"his words actually have meaning in his heart touching songs."
Punjabi singers from India and their tracks have become very popular across the world with their catchy tunes.
Punjabi vocalists have achieved fame and success in the music scene over eight decades. These Punjabi singers are famous for their evergreen folk tracks to more contemporary anthems, which are uplifting.
Each of these singers has their own distinctive style and, leading the way during different eras.
Most of their songs continue to dominate playlists across various music platforms and occasions.
Some of the older singers were born during pre-partition, in cities like Lahore, whilst others come from major large town and villages in Punjabi, India.
We showcase in detail the 25 best Punjabi singers, including their top songs.
Parkash Kaur was born into a musical family in Lahore, British India on September 19, 1919. She made her debut as a Punjabi singer on the radio with her younger sister Surinder Kaur.
Their radio journey took them to several cities, including Peshawar, Lahore and later Delhi.
Both sisters were so fond of Punjabi songs and singing that they would sneak into sangeet ceremonies of people to experience folk music.
Best five songs of Parkash Kaur include ‘Gori Diyan Jhanjran’, Chan Weh Ki Showkan’, Kithe Te Laaniyan Tahlian’,
‘Aap Mahi Ne Chug Laiyan’ and ‘Ghut Paani Pilade Ni Sohniye.’
Kaur won the hearts of many, receiving many accolades during her career.
At the age of sixty-three, Parkash Kaur sadly passed away on November 2, 1982.
Asa Singh Mastana
Asa Singh Mastana was born in Punjab on August 22, 1927. He is a legend in the history of Punjabi music. The Punjabi music maestro was famous for putting his voice to the songs of Bollywood film Heer.
He had a much-coveted ‘government job’ in the Reserve Bank of India. However, he took early retirement to devote his time to the music.
Mastana became a household name in the 1940s when he used to feature on All India Radio. Fans remember him for his popular duets with sisters Parkash Kaur and Surinder Kaur.
Top five songs of his include ‘Doli Charhdeyan Marian’, ‘Balle Ni Panjaab Diye’, ‘Kali Teri Gut’, ‘Jugni and Menu Tera Shabab Lae Betha.’
In 1985, Mastana became a recipient of the Padma Shri Award, courtesy of the Indian government. He left this world on May 23, 1999, at the age of seventy-one.
Familiar as the ‘Nightingale of Punjab’, Surinder Kaur was born in Lahore, British Indian on November 25, 1929. She regaled Punjab and the Punjabi Diaspora with her voice for over forty years.
She had immortalised numerous folk songs. Surinder also sang poems by acclaimed Punjabi poets such as Amrita Pritam, Shiv Kumar Batalavi and Mohan Singh.
Pining girls have been finding solace in her song ‘Ehna Akhiyan’ for generations. She has sung many beautiful numbers with her sister Parkash Kaur as well.
Her husband Joginder Singh Sodhi wrote the lyrics of her songs such as ‘Chan Kithe Guzari’, ‘Lathe Di Chadar’, ‘Shonkan Mele Di’ and ‘Gori Diyan Jhanjran.’
Recalling the influence of her husband, Surinder says: “He was the one who made me a star. He chose all the lyrics I sang and we both collaborated on compositions.”
Five best songs of hers include ‘Maavan Te Dheevan’, Ehna Akhiyan’ ‘Madhaniya’ ‘Juti Kasoori’ and ‘Suhe Ve Cheere Valeya.’
In 2006, the government of India deservedly gave her the Padma Shri Award. Following a long illness, at the age of seventy-seven, she took her last breath at New Jersey Hospital on June 14, 2006.
Kuldeep Singh, more famously familiar as K Deep was born in Rangoon, Burma on December 10, 1940. ‘Nashean Naal Yaari, Roli Main Izzat Sari’ was his first LP in 1969 under HMV.
He was one of the first few singers who gave voice to songs and poetry penned down by poet Shiv Kumar Batalvi. His five best songs include ‘Poodna’, ‘Gora Gora Rang’, ‘Yarane’, ‘Tere Patle Bulan’ and ‘Pyaar.’
