29th November 2004, 02:56 PM

No song from 16 Vayathinile could be singled out for credit, as all songs are equally good and form interesting material for discussion. So let me cover a few songs in a go.
That was the 13th movie for Ilayaraja. Years later Raja was asked which was the film from which he derived full satisfaction. Ater a moments reflection Raja said that that was the film where he was able to manifest and exhibit his full imagination in composing music. Bharathiraja too had commented that 16 Vayathinile provided best musical results.

As for the film, that was the first film to be shot outside studio- in natural settings with no make up for the everyone. The lyrics too reflected naturalism set in village surroundings.

Raja has toured several villages in South India, and had sung in many of the concerts. Perhaps there are very few villages on which they had not set their foot. The Pavalar Brothers- Varatharajan, Bhaskar, Amar Sing (gangai amaran) and Gnana Desigan (Ilayaraja) claimed “MaAttu vandi POgatha Oorukkellam Engal PaAttu vandi Ponathundu.”

Wherever Raja went he made sure he picked up folk tunes, folk based lyrics and took note of the musical instruments played in the villages. He kept all these as well guarded secret, hoping to use them one day. He was the first to bring the entire range of the folk tunes, lyrics and even instruments to Kodambakkam. The movie where he used them in full range was 16 Vayathinile.

The film ran for 30 weeks. It was selected the best film by the Tamilnadu Government.

Now three songs:
S.B Bala was bookd for recoding the song in this movie. However, as Bala was not feeling well, he himself recommended Malaysia Vaasudevan. So Vasu had to sing the songs in this movie.


This was a killer song. It is quite difficult to grasp how Ilayaraja could use guitar and western orchestration for a village tune and still create a hit out of it. (guitar is discussed in another song) Gangai Amaraqn boasts that following the success of this cong, many other producers wanted the pallavis of theirs songs to start with names of flowers.

This was a trend setting song for a short period, as there were already songs starting with names of flowers prior to this. Perhaps this song revived the need to start songs with names of flowers. Camerawork was a strong plus point for this song. (Gangai Amaran also has said that there is no such flower as Senthoorappoo. It is an imaginary flower, and challenges anyone to produce that flower!)

The vinyl record also recorded sky high sales. Sivaji Ganesan himself has reportedly remarked that Senthoora Poove was his favourite song for 1977.

S. Janaki was bestowed national award for best playback singer for the song Senthoora Poove. The song was surprisingly very popular in Russia as well.

Click here to listen to it! (http://tfmpage.com/cgi-bin/song.pl?id=mani-6.2)

sendhoorappoovae sendhoorappoovae jillenra kaatrae
en mannan engae en mannan engae nee konjam sollaayoa


thenralaith thoodhu vittu oru saedhikkuk kaaththirundhaen
kangalai moodavittu inbak kanavinil naan midhandhaen
kannip paruvaththin vannak kanavidhuvae
ennai izhukkudhu andha ninaivadhuvae
vannap poovae thenral kaatrae ennaith thaedi sugam varumoa


neelak karunguyilae thennanjoalaik kuruvigalae
koalamidum mayilae nalla gaanap paravaigalae
maalai varum andha naalai uraiththidungal
saalai vazhi engum poovai iraiththidungal
vannap poovae thenral kaatrae ennaith thaedi sugam varumoa



29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
This was the debut for Ilayaraja as a playback singer. Malaysia Vasu was booked for the tile song. But as he did not turn up, Ilayaraja had to immediately compose and sing. Gangai Amaran wrote the lyrics within 15 minutes and Ilayaraja sang the song with no difficulties.

In fact Raja had been singing from his childhood days. When he followed his Pavalar brothers, he used to sit at the back of the stage and sing in female voice. The first song that Raja ever sang was a M.S. Rajeswary song from the film THAI PIANTHAAL VAZHI PIRAKKUM. The song is “Mannukkau Maram Baaramma marathukku Ilai Baarammaa.” The audience could not believe it was a male child singing the female song. According to Raja himself, many used to even place betting. Later Raja sang many of P. Suseela’s songs. When raja came to adolescent age, there was a break in his voice- makarakkattu they say in Tamil. Thereafter raja stopped singing and concentrated in playing harmonium and guitar.
After a long time, raja sang for the first time and recorded his song in 16 Vayathinile. That was the beginning of many sweet beginnings in store for lovers of Raja’s voice.

