Aayitha Ezhuthu

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How do you think I cleared the JEE? The most often heard answers from IITians for this question maybe their coaching classes, parents, God, their supreme intelligence (yeah this is more likely), their friends and so on and so forth. Agreed that I attribute my ‘achievement’ to these things but there is another uncommon but important factor which I believe helped in my preparation for JEE. And that is Aayitha Ezhuthu music (you read that right). So here goes my story.

One fine day in the last week of March 2004, I came back home from school and found an audio CD of Aayitha Ezhuthu.With a lot of excitement, I opened the CD and listened to the whole album once. It sounded different and fresh. I knew I would like it but what happened later is something I never expected. From that day onwards, I kept listening to it again and again and again – the whole album. Whenever I was at home studying, I needed that in the background. I went crazy. It seemed odd to study without Aayitha Ezhuthu. It wasn’t restricted to listening at home. Whenever I went to my coaching classes in car, I used to listen to it. It was magical. It inspired me to study, cheered me up if I felt a little discouraged, made me feel relaxed and on the whole helped me concentrate and study well. That, I feel, is the magic of A R Rahman.

Coming to the songs of Aayitha Ezhuthu, I still am not able to pick one as my most favourite. The whole album running for nearly 30 minutes is a package in itself. It’s a separate class of music.

‘Hey Goodbye Nanba’, with some beautiful vocals by Sunitha Sarathy and those soft beats, makes you fall in love with it immediately. Lucky Ali, though sings for a little while only, makes a great impact.

Jana Gana Mana – ARR rocks in this song. Full of energy and some inspirational lyrics by Vairamuthu.

Sandai Kozhi – Madhushree does complete justice to this song. The cheesy lyrics go really well with her voice. Not to forget ARR’s bit. It comes for about a minute. Nobody else could have sung that the way he did.

Dol Dol – Blaaze rap. Those ‘ethnic vocals’ by Shahin Badar are simply out of the world. Perfect dance number.

Nenjam Ellam – Though I don’t like Adnan Sami’s voice that much, it sounds good in this song. But the best thing about this song is Sujatha’s voice. She perfectly creates the mood of the song.

Fanah – ARR rocks again. Wow what a song! Instantly likeable. Some cool lyrics by Vairamuthu. Only ARR can sing swarams in a disco song!

About the movie, it’s a Mani Ratnam classic. It deserves a separate post.

ARR rocks!!!

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Endsems!!!

Portions??? Notes. Overflowing xerox shop. Lib!?!? Night out. Drugged. Nth cup of coffee at Tifanys. Tutorials. Group study?!?! Philosophy. Mug. CCD. Chess. Room. Mug. Half the portions unfinished. 5 already! Comp. Blog post. Chat. Watch a new episode. Mug. Mug. Mug. Crash at 7. Alarm. Snooze. Alarm. Snooze. Alarm. 8.50! Pack bath. Lucky T-shirt. RUN. Last minute (re)vision. TEN minutes late! Cell phone! Smart Card(where is that??). Calci. Borrowed pen. Neighbour Freshie’s pencil. Bulb. Sleepy. 12 finally. Sigh!

Yes, Endsems are a week away!!!

P.S. : I have seen this format of writing in many blogs. Thought I would try my hand at this.

The Myriad Hues of Carnatic Music

I was introduced to Carnatic Music at a very young age. But it was some time before I started enjoying what I was listening to and singing. Music is one of those things which touches the soul and Carnatic music holds a special place in my heart. The most amazing thing is that it brings out such varied emotions. It’s as if each ragam brings naturally along with it a certain mood. You need no lyrics to understand the emotion.

 

Trinity of Carnatic Music - Muthuswamy Dikshitar, Thyagaraja and Shyama Sastry

 

For example, Sindhubhairavi ragam always makes me melancholic, a sadness which I actually like, which is as if it’s required and gives a sense of completeness. One of my most favourite krithis in this ragam is ‘Chandrashekharaa Eesha’ by Papanasam Sivan.

Next, Abheri. ‘Nagumomu’ by Thyagaraja is unarguably the best composition in Abheri. And to hear Dr. Balamuralikrishna sing this, transforms me to some other world. The pace, the utterance, the mood he creates is just so different from what the others do.

Reetigowlai is another lovely ragam which makes me feel pure bliss. ‘Nannuvidachi’ by Thyagaraja is my favourite in this ragam. I happened to hear a beautiful rendition of this by Ganesh – Kumaresh (Violin) during Saarang 2006. ‘Janani Ninnuvina’ is another beautiful composition and I love hearing MSG playing this. His is the best rendition of this composition I have ever heard.

Khamas. ‘Brochevare’ by Thyagaraja is my favourite, which is of course, a very popular song. ‘Seethapathe’ is another song I like, especially Madurai Mani’s rendition.

Sahana. Only one word can describe Sahana – Beauty. That’s exactly what I see in Sahana. There are numerous compositions in this, but my favourite is ‘Oho Kaalame’ which Sanjay is heard singing quite often nowadays.

Well, there are a lot more ragams that I love and it continues to amaze me how each one evokes a different emotion. Did Carnatic music really result from divine inspiration? After listening to it for so long, I truly believe so. Infact, any form of music which touches the soul, I believe, comes from a power that is beyond us. Carnatic is one such genre of music which has a very structured form and which has been preserved for a long time and at the same time, adapted to changing times.

Bhakti is closely associated with Carnatic music. All the compositions of the Trinity (I would like to know if there are any exceptions) express their devotion or prayer or some form of their connection with the Gods. Even now, when the singers perform, it really shows when they sing with the real spirit with which the song was actually composed. I believe that we can reach God or that higher power through Carnatic music. I feel that whenever i listen to Carnatic, when sung with the real feeling.

Well, I started off with something and ended with something. Anyway the point is that, there is an inherent depth in Carnatic music. You don’t need to know the technicalities to enjoy it. I think everybody should atleast try listening to it sometime.

Get Set Go

With this, I move over to WordPress from Blogspot. Hope this happens to be a longer innings than the one at blogspot. There is an option to import my posts from my older blog but I think it’s always better to start afresh. Joblessness always makes you start a blog. Or atleast that’s how it has been happening for me ;) I don’t know how I am going to use this space of mine in the blogworld. Let’s see.