After meeting his wife, the singer Jagmohan Kaur, at a musical event in Kolkata, the two began singing together.
In fact, Kaur broke her engagement to marry K Deep. They became a famous singing and acting duo in Punjab. which many grew up hearing.
K Deep played the famous comedy character Posti opposite Mahi Mohno portrayed by his wife Jagmohan Kaur.
The couple had two children, “Billy” Gurpreet Kaur Mada and Raja Kang.
Notable Punjabi singer, Mohammad Sadiq was born in Kup Kalan, British India during 1942. Sadiq took up music after taking inspiration from his uncle who was also a folk singer.
After earning fame as a folk singer and actor for over four decades, he became a politician.
His songs were so widely popular that other singers went onto re-record them in their own voice.
The tracks include ‘Na De Dil Pardesi Nu’, ‘Lammi Seeti Maar Mittra’, and ‘Mera Laung Gawacha’.
Other successful tracks of his include ‘Kurti Malmal Di’, ‘Baggi Titri Kamaadon Nikli’ and’ Mitran Di Khang Wich Khang Balliye.’
He sang with many famous female vocalists, including Surinder Kaur, Narinder Biba, Rajinder Rajan, Swaran Lata and Ranjit Kaur.
The legendary singer Kuldeep Manak was born just after partition in Jalal village, District Bhatinda, Punjab, India, on November 15, 1947.
He is credited for popularising the Punjabi music genre ‘Kalli’ (poetry linking to Punjabi literature)
He came from a singing family, with his forefathers being Hazoori Raagis (reciting spiritual hymns) for Maharaja Hira Singh of Nabha
His musical talent was further honed under the tutelage of Ustad Kushi Muhammad Qawwal. He left his village for Ludhiana to start performing at gatherings, Ever since then, he did not look back.
He released numerous albums that gained popularity including Mitran De Jacket De, Maa Hundi Ae Maa, and Heer Di Doli.
Five great tracks sang by Kuldeep Manak include ‘Kaliyan’, ‘Lok Tath’, ‘Sada Soormen Samjha’, ‘Sahibaan’ and ‘Tere Tille Ton.’
At only sixty, Manak departed from this world on November 30, 2011, in the city of Ludhiana.
The voice of Manak still echoes in the minds of his fans worldwide.
Singer Jagmohan Kaur of ‘Ghada Vajda, Ghadoli Vajdi’ fame was born in Pathankot, India on April 16, 1948. After initially working as a teacher, she took up singing as a full-time career.
While working, she began training under Mahinder Singh Bedi to understand the nuances of music. She eventually quit her comfortable government job to pursue singing.
Five top tracks of Kaur, include ‘Bapu Ve Add Hunni’, ‘Bara Karara Pudna’, ‘Guddi Wango,’ ‘Ghund Vich Nahi Lukda’ and Shaahan Da Karz Bura.
Primarily known for her contribution as a Punjabi singer, Kaur also achieved success for her acting in Punjabi films such as Daaj (1976) and Mutiyar (1979).
In love with singer K Deep, the two entered into wedlock on February 2, 1971. Together, the husband and wife sang duets, along with playing memorable comedy roles of Mai Mohno and Posti in Punjabi films.
Jagmohan Kaur died at the very young age of forty-nine in Ludhiana on December 6, 1997.
Born in Roper, Punjab on October 1, 1950, Ranjit Kaur had a passion for music from she was a child. She grew up singing in school and at spiritual places, giving her a good head start.
She earnt one and a half rupees payment for her first professional performance. Her duets with folk singer Mohammad Sadiq were very well received by the audience.
She also gave voice to poetry by writer Babu Singh Mann, which was very appreciated.
Five songs that fans remember Kaur for include ‘Menu Chandi Diyan Chanjran Kada De Haaniya’, ‘Nanane Baeimane,’ ‘Khich Lai Vairiya’, ‘Metho Palla Kar Layi’ and ‘Meri Gal Sun Sardarji.’
Kaur also worked as a supporting actress in some Punjabi films.