Click here to listen to it! (http://tfmpage.com/cgi-bin/song.pl?id=mani-6.3)

The first song that Kannadasan wrote for Raja’s music was in the movie Palootti Valaratha Kili, and the song is “Kannodu Kannu” sung by S. Janaki. Kannadasan has inserted a line in the song:” Vaa Raja Vaa” Ilayaraja feels that it was a sign from Kannadasan, welcoming raja into the cine field. However, Aattukkutti Muttai Ittu was quite different. Barathiraja and Ilayaraja went to see Kannadasan in Kavitha Hotel. There they saw the poetic ability of Kannadasan. He was able to provide alternative words within fleeting moment, only to the astonishment ant amazement of Ilayaraja and Barathiraja. This incident was recalled for several years. S. Janaki was proved to be a versatile singer. She gives voice an old lady. Ilayaraja was credited for bringing out this talent from S. Janaki. Janaki too was appreciated for this song. This song is a break song for Malaysia Vasudevan as well.
This is the song: Click here to listen to it! (http://tfmpage.com/cgi-bin/song.pl?id=mani-6.4)

Aattukkutti Muttaiyittu Kozhikutty Vanthathunnu
Yaanaikkunju Sollakkeittu Poonaikunju Sonnathamma
Kathaiyilley Saami Ithai Kaanuthu Bhommi;
Ada Ithumattunthaana Innum Irukkuthu Saami!

Koottumedai Rasaavukku noothiraNdu Pondaattiyaam,
Nootirandu Pondaattiyum Vaattumuttai Poathathamma;
Pattatturani Athuley Pathinettu Peru,
Pathinettuppeirkkum Vayasu Irubhathiaaru,
Motham Irubhathiaaru- Aangh,
chinna kuttigaLin mEl aaNai
indha sattigaLin mEl aaNai
idhu vaLLuvanin EttiluNdu parambarai paattiluNdu
kadhaiyillai magaraasi!

Kaakkaiyilla Seemaiyiley Kaatterumai Meikkaiyiley
Kaakkavachu Neram Paarthu Paakku Vacha Aasaimachan
Santhaikku Poana Naan Saatchikku Varava,
Sambhantham Panna Enakku Sammathanthaana?
Ada Innum Konjam Paarungalein,
Enn Kannimanam Keilungalein,
Ada Yendi Intha Sangathinnu Kekkureenga Kekkureenga,
Pazhaiya Nenapputhaan Peiraandi
Pazhaiya Nenapputhaan, mMMm
Pazhaiya Nenapputhaan Peiraandi
Pazhaiya Nenapputhaan

Kittappavin Paattai Keittein
Chinnappavai Neriley Paarthein,
Sotta Sotta Varuguthamma
Sangeethama Peruguthamma,
Medaikkuppoana Enakku Eedilley Ponnu,
Paadinaninna Naan Noottuley Onnu;
Enn Thiramaiyai Kaattathumaa,
Rendu Sangathiyai Poadattumaa,
Ada Thatharina thatharina,
Thatharina Thatharina
Thatharina thatharina,

In this song Kannadasan says Kittappavin Paattai Ketten. In an interview he said he never saw Kittappa in person or listened to his songs.

This is the song that I selected for the Show. This is the song where Ilayaraja had used most of the village musical instruments in his early days. The members of the musical band almost became ecstatic. The audience started to dance. The band did well, but at the end of the show, the band members told me that they would have done better if only all the instruments used by Raja had been made available to them. They were not able to identify some of the instruments used.
Click here to listen to it! (http://tfmpage.com/cgi-bin/song.pl?id=mani-6.1)

Bharathiraja who capitalised on Ilayaraja’s music, had commented that Raja was very much ahead of him in scoring music for his movies. Even in subsequent released the movie made huge profits. This film boosted folk music and enhanced the taste for folk tunes. Whereas in the past music fans loved to listen to folk songs at random, this movie made fans seek such music. Folk music became a rule of the day rather than an exception. Raja set the new trend.

16 Vayathinile is one of the best movies and a crowning victory for Ilayaraja and Bharathiraja. Certainly a movie that took Tamilnadu by storm!

Over to all of you for further indepths.

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
Sevvandhi poo mudicha chinnakka was sung by MV & PS

a nice song

Particularly the portions "Kovil ammanukku velakethu ...."

Both have sung beautifully

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
Mani Sir, it's true that this movie took TN by storm. I remember the song "Senthoora poovae" brought the national award for S.Janaki. The orchestration was simply superb for that song. I came to know that a 12-string guitar was used for the song.

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
The first gold and platinum disc in tamil film industry...
It created waves during a time period when ABBA, BoneyM and RD Burman were invading Tamilnadu..

Surprising to note that a 12 string guitar was used in Senthoorapoove song. Do they normally play this type of guitar in orchestras or is it a rare commodity ?

