34: Song of the Day: Amman Koil Vaasalile

17 Apr

Song: Amman Koil Vaasalile

Composer: Deva

Singers: SPB, Chitra

Lyrics: Kalidasan

Movie: Thaai Maaman


Composer Deva has given some fantastic melodies in many movies and this song is a melodious and soothing number. The ever dependable pair of SPB/Chitra sing the song with the right emotions considering the romantic situation and even the lyrics are pretty creative. Deva uses the strings section and flute to great effect and you can say in a positive way that Raja has inspired these composers to have such grand orchestration. This is one song from Deva which should be missed!






33: Song of the Day: Yaarodum

10 Apr

Song: Yaarodum

Composer: Ramesh Vinayagam

Singers: Haricharan

Lyrics: Yugabharathi

Movie: Sollakadhai

Sollakadhai is a movie which was never released and the songs vanished into oblivion. In many cases, the songs of such movies by talented composers would be good and this movie is no exception. Almost each song in this album is pretty good but this particular song is the clear winner with a mellow feel. Ramesh & Chinmayi have sung it and they ace it completely with good modulation. The tune in the charanam especially in the part where Ramesh sings “Kaigal thodumpodhu kuliradhu pani marghazhi” is the highlight of the song. We can always expect at least one brilliant song from Ramesh Vinayagam and he vindicates our belief here.

32: Song of the Day: Kadhal Oru

2 Apr

Song: Kadhal Oru

Composer: Girishh Gopalakrishnan

Lyrics: Na.Muthukumar

Singers: Haricharan

Movie: Marina

Girishh made his debut with this movie Marina, he has learnt Carnatic music from Lalgudi Jayaraman and has also learnt Western Classical music. This song set in Madhyamavathy raga is a beautiful fusion piece with a profusion of strings and guitar. One of the highlights is the usage of Cellos and Girishh uses it like a major instrument played like a violin. The whole soundscape is very different and refreshing. Even the other songs in the album are pretty good but this is the best one.

31: Song of the Day: Naram Pookal

31 Jan

Song: Naram Pookal

Composer: Ranjit Barot


Singers: Hariharan, Nandini Srikar

Movie: Urchagam

Ranjit Barot is a famous drummer and works with fusion musicians and has also arranged music for some composers in Bollywood. He has composed in Bollywood and only for 2 movies in Tamil, one being this one and other being VIP. He is a niche composer and has given some good songs in all languages. This song is a beautiful song , it begins with a Hindustani-styled alaap and Shehnai which is played very differently and sounds grand (usually Shehnai pieces sound sad with exceptions like Humma from Bombay). The overall tune structure is really good and in the paragraphs the singers kind of extend the lines at the end which gives a different feel. The background percussion in the song is again very good and it’s played off-beat, its expected that the percssuion will be special in the song as Ranjit is a drummer. Overall, this is a song worth hearing many times for the fabulous tune and some great singing by Hariharan & Nandini.

30: Song of the Day: Ikkudhae

11 Jan

Song: Ikkudhae

Composer: Joshua Sridhar

Lyrics: R.Parthiban

Singers: Hariharan, Shreya Ghoshal

Joshua Sridhar belongs to the underrated composer club. I am not saying he is a legend but he has enough talent to warrant more chances. His style of orchestration is like the ARR of yore and he has refined it well over the years. He composes for 1-2 films a year and manages to give at least one excellent melody song. This is one of those songs from a movie which vanished faster than it arrived. It is based on the Kedharam/Neelambari scale, so it is brimming with melody and Joshua manages to create a fantastic song with some excellent orchestration, an all-round song worthy of repeat even after many years. Just like his other melody songs, the flute usage here is outstanding (Naveen I guess) and he uses a strings section and Veena too. Finally, the singing by Hariharan and Shreya exceeds expectations, I just love the way Hariharan joins the song in the first paragraph, it’s like a hero introduction! Listen to this and be in bliss…..

29: Song of the Day: Thavamindri Kidaitha

4 Jan

Song: Thavamindri Kidaitha

Composer: Vidyasagar

Lyrics: Thaamarai

Singer: Hariharan, Sadhna Sargam

The raga Dharmavathi is a poignant one which gives the flavour of pangs of separation and longing and it has been used by many composers to good effect. Vidyasagar has composed a wonderful song in this raga and strangely there are 2 version of this song, the only difference being the longer version has a longer prelude of a wonderful solo violin piece in the same raga (link below). Another highlight of the song is the first Veena interlude (could be Rajhesh Vaidya) which just gives a beautiful crash course on the raga. The second interlude has a silent flute piece followed by a keyboard strings piece. This is an easy song for the two veteran singers and they are as good as ever. Another feather in the cap of “Melody King” Vidyasagar.


Songs in the Competition Genre

3 Jan

It’s quite challenging for directors to come up with creative situations for their songs. It’s even more challenging when you have to explain situations to super-talented composers like Raja, because only when you challenge them will you get something special! The “Competition genre” is basically a situation where the actors in the song compete and are trying go one up on each other. This gives scope for innovation in the music and it also makes the lyricists work harder. Let’s look at some songs in these situations, this is just an indicative list and by no means exhaustive.

  • Ennama Kannu: This is like a slient conflict between Rajini and Sathyaraj in the movie Mr.Bharath and Raja cooks up a beautiful Sindhubhairavi tune (wonderful innovation indeed) and the lyrics by Kavinger Vaali are brilliant. SPB and Malaysia Vasudevan also up the ante through their spirited singing.
  • Mannar Mannane: A majestic song and oozing gambheeram in every note. The orchestration is amazing with some powerful lyrics. SPB and Janaki seem to be enjoying here and Raja uses a rare raga Kalasaveri here to great effect.
  • Minsara Kanna: ARR comes up with a beautiful song in a melodious and intense raga Vasantha and this is probably one of his best songs. Nithyashree starts the song with all gusto and in the second paragraph Srinivas takes over in a more mellow manner but his singing is excellent. The orchestration and the way it ends on an explosive fashion makes us visualize the whole scene.