Eminent Punjabi singer Gurdas Maan was born in Giddarbaha town in Punjab, India on January 4, 1957. The Bhangra and folk specialist had an interest in music from an early age.
Maan came to national notice in India with the Doorsharshan recorded song ‘Dil Da Mamla Hai’ (1980). He went onto record more than thirty albums, writing over three hundred tracks.
Many of his hit tracks were part of successful Punjabi films.
Popular tracks of Maan include ‘Mamla Gadbad Hai’ (1984), ‘Chhalla’ (1986), ‘Peer Tere Jaan Di’ (1995), ‘Chugliyan’ (1995) and ‘Apna Punjab Hove’ (20110.
Alongside Diljit Dosanjh, Gurdas Maan sang the song ‘Ki Banu Duniya Da’ which was released by Coke Studio MTV Season on August 15, 2015.
For Boot Polishan, Maan bagged ‘Best International Album at the 2009 UK Asian Music Awards.
Surinder Pal Dhammi more familiar as Surinder Shinda comes from Ludhiana, Punjab, India.
Shinda has been a mentor to several Punjabi singers such as Amar Singh Chamkila, Gill Hardeep and his son Maninder Shinda.
He inherited the passion for music from his father and grandfather who were folk and classical singers respectively.
Despite graduating as a mechanical engineer and getting a job, he gave it all up to pursue his love for music. He then undertook training from Ustad Jaswant Bhanwra.
His first song, ‘Ucha Burj Lahore Da’ was a fans favourite far and wide.
Ever since then he has released more than forty albums ever since.
Five popular track sang by Shinda include ‘Jatt Jeona Mod’, ‘Putt Jattan De’, ‘Rakh Lae Calendar Yara’, ‘Bol Punjab De and ‘Jatiye Ne Jatiye.’
Shinda who has also acted in many Punjabi films as well continues to develop young artists.
Surjit Bains more famous as Surjit Bindrakhia was born in the village of Bindrakh, District Rupnagar, Punjab, India on April 15, 1962.
His father wanted him to be a wrestler, but Surjit was more set on becoming a singer. The musical career of Bindrakhia began when singing Punjabi couplets for a Bhangra team at college.
Known for his powerful bhangra voice, Surjit got his big break with the album, ‘Addi Utte Ghum’ (1990). From then on Bindrakhia sang for many successful singles and albums.
Five exceptional songs of Bindrakhia include ‘Jugni’, ‘Tera Yaar Bolda’, ‘Dupatta Tera Sath Ranga Da’, ‘Lak Tunoo Tunoo’ and ‘Billian Akhiaan.’
‘Dupatta Tera Sath Rang Da’ held onto the top spot for several weeks in the UK charts.
Unforfuuntaley for Bindrakhia his life was shortlived. He passed away at the age of fourty-one on November 17, 2003, following a cardiac arrest.
His contribution to Punjabi music earnt him a special jury award at the 2004 Filmfare Awards.
Hans Raj Hans
Punjabi Sufi singer Hans Raj Hans was born in Shafipur village close to Jalandhar, Punjab, India on April 9, 1962. Hans has garnered love and support for his devotional music.
His guru, Ustad Puran Shahkoti Sahib perfected the singing of Hans. In fact, blessed him with the surname, ‘Hans’ as a token of appreciation.
His melodious voice, signature curly hair and albums such as Jhanjarand Mornihave are famous amongst Punjabis of all generations.
He has also been named as the head of a Sufi Darbar (shrine) in Punjab. Besides promoting music from Punjab, contributing to culture, Hans has also sung for Bollywood films.
Five top songs in the voice of Hans include ‘Dil Chori Sada Ho Gaya’, ‘Silli Silli’, ‘Nit Khair Manga’, ‘Haal Ve Rabba
and ‘Dil Tote Tote Ho Gaya.’
In 2008, he became a recipient of the Padma Shri Award, highest civilian honour in India.
Punjabi-pop style singer Harbhajan Mann was born in District Bhatinda, Punjab, India on December 30, 1965. Mann began as an amateur singer, whilst studying at high school in Canada.