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
I think 12-string guitar is a rare commodity as it needs special skills to play. It is used when a heavy arpeggios are written by the composer.

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
Mani Sir

Thanks (I wanted to correct myslef on number 6. I realized I forgot Senthoora poove, what a majestic number! But it was too late yesterday)

Anyway, wonderful write-up. DId Alangodu Somu write 'Manja Kulichu..' another peppy number in the movie. So did the movie have 3 lyricists (KD - Sevvandhi & aatu kutti, GA - Senthoora Poove and Solam Vidhai and Alangud Somy)?

Thanks once again. I am now uanble to guess your 7th? Is it
a. Kizhakke Pogum Rail?
b. Mullum Malarum? (who can forget Senthazam, Nitham Nitham, Adi Penne and Ramen Andallum)
c. Darling.. Darling (PRiya for its first stereo recoding...)?
d. Ennadi Meenatchi (Elamai Oonjal Adukiradhu..)
e. Still hope "En Kanami" from Chittukuruvi and 'Chithra Sevvanam' from KVG makes the 7th ...

Year 1978 was a sad year. No Tamil film qualified for National Award (I thought Mullum Malarum easily qaulified, however the National Award committee thinks otherwise!.)


29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
"Sevanthi Poo Mudicha Chinakka.." Isn't it amazing how the dialogues slowly blend into the flute bit and then flowing into laughter, joy and culminating into the claps and then the chorus.... A simple yet brilliant flow of moods....And despite the folk tune, the violin orchestration flows in the background through the first interlude.... Really brings a feeling of joy when you listen to these songs.. Wonderful choice, Mr.Mani !

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
NO digression on your part. We are still in the same grouping.

Bala, you are coming close. I have differentiated between popular songs and landmark or milestone songs of Raja.That is the only catch in this discussion thread.

All songs are by Gangai Amaran, except Aattukkutty Muttai Ittu.

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
Hi Manisekharan, nice write up. Sorry for the late entry. I am a great fan of IR's early songs, and a discussion about those songs here. Keep it up. Will come regularly.

I just want to make two points.

1. "Chevandhi Poo Mudicha" wonderful song it is. It is one of my all time favourites. While listening it brings out the happiness instantly, making us to feel elated. Nice songs. Due credits to the singers are missing in your writeup, when the credit to the singers are elaborated for other songs. Please ensure the samething will not repeat again for any other song.

2. While bringing out the greatness of IR's music endowements, we shouldnt bring down the due respect and opinion on any of IR's music companions. It is better to conseal the facts in a decent way. Otherwise, there are high possibliities of digression in degraded way by fanatics. Such things are equivalent to showing disrespect to IR.

Manisekharan, You are doing a great job. I am awaiting more eagerly.


29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
I just discovered the thread. Great read Manisekeran and everyone!

I had to rewind a bit. sorry!

A trivia: I think the violin piece in the second interlude in CHINNA KANNAN AZHAIKIRAAN of Janaki's has a very striking resemblance to the famous starting prelude of "Adi Raakamma Kaaiya Thattu" violin piece.
(SJ version 2:50 to 3:00)
http://musicindiaonline.com/l/26/s/movie_name.4357/ (http://musicindiaonline.com/l/26/s/movie_name.4357/
Any1 agree :)

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM
I know Manisekaran is hosting the show but I think it is a great opportunity to explore Raaja’s unique capability as a film composer and how his compositions scaled new heights in film music.

I very much differentiate between a music composer and a film music composer. After all most of his music is film music :) Although Raaja’s background score is wildly discussed, his talent in deriving full inspiration from the situation, its elements, the mood, it musical motifs, and the conflict itself is very rarely discussed.

I believe Raaja has reached Himalayan heights as a film music composer which is very less explored even by musicians. So I want to throw my 2 cents in that aspect/angle to the songs that will be posted by Manisekaran. I’m bound to make some wild speculation, mistakes and assumptions. Please correct me when I go wrong :)

I’ll stop my analysis if you someone has serious objections (especially Manisekaran :)

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM

Situation: A *tender* teenage girl is *searching* for her unknown lover all over the village, *looking* for him, *longing* for him and *asking* for him. She converses with flowers, birds, breeze etc… asking them about her unknown lover’s whereabouts and requesting them to help her to get him on her way.

Conflict: She bitten by love-bug and is in a hopeless case. Her hidden *vulnerability*.
Irony: She has the lover she’s searching (chappani) right under her fold. She’s yet to realize it.

Raaja’s dramatic choices in the song:

1) Theme -- *Search* is the theme of the song and it dominates every musical aspect of the song --from the tune to orchestration, to rhythm, to beat, to ornamentations etc. But the tune also makes sure the *longing-ness* and *vulnerability* of the character is also exposed. Some musical elements in second interlude express strong vulnerability.

