What Is Playback Singer?

Are you curious to know what is playback singer? You have come to the right place as I am going to tell you everything about playback singer in a very simple explanation. Without further discussion let’s begin to know what is playback singer?

In the realm of music and film, playback singing is a fascinating and integral part of the creative process that often remains hidden from the spotlight. Playback singers are the talented voices behind the on-screen personas, lending their vocal prowess to actors, creating magic with their soulful renditions. In this blog, we will explore the captivating world of playback singers, their roles, and the impact they have on the world of entertainment.

What Is Playback Singer?

A playback singer is a vocalist who records and provides the singing voice for actors in films, television shows, or even stage performances. These singers record songs that are later synchronized with the lip movements and expressions of actors on screen. Playback singers are responsible for breathing life into the characters and evoking emotions in the audience through their powerful and emotive vocal performances.

Key Aspects Of Playback Singing:

  1. Versatility: Playback singers are known for their versatility. They must adapt their singing style to match the character portrayed by the actor on screen. Whether it’s a romantic ballad, an energetic dance number, or a heart-wrenching emotional song, playback singers are expected to deliver a wide range of musical genres and emotions.
  2. Recording Studios: The recording of playback songs typically takes place in recording studios, where the singer performs the song while watching the video footage of the scene for which the song is intended. This synchronization is essential to make the song appear as though the actor is singing.
  3. Dubbing: The process of playback singing is also known as dubbing. Playback singers are often referred to as dubbing artists because they dub their voices over the actors’ lip movements. This meticulous process requires precision and timing to match the actor’s expressions.
  4. Prominence in Various Industries: Playback singing is not limited to just Bollywood; it is a significant component of various film industries around the world, including Hollywood, Tollywood (Telugu cinema), and Kollywood (Tamil cinema). Each industry has its own set of renowned playback singers.

Famous Playback Singers:

  1. Lata Mangeshkar: Often regarded as the “Nightingale of India,” Lata Mangeshkar has a timeless legacy in the Indian film industry. Her melodious voice has graced countless classic songs.
  2. Kishore Kumar: Kishore Kumar’s versatile singing style and charismatic voice made him a legendary playback singer in Bollywood. His songs continue to be cherished by fans worldwide.
  3. Adele: Known for her deep and soulful voice, Adele’s singing talent is prominently featured in the James Bond movie “Skyfall,” where she contributed to the iconic theme song.
  4. Whitney Houston: Whitney Houston’s powerful voice shone in movies like “The Bodyguard,” where her rendition of “I Will Always Love You” became an instant classic.
  5. Elton John: Elton John’s memorable soundtrack for “The Lion King” included hits like “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” which was pivotal in the film’s success.

Impact And Recognition:

Playback singers play a significant role in enhancing the cinematic experience and often receive accolades for their contributions. Their work has the power to connect with audiences on an emotional level, making them indispensable to the entertainment industry. Many playback singers have received awards and recognition for their work, alongside the actors and music directors who collaborate with them.


Playback singing is a mesmerizing art form that blends the talents of singers with the magic of the silver screen. The ability of playback singers to evoke emotions and enrich cinematic storytelling with their powerful vocals is a testament to their importance in the world of entertainment. Their work is a vital component of films and plays a substantial role in shaping the way we perceive and connect with the characters and stories on screen. Playback singers are the unsung heroes of the music industry, breathing life into characters and leaving a lasting impact on the hearts of audiences worldwide.


What Is Difference Between Singer And Playback Singer?

In simple words, Singers who sing behind the screen are called a playback singer and those who sing on the screen are called singer.

How Do You Become A Playback Singer?

If you want to be a playback singer, then all you have to learn is how to sing, as playback singers are pre-recorded. They are never seen on film, as the actors lip sync to the pre-recorded tracks. Create an audition tape. This tape will need to demonstrate your range and your ability to perform Bollywood style songs.

What Is The Salary Of Playback Singer?

The kind of revenue that the music industry generates for the Indian film industry, has made the artists realise their potential. There has been a massive hike in their fees as well, where singers charge around Rs. 5-10 Lakhs per song, while the top artists can easily command anywhere between Rs. 20-25 Lakhs.

What Is Indian Playback Singing?

Playback singing is unique to Indian cinema. The technique of lip-syncing to recorded songs, first introduced by Rai Chand Boral in the Hindi film Dhoop Chhaon (1935), forever replaced the convention of live singing on set. This move opened up separate career avenues for actors and singers.

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