P. Unnikrishnan is an accomplished vocalist in Carnatic music
. He has also done playback singing for a number of South Indian movies and sung the compositions of some of the most renowned music directors. His soulful renditions of devotional songs also earned him huge popularity in the music world. P. Unnikrishnan owns the credit of being the first male singer to receive the Best Male Singer National Award for a Tamil song. Apart from this, he has bagged a number of other awards too for his appealing renditions. He has been given credit of connecting the classical music with film music.
Early Life of P. Unnikrishnan
P. Unnikrishnan was born on 9th July in the year 1966 to parents K. Radhakrishnan and Dr. Harini Radhakrishnan. His home, Kesari Kuteeram, is considered as the landmark of Chennai
city as his great grandfather, Dr K.N Kesari, was an eminent Ayurvedic physician and the impresario of the popular Telugu women`s magazine `Gruhalakshmi`. P. Unnikrishnan`s home was frequently visited by artists, singers and eminent personalities. These artists on a regular basis used to come there to execute their renditions and Dr K. N. Kesari used to reward them after their performances.
At his childhood and later on too, cricket occupied a pivotal position within him. But his talent in the realm of music was noticed by his mother and with her initiative P. Unnikrishnan was registered under Sri VL Seshadri to receive music lesions. During his school days at the Asan Memorial School, P. Unnikrishnan simultaneously carried out both cricket and music. He not only carried it out but also started exhibiting his excellence in both the stream of lines. In the year 1987, P. Unnikrishnan obtained his graduation in commerce from the Vivekananda College
, Madras University
. While doing his graduation P. Unnikrishnan was also receiving training in music from Dr S. Ramanathan
, the well-known musician. P. Unnikrishnan`s love for cricket led him to obtain graduation in it and he was enrolled as a top order batsman and wicket keeper in the Tamil Nadu
Senior Division League.
Career of P. Unnikrishnan
P. Unnikrishnan focussed on his music career from the 1990 when he started executing his repertoire in music. His first concert was held at Palghat
. His musical talent was noticed out there and his eloquent voice managed to fetch the attention of the music lovers. Later on he joined the league of young Turks such as Vijay Siva and Sanjay Subrahmanyan. Their main aim was to `bring back the fans to Carnatic Music`. P. Unnikrishnan left the cricket sadly as he had to devote his time towards his training for music. But he continued to be a life member of the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association
. He continued his musical training under Sangita Kalanidhi, Dr. Ramanathan, Sri KS Krishnamurthy and later on under Smt Savitri Sathyamurthy. P. Unnikrishnan has also fetched the honour of being trained under Sangita Kalanidhi T Brinda and Sangita Kalanidhi T Viswanathan on a six-month training programme on the Veena Dhanammal Bani. During this time he completed his General Law and Post Graduate Diploma in Personnel Management and Industrial Relations. Afterwards he joined the Parrys Confectionery Limited and stayed there from the year 1991 to 1994. By this time P. Unnikrishnan also became very busy with his musical concerts. In the year 1994, he got his first film offer.
Achievements of P. Unnikrishnan
Throughout his musical career he has been conferred many accolades. P. Unnikrishnan has been conferred the title "Isai Peroli" by Karthik Fine Arts, "Yuva Kala Barathi" by the Bharath Kalachar, "Nada Bhushanam" by the Shanmukhananda Fine Arts and "Kalaimamani" by the Government of Tamil Nadu. He also received the National Award for the Best Male Playback Singer for the year 1994 for his first ever film song "Ennavale" (Movie-Kadalan) and "Uyirum Neeye" (Movie-Pavithra) and won various awards from the Music Academy, Chennai and other prestigious institutions. He has recorded over 600 film songs for Tamil
and Malayalam films
and more than 25 albums on cassettes and CD`s to his credit. He is an "A" grade artist of All India Radio
and has given a number of concerts all over India, U.S.A, The Middle East, The United Kingdom, The Far East, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Personal Life of P. Unnikrishnan
Due to his involvement into the field of music P. Unnikrishnan left his corporate career and devoted his full time to music. He is married to Priya and the couple has two children. Till date he is receiving training under Sri P.S. Narayanaswami and Prof. S.R. Janakiraman.