gopala Ayyar, who ran a famous music school. At age five, he observed other boys playing the flute and secretly, against his father’s wishes, picked up a flute and learnt to play, in three speeds, the Viriboni Varnam from the Bhairavi Raga entirely by himself. As a boy, T.R. Mahalingam had the ability to play any song he heard after listening to it only once. As such, he quickly advanced through his music training.
Edited by klimaz on 25 Jan 2012, 15:16
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