Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Legendary 'Sweet-Voiced' Siblings

It is a pretty rare sight to witness in the music industry where two musicians coming from the same family are equally talented. Moreover, being sisters and challenging each other they have climbed up the ladder of music, especially in the Bollywood industry. Well if you were thinking about our very own Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhonsle, yes you are right. The talented sisters started singing at a tender age and ofcourse one landed up being the 'Melody queen' and the other the 'Nightingale of India'. With our exclusive playlist, we give a glimpse of both the lilting voices in sync resulting in the best songs ever composed. The stalwarts who have sung over 75 duets together initially started off 'Yeh rookhi rookhi hawayein' from Daaman . But it was 'Manbhavan ke ghar' in 1955 under Shankar Jaikishen that made them known in the circles. 'Ye barkha bahar' from the film Mayurpankh was yet another famous number.
It was during the 1950's to 1960's that the sisters echoed throughout in the Bollywood industry, lending their voices for all the popular heroines belonging to that era. Musical legend C.Ramchandra is the reason behind their wonderful 'O Chaand Jahan Woh Jaaye' in Sharda. One song with a classical touch, 'Sakhi Ri Sun Bole Papiha Us Paar' from Miss Mary also  holds its own accolades until today. Few other popular songs from the 'sweet-voiced' ladies include 'Man Bhawan ke ghar jaye gori' from the movie Chori Chori , 'Aji chale aao' which appears in Halaku .

Movies like Mere Mehboob and Jaanwar saw 'Jan e man ek nazar dekh le'  and 'Aankhon ankhon mein' respectively, which are also classic hit songs from the duo. 'Pad gaye jhoole' in the movie Bahu Begum stands irreplaceable until today. Such is the use of musical notes in the song.

It is sad to note that their duets ended with  'Aaina hai mera chehera' in 1983 with Suresh Wadkar in Aaina. It was this year that Asha Bhonsle also received a 'Lifetime Achievement' Award from her own sister. What a moment of pride for the sisters. It is an understatement to say that the Indian Music Industry is blessed with the best duo.

In the 'Rains'

'Mazhai' - The word by itself brings in a positive emotion. A feeling of happiness for many. Don't we all love to get wet in the rain? An important element to set the mood for a song, the 'rain setting' is loved by many and is usually preferred to depict the emotion of love. In particular, many Kollywood lyricists have used the term 'Mazhai'. A sneak peek into the best songs of the Kollywood industry with the term 'Mazhai' in it.

'Mazhaivarudhu Mazhaivaradu kudai kondu vaa' from Raja Kaiya Vecha  sung by Yesudas sends in vibes of romance in air. Similarly one can say the recent 'Manasellam Mazhaiye' from Saguni in Sonu Nigam's voice captured the hearts of many alongside 'Mazhaiye Mazhaiye veedil' from Eeram. A favourite A.R.Rahman composition for every fan is ofcourse 'En mel vizhunda mazhai thuliye' from May Madham which echoed in Jayachandran and Chitra's voices. Until today it remains one of the top songs requested by people all over the South on radio and television.

'Vaan Megam' from the movie Punnagai Mannan in Chithra's lilting tone makes any listener sway like innocent Revathi pictured in the song. Another wonderful track by the same singer which sets our foot tapping is 'Nee Varumbodu Naan Nanaivena' from Mazhai.

Coming to duets in the recent era, 'Ennai Konja koja vaa mazhaiye' from the movie Aadhi  in Hariharan and Sujatha's voice definitely conquered the hearts of those in 'love'.  On the other hand, 'Adada adada ada mazhai da' from Paiyya is a good listen for lovers looking some dancing too. A song with a dash of variety in voices, with a jovial nature and not fully romantic in its nature of the tone is 'Alan Kati Mazhai' from the movie Tenali.

The movie June R became popular especially for this number. Well yes, 'Mazhaiye Mazhaiye' by Hariharan which made it to the top charts too. A popular, hummable song which is even loved by kids is ofcourse 'Chinna Chinna mazhaithuligal' from En swasa Kaatre which is upbeat and definitely sets the tempo for everyone to enjoy the rains.