His professional singing career started in Punjab during 1992. It is at this time that he released ‘Chithiye Nee Chithiye’ (1992) that became very successful across the Punjab region.
Realising the huge potential in Punjab, Mann got his first major breakthrough with the album Oye-Hoye (1999). T
he album was aided by terrific exposure from the likes of MTV India and T-Series.
Mann went onto release many other albums going into the millennium. The early success of Mann also earnt him playback singing roles.
Five songs that Mann is known for include ‘Gallan Goriyan’ (1999), ‘Tin Rang’ 2010, ‘Sher’ (2016) ‘Jinddriye’ (2017) ‘Kangan’ (2018).
Tejinder Singh Maan more commonly familiar as Babbu Maan was born in Khant Maanpur, District Fatehgarh Sahib, Punjab, India on March 29, 1975.
Sajjan Rumaal De Geya was the first recorded album of Babbu recorded his first album, coming out in 1997.
His first official debut album Tu Meri Miss India (1999) came out in 1999. Two years later saw the release of this third album, Saun Di Jhadi (2001).
From 1998, onwards, Maan has released more than eight studio albums, including the best selling Punjabi album, Pyaas: In Search of Destiny (2005). He also became singer-songwriter for many Bollywood and Punjabi films.
Five musically pleasing songs from Maan include ‘Tupka Tupka’ (1999), ‘Dil Ta Pagal Hai’ (2001), ‘Kabza’ (2001), ‘Mehfil Mitraan Di’ (2001) and Mitraan Di Chhatri (2005).
In 2014, Maan received four Global Music Awards, as well as two daf BAMA Music Awards in Germany during 2017.
Amrinder Singh Gill who is more familiar as Amrinder Gill was born in Punjab, India on May 11, 1976. Gill who is a Khalsa College, Amritsar graduate was always very passionate about Punjabi music and Bhangra.
Following a brief stint working for a bank, he gave it all to pursue music. His first album, Apni Jaan Ke came out, in 2000.
Gill’s first song that he did for the Indian state broadcaster, Jalandhar Doordarshan, ‘Koi Taan Paigaam Likhe’ became a public favourite.
His other super hit albums are Ishq (2007), Dooriyan (2009) and Judaa (2011). He has also sung for many Punjabi films.
Five fan favourite songs of his include ‘Dildariyan’, ‘Khedan De Din’, ‘Mel Karade’, ‘Taur Mitran Di’ and ‘Tu Juda.’
Gill stays away from the public eye, but his romantic and sad songs are forever green.
Gill won ‘BestPlayback Singer’ (Male) for the song ‘Akhar’ at the 2018 Punjabi Filmfare Awards.
Punjabi singer, Gurinder Kaur Kainth who is popularly known as Miss Pooja was born in Rajpura, Punjab, India on December 4, 1980.
She began taking music lessons at the age of five. Before attaining international fame as a singer and making her Bollywood entry, Miss Pooja was teaching music at a school.
She made her debut with the duet track ‘Jaan To Pyaari’ in 2006. 2009 saw the release of her debut solo album, Romantic Jatii.
From there on she also gave her voice to Bollywood, along with releasing duets and singles which became super hits overnight
‘Do Nain’, ‘Seeti Marke’, ‘Ik Tere Karke’, ‘Sohnea and ‘Dimaag Khraab’ are five amazing songs of Miss Pooja.
Miss Pooja has also acted in several Bollywood films.
Singer Satinder Sartaj was born as Satinder Pal Singh Saini in Bajrawar village, Hoshiarpur, Punjab, India on August 31, 1982.
He took up Sartaj as his ‘thakallus’ (pen name) when penning down poetry during his college days. He specialises in folk and Sufi music.
Sartaj has an honours degree in music along with an MPhil in singing and a PhD in Sufi singing from Panjab University, Chandigarh. Many consider Sartaj to be a scholar of Punjabi music and culture.
He has had the honour of performing at the Royal Albert Hall. Sartaj has even featured in an American film, Black Prince (2017), essaying the role of Maharaja Duleep Singh.
