Recent inspired songs

Recently I came across two songs heavily inspired from other songs.

1. "Silu Silukkum Silmishi" from "Chennai Kadhal" very much reminds me of "Alai Alai" from "Boys". Though it is not the same tune, the phrase looks similar to "Egiri Kudithen". The rhythm pattern, sounds used and the tune in the interlude also looks similar. Don't know why an upcoming music director who had shown promise in the film "Kadhal" should do it this way.

2. “Orugalluke Pilla Pilla” from the Telugu film "Sainikudu" sounds very much like "Chaiyya Chaiyya" from "Dil Se". The feel, the voices, the rhythm patterns, all sound similar to the one from Dil Se / Uyire. I can even imagine the producer / director requesting Harris Jayaraj to create a song similar to "Chaiyya Chaiyya". OK, this is my assumption, but I think that is the way it works in film industry. But this song along with other songs in the album has become a huge hit. So who do you think can be credited with the success of this song?

Copying songs can broadly be classified into two types - intentional and unintentional.

When you intentionally copy and compose songs similar to the original, then it is intentional copying.

Sometimes, one will compose a simple tune, but it would have already been composed in the past. And in some cases, the new composer would not have heard of the original itself. Or it would have been in his subconscious mind and would have come out as a new tune. As the number of songs composed keeps growing over the years, the number of simple and unique tunes not yet composed automatically decreases. So there is a greater chance of unintentional repetition. The first line of the song "Collegukku povom" from "Kovil" resembles "Kamban enna aanan" from "Jathi Malli" I think. The first line is plain simple and I believe this is a case of unintentional similarity.

Let me know your views.

Thaiyyaththa from Thiruttu Payale

One of the recent songs that I like very much is the Thaiyyaththa song from Thiruttu Payale. This is a nice melodious song in Raag Charukesi. Even though Charukesi evokes pathos feeling generally, this song is not a sad song. Nice melody. The Thavil beats are also nice.

I never get bored listening to this song. This song is on my list of all time Bharadwaj favorites which also include "Enakkenna Erkkanave" song from Paarthen Rasithen.

One nice thing about Bharadwaj is the clarity with which he records the acoustic instruments. For example, I don't like the Thozha Thozha song from Pandavar bhoomi. But when I heard the song in my friend's car, I could appreciate the clarity with which the stringed instruments (banjo / mandolin?) in that song were recorded. Same case for the Parthen Rasithen song. In the Thiruttu Payale song too, there is a very brief guitar piece and I was amazed by the clarity.

Do you like this song?

Angel Vandhale

This song is from the Tamil film, Badri. Music is by Ramana Gokula. I am blogging about this song because I noticed an interesting aspect in the charanams (or is it saranams?). The first charanam is sung by the lead character which is played by Vijay. It has a kind of western feel to it. While the second charanam has a light classical feel. This one is portrayed on one of the heroines, Bhoomika. But if you listen carefully, the tune of both the charanams, though seems different, is very similar. Hence I have overlapped the 2 charanams so that you can appreciate the composition. Listen to my mix below by clicking on the Play button.

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Yesterday I was listening to this "Suppose unnai" song from Sukran. It is a peppy song based on the Hamsadhwani scale. And it set me thinking why this scale is not used in many film songs. Hamsadhwani/Hansadhwani is a janya of Shankarabharanam.

Arohanam: S R2 G3 P N3 S
Avarohanam: S N3 P G3 R2 S

It is a very sweet and pleasant raga. Most of you would have heard of the famous "vathapi ganapathim baje" song set in this raga. However, this is not used much in film songs. I first heard about this raga from my mother while hearing the song "Let me see the love" from "Colonial Cousins" debut album. Film songs in recent times set in this scale are listed below. You may add more to the list.
  1. En manadhai kollai - Kalluri Vaasal
  2. Thee kurivi - Kangalal Keidhu Sei
  3. Vellai pookal - Kannathil Muttham Ittal
  4. Suppose unnai - Sukran
  5. Sriranga ranga - Mahanadhi (interludes and charanam)
  6. Thirakkadha poovukulley - En Swasa Kaatre (starting portions of charanam alone)
  7. Enna paatu - Oru naal oru kanavu
I could only list a handful. The chords for this raga are also very light-music friendly. Chords like C Major, G Major alone are sufficient for this scale. E minor chord can be used at times. Still not many songs are set in this scale. Other ragas like Mohanam are used more than this. Any thoughts?

Airtel Super Singer

Most of you would be knowing about the Airtel Super Singer Contest, the search for the best voice in Tamil Nadu. If not read about it at:

You can either record your voice on cassette / CD and send it to them. Or just dial them up on Airtel and sing the song of your choice. If you are selected, you need to go to the auditions I believe. The winner of the finals would get a chance to sing for Harris Jayaraj. If you are a decent singer (I am ruled out), you should try this oppurtunity. You would atleast know where you stand. I think the contest closes on March 30. Watch Vijay TV for more info.

Good Luck !

Mozart Meets India

Coming June, there would be a performance of the first ever Indian orchestral symphony music in chennai, combining both western and indian classical music, without compromising on any of the music forms.

More info of "Mozart Meets India" at:

This is something Ilaiyaraaja does so well, especially in albums like How to Name It, Nothing But Wind and Thiruvasagam in Symphony. But this has nothing to do with Ilaiyaraaja though. I am looking forward to attending it.