Thus, an important word used in many songs in Kollywood, 'Mazhai' as we all know is beautiful by itself and ofcourse its usage does not fail to add beauty to any song.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Assuming Dual Roles - Carnatic Musician and Playback Singer

It is not a new scenario where we see carnatic musicians making it big in the playback industry too. We take a quick look at three female gems of Carnatic music  that have emerged out to be the best of both genres in the recent era.

Who can forget Nithyashree's famous 'Kannodu Kaanbadhellam' from the movie Jeans. Nithyashree's bold voice was loved by many. Her versatility infact caught many music lovers' attention with her  'Sowkiyama Kanne' from the movie Sangamam and 'Poova Poova' from Poovellam Kettupaar. Her other hits include 'Oru Nadhi Oru Pournami' from the movie Samurai, 'Vanthaen Vanthaen' from Panchathanthiram. One could boldly say that 'Minsara Poove' from Padayappa could have not reached the top charts if not for Nithyashree's voice in the song with apt 'niravals' in the song.

Moving on, another such miraculous find who has made it big in playback singing would be Bombay Jayashree. Her 'Narumugaye' from Iruvar definitely marked her entry in Kollywood. The song which needs no introduction 'Vaseegara' from Minnale can be termed as her landmark song in her career path. Duets like 'Mudhal Kanave' from Majnu , 'Suttum Vizhi' from Ghajini and 'Chellame Chella' from Sathyam stand proof for bringing out best, the emotion of love, through her rendition. Ofcourse Jayashree's 'Malargale' from Pudhukottailirundhu Saravanan is an all time favourite for a light listen.

Sudha Raghunathan who has sung  many numbers like 'Kadhal Periyadha' from Sattham Podathey, 'Abinayam Katugindra' from  UliyinOsai but it was indeed 'Annul Malae' from Vaaranam Aariram.that created a sensation and was loved by many. 'Yeno Yeno Panithuli' from Aadhavan is Sudha's another hit number. Although, both the genres completely different in nature, these singers, with a zeal that they carry have carved a niche for themselves and ofcourse it is needless to say, these strongly trained carnatic musicians are a boon for the Tamil Music Industry.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Multitasker - Dhanush

Dhanush is one of the few successful actors in the Tamil Film Industry who donned the hat of a singer with his 'Naatu Sarakku' in the movie Pudhukottaiyilirindhu Saravanan which made it to the top charts.

The music director, Yuvan Shankar Raja impressed with Dhanush's performance roped him in for 'Enga Area' , a song from 'Pudhupettai' which emerged as a hot favourite among the youth. With 'Why this Kolaveri Di' from the movie 3, turning to be a rage in the digital media, the song which grabbed the eyes of the international media, another facet of the talented singer came out as well, the lyricist in him. The man who penned down the lyrics for this hit song is the voice behind many hit songs too.

Dhanush has lent his voice along with established playback singer like Karthik for 'Kalangathale' from the movie Venghai. He also sang with one of the most  well known female singer in the industry, Anuradha Sriram for Devadhaiye Kanden, track titled 'Thunda Kaanom'. Another feather on his cap would be his rendition with one of the greatest singers of all times, Hariharan,'Saravana Samayal' for the movie Seedan
Mayakkam Enna which emerged as a perfect break for the movie made his track 'Kaadhal YennKadhal' and ' Voda Voda' popular amongst the young blood.  By singing 'love failure' songs, Dhanush did not fail to popularize 'soup boys' as well. The actor who has a good rapport with his brother, director Selvaraghavan is the voice behind 'Un mela Aasadhan' from the movie Aayarathil Oruvan.

Dhanush has written lyrics for the latest flick in town , Irandaam Ulagam as well, another directional venture of his brother Selvaraghavan.

As an actor too, Dhanush has had a brilliant 2013 , with Maryaan and Naiyandi releasing in the Tamil film industry. One more thing to keep in mind about the multi taskeris that he is one of the very few Tamil entertainers welcomed by Bollywood. Kudos to the talented actor, musician, lyricist, scriptwriter.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Kollywood welcomes Malayalam heroines

It has always been a migration season where the best Malayalam actresses have made it big in Kollywood.For instance, the ravishing Shobana who made it big with her appearance in Thalapathy is sought after even now. Not to be forgotten is Nadhiya's long stint with Kollywood and her mega hits like Paadu Nilave , Poove Poochudava. In fact, Nadhiya was well appreciated for her comeback role in M.Kumaran S/O Mahalakshmi which released in 2004.

