Famous Indian Singers

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Clearly, if there is one place under the sun where nothing has been left undone, it has to be India – an ancient land with an absorbing history, a vibrant present and an opportunist future. And much of its enthralling galore has been because of its exquisitely talented pool of nationals who have constantly worked hard to help India stand tall in the world forum, be it in art, culture, music, business, politics, science, technology, philosophy or military. Talking specifically of music, the country has given the world some of the world-class singers who have redefined the field of music through their exemplary work and talent. Historically, Indian singers have succeeded in installing a unique style or character into their work, thus changing the panorama of Indian and world music completely. It is to these Indian singing legends that this section is committed – an incredibly large lot that has through their talent alone inspired a world way beyond their country’s borders. The Nightingale of India, Lata Mangeshkar, the man with a Golden voice Mukesh, the versatile hero Mohammad Rafi, the legendary genius Kishore Kumar, the Ghazal king Jagjit Singh, the teen idol Shreya Ghoshal, the melody genius Sonu Nigam, the superstar’s voice Udit Narayan – the list is interminable. Know in details about some of the greatest Indian singers, their life and works through this segment.
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 1 
S. P. Balasubrahmanyam
(One of the Greatest Indian Playback Singers of All Time)
S. P. Balasubrahmanyam
75
Birthdate: June 4, 1946
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Nellore, Andhra Pradesh, India
Died: September 25, 2020

S. P. Balasubrahmanyam was an Indian playback singer, music director, actor, television presenter, film producer, and voice-over artist. Widely regarded as one of the most gifted singers of his generation, Balasubrahmanyam received six National Film Awards in an illustrious singing career that spanned more than five decades. He was posthumously honored with the Padma Vibhushan, India’s second-highest civilian award.

 2 
Lata Mangeshkar
(One of the Greatest Playback Singers of India)
Lata Mangeshkar
81
Birthdate: September 28, 1929
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Indore
Died: February 6, 2022

One of the most respected and best-known playback singers in India, Lata Mangeshkar is popularly known as the Nightingale of India. She had a long career of more than 60 years and was honoured with India's highest civilian award Bharat Ratna..

 3 
Kishore Kumar
(Indian playback singer)
Kishore Kumar
60
Birthdate: August 4, 1929
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Khandwas, India
Died: October 13, 1987

A man of many talents, Kishore Kumar was an Indian actor, filmmaker, writer, music director, lyricist, and playback singer. One of the most popular Indian singers of his generation, Kishore Kumar sang in different genres and multiple Indian languages. In 1997, the Kishore Kumar Award was initiated for his contributions to Hindi cinema. Despite marrying four times, he remained a loner.

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 4 
Arijit Singh
(One of the Best Playback Singers of Indian Cinema )
Arijit Singh
63
Birthdate: April 25, 1987
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Jiaganj, West Bengal, India

Arijit Singh is an Indian music composer and singer. Dubbed the king of playback singing, Singh has received six Filmfare Awards and a National Award in his illustrious career so far. Also known for his humanitarian work, Arijit Singh is credited with founding a non-governmental organization named Let There Be Light which aims at helping the Below Poverty Line community.

 5 
A. R. Rahman
(One of the Most Famous Indian Film Composers)
A. R. Rahman
28
Birthdate: January 6, 1967
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

A. R. Rahman is an Indian film composer, singer, songwriter, and record producer. Rahman is one of the most decorated and celebrated musicians in Indian history. He was won several prestigious awards including two Grammy Awards, two Academy Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and a BAFTA Award. In 2009, he was named among the 100 most influential people in Time.

 6 
Sonu Nigam
(Actor, Singer, Composer)
Sonu Nigam
59
Birthdate: July 30, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Faridabad

Sonu Nigam is an Indian singer, actor, and music director. Nicknamed The Lord of Chords, Sonu is widely regarded as one of the world's best live performers. He is credited with recording over 4000 songs in several Indian languages. He has also won many prestigious awards, such as Filmfare Awards, National Award, and Indian Television Academy Awards.

