Bitty Ruminations 73

Every time we trot out the melody-is-dead argument, there comes a number that’s nothing but melody, effusive swirls of it, and seduces us into endless-loop listening. I love how Nandini Srikar sings this song, with its profusion of La and Zha words — she touches on them just enough, without turning into an didactic schoolmarm like Vani Jairam, whose singing in romantic songs I never could fully buy. There’s no prelude to this number — just a piano laying out some chords, like a tambura before a kutcheri tuning into a pitch. And afterwards, the song just spills out, no throat-clearing, no skirting the point, just a straightforward launch into an admission of desire.

PS: We need more voices like Nandini Srikar’s, the yang to a Shreya Ghoshal’s yin. Those outpourings of love sound just so much… sexier, though that spot vacated by Swarnalatha is still vacant.

PPS: In case you got the feeling I don’t like Vani Jairam, here’s a song where she shines. (Try not to see the video though.) Note how her voice melts around the line “pazhagum koottam vilagi poyi,” though that’s also a function of the exquisite tune, from an era when no one claimed that melody was dead.

14 thoughts on “Bitty Ruminations 73

  1. Beautiful – have no idea what the words mean, but unbelievably beautiful..Any more recommendations.


  2. The violin bit in Aaha Kadal reminds me of the violin interlude in Ragasiyamai. Nevertheless, its refreshing to hear a solo violin as the tune background…


  3. I like such posts. I don’t listen to many Tamil movie songs and so I am at a loss when trying to compile a list of melodious songs to listen to, in addition to, all the known Ilayaraja hits of seventies and eighties. Please ruminate some more and come up with more such song preferences. Thanks!


  4. Yuvan seems to have been inspired by the take-off notes of the charanam of MSV’s bharathi kannama (ninaithaale inikkum)along with his dad’s kootathile kovil pura/aaveshamantha aalapana songs for the scale.Not bad though. Nandini is the same person who sang africa kaatupuli in Aalavandhan for SEL and then vanished for over a decade
    But as a whole the MPMK soundtrack is underwhelming


  5. “There’s no prelude to this number — just a piano laying out some chords, like a tambura before a kutcheri tuning into a pitch. And afterwards, the song just spills out, no throat-clearing, no skirting the point, just a straightforward launch into an admission of desire.”

    I did notice this but i felt a bit of tuning and prepping would have worked for me better. Right now it’s getting straight into action.Also the opening line is not one or two words but a whole stream of words. May be i did not listen to any song in this format for a long time. Do you remember any song of late ? :)


  6. munimma: On YouTube, where else? Sometimes you just get lucky :-) Another beautiful MSV song I’ve been looking for on YouTube is “Yedho oru nadhiyil naan…” — but haven’t found it so far.


  7. I feel MPMK is an OK album altogether. The last three songs are the only ones worth listening to and even a couple of those give me a feeling of been-there, heard-that. The song you linked to is probably the only one that I am going to keep coming back to. But why the **** does YSR choose to sing. It’s horrible. Remember the feeling you get when nails are scraped across the blackboard, I feel worse when listening to him, especially in Unakkagave Uyir Vaalgiren… (notice the absence of Zha…). And I was as close to beating up my mobile phone with a sledgehammer as I’ve ever been when he started singing in English. Oh God… it’s so horrible. I wish I don’t have to go through that ever again.


  8. A stunner of a voice and it is one of the songs that replace Saara kaathu for me as a wake up song.

    Otherwise a beautiful song – The problem – or my useless rant about this song is its lyrics.

    Pengal Manam Oru Oønjal Illai…
    Unjal Thannal Asaivathu Illai

    Why would you bother about the oonjal when you have established pengal manam is not an oonjal.

    Nathiyil Vizhum Ilai Intha Kaathaala
    Karaiyai Thoda Ithanai Mothaala
    Vizhunthathu Naana Aezhunthidu Vaena?

    The one that falls = Ilai = Kaadhal and she later sings Vizhundhadhu Naana? I am not too sure if equating herself to the feel of love is right.

    May be i am not getting this completely. I think some one else also pointed these out on twitter also ..

    May be this is like your holding a bunch of pencils question to Mani R.


  9. Thanks for this song, The thing abouth this song is that she takes and owns it in a very Jazz vocal kind of a way, so the melody is not a “raga” derived (ninnai charan adainten) or a “briga”derived one( pon maalai pozzuthu), but almost completely a “bhaava” derived one, with wild abandon at that.

    Reminds me of Nina simone’s songs.. (globalization, annachi , what to do?)


  10. I loved ‘Aahaa Kaadal’… wouldn’t have heard it had I not come across this article…would be great to know your thoughts on this song called ‘Kanave Kanave’ from David nd it’s hindi version ‘yun hi re’


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