Unnai Kandane Muthal Murai Naan

For the past 1 week, I keep listening to this song frequently on Radio. It is a song from Parijatham - "Unnai Kandane". It is a beautiful soft song. This is the Bhagyaraj's film in which her daughter is acting. Music is by someone called Dharan. I haven't heard of him before, but has done a great job in this song. This song seems to be set in minor scale. Lots of harmonies are added in the female portions and that elevates the song. It has been sung by Haricharan (Remember Thottu Thottu Ennai?) and Shruthi. I don't which shruthi is this, but at first the voice seemed like Bhavatharini. Don't forget to listen to that song in the link above and post your comments on the song.

Master Siddharth, Young Drummer

Master Siddharth Nagarajan is India's Youngest drummer. They have launched his official website recently -

I saw him on TV performing for a charity show at Hyderabad along with Kamal Hassan and Jayaram. He was awesome with the drums. Kamal and Jayaram were singing some jathis and Siddharth was answering them on the drums. What I liked is, he was thoroughly enjoying himself while playing and that is very good to watch. I wish him good luck in his career.

There is some performance of his on Feb 16th (tomorrow) at Anna University, Chennai. I would like to go, let me see.

Trills in the prelude of IR songs

Listen to the opening few seconds of the following songs and identify the similarity.
  1. Etho Moham from Kozhi Koovudhu
  2. Nalam Vazha from Marupadiyum
  3. Etho Onnu from Solla Marantha Kathai
You can listen to the song prelude bits below:

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The similarity is they all start with a very rapid alternation between 2 adjacent notes of a scale. I learnt from my colleague, Godwin, that this is called a 'Trill'.

The first song, Etho Moham, is a very beautiful song. You can read a more detailed review by RJAY of the Edho Moham song at Heard that our Maestro wanted to meet French maestro Paul Mauriat, and took this song in a cassette to him as a sample. Upon listening to this song, the French composer immediately wanted to meet our Maestro, who was waiting outside.

Coming back to the prelude of the 1st song, there seems to be 3 string sections, all of them playing trills in different intervals. Then the strings sections takes of and the flute follows the melody.

In the second song, Nalam Vazha, some wind instrument like flute seems to be playing the trill, backed by strings filling. There is also some bass walkthrough during this piece. Is it pizzicato strings? I am not sure. After the very short trill, the guitar piece starts.

The Trill in the third song, Edho Onnu, is my favorite of the three. Here the strings section plays the same trill repeatedly. After the first 2 bars, there is a short sweet melody on strings overlapping the trill. After the piece, the song immediately starts. At first hearing, the song seems to start abruptly after the trill, but after listening properly and repeatedly, I am able to understand the timing. I don't think I listened to the strings overlap when seeing the song on TV. So use a proper headphone while listening to the above pieces.

Do you know of any other similar song employing this technique?

Identifying the timing / thalam of songs

Identifying the timing (thalam) of a song is always very interesting, especially songs with a bit complex rhythm. I remember arguing with my colleagues that "Roja poo aadi vandhadhu" song from Agni Natchathiram is in 3/4 or some multiples of it, where as they were arguing that it was in 4/4. You can actually count 1-2-3-4 with that song and it will actually fit into the song rhythm. Only after a few days, did we conclude that the song was in 6/8 (tha ki ta ; tha thi mi). Other similar songs in 6/8 include Iravu nilavu (Anjali), Vegam Vegam (Anjali), Kaalam Kaalamaga vandha (Punnagai Mannan), Theme Music (Punnagai Mannan), Vaan Megam (Punnagai Mannan), Oh Oho Megam vandhadho (Mouna Raagam), Aathadi Ammadi (Idhayathai Thirudathe), etc. Interestingly IR has composed the last 3 songs, which are actually rain songs, in similar rhythm. Infact 6/8 rhythm generally conveys / brings in a jolly mood. I also heard that IR has composed many of his songs in 6/8, while ARR uses 4/4 by default. But I guess a composer will not generally start composing by saying, let me do it in 6/8 or 4/4 or whatever. It comes natutally to them when they start composing. It would also depend on the environment and culture in which they were brought up I believe. IR would have probably heard a lot of folk songs in his childhood, and hence 6/8 might be natural to him.

OK, now try identifying the thalam / timing of the song "Malarae Malarae" from the film, Power of Women and post it in the comments. The rhythm pattern is not a normal one for this timing and hence might be a bit confusing. It is a good song by Vidyasagar with a strong kaapi flavour, and sung by Hariharan (he is the lead artist too in the film).

Ding Dong Kovil Mani

Have you heard "Ding Dong Kovil Mani" song from "Ji"? It is a beautiful composition by Vidyasagar. In this song, almost all the instruments seem to have a longer sustain, giving a sort of eerie effect. In the charanam an extra percussion layer of Dhols is added over the western drums giving a nice sound. This beat is similar to "Kurukku Siruthavalae" from Muthalvan.

Interestingly, this is set in a not-so-common rasikapriya raaga, which is the 72nd melakartha ragam, which is why I thought of blogging this. Arohanam is S R3 G3 M2 P D3 N3 S and avaraohanam is S N3 D3 P M2 G3 R3 S. Any other songs in this scale?