Legandary playback singer S P Balasubrahmanyam, who held sway over millions of fans with his golden voice rendering a record 40,000 plus songs over five decades, died on Friday at a hospital in Chennai, plunging music lovers in grief.
After waging 52 days of grim battle for life following COVID-19 infection, the 74-year old singer suffered a cardio- respiratory arrest and the end came in the afternoon, a day after his condition turned extremely critical. However, the hospital said Balasubrahmanyam, popularly known as SPB, had tested negative for COVID-19 on September 4.
The whole nation griefed the death of the music icon, a six-time national award winner who was honoured with Padma Shri in 2001 and Padma Bhushan in 2011. The impeccable singer had sung over 40,000 songs in films and albums in 16 languages. The evergreen song ''Ayiram Nilave Vaa'' (come thousand moons) from MGR starrer Tamil flick ''Adimaipen'' catapulted him to fame in 1969 and there was no looking back since then for SPB, also fondly called "Balu" by his friends such as music maestro Illayaraja.
Not just President, Prime Minister, celebrities and distinguished personalities paid rich tributes to the singer, cartoonists joined in. Cartoonists from various dailies drew SPB's caricature and immortalised him. Have a look:
ഇതൊന്നും ഇന്നും ഇന്നലെയും തുടങ്ങിയതല്ല മക്കളെ.. 😏😁— PENCILASHAN (@pencilashan) September 25, 2020
അറിയാത്തവർക് @roshanmathew22 ന്റെ പോസ്റ്റ് നോക്കിയാൽ മനസിലാവും 🤭#malayalamnews #malayalamanorama #vanitha #keralam #malayalamcartoon pic.twitter.com/gSS3FB0Bsp
Cartoon by Sridhar for Eenadu
Cartoon by Madhav for Andhra Prabha