Playback singer  

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A playback singer is a singer whose singing is prerecorded for use in movies. Playback singers record songs for soundtracks, and actors or actresses lip-sync the songs for cameras.

South Asian movies produced in the Indian subcontinent are particularly known for using this technique. A majority of Indian movies (particularly Bollywood) as well as Pakistani movies, typically include six or seven songs. Popular playback singers in India enjoy the same status as popular actors, and talented music directors, such as Dr. K. J. Yesudas (who earned best singer honors seven times in India's National Film Awards) and Mohammed Rafi, also receive wide public admiration.

S.P.Balasubrahmanyam holds the world record in the Guinness for having sung the most number of song recordings by any singer and the record for a female singer is held by Lata Mangeshkar. Other popular singers include but are not limited to: Mukesh, Manna Dey, Kishore Kumar, Geeta Dutt, Ruma Guha Thakurta, Anuradha Paudwal,K. S. Chitra, Alka Yagnik, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Udit Narayan, Kumar Sanu, Sadhana Sargam, Sonu Nigam and Shreya Ghoshal.

Songs in Bollywood movies - the combined products of the talents of lyricists, music directors/composers, and singers - often determine the extent of success of individual Indian movies; as such, playback singers are an important part of the Indian film industry. Soundtrack albums of songs in movies are usually released before the movies.

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