Mar 17, 2006

Bharathi - Anyone better?

During my last trip to Chennai, I got to see a pack of cassettes in a CD shop. A collection of my most favourite tamil poet Bharathiyar songs. I was so excited that I bought the pack immediately. Last evening, I played one of those cassettes. The first song was "Theeraada Vilaiyattu Pillai" sung by D.K. Pattammal. What a powerful voice she has ! This song reminded me of my childhood when I used to sing this song in all the music competitions. When I was a baby, my grandmother used to sing this song to put me into sleep. After many years, while I listened to this song yesterday, it gave me a lot of happiness.

Bharathi was the one who brought new dimension to Tamil poetry called "Pudhu Kavidhai". His verses are very simple and captivating and most importantly, are not time-bound. "Oodi Vilaiyadu Paapaa" is applicable to every child in this world, even today. His romantic poems based on his wife Kannamma are lovely, the most recent one composed by Rahman "Suttum Vizhi Chudar dhaan kannamma" in "Kandukonden...". Rahman has used minimal instruments so that Bharathi's lyrics stand out.

Most of his poems are centred around three themes - freedom struggle, Lord Krishna and his wife Kannamma. Another interesting thing about his poems are that different raagas have been used by different singers for many decades. I have heard atleast three different versions of "Kaakai Chiraginile".

Although I have heard many of his songs, I plan to read his entire collection. Thanks to my dad who got "Bharathiyar Kavidhaigal" book as a prize when he won a speech competition in his school, I have the copy with me.

Bharathi is definitely an inspiration to amateur kavingni like me....

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