Balamurali Krishna – A Genius who needs no introduction in Indian Classical Music. He was a vaggeyakara himself and popularised many Keerthanas of Thyagraja, Ramadasu, Annamayya, Purandaradasaru among others in 20th – 21st century.
Janaki amma’s musical relationship with Balamurali sir is more than 5 decades old. Together, they sang in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam movies.
(1) Swaramanjari – Muthayala Pallaki – Satyam.
This is an interesting ragamalika composed by Satyam sir for Telugu movie ‘ Muthyala Pallaki’. When speaking about her achievements and satisfactory works in Film fields, Janaki amma mentions about this song as most precious feather in her crown. Their vocals in this song takes us to some unknown heavens!
(2) Vasantha Galiki – Srikakulandhra Mahavishnuvu katha – Pendyala
This song must be the very first duet from these two great artists together. This song is not a semi classical rendition but a lovely romantic number with ‘love’ in each and every word from pen of Pingali garu. This is one song that Balamurali garu would sing when ever he spoke about his small yet fruitful career in movies. Listen to the way young vocals of Janaki amma flows effortlessly in tune set by Pendyala garu.
(3) Padalepam karagipoye – Srikakulandhra Mahavishnuvu katha – Pendyala
Story of Varudhuni – Pravarkaya from “Manu charitra” written by Allasani peddanna, who was the foremost among Ashtadiggajalu (8 great poets in court of SriKrishna devaryalau) has become part of entertainment in various forms in Telugu communities. Many dramas, musical shows were based on this story. Not only theatre but Cinema also used this story many times and gave us wonderful memories.
This song tuned by Pendyala garu, written by Pingali garu is also based on the same story for Telugu movie “Srikakulandhra Mahavishnuvu katha” . Janaki amma and Balamurali krishna garu sang it off screen. Dancer Vijayalakshmi performed both characters on screen..!
(4) Siri Siri Laali – Bhakta Prahlada – S Rajeswara Rao.
Balamurali sir acted in few movies and most memorable role was his portrayal of Narada in Bhakta prahalda, where he sang beautiful songs. This song in particular is a lullaby to Prahlada by his mother Leelavathi. Balamurali sir joins to make it more precious!
(5) Chinna Chinna Kanna – Bhakta Prahlada – S Rajeswara Rao.
Bhakta Prahlada was released in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Hindi simultaneously. Janaki amma sang for actress Anjali devi in all versions. Hindi and Kannada versions of this song was sung by PBS-S Janaki, which is quite interesting as PBS sir got to give play back to Balamurali sir! Tamil version is equally enjoyable as Telugu one..
(6)Ranga Baara Turanga Nayana – Navakoti Narayana
Navakoti Narayana is a biographical movie of Saint Purandara Dasa. Balamurali sang immortal Dasara padagalu in this movie. In this particular song, he just did the humming part while Janaki amma rendered complete solo in her golden string like young vocals.
(7) Nanna Hrudaya Veena Meeti – Sri Raghavendra Vaibhava – Chitti Babu
This is yet another musical in Kannada filled with melodies from Balamurali sir. Interestingly, this song is a mirror image of above song where Janaki amma did the humming and Balamuarli sir sang complete song! This song is composed by Legendary Veena Maestro Chitti Babu sir! Telugu version is also song by them for the dubbed version of the movie.
(8) Raghuvara ninnu – Ende Mohangal Poovirinju – V Dakshinamurty
One of the most interesting songs in career of Janaki amma. Amazing is the way she sings the swaras (with minimal training in classical music) competing with experts in classical music Balamurali sir and K J Yesudas sir ..! Though Janaki amma sang other Malayalam songs like Neela Neela vanamatha/Manasin Aarohanam, this song is just outstanding! Raja sir used this song as is in Tamil movie ‘Isai Paadum thendral’.
(9) Nambide Nina nadha devathe – Sandya Raga
This is one of most popular semi-classical songs in history of Kannada cinema. Three versions are sung by Balamurali sir, Bheemsen Joshi sir and Janaki amma respectively. Janaki amma mentioned in stage show that her version was also composed by Balamurali sir and G K Venkatesh arranged background score for the same. What a composition and what a singing!
(10) Thodu Thodu – Thodu – M Balamuralikrishna
Balamurali sir is really a wonder who proved his mettle where he worked. He not only sang and composed in film music, he won national award as best music director also. Janaki amma sang for his music direction in Telugu movie called ‘Thodu’ in 1997. Though movie was not released in theatres and the songs became rare, she won Nandi award for ‘Nadila pravahinchede jeevitham’ song. Sharing yet another rare classic from the movie. Though Janaki amma sang few more songs with Balamurali sir, ending the collection with this lovely lyrical beauty of C Narayana Reddy sir!
Their collaboration was not limited to movie songs, they released few devotional albums together and sang in Ardhana utsavalu. He was a true genius, dear most child of Goddess Saraswathi. People learn music, Music came to him by itself…His departure from us to his own abode is extremely sad news for every music lover of the Nation.
This pic is from visit of Janaki amma with Balamurali sir few days before his demise!