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Deva (composer)

Indian film composer and singer

.mw-parser-output .infobox-subbox{padding:0;border:none;margin:-3px;width:auto;min-width:100%;font-size:100%;clear:none;float:none;background-color:transparent}.mw-parser-output .infobox-3cols-child{margin:auto}Musical artist

Devanesan Chokkalingam, popularly known as Deva, is an Indian film composer and singer who predominantly works in Tamil Cinema. He has composed songs and provided background music for Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada films in a career spanning about 20 years. Many know his gaana songs, written mostly using Madras Tamil,[2][3] though he has gained notoriety for plagiarising others’ songs.[4] He has composed music for more than 400 films.[5]


  • 1 Personal life
  • 2 Career
    • 2.1 Awards
  • 3 Filmography
    • 3.1 Tamil films
    • 3.2 Kannada films
    • 3.3 Telugu films
    • 3.4 Malayalam films
    • 3.5 Television
    • 3.6 Singer
  • 4 Onscreen appearances
  • 5 Reused tunes
  • 6 References

Personal life[edit]

Deva was born to M. C. Chokkalingam and M. C. Krishnaveni. Even in his childhood, Deva was attracted to the world of music. Teaming up with Chandra Bose, he staged many musical programmes. He started learning classical music under Dhanraj and has completed a course in Western music at Trinity College of Music in London. His son Srikanth Deva is also a music director, as are his brothers, who have formed the duo Sabesh–Murali. His nephew Jai is an actor.


Before coming to cinema, Deva worked for some time in the television field. In those days, Deva’s brothers were working in the musical troupes of Illayaraja and other music directors as instrumentalists. His first film, Manasukketha Maharasa, was released in 1989. He was then called to work on the movie Vaigasi Poranthachu. After the release of Vaikaasi Poranthaachu, his name became known throughout the Tamil community.[1]

The great music composer M. S. Viswanathan called him “thenisai thendral”, or the breeze of sweet music. So far, he has composed music for more than 400 films, which include Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam films. He is also famous for his compositions for religious films. He was widely acclaimed for his scores for the Rajinikanth starrer Annamalai (1992) and Baashha (1995).

The 1990s belonged as much to Deva as it did to A. R. Rahman. In 1996, Deva composed tunes for 36 movies. His scores played a big role in the emergence of actors Ajith and Vijay, with hits such as Aasai (1995), Kadhal Kottai (1996), Nerrukku Ner (1997), Ninaithen Vandhai (1998), Priyamudan (1998), Vaalee (1999), Kushi (2000) helping them establish themselves as the next-generation superstars.[6]

In 2014, Anirudh Ravichander chose Deva to sing a gaana song in his album Maan Karate.[7]


In 1990, he received his first Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Music Director. He received the Tamil Nadu Government’s Kalaimamani Award in the year 1992. In 1995, the film Aasai brought him another state film award. For Baashha, he got the Tamil Nadu Arts and Cultural Academy Award. He received an award by Guinness world records for Sivappu Mazhai as the world fastest movie from script to screening. He has also been honoured by awards from popular journals like Dinakaran, Cinema Express and Screen. He won the Filmfare Award for Best Music Director – Kannada film Amrutha Varshini.[8][9]


Tamil films[edit]

Kannada films[edit]

Telugu films[edit]

Malayalam films[edit]


  • 2007 Vaira Nenjam
  • 2007 Bharathi
  • 2008 Thangamana Purushan
  • 2009 Vilakku Vacha Nerathula
  • 2013 Mahabharatham


Onscreen appearances[edit]

Reused tunes[edit]

  • Kotigobba (2001) from Baashha (1995) (3 songs added with one of them being reused version of “Athanda Ithanda” from Arunachalam (1997))
  • Simhadriya Simha from Kattabomman (1 song “Priya Priya” has been reused; while “Kalladre Naanu” was reused as “Poove Mudhal Poove” in Kadhal Kirukkan with different vocals and instrumentations; “Malnad Adike” was reused from “Kottapaakum” in Nattamai).
  • Naaga from Kushi (3 songs “Megam Karukuthu”, “Macarina” and “Oru Ponnu” has been reused).
  • Nata (2002) from Priyamudhan (1997) (3 songs “Bharathikku”, “Pooja Vaa”, and “Mowriya” have been reused).


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  • ^ “Tamil cinema Data Base of actors,actress,directors”. 29 October 2006. Archived from the original on 29 October 2006.
  • ^ “Find Tamil Actor Deva Filmography, Movies, Pictures and Videos –”. 15 August 2011. Archived from the original on 15 August 2011.
  • ^ “chronicles of plagiarism in indian film music”. itwofs. Retrieved 30 April 2021.
  • ^ “Deva tamil music director”. Retrieved 20 July 2014.
  • ^
  • ^ “Deva sings for Anirudh ! – Times of India”. The Times of India.
  • ^ “45th Annual Filmfare Best Kannada Music Director : Santosh : Free Dow…”. 5 February 2017. Archived from the original on 5 February 2017.
  • ^ “deva_won_filmfare__best_kannada_music_director : santosh : Free Downl…”. 5 February 2017. Archived from the original on 5 February 2017.
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