CHATLINE Hit songs in multiple languages, a popular TV show and live music programmes… Singer Mano talks to SUDHISH KAMATH about his successful journey

The man who interviews a celebrity every week on television isn’t the easiest to catch for an interview himself. He’s constantly shooting or travelling. It takes us three months and considerable guilt-tripping before he gives us a slot on a Sunday morning, the only time he has to spare.

But then, the last five years of his life have been a roller-coaster, thanks to the small screen. His show on TV is becoming popular by the day, and around the world.

Singer Mano, who hosts the chat show Manothodu Mano on Jaya TV and judges Super Singer Junior on Vijay TV, is thrilled with how TV has brought him so much fame. He was in the U.S. recently touring with Ilaiyaraja when people came up to him and called him “Manothodu Mano”. “I just couldn’t believe they identified me with that show in America,” he says excitedly.

“Thanks to the show I get to meet all these talented artistes and listen to their experiences. It’s a God-given opportunity,” the modest singer adds.

Mano has to his credit over 24,000 songs (film and non film) since his debut about three decades ago. “Whenever I go to Andhra, my home state, I am surprised every time I listen to the radio. So many songs I had sung still come on air.”

Born Nagoor Babu, he was named Mano by Ilaiyaraja. In his early days, Mano was often referred to as the poor man’s S.P. Balasubrahmanyam. Mano thinks of it as a compliment.

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Meeting talented artistes and listening to their experiences is a God-given opportunity

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