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 7 
Nora Fatehi
(Actress, Model, and Producer Known for Her Work in the Indian Film Industry)
Nora Fatehi
31
Birthdate: February 6, 1992
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Toronto, Canada

Nora Fatehi is a popular figure in the Indian film industry. Although born and raised in Canada. Nora has worked in Malayalam, Telugu, and Hindi language films. She was part of one of the highest-grossing Indian films ever - Baahubali: The Beginning. Apart from appearing in films, she has also made a mark in the TV industry.

 8 
Armaan Malik
(Singer)
Armaan Malik
38
Birthdate: July 22, 1995
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Mumbai

Armaan Malik is an Indian singer, record producer, songwriter, actor, and voice-over artist. In 2015, he won two Global Indian Music Academy Awards (GiMA), becoming the youngest singer to win a couple of debut awards at GiMA. He has also received other prestigious awards like Stardust Award, Filmfare R. D. Burman Award, and South Indian International Movie Award. 

 9 
Neha Kakkar
(Singer)
Neha Kakkar
63
Birthdate: June 6, 1988
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Rishikesh, Uttarakhand, India

Starting her training in singing at age 4, Neha Kakkar later participated in Indian Idol but was eliminated before she could make her mark on the show. She later soared to fame with the track Second Hand Jawaani from Cocktail and never looked back. She has also performed in minor roles.

Krishnakumar Kunnath
14
Birthdate: August 23, 1968
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: New Delhi, India
Died: May 31, 2022
 11 
Mohammed Rafi
(One of India's Greatest and Most Influential Playback Singers)
Mohammed Rafi
29
Birthdate: December 24, 1924
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Amritsar, Punjab, India
Died: July 31, 1980
Legendary Indian playback singer Mohammed Rafi was known for his versatility. The winner of one National Film Award and four Filmfare awards, Rafi often collaborated with ace composer S.D. Burman. He also received the Padma Shri and sang in countless Indian and foreign languages, including Arabic, Persian, and Dutch.
 12 
K. S. Chithra
(Playback singer)
K. S. Chithra
11
Birthdate: July 27, 1963
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Thiruvananthapuram

Padma Shri- and Padma Bhushan-winning legendary Indian singer K. S. Chithra is also a 6-time National Award winner. Trained in Carnatic music, she earned a government music scholarship. A star in the South Indian music scene, she also gained recognition with her Hindi tracks such as Kehna Hi Kya.  

 13 
Himesh Reshammiya
(Playback Singer & Music Director)
Himesh Reshammiya
10
Birthdate: July 23, 1973
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Mumbai, India

Himesh Reshammiya is an Indian playback singer, songwriter, music director, actor, and producer. Although he is often criticized for his nasal singing style, Himesh Reshammiya is also one of the most recognized singers in India. Over the years, he has won many prestigious awards, such as Filmfare Award, Star Screen Award, Zee Cine Awards, and Star Guild Award.

 14 
Shreya Ghoshal
(Singer, Writer, Actor, Composer)
Shreya Ghoshal
83
Birthdate: March 12, 1984
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Durgapur

National Award-winning singer Shreya Ghoshal grew up in Rajasthan and later moved to Mumbai, where her electrical engineer father was posted. After gaining attention with the talent show Sa Re Ga Ma, the classically trained artist was catapulted to fame with her playback singing in Devdas, and never looked back.

 15 
Diljit Dosanjh
33
Birthdate: January 6, 1984
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Dosanjh Kalan, Punjab, India
 16 
Kumar Sanu
(Singer, Composer)
Kumar Sanu
44
Birthdate: September 23, 1957
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Born Kedarnath Bhattacharaya, Kumar Sanu turned out to be Bollywood’s King of Melody. One of the greatest Indian playback singers, he rocked the 1990s with hits such as Kuch Na Kaho and Yeh Kaali Kaali Aankhen. The Padma Shri winner has had multiple hit duets with co-singer Alka Yagnik.

 17 
Udit Narayan
(One of the Most Prominent Singers of Bollywood Throughout the 1990s and Early 2000s)
Udit Narayan
34
Birthdate: December 1, 1955
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Baisi, Supaul district, Bihar, India

Known for ruling the Bollywood playback scene in the 1990s, Udit Narayan has 4 National Awards in his kitty. Initially a singer on a Kathmandu radio station, he later moved to Mumbai. He soared to fame with the track Papa Kehte Hain and later scored many hits with singer Alka Yagnik.

