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Monthly Archives: April 2010

Happy B’day Sudha Raghunathan

Sudha Raghunathan is the one whom I can say my Guru of Carnatic Music. She’s my Drona and I’m her Ekalavya. (But I won’t give her my thumb as Fees). Though I could not learn Music from her directly, I learned from her by listening to her Cassettes and CDs. First my mother became her fan and started listening to her songs. That time I was not aware of pure form of Carnatic Music as I just entered my teenage. But I had an affinity towards the Classical songs in the films like Sindhu BhairaviUnnal Mudiyum Thambi (Courtesy KB). Later I got an interest to identify ragas of a few Film songs (Courtesy Mohan Vaidhya).

Sudha Raghunathan Portrait by C.S.Prasad

It all started with the famous Bharathiyar song “Chinnanchiru Kiliye Kannamma…” sung by Sudha and it created a magic in me. Especially when she sings the line “Kannathil Muthamittaal…” I felt like someone pecks on my cheek literally. I kept listening to it and sang the song in a Music competition in my 10th Std. The same song got me the First Prize in my 11th Std.

When I was in 2nd year Engineering, I heard Sudha singing the famous song of Oothukkadu Venkata Subbiyer, “Asaindhadum mayil onru…” I was just mesmerized by the way the song was composed and flawlessly sung by Sudha. From that moment I had become a die-hard fan of Carnatic Music and of course SR. Eventhough I have listened to the same song sung by various artistes, still SR is the Best. Her Album titled “ALAIPAYUTHE KANNA” contains the songs of Oothukkadu is my most favourite Album till date. If anyone wants to learn Carnatic music, they can start with those songs which help have control over breath while singing. One can also improve his/her Tamil pronunciation by practising those songs. Especially the lines:

“KaRutha kuzhalodu niRutha mayil siRagirukki amaitha thirathile
Gaana mayilaadum neela kuyil paadum neela nadhiyodum vanathile

Kuzhal mudhal ezhilasai kuzhaiya varumisayil kuzhalodu miLiriLan karathile

Kadhirum madhiyum ena nayana vizhigaL iru naLinamaanda salanathile…”

Later I started collecting most of her Albums and recommend others to listen to it.
In my opinion, Bombay Jayashri sings with a very low pitch, whereas Nithyasree sings at extremely high pitch. Sudha can sing in both low pitch and high pitch. She can sing any kind of raga very well, whether it’s a soft Sahana or a hard Thodi. But for my uncles Bombay Jayashri is the best in this generation. My granny says after MS it’s BJ. But for me SR is the Best.

Though her contemporaries Bombay Jayashri and Nithyasree are popular among common audiences because of their Film songs, Sudha has her unique place in the Hearts of Music Lovers in spite of a few renditions of film songs. Her songs in “Ivan” are of her kind but the song “Kadhal periyadha kaamam periyadha…”from the movie Satham Podaadhey is the biggest blunder Sudha has ever made as MLV did in “Ayyasamy Aaojisamy…”. When Ilayaraja made her singing Carnatic songs in films, A.R. Rahman too was keen to make her sing in “Yelelo”, Yuvan tried to spoil her image by the song. This is the only song of Sudha which I hate to the core though I haven’t yet watched the film and song. Her voice suited to Late Actress Soundarya in Ivan and also to the legend Shabana Azmi in the crossover movie “Morning Raga” where Shabana’s lip sync is perfect for the “Thaye Yashodha…” fusion song.

Once the great Music Critic Late Mr. Subbudu had mentioned that if he had to be in a No man’s land, he would take Bhagavad Gita, his Vethalai Petty and Casettes of Sudha Raghunathan’s songs along with him. Sudha was overwhelmed by this statement of Subbudu and told that it’s like the most prestigious Award for her.

She participates in the “THIYAGARAJA ARADHANA” every year at Thiruvaiyaaru as well as Cleveland; but I have not found any of her albums for Pancharatna Kritis. I would like her to release the album of “Pancharatna Kritis” soon.

I would like to dedicate this blog to my “Maanaseeka Guru” on her Birthday and wish her to keep singing like M.S.Subbulakshmi with her God-gifted voice. I also wish she would get the Bharat Ratna Award like the great MS. Now listening to “Vandhanamu Raghu nandana…” Thiyagarajar Kriti composed in Sahana raga.