Five top track by Sartaj include ‘Sai’, ‘Aaakhari Appeal’, ‘Heeriye Faqeeriye’ ‘Paani Panja Daryawaan Wala’ and
‘Nikki Jehi Kudi.’
People look up to Sartaj at a time when some elements of the Punjabi music industry face criticism for their fixation on alcohol and weapons.
Sartaj is one of the few brave contemporary singers who has not chosen to follow any controversial trends.
Surinder Singh Mann famously known as Sharry Mann was born in Mohali, Punjab, India on September 12, 1982. The Punjabi singer and writer had a civil engineering degree. But he had his heart always set on singing.
His journey as a singer began when posting songs on various social media sites. Mann became a celebrity overnight after the release of his album, Yaar Anmulle (2011).
He won ‘Best Album of the Year’ for ‘Aate Di Chiri’ in 2012. He has several other hits to his name, which DJs usually play on the dance floor.
‘Yaari Da Vasta’ (2011), ‘Dil Da Dimaag’ (2014), ‘Vadda Bai’ (2016), ‘3 Peg’ (2016) and ‘Hostel’ (2017) are five top songs of Mann.
A fan praising Mann on The Top Tens site writes:
“His voice is different from others, his words actually have meaning in his heart touching songs.”
Mann who made his film debut in 2013 is loved both as a singer and actor.
Rupinder Singh Grewal, more prominently known as Gippy Grewal was born in Ludhiana, Punjab, India on January 2, 1983.
After making his debut with the Amar Haldipur produced album, Chakk Lay, Gippy released further hit albums, including Phulkari 2 (2005).
The Punjabi singer has also sung some popular tracks in films that he has acted in and produced.
Five tracks of Gippy that his fans love include ‘Phulkari’ (2004), ‘Angreji Beat’ (2011), ‘Oscar’ (2016), ‘Car Nachdi’ (2017) and ‘Fuel’ (2018).
Besides performing at the 2014 Sandwell and Birmingham Mela, Gippy has won many awards for his songs.
Singer Jenny Johal was born in Jalandhar, Punjab, India on April 18, 1983.
Jenny began learning music at the age of four from her guru Sardar Bhupinder Singh Ji. She sang for the first time on the radio when she was just four and a half years old.
Being so passionate about music, she participated in several competitions over the years in school and college.
After a brief period of struggle her first song, ‘Yaari Jatt Di’ became a hit. She has released many other hit track, much to the delight of her fans.
Her real name is Bahar Johal but Bunty Bains gave her the name Jenny before her first song in 2015.
Other hit tracks of hers include ‘Muttiyaar Jatt Di’ (2015), ‘Chandigarh Rehan Valiye’ (2016), ‘Mastaani’ (2017), ‘Rakaan’ (2017) and ‘Nakhra’ (2018)
She often gives the credit of her success to her parents and has a lot of faith in herself.
Famous singer Diljit Dosanjh was born in Dosanjh Kalan village, District Jalandhar, Punjab, India on January 6, 1984.
The Punjabi singer has lived up to his name as he has won countless hearts. His first album, Ishq Da Uda Ada came out in 2004. The same year saw the release of his second album, Dil. Both albums were in association with Finetone Cassettes.
Subsequently, he has released many hit numbers including Bollywood tracks. Best five songs from his collection include ‘Lak 28 Kudi Da’ (2011), ‘Patiala Peg’ (2014), ‘Pagg Wala Munda’ (2016) and ‘Rangroot’ (2018)
Dosanjh who has won many accolades for his singing is also very popular on social media. With over a record-breaking 7.6 million followers on Instagram, Diljit is a favourite with the generation next.
In addition, Diljit is a successful actor. He made his Bollywood debut in Udta Punjab (2016), featuring Kareena Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor in key roles.
Ranjit Singh Bawa better known without his middle name was born in Gurdaspur, Punjab, India on March 14, 1989.
His father passed away when he was just two years old. His school Principal Master Mangal Singh who was a father figure for him had a big influence on him, especially to pursue singing.