The scuttle from Malayalam cinema to Tamil opens avenues to ponder why there is more scope in the Kollywood industry. Is it that the Kollywood industry gives more opportunities for the new talents? Is there a dearth of Tamil- speaking actresses?

A classic example of a Malyalam heroine who had the best Kollywood breakthrough is Asin Thottumkal who rose to stardom in the early 2000's. Her role in Ghajini conquered so many hearts that she was warmly welcomed by the Bollywood industry for the same role!

Not to forget one such heroine is the ever-cherubic Shalini, who gave her debut in the Malayalam industry at a tender age of 4. The actress gave many hits like Kadhallukku Mariyadhai, Piriyadha Varam Vendum etc. Infact, she was picked by Mani Ratnam for Alaipayuthey, a perfect fit for the role which no one else could have done better.

The trend does not stop with that. Nayanthara, another star tracing her origin to the Malayalam industry is still admired by many for her on-screen presence. Her role in movies like Boss engira Baskaran and Yaaradi Nee Mohini captured the eyes of many directors. Her recent performance in Raja Rani saw her in a very mature character which she yet again aced. The movie also witnessed Nazriya, the recent heart-throb in Kollywood who is yet again a diva of the Malayalam industry. Nazriya has bagged many offers in the Kollywood industry. Her role in Nayyandi against Dhanush was widely talked about. Other such stars include Oviya , Bhavana, Gopika who were a part of mega hits like  Kalavani, Asal, Autograph respectively. Newbies like Rima Kalingal (Yuvan Yuvathi), Meera Nandan (Ayyanar) have been recently welcomed by the Kollywood industry and are shooting for various projects in the Tamil movie industry. And thus, the success stories of Malayalee actresses in Tamil industry continues for many decades now.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Adnan Sami - The Man Par Excellence

Did the album 'Tera Chehra' released in 2002 appeal to you? Here is more about the man behind the album - Adnan Sami.

A prodigy in music, his tender fingers could play the piano like a professional when he was just 7. For those who didn't know, Adnan Sami is the fastest keyboard player in the world.

The man who always loved reinventing, gave a new approach to classical music. His 'Live in Karachi' along with Zakir Hussain made him known in the circles. Moving further, Adnan being a very talented pianist, singer, composer took is musical journey to new levels leaving no stone unturned in the plethora that 'Music' offers.  His stints with stalwarts like Asha Bhonsle laid his stepping stones in the Bollywood industry.

His "Bheegi Bheegi Raaton Mein", a song from the album 'Always Yours' captured many music-listening ears and turned out to be the best humming tune for 'those just out of love'. 'Kabhi Nahin' from the same album stole the limelight with Big B making an entry in the album too. Moreover, the album became a big hit as Sami had roped in the best Bollywood heroines for each of the song ranging from Rani Mukherjee to Mahima Chaudhry to Raveena Tandon.

The Musician went on to work on many albums after the hit in 2002. "Kabhi to Nazar Aao" and "Teri Kasam" were released in 2003 and 2004 respectively. This year, Adnan Sami in fact released an album titled 'Press Play' with over 11 tracks.

Although a very disastrous personal life (marriage failure), Sami turned out to be a hero for many after his tremendous weight loss. His 'exceptional' thin version called many directors' attention and thus acting offers to started pouring in for Sami. The singer although chose not to accept all the offers except for one directed by Bela Sehgal. The music director/composer has worked for over ten films including Chance Pe Dance released a couple of years back (2010). A talented man that he is, his exploration for music knows no bounds and one can even say that he has ventured into all the branches/scope that a single note (of a song) can offer.

The Man behind Kolaveri - Anirudh Ravichander

His first song "Why this Kolaveri" reached over 1 crore views in just 1 week on YouTube which by itself is a massive record. Turning out to be one of the most searched songs, the term 'Kolaveri' has even made its mark as the latest trend word.

Apart from the proletarian, peculiar yet fun "Tanglish" lyrics, what sets the song apart from other such released tracks is its catchy tune. The man behind it, Anirudh Ravichander has blossomed as a music director after the virility of "Kolaveri". Not confined only to the Kollywood industry, the music director has now moved on to test the waters in Bollywood and Tollywood as well. Well with Muni 3 waiting to hit the theatres next year, we will know whether his songs managed to weave a magic around it, enough to appeal to the Telugu film industry/ audience.

