Indian singer SP Balasubrahmanyam dies aged 74 after contracting Covid-19

Legendary singer SP Balasubrahmanyam has died aged 74 after contracting coronavirus.

The Indian star died in Chennai on Friday, after testing positive for Covid-19 in August. 

Just days ago, his son Charan had said that his father was making ‘steady progress towards getting better’, saying: ‘He’s been eager to leave the hospital as early as possible.’

Charan said that Balasubrahmanyam had been watching cricket and tennis matches on his iPad in hospital.

However, according to local news reports, Balasubrahmanyam was put on life support after his condition deteriorated over the last 24 hours. 

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The singer had tested negative for Covid-19 on September 8, but could not be taken off a ventilator due to the damage done to his lungs.

Balasubrahmanyam, also known as SPB and SP Balu, was one of the world’s post prolific singers, recording over 40,000 songs in 16 Indian languages.

He holds the Guinness World Record for recording the highest number of songs by a singer. 

The musician was a muse for Oscar-winning composer AR Rahman, and sang for him in a number of films including his 1992 debut Roja.

He made his film debut in the 1966 Telugu film Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, and went on to perform in thousands of Indian movies, singing in Tamil, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam and English.

Balasubrahmanyam provided the on-screen singing voices for stars including Salman Khan and Kamal Hassan, and won the singer prize at India’s National Film Awards on six occcasions.

He has also been awarded with some of India’s highest civilian honors, including the Padma Shri in 2001 and the Padma Bhushan in 2011

Balasubrahmanyam is survived by his wife, Savitri, his daughter Pallavi and son Charan.

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