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Posted by on April 30, 2010 in Birthdays, Sudha Raghunathan

 

Behne De… Let me Flow

Behne de

I’m addicted to Raavan songs after getting relieved from Vinnaithandi Varuvaya hangover. As I had mentioned in the earlier post, I’m writing a separate post on it. I’m attracted to the song much before listening to it since I saw the track list of Raavan songs from wikipedia. The singer is none other than my favourite Karthik. His previous hit Behka main behka from Hindi Ghajini was pretty good yet didn’t create an impact like his Oru maalai from Tamil Ghajini. One thing is his rendition is flawless in both the songs.

The song starts with a lengthy prelude (about 50 seconds). Not much instruments are used but with a few percussion instruments that gives a mysterious feeling and creates an anxiety about the lyrics. The drum beat rhythm comes throughout the song which makes us visualize the song with a dark picturization. Karthik starts singing “Arey aankh se boond gira koi…” very softly and subtly with a low note till 1:17. Suddenly the pitch goes high from “Behne de mujhe behne de…”. Again at 2:10 it reaches its crescendo when Mohammed Irfan joins him in “Beh gaya beh gaya; jo reh gaya reh gaya…” It’s absolutely scintillating and really a delight to hear since the pitch flows at different levels and Karthik excellent rendition. He sings it with ease.

The interlude is same as the prelude but with 38 seconds. The 2ns stanza also has similar tune as the first. Here too Irfan has the same job crooning the verses “kar gaya kar gaya… sab bhar gaya bhar gaya…” . The song ends with a fine (lengthy music at the end) for about 50 seconds. The magic is not over bcos it would make you listen to it again and again. The song is a typical A.R.Rahman template.

The song’s other great asset is its lyrics. It’s too intense and in depth meanings. The song might have shot on characters with opposite characters. The comparison with fire and water makes think so. The words chingari (fire spark) and boond (water droplet) are used at many places.The song starts with an agony and ends with an ecstasy (sab bhar gaya). Sheer brilliance of Gulzar!!!

The song sounds similar to “Sat rangire…” from Mani Ratnam’s Dil Se. It has the same feel here too that brings out the feeling of a desperate and passionate lover with a voracious quest for love. Still Satrangire has more impact even after a decade. Karthik has done the magic that Sonu did. He’s equally good as Sonu Niigam and a step ahead than Shrinivas in its Tamil version Ennuyire… from Uyire. Can’t wait till tomorrow to listen to its Tamil version.

Lyrics with meaning of Behne De:

Arey aankh se boond gira koi Someone falls a drop of tear from eyes

Chingari ka tukda jala koiSomeone burnt a piece of spark

Umeed ko aag laga zaraFire (Burn) the expectation

sehra ki pyaas bhuja zaraquench the thirst of your lover

umeed ko aag laga zara; sehra ki pyaas bhuja zara

ghan itna baras ke ghalne lagoon – The cloud is about to downpour

main paani ke oopar tarne lagoon – I’m about to relax myself in the water

behne de mujhe behne de mujhe behne de mujhe behne deLet me flow.. let me flow

Behne de ghanghor ghataFlow like thunderstorm filled clouds

Behne de paani ki tarah – Flow like water

saagar mein jaa girna hai; behne de nadiyaan ki tarah

However, the fall will be in the sea, still let me flow like rivers

shart lagi hai mar jaane ki jeena hai to pyaar mein

I have taken a pledge before I die that if I live, I’ll live in LOVE

deh kahin bhi ho mera , jaan rakhi hoo yaar mein

Where ever my body be, I’ve kept my life on my lover

beh jaa.. beh jaa.. hai sagar ka kehna

Flow.. Flow.. the sea says

beh jaa… beh jaa… hai nadiyaan ko behna

Flow… Flow… Let the river flow

patte se tapakti boond ki aawaaz sunaai di thi

The sound of a water drop dropping from the leaves is heard

nadiyan mein tapak aur gum ho ja

Fall into the river and disappear

beh gaya beha gaya… jo reh gaya reh gaya

Whatever flows would flow out… whatever stays would stay forever

beh gaya beha gaya… jo reh gaya reh gaya

behne de mujhe behne de…

mera pal pal ang ang bhar diya

you have filled my my every moment and every part of my body

tu ne jaan pe junoon sa kar diya

you have done something crazy in my life

mera hai kya jo main haar doon, jaan teri hai tujh pe waar doon

Nothing is mine, even my life is yours and I sacrifice for you.

doob gaye jo suna hai saare tere dere aate hain

dil ke chullo mein bechaare dubkiyaan ghaante khaate hain

beh jaa… beh jaa… chal tod kinare ko

flow out and break the banks

beh jaa… beh jaa… dhar le majhdhaare ko

flow out and

chingaari udaake raakh se

by taking a spark of flame from the ashes

ek boond gira ke aankh se

by dropping  a tear from the eyes

chalne ka ishaara kar gaya

a signal is given to go on

kar gaya kar gaya… sab bhar gaya bhar gaya

a signal is given and my everything (heart, soul and body) is filled


I’d like to thank my friend Amit, who told me the meaning of some words and sentences. He’s been my Hindi Teacher since my Kolkata days and Bengali too.

