Music

On a triumphant note

Sooraj Santhosh   | Photo Credit: S MAHINSHA

“I was shocked...” that’s how Sooraj Santhosh sums up his first reaction when his name was announced as the best singer of the Kerala State Film Awards 2016. Speaking to The Hindu MetroPlus from Chennai, he says that the award was unexpected.

More familiar to Malayalis as the lead singer of the music band Masala Coffee, the 29 year old won the award for the melody Thaniye Mizhikal, from the movie Guppy. What makes the award sweeter for the singer, who hails from Thiruvananthapuram, is that the song has been composed by Vishnu Vijay, whom he calls his “soulmate.” The best part, he says, is that Vishnu won the state award for the best background score for the same movie. “The song was very special for us. But never in my wildest dreams did I think that it would be considered for an award.”

Sooraj calls Guppy an intimate project. “Vishnu and I have been friends from school. John (John Paul George, the director of the movie) came to study at Sri Swati Thirunal Music College in Thiruvananthapuram where Vishnu was also a student. Thus, we three became good friends. After our studies, we three moved to Chennai together to do something more in music. The award is a celebration of our friendship,” he says.

A disciple of flautist Kudamaloor Janardanan, Sooraj is a veteran of school and college arts festivals in Kerala. He debuted as a playback singer in Telugu even when he was a student of Mar Ivanios College. He chose a career in music over his job with a bank. Sooraj has sung for composers such as Ilayaraja, Devi Sri Prasad, D. Imman, Thaman and Yuvan Shankar Raja in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada.

On that note, he has sung only for a few films in Mollywood, mainly Second Show, Kunjiramayanam and Madhura Naranga. Admitting that he has never pushed himself for opportunities in Malayalam films, he says he is elated that the big honour has come his way from the industry itself. So has he proved a point? “It is not meant to prove anything,” says Sooraj.

With a lot of songs lined up for release and a new venture of Masala Coffee in the offing, Sooraj has busy days ahead. But right now it is time to celebrate!


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Printable version | Oct 20, 2021 7:13:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/music/sooraj-santhosh-on-winning-the-state-award-for-the-best-singer/article17427471.ece

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