K. P. Udayabhanu

6 Jun 1936
5 Jan 2014
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K. P. Udayabhanu (6 June 1936 – 5 January 2014) was an Indian playback singer and music director, mainly in Malayalam films. In 2009, he was awarded the Padma Shri, India’s fourth highest civilian honour

Udayabhanu was born to N. S. Varma and Ammu Nethyaramma at Tharur in Palakkad. He was the nephew of music scholar K. P. Appukutta Menon and freedom fighter K. P. Kesava Menon. Udayabhanu spent his childhood in Singapore where his father was running a business. Following his mother’s death, he reached back India at the age of seven. Udayabhanu joined the Thyagaraja Sangeetha Vidyalaya in Kalpathy and started learning music under the guidance of Erode Viswanatha Iyer, Palghat Mani Iyer, M. D. Ramanathan, Palghat Srirama Bhagavathar, and Flute Krishna Iyer. Udayabhanu married singer Vijayalekshmi in 1970 and they had a son. Vijayalekshmi died in 2007.

Udayabhanu started his career as an announcer in All India Radio in 1955, where he worked for 38 years.In 1964–65, he worked as music teacher at Lawrence School, Lovedale, but quit it in 1965 and rejoined All India Radio in the same year. He was also the Public Relations Officer to K. Karunakaran twice.

His favourite singers were K. J. Yesudas and K. S. Chithra. M. Balamuralikrishna was his favourite Carnatic musician.Bade Gulam Ali Khan and Bhimsen Joshi were his favourite Hindustani musicians.

Udayabhanu died on 5 January 2014 in Thiruvananthapuram. He was suffering from Parkinson’s disease

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