SPB’s humility and kindness are after-tones that will live forever in Pune
Pune relationship with playback singer Sripathi Panditaradhyula Balasubrahmanyam (74), also known as SP Balu or SPB, are tinged with memories of the 16th annual Pune International Film Festival in 2018.
The vocal legend, who died of a cardio-respiratory arrest on September 25 at 1.04pm in Chennai, was positive for Covid-19.
He was awarded the prestigious the SD Burman International Award for Creative Music and Sound at the Pune film festival.
Aditi Akkalkotkar, deputy director, coordination and communication, PIFF, recalls her interaction with the music director, actor, dubbing artist and film producer, who worked in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi, and Malayalam films.
“I have the sweetest memory of SP Balasubrahmanyam during 16th PIFF 2018. I was awestruck meeting him in person, but he was one of the most down-to-earth persons. I told him of me being his biggest fan and he surprised me by singing lines from the songs ‘Pushpanjali ‘ and ‘ Saathiya Tune Kya Kiya’. I shall always remember his soulful voice,” Akkalkotkar said.
Pune -based music composer and playback singer, Harsshit Abhiraj, collaborated with SPB on his first Marathi album ‘Nishigandha’ in 2009.
“We worked on this project for a radio channel in Marathi for which I had composed the music for Dr Balu for his first Marathi album. It was a learning experience, for he is an institution in himself. Producer and director Shantivan Todkar introduced us and all the songs were written by Ilahi Jamadar, the ghazal lyricist. This album was of Marathi bhavgeet in the ghazal format. Dr Balu’s manner with new people was very gentle and kind and he included us as part of his large family. He was also well-read and knew a great deal about Marathi literature. His favourite was GD Madgulkar and Sant Tukaram,” said Harsshit.