P.S: When Jodha Akbar was released, I liked the track Jashn-e-bahara and asked the meaning of each and every word from him and loved it. Surprisingly it fetched the Filmfare Award for the best Lyrics for Javed Akhtar in 2008. Hope this would fetch National/Filmfare Award for Gulzar sahab and Karthik too.

Tail Piece: Karthik is going to take a new Avatar. Yeah he’s gonna compose Music for Mysskin’s next movie.


 
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Posted by on April 29, 2010 in A.R.Rahman, Mani Ratnam, Music

 

Raavan – Music Review

The much awaited Audio of this year Raavan was released on April 24th. Mani Ratnam & A.R.Rahman and his mentor Mani Ratnam always come with great works. I was a bit disappointed in the duo’s earlier Guru. But I have lot of expectations for Raavan and its Tamil version Raavanan. I expected the audio of both Tamil & Hindi versions would be released. But it’s a disappointment for Tamilians as the Tamil version is getting released 30th April only. But it’s not an issue for ARR fanatics as they can enjoy the double bonanza. Though I have downloaded the songs on 23rd night itself, I was sure that I would buy the Audio CD as since I missed in the case of Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya. Yeah, I got an ACD after watching the movie only. Yesterday night I bought the CD and today whole day I was listening to the songs. I didn’t like the songs instantly except Behne De. Even I didn’t like VTV songs earlier but they still keep growing on me. Same way, Raavan songs also would sound better after multiple listening. In a way, it’s good that the Tamil version is delayed by a week. Cos, in the week’s gap I could listen to the Hindi songs and I may like the Tamil version instantly.

I was shocked to see the CD cover with Horrible Aishwarya (Almost like a Devil) and a Cruel Abhishek (Like a Demon). The stills inside the CD and the booklet also have Aishwarya with blood and bruises all over. In general, the best stills of movie get place in the cover of Audio Cassettes/CDs as they make the first impression of the movie before its release. But this is the first movie to have these kinda stills in the Audio cover. Mani always breaks the conventional rules. Still I remember the day I bought the Audio Cassette of Alaipayuthey on the day of its release (March 27th 2000). The stills (mostly from pachai Nirame song) are still fresh and evergreen.

Beera Beera :

This seems to be the introduction song of the protagonist Beera portraying his character as a rugged person.

“Beera ko dus maathe;

Beera ko sau naam;

Chedhe jo beera ko… dhama dham dham dham”.

Hosanna fame Vijay Prakash has crooned the song. This is a short yet fast paced song. We can easily picturise in our mind that the song takes place in a village. Native instruments are used that give the feel. I felt an interlude with a Chinese sound is like the pachai pandhalil oru latcham vennila from the song Jothi Neranjava from 12B. It’s similar and not same.

Behne De:

This is my pick of the Album. It sounds like Satrangire from Dil Se (Ennuyire from Uyire). Karthik has sung it extra-ordinarily. He’s simply terrific like Sonu was in Satrangire and better than Shrinivas in Ennuyire. The song travels different pitches low, high, again low, then very high. But Karthik has sung with ease with sincerity and excellent pronunciation. Have to write an individual post on this song. Lyrics by Gulzar is just great that describes the rustic love of Raavan. No wonder, this will be my caller tune in a couple of days.

Thok de Killi:

This is a fast paced number rendered by Sukhwinder Singh and chorus. He sings extremely energetic and so does in this song too. The interlude and the first stanza seems to be a journey song. The first interlude is like a ceremony arrangement with lyrics having ornaments like kaajal, nathi, jhumka, etc. The second interlude is typical ARR style like which is so similar to Rangeela Theme Music. The song ends with a much faster pace. The orchestration is too good. It would be liked within 2-3 listens.

Ranjha Ranjha:

This is the only duet song of the album crooned by Rekha Bharadwaj of Ghenda Phool fame and Javed Ali of Guzarish fame. I don’t know how the earthy voice of Rekha would suit Ash on screen. But her voice sounds a bit different from Ghenda Phool. This seems to the raunchy song that usually exists in almost all Mani Ratnam movies. First I thought it would be a duet between Vikram & Aishwarya, but Abhi-Ash’s picture is there in the Lyrics booklet. The song is credited to Sufi Poet Bulleh Shah for the first line Ranjha Ranjha kardi..

