M S Anantharaman comes from one of the famous violin families in Carnatic music. He is the son of Parur Sundaram Iyer, a violinist who pioneered violin technique and created the Parur style of playing the violin. His younger brother was the violinist M S Gopalakrishnan. His elder sister Parur Sitalakshmi was also a violinist. In 1932, M S Anantharaman and Sitalakshmi played violin duets (probably the first brother-sister duo) at the Ramanathaswamy temple in Rameswaram, the Subramanya temple in Tiruchendur and at the temple in Kanyakumari. The same year, they also played at the Padmanabhaswami temple in Thiruvananthapuram. In a distinguished career of more than seven decades, M S Anantharaman has been accompanist and violin soloist in Carnatic music, and also been on the Hindustani music stage as accompanist. Today, his impeccable technique is still on evidence even as he remains one of the senior most violinists and musicians on stage.