Sripathi Panditaradhyula Balasubrahmanyam or S. P. Balasubrahmanyam was born into an Orthodox Telugu Brahmin family in Konetammapeta near Nellore, Andhra Pradesh.His father S. P. Sambamurthy was a well-known exponent of Harikatha and his sister S.P. Sailaja is a former actress-singer in Telugu who married Subhalekha Sudhakar. He has two children - Pallavi and S. P. B. Charan.He is also known as S.P.B. and Baalu in the media.
Balu took to singing as a hobby during his childhood. He developed an interest in music very early in his life, and had studied notations and learnt to play instruments such as harmonium and flute on his own while listening to his father. His father wanted Balu to become an engineer; this brought him to Ananthpur, where he enrolled for the AMIE course in JNTU. Meanwhile, he also pursued his hobby and won awards at many singing competitions.
In 1964, a Madras-based Telugu Cultural Organisation, organised a music competition for amateur singers. Balu won the first prize, and that proved a turning point in his life. Music director SP Kodandapani took him under his wing. Offers then poured in from Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam movies.
Before he became a full fledged cinema singer, SPB was the leader of a light music troupe with Anirutta,Ilaiyaraaja,Baskar and
Gangai Amaran (brother of Ilaiyaraaja)
Balasubrahmanyam made his debut in film music as a singer in Dec 15,1966 with Sri Sri Sri Maryada Ramanna, a Telugu film scored by his mentor Kodandapani. He has sung more than 40,000 songs in more than 5 different Indian languages including Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi and Malayalam. He holds the world record in the Guinness for having sung the most number of song recordings by any singer.(Male)
(the record for a female singer is held by Lata Mangeshkar).
A gifted singer, he is highly regarded for his incredible vocal range, deep rich voice, and mastery of style, technique and control. His approach to singing is methodical; he perseveres to understand the full meaning of the songs that he sings.SPB virtually monopolised playback singing for more than 30 years in the Telugu, Kannada and Tamil cinema.
He hosts a popular TV show in Telugu called Paadutha Theeyaga on E-TV, Paadalani Undi on MAA-TV , and a kannada show Ede Thumbi Haaduvenu on 'E-TV Kannada' and Tamil show 'Ennodu Paattu Paadungal' on JAYA-TV.