Anirudh further went on a success spree for his tracks for the movie "Ethir Neechal" which was widely accepted by many. The song "Ethir Neechal adi" set many people humming the tune not failing to instil a spirit of motivation for all listeners. Basking in the glory of Ethir Neechal, Anirudh was roped in compose one song 'Kanave Kanave' for the Tamil version of the movie 'David'.

Recently, we could tap our feet for his swaying compositions for "Vanakkam Chennai". "Chennai city gangsta" stole all the attention ofcourse and yet again Anirudh was well appreciated for his efforts. One could say that the young music director has surely given us a hatrick hit.With  Selva's magnum opus Irandaam ulagam set to hit the screens,Anirudh is excited as he has worked on three tracks for the movie as a part of the Background music. He has also lent his voice for one of the tracks is what we hear.

Well, there is more in store for Anirudh this year with 'Maan Karate' scheduled for release this year end . Until the movie releases, let us now tune in and listen to some of the young music director's hits.

Foreign Singers in India

Hasn't our Indian music industry opened its ears to international sound? In the last few years, India has seen a lot of coalition with International artists for various soundtracks.

Rewinding a little bit to history, we understand that the development of foreign singers singing Indian numbers had started with great singers like Ghulam Ali who accepted to sing in Nikaah. Mehndi Haasan on the other hand ruled the 'Ghazal' scenario in India for a long time until Indian origin singers like Jagjit Singh, and Chandan Das made an entry. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, another foreign entry to the Indian industry made a landmark with sensational songs like 'Aur Pyar Ho Gaya', 'Bandit Queen' ,'Dhadkan' etc.

Samantha Fox, the English pop singer was invited to India by Bappi Lahiri to sing for the movie Rock Dancer which had Govinda acting in it. One song which caught the attention of many was Tata Young's voice in 'Dhoom Machale' for the movie Dhoom which released in 2004.

When Akon landed in India to record for the blockbuster hit 'Chamak Chalo' from Ra.One The song which set many legs shaking a beat can be considered as a turning point for foreign singers in India. The continuously emerging global market of India has emerged as a platform for many singers to experiment as well. None can forget 'I wanna Chiggy Wiggy with ya' by Kylie Minogue for the movie Blue composed by our own Mozart of Madras, A.R.Rahman.

Snoop Dogg's feat with Akshay Kumar in the movie Singh is King caught the attention of many as well. The trend continues for Punjabi songs too and recently singer Canada girl Nindy Kaur has signed up for projects with the Bollywood industry with a 'Punjabi' tune attached to it. Blockbuster hit movie - Band Baaja Baraat exposed yet another foreign singer Natalie Di Lucio who sang 'Adha Ishq' along with Shreya Ghoshal. The trend which was set years ago still continues with Milli Moonstone, a London singer/musician roped in last year for a Bollywood Project - a supernatural film.

Recollecting Reshma, the Nightingale of the Desert

Popularly known as the 'Nightingale of the Desert', Reshma was best known for her distinguishing rendition of Punjabi Folk songs. Her death earlier this month, due to throat cancer has shocked her fans. Hailing from Bikaner, Rajasthan, Reshma was born in the year 1947. Diagnosed with the disease, she was under treatment for many years now. She is survived by son Umair and daughter Khadija.

The ace singer was spotted at a tender age of 12 while singing at Shahbaz Qalandar's shrine , a sufi saint, by a former Radio producer and made her record a song 'Laal Meri' on state-run Pakistan Radio. With her successful rendition of the sparkling 'Dama Dam Mast Qalandar', a traditional song praising a Sufi mystic, spiritual song encompassing the emotion of a pious euphoria, she became widely known in many local circles. A big break came towards her way in 1983 as she made her debut in the Bollywood industry with "Lambi Judaai". Some of her other famous tracks that take account as hits are 'Hai O Rabba nahion lagda dil mera' and  'Ankhiyan no rehen de ankhyan de kol kol'.

The singer, who had an enormous fan following for her mesmerizing husky voice was awarded several national awards during her soaring career. She won prestigious awards including 'Sitara-i-Imtiaz' and 'Legends Of Pakistan' which in fact was bestowed on her by the President of Pakistan. The successful singer was one of those honoured by then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi to meet her in person. Few years back, in 2005 Reshma released her final album titled "The Nomad".

