It is difficult to place Vidyasagar in the Tamil movie scene – you see the 1980s and 1990s was dominated by the one and only Maestro Illayaraja and then 2000s thereafter we had AR Rahman changing the whole way we hear Tamil songs and then we had other music directors like Vidyasagar. Image source: Times of India
Vidyasagar is one music director who has very good compositions in the past and the last one that I really like is the composition he did for Prakash Raj’s Mozhi (2007). I have not run through his other discography in Telugu and Malayalam (I will do that as a special project and do another collection) but presently there is plenty to hear from the Tamil movies itself.
At a time when in mainstream music, the place of melody, music’s basic building block, is being reduced substantially, Vidyasagar gives us plenty of reasons to cheer.
Since he made his début 30 years ago, Vidyasagar has built his music around melody, harmony and rhythm interacting in a meaningful way that is powerful and magical.
And now working overseas and needing to hear music to focus on the analysis of data, I tuck into my playlist and somehow I keep coming back to my collection of Vidyasagar Tamil hits. And here are some of the songs that I have in my on-going list of 29 cherry-picked Vidyasagar Tamil songs.
Poi Solla Kudathu (Run 2002)
Run is a Tamil movie directed by N. Linguswamy starring Madhavan and Meera Jasmine in the lead. This movie is famous for the classic comedy by Vivek and a great love story between Madhavan and Meera Jasmine.
The whole soundtrack for this movie is amazing and all the songs are hits when the movie came out. This song is interesting with a beautiful violin composition blended with flute and strumming of the guitar.
The lyric is just perfect and it is sung by Hariharan who gives this song a fresh breath of life. The rhythm just before the chorus picks up the pace and seems heavenly before the chorus starts.
Vennilave Vennila (Sengottai 1996)
This movie acted by Arjun and Meena in the lead and it was not a really great movie – yes, I have seen the movie and I lost in the number of the illogical storylines. The soundtrack, on the other hand, is another gem. This song especially is great as a wake-up call in the morning and great at parties as dance music.
It has this catchy zip zap tune in between the drumbeats which is not difficult to miss. The picturisation of the song was also well done with modern and classical dances for this song (yes, there are plenty of moves copied from Micheal Jackson). To better appreciate this song and the various musical instruments, you need to listen to the higher quality restored version like this one.
The other great song from this movie is Uchchi Muthal Patham.
Kadhal Vanthal (Iyargai 2003)
This movie has Shaam in the lead and this song, in particular, could be considered as one of the greatest songs of a lover missing his partner composed by Vidyasagar.
The picturisation for this song, however, was badly done even though surprisingly this movie won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil at the 51st National Film Awards in 2004. But consider the composition of the song and the mesmerising lyrics – “if the love comes by, let me know. I will come if I am still alive”.
The music for the chorus shows how talented Vidyasagar really is – it borders an adventure but at the same time portrays that it is an adventure that will end with empty hands. The infusion of quotes in English enforces the loneliness of the hero loving for his lost love.
To be continued with Part 2