Sunday, December 12, 2004
MS Subbalakshmi (1916 - 2004)
MS at her best
MS Subbalakshmi died peacefully in her sleep on December 11th 2004 at St. Isabels Hospital, Chennai of broncho pneumonia and cardiac irregularities. She was the greatest vocalist that the Carnatic world has ever seen. Born in Madurai, she went on to become a national icon. Her admirers include Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and C. Rajagopalachari. She lent her voice for the song "Vaishnava Janato ", a favourite of Mahatma Gandhi. Her best song was "Kurai Ondrum Illai" penned by Rajaji. She immortalized many songs, bajans and Annamacharya kirthanas. She won a lot of accolades including Bharat Ratna, the nation's highest civilian award.
Along with her she carried the rich tradition of South India and was the real ammbassdor for the culture for nearly seventy years. She stopped singing after her husband died in 1997
With her passing away, a cavity has been created in the Carnatic world that may never ever be filled.