He singing story goes back to when he was in sixth class. He won singing competitions six years in succession, during his graduation from Guru Nanak College, Batala and when undertaking post-graduate study at Khalsa College, Amritsar.
After gaining popularity for the song, ‘Bol Mitti Diya Bawaiya,’ the word ‘Bawa’ became an add on to his name. Speaking about this, Bawa said:
“For those six years, I sang a Pakistani song, Bol Miti Deya Baweya, which made me popular as ‘Bawa’.”
Although achieving early success, he did struggle for fifteen years to make it big in the world of Punjabi music. He even made an appearance on the talent show, Awaz Punjab Di but was unsuccessful in winning it.
With constant perseverance, his first song, ‘Jatt Di Akal Vech Ke’ finally came out in 2013, The track became immensely popular, breaking many records.
Five fantastic tracks of his include ‘Jean’, ‘Saddi Vaari Aun De’, Yaari Chandigarh Waaliye’ ‘Sher Maarna’ and ‘Meri Sardarniye.’
His most popular song was part of the album, Mitti Da Bawa, which won ‘Best Word Album’ at the 2015 Brit Asia Awards.
Singer, songwriter and performer Jasmine Kaur Sandlas who is more familiar without her middle name was born in Jalandhar on September 4, 1990.
Although Jasmine Sandlas was born in Jalandhar, Punjab, India, she made the USA her home. It is in America that her aesthetics were influenced by West coast music.
As a Punjabi music artist, she has already worked with names from the industry including Bohemia, Badshah, Gippy Grewal, Garry Sandhu and Amrit Mann.
In 2014, she made her Bollywood playback entry, singing with Yo Yo Honey Singh in the film Kick.
Five top songs of Sandlas are ‘Baddal’ (2016), ‘Punjabi Mutiyaaran‘ (2017), ‘Illegal Weapon’ (2017), Sip Sip (2018) and ‘Veera’ (2018)
Sandlas has made her presence felt on other platforms, including the MTV show, Angel of Rocks about women empowerment. She has also appeared on TED talks and other spoken-word stages.
Famous singer Guru Randhawa was born as Gurusharanjot Singh Randhawa in Nurpur village, District Gurdaspur, Punjab, India on August 30, 1991.
Randhawa was inclined towards Punjabi music as a little boy. Randhawa wrote a lot of songs, while he was in college.
After struggling to get a break, his first major single ‘Chhad Gayi’ (2013) came out. But this song did not have the response that he was probably hoping for.
Even his first album did not have the desired effect. He finally came to the forefront with his song ‘Patola’ (2015), a collaboration with rapper Bohemia.
This was the turning point in his career after, as he went onto release hit after hit.
The magic of Guru has worked wonders in songs like ‘Tu Meri Raani’ (2016), ‘Yaar Mod Do’ (2016), ‘Suit’ (2017)
‘High Rated Gabru’ (2017) and ‘Lahore’ (2017).
This village boy has certainly grown up to make it big not only across the Punjabi Music industry but also in Bollywood.
Punjabi singer Sunanda Sharma was born in Fatehgarh Churian, Gurdaspur, Punjab, India on January 30, 1992. Without much planning, she became a musical sensation sitting at home.
The friend of Sunanda put her video cover of the song ’Sucha Soorma’ on social media, which went viral.
Soon after, she was had many offers from music houses. She released her first song, ‘Billi Akh’ (2016) with Amar audio, which also became a huge hit.
Her five popular songs include ‘Patake’ (2016), ‘Jatt Yamla’ (2016) ‘Jaani Tere Naa’ (2017), ‘Morni’ (2018) and
From YouTube sensation to a Punjabi music star, Sunanda has come a long way in a very short time.
Other than her voice and songs, the cheerful attitude and expressions of Sunanda featuring in the videos are also very widely appreciated.
There are many other talented singers, which do not make our list, yet they also get avid listeners into the mood for Punjabi music.
Most of the songs sang by Punjabi singers are available on popular platforms, such as YouTube.
The great thing is that this music genre continues to produce vocalists across every generation, blowing your mind with their hit tracks.