Puneeth Rajkumar was never trained in classical music, but he sang songs for his movies from the time he was a toddler!
It is a trait he probably picked up from his famous father, Dr Rajkumar.
As an adult singer, Puneeth's voice had a distinctive timbre -- slightly husky, boyish and strong.
Long-time Rediff.com Contributor M D Riti brings you a collection of five songs that span Puneeth's tenure as a singer.
This song almost represented the child star Puneeth.
It has nice lyrics about Shiva, and was an important element in the semi thriller Chalisuva Modagalu, starring his father Dr Rajkumar.
Puneeth plays a little orphan who lives near a monument. He becomes close to a couple who happen to visit the place casually one day.
He later becomes a witness to an incident that causes a sudden twist in an otherwise straightforward plot.
This song marked Puneeth's debut as an adult singer, and was picturised on him in Appu, the film that launched him as a hero.
Taliban Alla has a catchy, hummable melody, and has the hero and his group of friends 'teasing' the heroine -- something that was quite common in Indian movies.
The lyrics of this song go something like: I am not the Taliban, am certainly not Bin Laden. He struck at buildings, I only want to win over people's hearts.
Hosa Gaana Bajaana
Hosa Gaana Bajaana is a fun, dance number, with even the nursery rhyme Johnie Johnie Yes Papa thrown in.
Many of Puneeth's songs as an adult singer were light-hearted and meant to just delight his listeners.
If you hear any of them, you automatically start remembering Puneeth's impish face and his endearing, wide grin.
Abhimanigale Nammane Devru
This track features Puneeth with his elder brother, the superstar Shivarajkumar.
The movie title and the song refer to and leverage the lineage of Puneeth and his brothers as the sons of Dr Rajkumar, whose favourite line was Abhimanigale Nammane Devru (our fans are the Gods of our home.)
They truly reflect the humility with which this grounded family treated their fans and audiences.
Yen Madodu Swamy
One of Puneeth's last songs, Yen Madodu Swamy, was sung in 2020, and is quite tongue-in-cheek.
It is from Puneeth's own production, the film French Biryani, featuring the popular comic Danish Sait as an autorickshaw driver in Bangalore.
It begins with a famous piece of verse from Kannada poet G P Rajaratnam, which talks about pride in the Kannada language, and then goes on to liken life to a Tom and Jerry cartoon.