 18 
Yo Yo Honey Singh
(Rapper, Actor, Singer, Record producer, Composer)
Yo Yo Honey Singh
50
Birthdate: March 15, 1983
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Jalandhar

Yo Yo Honey Singh is an Indian rapper, music producer, pop singer, composer, actor, and lyricist. He is currently one of the most successful and highest-paid musical artists in the music industry in India. He has received several prestigious awards including an MTV VMAI Award, MTV EMA Award, UK Asian Music Award, BritAsia TV Music Award, and Zee Cine Award.

 19 
Sivakarthikeyan
(Actor, Singer)
Sivakarthikeyan
17
Birthdate: February 17, 1985
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Singampunari
 20 
Sid Sriram
(Playback singer)
Sid Sriram
15
Birthdate: May 19, 1990
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chennai district Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Born in Chennai, to a Carnatic music teacher mother, Sid Sriram later moved to the US with his family. The talented singer-songwriter is a Berklee College of Music alumnus and is known for his skills mixing pop/soul and Indian classical elements. His Indian playback credits include Adiye from the film Kadal.

 21 
K. J. Yesudas
(Playback singer)
K. J. Yesudas
18
Birthdate: January 10, 1940
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Fort Kochi, Kerala, India

Fort Kochi-born K.J. Yesudas is a major figure of Indian Malyali music. Known as Dasettan to his followers, the singer is an eight-time National Award winner and has the prestigious Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, and Padma Vibhushan in his kitty. He has also acted in a few regional films.

 22 
Shankar Mahadevan
(Actor, Singer, Composer)
Shankar Mahadevan
8
Birthdate: March 3, 1967
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Chembur

Shankar Mahadevan is an Indian film composer and singer. He is one-third of the popular musical trio Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy which predominantly composes music for Bollywood films. A well-known playback singer, Mahadevan has won three National Film Awards for Best Male Playback Singer. In 2019, Shankar Mahadevan was honored with the Padma Shri for his contributions to film music. 

 23 
Adnan Sami
(First Musician to Have Played the Santoor and Indian Classical Music on the Piano)
Adnan Sami
9
Birthdate: August 15, 1971
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London, England

Adnan Sami is an Indian musician, singer, pianist, and music composer. Best known for his skills as a piano player, Sami was named the world's fastest keyboard player by Keyboard magazine. He is also widely regarded as the first person to have played Indian classical music on the piano. In 2020, he was awarded India's fourth-highest civilian award, Padma Shri. 

 24 
Shirley Setia
(Singer, Actress)
Shirley Setia
11
Birthdate: July 2, 1995
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Daman, India
 25 
Asha Bhosle
(Indian playback singer)
Asha Bhosle
37
Birthdate: September 8, 1933
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sangli, Maharashtra
Legendary Indian playback singer Asha Bhosle holds the Guinness record for the most recorded artist. The Padma Vibhushan-winning singer had initially started singing along with sister Lata Mangeshkar, another iconic singer, to make ends meet. Bhosle, a versatile artist, has sung in 20 languages and experimented with almost all genres.
 26 
Neeti Mohan
(Singer, known for her time as a member of the group Aasma, a position she earned after winning the show Popstars in 2003)
Neeti Mohan
6
Birthdate: November 18, 1979
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Delhi, India
 27 
Sunidhi Chauhan
(Singer, Actor)
Sunidhi Chauhan
40
Birthdate: August 14, 1983
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New Delhi, India

A musical prodigy, Sunidhi Chauhan had started performing at events at age 4. Discovered by actor Tabassum, she quit school and plunged into a full-fledged music career, winning several reality shows. She then soared to fame with her playback singing in Mast and now has three Filmfare awards in her kitty.

 28 
Vijay Antony
(Singer, Composer)
Vijay Antony
9
Birthdate: July 24, 1975
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Nagercoil

Initially a sound engineer, Vijay Antony later rose to become a prominent music director of the Tamil film industry. Known for his music in films such as Vettaikaaran and Kadhalil Vizhunthen, he later stepped into acting with Naan. He won the Golden Lion at Cannes for his track Naaka Mukka.