After listening to the full song, I was a bit confused for not hearing Anuradha Sriram’s voice which was mentioned in the cover. I again played the song and was shocked that she’s used only to sing a humming after the second Santoor interlude.  Yahi yahi ye ye ye ye… bit was hummed by Anuradha Sriram like Sonu Niigam was used only for the initial humming of Guzarish. It’s good to see that these great singers agree for this only for Rahman. But ARR too should make use of their gratitude.

.Kili Re Kile Re:

Wow, a pleasing melody that takes back to the earlier days of Rahman. Starting with a soft prelude, it has pleasant Hindustani Classical touch decorated with instruments like Sitar, Tabla, Flute and Santoor esp in the first interlude. The music is subtle and the lyrics is so clear.  Reena Bharadwaj has sung well. It describes the woman’s love for a man. I felt Shreya would have been so apt since Ash-Shreya combination is a great one. Devdas, Guru are great examples. Surprisingly, Shreya has sung this song in Tamil version. Good for that. She’s become more like a Tamil singer. Very eager to listen to the song in Tamil. As per the CD pictures, this song will have Vikram and Aishwarya on screen.

Kata Kata Bechara Bakra:

Yet another group song with prominent singers like Ila Arun, etc. Lot of instruments are used throughout the song and the arrangement is awesome. Credit goes to Ranjit Barot.  It’s so obvious it’s a marriage song yet a sarcastic one. Yes. the bridegroom is compared to an innocent goat (bechara bakra) which got killed for its meat. Gaya gaya ek aur bechara… (Another innocent is gone). So this might be Ram and Sita’s wedding song. Ila Arun’s unique voice suits the song like an old lady tells the bride about the in-laws and relatives. It reminded me Rahman’s other wedding songs like Yaaro yaarodi and Avalukkenna Amba samudhiram.

In a nut shell, the music is folkish and rustic like Raavan, that would give required feel to the movie. I hope the picturization would make the songs like more as Mani is a master in that. In fact, I didn’t like Yaaro Yaarodi from Alaipayuthe till I saw it in the movie with cute dialagoues in between. Later I started loving to watch it (esp Karthik vazhiyaadhe!!!) But at the same time, some songs may not picturized fully in Mani’s movies. I was so disappointed with Evano Oruvan Vaasikkiraan with lot of dialogues and only with one stanza, I didnt get the feel of the song like I listen to it. I wish all the songs to be picturized fully. I’m glad that Rahman has given a music which is so Indian.

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2010 in A.R.Rahman, Mani Ratnam, Music

 

Alaipayuthey – Trivias

The main plot of Alaipyuthey is “Secret Marriage”. If a couple gets married secretly and stays at their respective houses, ppl use to say they get married in Alaipayuthey style. But this is not the first movie to show this concept. Thoongadha Kannendru Onru portrayed this in the early 80s that was directed by R.Sundara Rajan with Mohan and Ambika as the lead pair.

Singer Vasundhara Das was first chosen by Mani Ratnam to play the role of Shakti. Thank God, it didn’t happen. Else I would haven’t been writing this post.

Shalini got married to Ajith after 10 days of Alaipayuthey’s release (On 24th Apr 2000). After 10 days of their marriage Kandukondain Kandukondain got released (4th May 2000).

Karthik Kumar says that he’s getting his M.D. at Princeton while in reality Princeton doesn’t have a Med School

Alaipayuthey bagged the Filmfare awards for the Best Music Director, Best Singer Male (Hariharan), Best Female Singer (Sadhana Sargam), Best Cinematographer (P.C.Sreeram), Best Editor (Sreekar Prasad), Best Debut Actor (Madhavan),

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2010 in Filmy Freak, Mani Ratnam

 

Wow, It’s been a Decade!!!

It’s been a Decade. Yes, one of my most favourite films Alaipayuthe was released 10 years back on a Tamil New Year Day (April 14th 2000). I never miss a Mani Ratnam Film. But this film is so special becos of the lead pair. Shalini has been my teengae crush since her debu in Kadhalukku Mariyadhai. Due to some reasons, I missed her Amarkkalam though I love the pair. Hence I didnt wanna miss her film that too with Mani Ratnam. When I saw Madhavan’s still in the Tamil weekly Ananda Vikatan much before its  release (I think in Nov 99) and liked him instantly for his charming looks. That time I didn’t know his debut screen name would be Karthik and we share the same Birth Date.

