Sonu Nigam (Hindi: सोनू निगम),(born 30 July 1973) is an Indian singer whose songs have been featured mainly in Hindi and Kannada movies. He has also sung many songs in other languages including Oriya, Tamil, Assamese, Punjabi, Bengali, Malayalam, Marathi, Telugu and Nepali. He has released Indian pop albums and acted in a few movies.
Nigam’s first song in Kannada was “Yello Yaro Hego” in 1996 for the film Jeevanadhi starring Legendary Super Star Dr.Vishnuvardhan. The song’s music was composed by Koti with lyrics by R N Jayagopal. Nigam has sung over 700 Kannada songs and has received several awards for them. He became a sensation in the southern industry of Kannada and is called the The Golden Singer Of Karnataka.
His songs include “Cheluve Yeke Bande” from the film Majnu composed by Gurukiran; “Usire Usire” from Huccha composed by Rajesh Ramnath,”Titanic Heroine nee nanna cheluve” from the film Snehaloka; the title track from the film Monalisa composed by Valisha Sandeep; “Hamsave Hamsave” from the film Gatti mela composed by Hamsalekha, “Kannale Kannale” from the film Aham Premasmi composed by V.Ravichandran and “Baaninda Baa Chandira from the movie Kanti composed by Gurukiran. The 2006 film Mungaru Male created a sensation and several records, mainly in Karnataka. The songs not only set records of highest sales and downloads, the film also set a national record on 29 December 2007 of having completed an entire year at the PVR Cinemas Bengaluru, the first time an Indian language film to do so.
The songs Mungaru Maleye and Anisuthide were composed by Mano Murthy and written by Yogaraj Bhat and Dr.Jayanth Kaikini respectively. Nigam became a sensation in the South and was called the Golden Singer of Karnataka. Nigam says that he finds Kannada songs more fulfilling than the Hindi numbers. Sonu Nigam, in a recent interview to the Deccan Herald news paper has said ‘Kannada songs make me feel positive’. He said, “I highly respect the musicians of Karnataka and many of my favorite songs are in Kannada. I consider Bangalore as my second birth place. Even if someone requests me to sing a Kannada song while I’m performing in the West Indies, I will sing it for them”.
With the same Mungaru Male combination, music director Mano Murthy, lyricist Jayant Kaikini and Nigam got together for a Kannada album Neene Bari Neene produced by Ashok Kheny. The songs Neene Bari Neene and Baa Nodu Gelathi were shot on the outskirts of Bengaluru featuring Nigam and model Madhuri Bhattacharya in the lead. Sonu Nigam also composed a theme song for the Karnataka Bulldozer’s team in the Celebrity Cricket League. The song was sung by Sonu Nigam, Kunal Ganjawala and Sowmya Raoh, who also penned the lyrics.