 29 
Mika Singh
(Vocalist known for popular bhangra and pop songs such as "Dhinka Chika," "Dhanno," and "Singh Is King.")
Mika Singh
6
Birthdate: June 10, 1977
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Durgapur, West Bengal, India

Mika Singh is an Indian singer, rapper, and performer. Apart from contributing to the soundtrack of many popular films like Singh Is Kinng and Jab We Met, Singh has released many solo albums as well. He has also performed live at popular venues like The O2 Arena.

 30 
Jagjit Singh
(Ghazal Singer)
Jagjit Singh
13
Birthdate: February 8, 1941
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sri Ganganagar
Died: October 10, 2011

Jagjit Singh was an Indian singer, musician, and composer. Nicknamed King of Ghazals, Jagjit Singh is credited with reviving and popularizing an Indian classical art form called ghazal. Regarded as one of the most influential artists in India, Singh was honored with India's third-highest civilian award Padma Bhushan in 2003.  He was also honored with other awards like Lata Mangeshkar Samman.

 31 
M. S. Subbulakshmi
(Carnatic Musician)
M. S. Subbulakshmi
8
Birthdate: September 16, 1916
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Madurai
Died: December 11, 2004

M.S. Subbulakshmi was an Indian singer. Dubbed the Queen of Music, Subbulakshmi was the leading exponent of Carnatic music. In 1966, she became the first Indian to perform in UN General Assembly. In 1974, she became the first Indian musician to be awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award. In 1998, Subbulakshmi became the first musician to be awarded the Bharat Ratna.

 32 
Yuvan Shankar Raja
11
Birthdate: August 31, 1979
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Chennai, India

Yuvan Shankar Raja is a music composer and singer-songwriter. He is credited with introducing hip-hop to the Tamil music industry and became one of the most sought-after Tamil composers in 2000s. In 2006, he won the Cyprus International Film Festival Award, becoming the first Indian composer to win the award. He has also won other awards like Filmfare Awards South.

 33 
Mukesh
(Singer who won National Film Award for Best Male Playback Singer for his song "Kai Baar Yuhi Dekha Hai" from the film Rajnigandha)
Mukesh
7
Birthdate: July 22, 1923
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Delhi, India
Died: August 27, 1976
 34 
Shaan
(singer)
Shaan
8
Birthdate: September 30, 1972
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Khandwa
 35 
Tulsi Kumar
(Playback Singer)
Tulsi Kumar
8
Birthdate: 1986 AD
Birthplace: New Delhi, India

The daughter of music magnate Gulshan Kumar, who launched T-Series, Tulsi Kumar began her playback singing career with the movie Aksar. She later gained fame with hit tracks such as Sanam Re and Soch Na Sake. She is now married to a Delhi businessman and has a son.

 36 
S. Janaki
(Actor, Singer)
S. Janaki
6
Birthdate: April 23, 1938
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Repalle

Better known as Janaki Amma, playback singer S. Janaki had begun her career with the Tamil film Vidhiyin Vilayattu. Also known as the Nightingale of South India, she has lent her voice to over 48,000 songs. Following her retirement, she has been the victim of death hoaxes at least twice.

 37 
Palak Muchhal
4
Birthdate: March 30, 1992
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Indore
 38 
Monali Thakur
(Indian Playback Singer)
Monali Thakur
11
Birthdate: November 3, 1985
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Calcutta, West Bengal, India

National Award- and Filmfare-winning singer Monali Thakur is best known for her hit tracks such as Moh Moh Ke Dhaage and Sawaar Loon. She first gained fame with Indian Idol 2 and later also acted in movies such as Lakshmi. She later secretly married a Swiss restaurateur she met on a trip.

 39 
Anu Malik
(Film director, Singer, Composer, Music director, Film score composer)
Anu Malik
14
Birthdate: November 2, 1960
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Mumbai

Anu Malik is an Indian singer, music composer, and arranger. He is credited with composing some of the most popular Hindi songs, including Chamma Chamma from the film China Gate, which was used in the jukebox musical romantic drama film Moulin Rouge! Anu Malik has also served as a judge on the popular TV show Indian Idol.

 40 
Bhupen Hazarika
(Musician, Singer, Poet, Filmmaker, Lyricist)
Bhupen Hazarika
7
Birthdate: September 8, 1926
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sadiya
Died: November 5, 2011

Bhupen Hazarika was an Indian playback singer, musician, poet, lyricist, and filmmaker. He is remembered for composing such songs that highlight the importance of humanity and universal brotherhood. His songs remain popular in places like Assam and Bangladesh. He is also credited with introducing the folk music of Assam to Bollywood. He was posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna in 2019.