Musical elements:

2) Violin -- From orchestration standpoint, Western classical sounding violin orchestration is chief participant in the *search* theme. It is effectively introduced, repeated, played up, played down, heightened and finally nailed.

3) Guitar -- The guitar piece is direct musical manifestation of lyricist word Senthoora Poove (Flower). In general, it stands for all flowers. The piece also sets the *mood* of the song so quickly. It also ornaments and embellishes the teenage girl with *flowers* throughout the song. Perhaps, Raaja liked the idea of flower setting with flowering (budding?) emotions of the girl or perhaps, a direct inspiration from Bharathiraja’s situation description. What amazes me is where does the *flowering* stop and *searching* start in this simple piece? The answer is they co-exist! This is magic!

4) Flute – A direct inspiration from the lyricist line *neelak karunguyilae* but symbolizes most birds described in the song and for the topper—for the character herself (Character name is Mayil -- meaning Peacock). How apt? Since this flute piece also brings out her vulnerability. A mild masterstroke! (Same technique used in the song “Kuyil Paatu” from En Raasavin Manasulae)

5) Beat – All rhythmic beats symbolizes, augments and intensifies the *search* theme.

Introduction: WOW! All the musical elements used in the rest of the song are introduced completely in the prelude (intro) itself. It is the gist of the song and almost all of them symbolizes and dramatizes the *search* theme. Either, they play the same notes or play the same idea with some musical variations and variety.

Transitions: A special mention to transitions. Although all the musical elements stand for *searching*, the is done with pin point precision bringing out the intended feeling throughout the song. Incredibly, there is no monotony, even if the same idea is played with variations. The supreme sign of mastery over the medium by Raaja.

The transition also keeps the girl character in motion throughout the song giving a flowing energy. Like a visual transition showing a legs running fast, spooked wheels of motor bike rotating fast, to a rubber tyre rolling at high speed and showing the tyre belonging to a plane taking-off in sky with a bird in forefront and the topper-- the bird flies. Just an example, I felt but it is not an analogy to the song.

Raaja’s musical transition in the song flows like a stream from the flowers, to the girl, back to the flowers, to her physical movement, her running legs, the narrow alley, rough but beautiful terrain, plants, birds, breeze, and obviously to her emotions running inside her. This makes the song so unique and wonderful to listen and watch in the film.

In the end, the song not only manages to express the *search* and *longing* feeling of the character but also brings across her tenderness and vulnerability. Raaja as a composer not only celebrates the character’s feelings but also makes his tune and musical instruments participate in the *search*.

So, it is no wonder Raaja felt satisfied or utilized! I’ve listened to his old songs before this and I can argue that this song is first situational song to fully use the situation, its elements, the mood, its musical motifs, and the conflict to a mind boggling level.

Please listen to the song again and give me your feedback and criticism.

Trivia: I love the musical imitation (echo) of * thennanjoalaik kuruvigalae kuruvigalae* (music which follows the line) in the second interlude. Even this piece (idea) is introduced in the prelude (intro)

29th November 2004, 02:56 PM

Thank you for your inputs. I have taken note of your points. In some cases I deleberately give more credits to Raja, where I feel he is the supremo in the success of songs. In some other cases I may emphasise on the vocal strength of the singers. In cases where you are tend to disagree or feel singers should be credited, please post your thoughts. Afterall it depends on which angle of the prism we are looking at. Different angles give different reflections. That is the very purpose of the discussion. Even in my introductory notes I had said fans can agreee, disagree or ignore my points.

Once again, thank you for the rich inputs.

I have not objection to your postings. This is a discussion forum. Everone has his/ her role to play. It is up to the acceptability of other readers.

29th November 2004, 06:34 PM
For me , "senthoorapoove" will always remain in the top 5 songs of raja. I also like "sevanthi poo mudicha" and "manja kulicchi" . They have a raw , rustic freshness. Even the interlude music in " Manjakulichu" has an apparent mischievous and naughty feel. In "sevanthi poo mudicha", if you notice the second interlude music just after the flute bit and before the "thandhana thaanaa " chorus the strings part punctuated with flute
and the music bit following the line
"aathula kaathadicha alai odum" - you can feel the effect of waves rippling through the waters. Such was the magic !!!

4th December 2004, 01:10 PM
before seeing the movie i used to like only senthoora poove...i fell in love with the other songs only after watching them blend almost perfectly with the screenplay...

12th December 2004, 04:28 PM
Pls continue further discussions here.