Kumar Sanu is a leading Indian Bollywood playback singer. He was awarded the Filmfare Best Male Playback Singer Award over five consecutive years.
Kumar Sanu's father Pashupati Bhattacharya was a vocalist and composer. He trained Sanu as a singer and tabla player. After getting a degree in Commerce from Calcutta University, Sanu began performing publicly in 1979 by singing at shows and restaurants around Calcutta. He modeled his singing style after Bollywood singer Kishore Kumar. Later he developed his own singing style.
In 1987, music director and singer Jagjit Singh offered Sanu the chance to sing in the Hindi film Aandhiyan. Sanu then relocated to Mumbai, where Kalyanji-Anandji gave him chance to sing in the film Jaadugar. Kalyanji-Anandji suggested that he change his name from Kedarnath Bhattacharya to Kumar Sanu. Sanu started off singing Jagjit Singh's film songs, and went on to work with composers including Naushad, Ravindra Jain, Hridayanath Mangeshkar, Pt.R K Razdan, Kalyanji Anandji, and Usha Khanna.
For the 1990 film Aashiqui, music directors Nadeem-Shravan got Sanu to sing all but one of the songs. He won the first of his record five consecutive Filmfare awards as Best Male Playback Singer. His next Filmfare Awards came for songs in the movies Saajan (1991), Deewana (1992), Baazigar (1993), and 1942: A Love Story (1994).
Sanu often collaborated with Nadeem-Shravan. Some of their collaborations include songs in movies like Aashiqui (1990), Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahin (1991), Sadak (1991), Saajan (1991), Deewana (1992), Dil Ka Kya Kasoor (1992), Kal Ki Awaz (1992), Shreeman Aashique (1993), Salami (1993), Damini: Lightning (1993), Dilwale (1994), Agni Sakshi (1996), Raja Hindustani (1996), Jeet (1996), Pardes (1997), among others.
In a career spanning two decades, he has sung with composers including R.D. Burman, Anand-Milind, Anu Malik, Jatin-Lalit, Nadeem-Shravan, Himesh Reshammiya, Ismail Darbar, Kalyanji Anandji, Laxmikant-Pyarelal, Rajesh Roshan, Sajid-Wajid, Viju Shah, Uttam Singh for Dushman, Raam Laxman, Dilip Sen-Sameer Sen, Anand Raj Anand, Aadesh Shrivastava, Vishal-Shekhar, M. M. Keeravani and Vishal Bharadwaj.
He has also created music for Indian films and has also produced the Bollywood film, Utthaan. Sanu was in the panel of judges on Sony TV for Waar Parriwar, a reality show based on the bringing together of a singing gharana (family of singers) and on Zee Bangla TV in a music reality show called Sa Re Ga Ma Pa - Vishwa Sera.