The lady stands immortal as an inspiration for many. During her stint, she did her best to popularize 'folk' music. The Indian and the Pakistani music industry will surely miss the star singer.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Tribute to the Little Master

With the 'Bharat Ratna' bestowed on the Little Master, there has been more love showering on the Master Blaster  with messages from Cricket lovers, aspiring cricketers , critics etc. As Sachin was knocked off a for 74-run on the 15th of November, everyone's eyes missed a blink. To make sure all Sachin fans relive the 'Sachin' moments, many initiatives from various forums across the country have been commenced. One such initiative by Jithin Roshan is the exclusive track "We Miss you Sachin", a musical tribute to the Little Master instilling a feeling of a 'strong bond' with the player himself for any listener.
The farewell tribute has been released in two languages, Tamil and English. Richard has penned down the lyrics in English while Raajee has contributed for the Tamil version lyrics. The song does not fail to embellish a full repertoire of classy shots of the 'God of Cricket' during the radiant 24-year career.
The track runs for just four and a half minutes but the lyrics does not fail to capture the hearts of all listeners. The singer conveys that the strong emotion of 'missing' the player on field. Attributing to the greatest Batsman of all times, he salutes the God of Cricket. The aura that Sachin Tendulkar has created for the country he brings out the essence that right anyone's childhood, he used to be the star on field. The song conveys that Cricket without Sachin is Life without heartbeat. The emotional appeal of the song captures how 'Cricket' as a game will never be the same after Sachin's retirement. Thanking Sachin for the best 'Cricket Moments', the singer instills an emotion that the game by itself may always be bigger than Sachin, but the key point is that the game will surely miss the 'Master Blaster' innings.
One must remember that although so many years went by after that elusive World Cup, the hunger inside Sachin never died. The man bought laurels for the country, the man who can never be replaced by another player.For all the Cricket fans, Sachin is and will always be one of the brightest days of cricket but he is not ageless. If you do miss him, just tune in to this wonderful song which will surely traverse you to a world of reminiscences.

Is ‘HIPNATIC’ Here to stay?

With a whirl of fusion taking over the music industry, it is interesting to understand that in the coming years, the evolution of ‘Hipnatic’ may conquer the hearts of many music lovers. For those wondering what ‘Hipnatic’ is, it is nothing but mixing Carnatic Music with Hip-Hop beats !

Considering it as a innovative way of packaging music to reach out to the audience at large, ‘Hipnatic’ will not only cater to the current mindset of the youth but will also in a way help Carnatic music enthusiasts rush back to ever-green ‘Keerthanams’ and ‘Varnams’ in a new ‘avatar’. The merging of the two different genres will definitely appeal to the youngsters but may not to the conservative Carnatic music lovers.

Keeping in mind, the recent songs in the Tamil film industry music, for instance ‘Enamo Yedho’ from the movie ‘Ko’, we witnessed inclusion of ‘Rap’ and when analyzing the mass appeal that the song created, it was definitely a hit. But the other facet to be thought of is whether such inclusion involving various genres in film music, is diverging the original genre leading to loss in the uniqueness of the genus?

Considering that Classical music has stirred off its platform to assume a position amongst various other magnificent genres of music across the world, it is essential we understand how ‘Hipnatic’ may change the scenario. Talking in specific about the Carnatic Music genre, a non- Carnatic music lover may speculate if the genre as a whole is dying and hence are these mere ways to keep it alive? But one can argue that it is the prejudice revolving around classical music, that it is a thing of the ‘times of yore’ may also be the reason why music enthusiasts are coming up with such new genres, with a touch of Carnatic music appeal. On the contrary, we could even say that such innovations may in a way harm the classical music landscape and may fragment it further.

Thus we can argue that by bringing out such new genres, it may clanger Carnatic music’s lasting effect on culture but we can also see it positively and attribute it as a silent renaissance in progress. We can conclude that such ‘additions’ to classical music has occurred due to changes in culture, which in turn has exaggerated and distorted the musical needs. We can still approve of, value and love Carnatic music and sustain it, considering it is the pride of South India. On the other hand, such new evolutions can also be accepted and mulled over in addition to the ocean of ‘Carnatic Music’.

>>  Listen To Hipnatic Hits