For a first in the Malayalam movie industry, SAMAM, an association of the playback singers has been formed with the legendary singer Dr KJ Yesudas as its first member.
With the formation of SAMAM, the decades’ long pleas of the vocalists for an association of their own have been fulfilled. Though there are few other organizations for the singers, this is for the first time that the singers turned up collectively in large numbers for the inception of an association.
Singers who are part of the Malayalam film industry could become members of SAMAM. Yesudas, whom the country has honored with the prestigious Padma Vibhushan, took the very first membership of the association followed by veterans MG Sreekumar and Sujatha. At the inaugural meeting of SAMAM held at Kochi, most of the playback singers including Shreya Jayadeep, the youngest among the lot, turned up to secure memberships
If the actors and technicians of Malayalam cinema have formed associations to address various issues faced by them in the industry, SAMAM primarily aims the welfare of its members. Any playback singer who has sung songs in at least five movies can be a member of SAMAM.
The officials of the association said that SAMAM focuses on the welfare and interests of those countless singers who find it difficult to establish careers after singing in just one or two movies, and also those who are mired in financial difficulties after pursuing a career in singing.
Though a number of names came up during the initial discussions, the members zeroed in on SAMAM which means ‘equal’. Besides, the first note in music begins with ‘sa’. The association is also planning to organize concerts to raise funds.
Earlier, the playback singers used to sing at various charity events either by accepting remuneration or for free. The members of SAMAM will jointly organize concerts for their own welfare, besides continuing their individual works and commitments.