prachi baidwrote on Aug 4 2009 1:02PM
Chitra was born into a family of musicians in Trivandrum in Kerala. Her father ,Krishnan Nair, a well-known singer and so singing was bound to happen. The earliest influence on Chitra’s musical career was her father. At school, Chitra was awarded cultural talent scholarship which enabled her to learn Carnatic music under Dr Omanakutty, a professor at the Music College, Thiruvananthapuram. She is a BA graduate in music, but had to discontinue further study in music because of a number of offers to sing in films. But the reward has been worth it.
Chitra is a multi-faceted singer, called as the nightingale of South India, Chitra has built a formidable reputation and repertoire as a playback singer for Hindi as well as south cinema.
Chitra started her music career when she was offered a song by music director M.G.Radhakrishnan,in the year 1983, in a Malayalam film. She also sang duet with Yesudas which was released before her first song. Since then she sung in several shows of KJ Yesudas and also for his cassettes. The offer which brought Chitra to Chennai was for a Hindi film by KS Gopalakrishnan, Kushi Aur Kushi. SP Venkatesh was the music director, and the song was written by PB Srinivas. But the film was never released.
Her other recordings were for Love, Jagruti, Pardes,Virasaat, Sapnay,Mann, Suryavansh, Ziddi... and many more. Her number 'Ganga chali tu kahan' from Pardes and payalien chun mun chun mun from virasat was received with great appreciation.
Then came Piya Basanti with Ustad Sultan Khan and Sunset Point with Gulzar which was a blockbuster selling album for the year and gave Chitra immense recognition.