Yet another ultimate reason is A.R.Rahman. I was a die-hard Rahman fan in my school days (since I didnt listen to many of Ilayaraja’s songs). The audio of Alaipayuthe was released a month before. I still remember I couldn’t get ticket on the first day and watched it on the 2nd day 15th April 2000.

 
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Posted by on April 14, 2010 in A.R.Rahman

 

இனிய தமிழ் புத்தாண்டு நல்வாழ்த்துகள்

அனைவருக்கும் என் இதயம் கனிந்த விக்ருதி ஆண்டு வாழ்த்துகள்

 
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Posted by on April 14, 2010 in Celebrations, Chummaa

 

Paiyaa – Movie Review

2nd Apr 2010

Paiyaa – The latest movie of Lingusamy with smart Karthi and Cute Tamannah was released today after lot of release dates postponements. I watched the movie on the first day itself at Maayajaal 6 pm show.  The only reason that made me watch the movie on the 1st day is Yuvan Shankar Raja’s Music. The songs are already chart-busters. The next reason is the urban Karthi with his clothes on.

Plot:

Karthi plays the role of Siva, not Shiva (Thank God not Karthik !!) He is an ECE Engineer, hunting for a job in Bangalore with his friends who are in good jobs. They try to get a job for him and take him to an interview. He sees Tamannah in a bus and falls in love at first sight and searches for her. At the time of interview, he sees her again, goes behind her and loses both Tamannah and the job. He goes to pick  a friend from the Railway Station. Tamannah and a middle-aged man are there in the station. As she lost her train ticket, the man asks Karthi to drop them till Chennai. On seeing her he leaves his friend and helps them. Meanwhile he comes to know from her that the man is taking her to Chennai for getting her married to his step-mom’s brother in which she’s not interested. He leaves the man and take Tamannah alone to Mumbai where her grandma lives. She says her name as Charu and tells her story to him. The first half is their experience in the journey, how he overcomes the villains who chase Tamannah. Before interval another group chases Karthi. Is it Run-2?? It ends with Karthi thrashing all of them alone and taking her to Mumbai. The first half is pretty enjoyable with Karthi’s dialogues and expressions which don’t  need to give place for a comedian.

When the second half started with Karthi’s flashback, it’s like another Sandakozhi. When Karthi was in Mumbai for an interview he stays with Jagan who makes laugh for some time. He had a clash with Milind Soman and his brother and they started chasing Karthi. When they reach Mumbai, both the villain groups are waiting for them. Whether Shiva safeguarded Charu and handed over her to her grandma whether he and Tamanna escaped from respective chasing groups is the rest of the story. Yuvan’s music is the greatest asset of the movie. Next is Madhi’s cinematography and Anthony’s editing hand-in hand. The picturisation of the songs (esp suthudhe suthudhe bhoomi) and the chasing scenes are laudable. But I felt my favourite number “En Kaadhal solla…” would have come after he leaves Tamannah. But Yuvan has surprised with an additional bit song which is not in the Audio.

It’s good to see Karthi with nice costumes. But he’s still in his Paruthi Veeran/Aayirathil Oruvan hangover with stiff chest and rough dialogue delivery, voice modulation, thiruttu muzhi, etc. Tamannah is tailor-made for the role of a rich dad’s daughter. She has improved a lot from her early films but still this is not enough.  Jagan is good though he has a little screen space. I’m so pity of Milind Soman. At least Atul Kulkarni had to do something more in Run than Milind in Paiya. Why villains always have long hair and unshaven faces, roaming in Scorpios and Tata Sumos? The action sequences are two, three, four much. Karthi beware of gaining yet another action hero image. Karthi is very much lacking in romance unlike Surya. Come on Karthi, you are a Gemini and possess a romantic name (Is it because of the missing K at the end??)

Shravs of Happy Days played Karthi’s friend and she lost the charm of Shravs and doesn’t look good as Priya. Like K.Balachander’s movies Tamannah’s step-mom and Karthi’s father characters are not shown though their voices are heard. The scene where Karthi hums his brother’s “Oru Maalai Ilaveyil…” and sings his father’s “En Kanmani Ilamaangani…” is like a tribute to them. He could have sung “Ennai Konjam maatri..” which might be a situational journey song and would have been like a tribute to his Anni Jo too.

On the whole Paiya is an action-romance packed entertainer. It is not a must-watch but a one-time watch for time-pass but not at the cost of Rs.220/ at Maayajaal. In Tamil, “Indha paiyyan romba Nalla Paiyan illenaalum Ketta Paiyyan illa.

My Rating: 2.5/5