Research on MSV's music
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Sriram Lakshman writes:
Pongum Kadalosai (from Meenava Nanban):
Sung by Vani Jayaram, Music by M.S.V.
The song arrives with a bang with VJ's high-pitched 'pongum kadalOsai..' with xylophones, triple congos and mirudangam taking over and undulating into majestic calmness at 'pongum thamizhOsai'.... as if making a point...softly, strongly spoken. The song must have been tuned to pre-written lyrics. Richness of melody with great orchestral embellishments usher in images of the silhouette a woman dreamily paddling away. The tune has all that one expects from MSV, savoury variations in line with the lyrics and a tasty charanam 'hand-shake' with the pallavi. Very aptly conjured up harmony in the rhythm section especially in the charanams, when the song starts veering towards the end of the charanam is yet another display of sense of placement,etiquette, aesthetics and whatever... Precise sense of sound, rhythm, usage of instruments decorate this great tune and the result is a package of musical delight from the master song 'planner'.
Following are Ramki's Analysis:
Muthukkulikka Vareehalaa (from Anubhavi Raja Anubhavi):
An unimaginable tune by Mellisai Mannar. The flute melody, the piano accordion interlude and the drum beat background at the end of the song brings out the outstanding skill of the Music Director in blending different styles of music in the same song. It is a wonder how such a tune strikes a music director - no explanation - it God’s gift. As Kavinger Vaali always says : Viswanathanin viralkalil Saraswathi Devi nardhanam adukiraal TMS/LREswari’s voice blends so beautifully in the song. From the movie ‘Anubhavi Raja Anubhavi’
Ennadi Raakkamma (from Pattikkadaa Pattanama):
A southern folk ( themmangu) with a class touch from MSV, as usual. A friend of mine once marveled at this song for being brilliantly set in the rare and unlikely raga ‘Peelu’, normally not used for themmangu except in Hindustani. Film : Pattikkadaa Pattanama. Lyrics : Kannadasan
Unnai Ondru Ketpen (from Pudhiya Paravai):
An amazing composition of Viswanathan Ramamurthy. From the film ‘Pudhiya Paravai’. Sivaji’s stylish act, Sarojadevi’s dance, Kannadasan’s lyrics and with MSV’s musical weave, the song will live for generations. Close to Raaga ‘Harikambothi’. ARRehman has told in an interview that this is most favourite song. And why - Ours too !
Kaalangalil Aval vasantham (from Paava Mannippu):
I would say paadalkalil idhu vasantham. This song gave aarohanam in career to PBSrinivas. And MSV gave this break to PBS. Look at the presentation in the line - Kaatrinile aval thendral…. Only MSV can give such presentation. A song from ‘Paava Mannippu’
Nilave ennidam Nerungathe (from Ramu):
All time great song of MSV-PBS-Kannadasan trio. Based on raga Bhageswari. PBS in very recent interview with us mentioned this is his most favourite song and he has told he could sing only 10% of how MSV had asked to sing ! Guess if it is 100% ? You know SPB sang this song to MSV for voice test to get entry into film industry ?
I have to tell a small incidence about the song : In my 25th Wedding Anniversary about two years back, where we were graced by MSVs presence, I was asked to sing a song. With my very great affinity to this ‘Nilavey ennidam’, I started singing this song, forgetting that it was a day of celebration and the song is pathos. MSV was uneasy and at the end he promptly pointed out this song was not meant for such a joyful occasion like that and directed all of us to sing ‘Nallthoru kudumbam’. What a caring soul MSV is ! I salute you, sir, for your affection.
Malligai En mannan mayngum (from Dheerga Sumangali):
I think it is Vanijayaram’s first song in Tamil film. MSV’s melody would be so filling in this. Many a carnatic musicians, I heard, tried to find out the raga of this song but failed but all were amazed by the ringing melody. A friend of mine Sriram Laxman, who too is ardent fan of MSV - Tried to come to a conclusion that this is based on prominently the raaga Abheri/Bhimplas but touches all notes of Karaharapriya and more. Listen to the flute interludes, accompanied by violin and the pleasant drum beats at the end of Charanams. From the film ‘Dheerga Sumangali’ Lyrics Kannadasan.
Pullanguzhal kodutha moongilkale (from Album - Krishnagaanam):
A song from Kannadasan-Viswanathan’s ‘Krishnagaanam’ - an album which broke all records in Devotional songs category, when it was released.
A song which MSV makes it a point to sing himself in every of his stage performances, as per the wishes of his companion Kannadasan.
Thangaradam vandathu veedhiyile (from Kalaikkovil):
A mesmerizing song of MSV from his own film ‘Kalaikkovil’ as was sung by Dr Balamuralikrishna
Sridhar was the director of the film. MSV used to mention that the release of the film was wrongly timed -released just after a box-office hit film of again Sridhar ‘Kadalikka Neramillai’ , where all songs of MSV were super hits. And therefore it did not go well. In spite of the film not being a success the songs still stand which of course a rarity these days. Now listen to the ‘Thangaratham vandathu ‘ which is purely based on the raga ‘Abogi’.
Adhisaya raagam (from Abhoorva Ragangal):
This number is from K Balachander’s ‘Aboorva Ragangal’. You will definitely recall the wonderful acting of Srividya who passed away recently. MSV wanted to make this song in a different raga and consulted Balamuralikrishna to suggest. Balamuralikrishna suggested to make the song in ‘ Magathi’ raga. The first two charanams are in Magati and the last in ‘Bhairavi’. The situation, lyrics, tune and the presentation by Jesudos were are just wonderful and this song became big hit taking Jesudos to greater heights.
Sonnathu nee thaana (from Nenjil Oru Aalayam):
A breath-taking melody from ‘Nenjil oor aalayam’ of Director Sridhar. Released in the year 1961. There is a story behind birth of this song. When everybody including MSV were waiting to start the composition, Kannadasan did not turn and after a long wait, MSV in a dejection had casually commented ‘ Kavinger Enga kudichittu kidakkaro’. Someone told Kavinger about this and obviously Kannadasan got so upset, took the pen and started the lyric as ‘ Sonnadu nee thanan sol sol en uyire'. Words from the bottom of heart and that bossomed as a great song and the beauty is the lyrics fully gelled with the songs situation !! Listen to the Sithar, Shenoy interludes with PSusheela’s sweet voice bringing before your eyes the scene of the film! Even after 5 decades, this song still rules all TV channels.
And this sort of creations - only MSV can do and none else!!!