 41 
Lucky Ali
(Actor, Singer, Songwriter)
Lucky Ali
12
Birthdate: September 19, 1958
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mumbai
 42 
Chinmayi Sripada
(Playback singer, working mainly for the South Indian film industry)
Chinmayi Sripada
3
Birthdate: September 10, 1984
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Chinmayi Sripada is an Indian singer, voice actor, radio jockey, and TV presenter who works predominantly in the South Indian film and TV industry. Chinmayi is also credited with founding Blue Elephant, a translation services company, for which she serves as the CEO. Also known for her activism, Chinmayi Sripada has been an important figure in India's Me Too movement.

 43 
Anuradha Paudwal
(Actor, Singer, Composer)
Anuradha Paudwal
5
Birthdate: October 27, 1952
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Mumbai

Anuradha Paudwal is an Indian playback singer who has contributed to the soundtrack of many Hindi, Tamil, Kannada, Bengali, and Marathi films. She is the recipient of several prestigious awards, such as Filmfare Awards and a National Film Award for Best Female Playback Singer. In 2017, Anuradha Paudwal was honored with India's fourth-highest civilian award, Padma Shri.

 44 
Pritam
(Indian Composer and Playback Singer Known for Blending Indian Classical Music with Western Style)
Pritam
7
Birthdate: June 14, 1971
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Kolkata, West Bengal, India

Known for blending Indian classical music with contemporary undertones, Indian music director, composer, and record producer, Pritam Chakraborty is also a well-known singer and instrumentalist.  Beginning his career with ad jingles, he later partnered with Jeet Ganguly to compose music for Hindi films before going solo. He has won numerous awards for his work, concurrently helping budding musicians through his organization JAM8.

 45 
Alka Yagnik
(Actor, Singer, Composer)
Alka Yagnik
44
Birthdate: March 20, 1966
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Kolkata

Alka Yagnik is an Indian playback singer. One of the most popular female playback singers in Bollywood, Yagnik has won a record seven Filmfare Awards and two National Film Awards in an illustrious career spanning more than 40 years. Alka Yagnik has also won other prestigious awards, such as Bollywood Movie Awards, Global Indian Film Awards, and Zee Cine Awards.

 46 
Divine
(Indian Rapper)
Divine
11
Birthdate: October 2, 1990
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Andheri, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Divine is an Indian rapper who achieved popularity after releasing his song, Yeh Mera Bombay, in 2013. He has also contributed to the soundtracks of several Bollywood films like Mukkabaaz, Blackmail, and Gully Boy. Over the years, Divine has received prestigious awards like Filmfare Award and Global Indian Music Academy Award.

 47 
Rohini
(Actress)
Rohini
4
Birthdate: December 15, 1969
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: thummapala, Andhra Pradesh, India
 48 
Aditya Narayan
(Indian Singer and TV Host)
Aditya Narayan
3
Birthdate: August 6, 1987
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bombay, Maharashtra, India

Born to legendary playback singer Udit Narayan, Aditya Narayan began accompanying his father to music studios and soared to fame with his award-winning track Chhota Baccha as a child artist. He grew up to sing and act in a few films, but has been most popular as the host of SaReGaMaPa.

 49 
Hariharan
(actor, singer, composer)
Hariharan
9
Birthdate: April 3, 1955
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Thiruvananthapuram

Though renowned playback singer Hariharan is known for his soft ghazals, he rocked the 1990s with the musical duo Colonial Cousins, with fellow singer Lesle Lewis. The two-time National Award winner also has a Padma Shri to his credit. He is also known for his long-term collaboration with A.R Rahman.

 50 
Badshah
(Rapper)
Badshah
20
Birthdate: November 19, 1985
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: New Delhi, India

Badshah is a singer, rapper, businessman, and film producer. Widely regarded as one of the highest-paid artists in India, Badshah is also considered one of the most controversial Indian rappers. His song Genda Phool is considered controversial, but is yet one of the most successful songs in Indian history. He has been featured thrice in Forbes India's Celebrity 100 list.