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    Manisekaran (@ 61.6*) on: Thu Nov 18 04:02:33 EST 2004

    KETTELE ANGEY –first controversy song
    Talking of Badrakali, one’s mind is sure to capture the all time famous hit "Kannan Oru kai Kuzhanthai." Much has been discussed and reported of that song. However, I would like to bring to the fore a song that stirred so much controversy in Tamilnadu, of course for no fault of Ilayaraja. The song itself and the MD have no involvement in this controversy. The only reason I am quoting this song “in passing” is because this was the first of Ilayaraja’s songs to have faced an unprecedented tempest in his career, all because of the picturisation. But the controversies that Raja directly in music are to follow soon.

    Maharishi’s novel was adapted as Badrakali, in which Ilayaraja composed music.

    The songs of Badrakali are:

    1. Aanantha Bairavi by MR Vijaya
    2. Kettele Angey by P. Suseela
    3. Kannan oru kai Kuzhanthai by KJ Jesudass and P. Suseela
    4. Odukiraal Urugugiraal by Seergazhi Gvovindarajan
    5. Ottha Ruba Unakku Taharen by S. Janaki and Malaysia Vasudevan

    The song that I have selected for discussion is Kettele Angey. Even while the movie was in the making, there was already an air of excitement, mainly following the unexpected and untimely passing of the heroine Rani Chandra. The film had then to be carefully completed, using another female actress. However, as soon as the film was released, it drew new opposition from the Brahmin community. In the story the hero wanted to go for a disco dance. The wife, having read the intention of the husband decides to perform the record dance at home to entertain the husband. Unfortunately she was wearing the graceful madisaru pudavai often used in the Brahmin community. The Brahmin community took offence to a Brahmin girl performing record dance wearing the madisaru pudavai. This controversy itself gave undue publicity for the movie and many rushed to the theatre. The controversy workled in favour of the movie. I remember seeing the movie at the Diamond Talkies at Pondy Bazar area (today it is no more there). The song was well written by Vali, following his great success in Aduthathu Ambujathai Paathela song in Ethirneechal.

    Kettele Angey is very beautifully set to folk tune, in which Raja simply excelled.

    Kettele Ange
    Adhai Parthela Inge
    Ethaiyo Nenechel Athaiye Nenachen -Naan
    Ambalaiyaan manusu Pole nadappen
    Intha Aathukkari Verethukku Irukken?
    Vangonnaa! Ada Vangonna!

    Madisaru Pudavaikku Illatha Azhaga?
    Veraaru Yennattam Nadai Pottu Varuvaa?
    Theriyathannaa Puriyathanaa
    Vayasillaiya Nekkum?
    Vasiyam Pannatuma?

    Tanjavoor kadamapathai Mozham pottu Vangi
    Thalaimele vaVachundu Ninneene Engi
    Manakkalaiyo mayakkalaiyio
    Kothikalaiyo Udambu
    Pakka nanillaiyo?
    Vangonna Ada Vangonna

    Pollathe Aasaikku Yenintha Alaichal?
    Kallattam Irukene Nekkena Kuaichal?
    Mookirukku Muzhi Irukku Aazhakillaiyo Nekku
    Aadi Kattattuma?
    Vangonna Ada Vangonna

    This was the Fourth Film for Ilayaraja that ran for 175 days. It turned out to be another feather in his cap.

    When I went for tea in Seergazhi Govindarajan, I enquired him on the song that he had sung in Badrakali- Odugiraal,Urugugiraal. Seergazhiyar told me that the song was of average score and that Ilayaraja was still at infant stage. But he believed then, that Ilayaraja still had a long way to go before he could prove himself. True enough, very soon, Ilayaraja scaled new heights in the world of Tamil film music.

    In my discussion with PB Sreenivas, he told me that Ilayaraja had some unique capabilities, yet to be well understood by any average listener.

    I conversed with these two immediately after the success of Badrakali.

    To cut the story short, the song that I had cited is just the beginning of many other direct controversies yet to be created by Raja. “Narathar Sandai Nallathil Mudiyum” So were the meaningful controversies created by Ilayaraja in the later years.

    Over to the fans for further comments and details.

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