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Showing posts from January, 2017

Day 342: OMG14: Oru Kochu Swapnathin

One of Janaki amma's beautiful melodious number from Tharavattamma. This movie stars Sathyan, Sheela, Thrikkurisi and Sukumari.

Movie: Tharavattamma
Music: M.S. Baburaj
Lyrics: P. Bhaskaran
Singer: S. Janaki
Director: P. Bhaskaran
Screenplay: P. Bhaskaran

Day 341:OMG13: Nee madhu pakaroo

Usha Khanna is a music director from Hindi film industry. She is one of the earliest female music directors in Indian music industry. She has composed for a couple of Malayalam movies and this one is very popular. The music does surely have a Hindi film music touch. For that period, the songs from this movie did stand out. The movie has Prem Nazir, Sheela, Adoor Bhasi, and few others.

Movie: Moodalmanju (Clouding fog)
Music: Usha Khanna
Lyrics: P.Bhaskaran
Year: 1970
Singer: K.J. Yesudas
Director: Sudin Menon
Screenplay: Sudin Menon

Day 340: OMG12: Ponveyil Manikacha

Enjoy this melodious beauty!

The film features Jayabharathi, Prem Nazir, Innocent, Shankaradi and others.

Movie: Nrithashala
Music: Dakshinamoorthy
Lyrics: Sreekumaran Thampi
Singer: K.J. Yesudas
Year: 1972
Director: AB Raj
Screenplay: S.L.Puram Sadanandan

Day 339: OMG11: Sindhoora Pottu thottu

Rakthapusthakam was directed by J. Sasikumar. He was known to have made many hit movies with Prem Nazir. Jagathy Sreekumar was introduced in his movie 'Chattambi Kalyanam'. He also introduced Tamil comedian, Senthil.

Movie: Rakthapusthakam (Blood Book)
Music: M.K.Arjunan
Lyrics: Sreekumaran Thampi
Singer: K.J. Yesudas
Director: J. Sasikumar
Screenplay: K.P. Kottarakara

Day 338: OMG10: Kakkakuyile chollu

Bharthavu had Kaviyoor Ponnamma, Adoor Bhasi, T.S. Muthaiah, and Sheela in lead roles. This is my favorite song from this movie.

Movie: Bharthavu
Music: Dakshnimaoorthy and M.S. Baburaj
Lyrics: P. Bhaskaran
Year: 1964
Director: M. Krishnan Nair
Screenplay/Story: Kanam EJ (Malayalam fiction writer).

Day 337: OMG9: Swapnangale Ningal swargakinavukal

Kavyamela starred Prem Nazir, Sheela, Adoor Bhasi and many others. K.J.Yesudas also appeared in the movie as himself. This movie was a remake of a Kannada movie called Kantherodu Nodu. The success of both Malayalam and Kannada lead to Tamil version with Muthuraman called Devi.
This film won the National Award. The film used Guru Dutt's Pyaasa's twist in the movie.

There are three versions of this song in this movie. One was a different singer version which featured K.J.Yesudas, P. Leela

Movie: Kavyamela (Art fair)
Music: Dakshinamoorthy
Lyrics: Valayar
Year: 1965
Director: M.Krishnan Nair (Bharathiraja worked as his AD)
Screenplay: S.L.Puram Sadanandan
Singer: K.J.Yesudas and P.Leela

Day 336: OMG8: Kaattile Paazhmulam Thandil

Vilakkyu Vangiya Veena was one of Prem Nazir's successful films and this song is popular through generations. The film had other actors like Sharadha, KPAC Lalitha, Madhu, Adoor Bhavani and a few others. This song is a signature song of Dakshinamoorthy sir.

Movie: Vilakkyu Vangiya Veena
Music: V. Dakshinamoorthy
Year: 1971
Director: P.Bhaskaran
Screenplay: Sreekumaran Thampi
Singer: K.J. Yesudas

Day 335: OMG7: Thanga thaligayil

Gayathri is a movie with Jayabharathi, Adoor Bhasi, Shankaradi, Raghavan, and others. This film won the National award for a feature film. 

Movie: Gayathri Music: G. Devarajan  Lyrics: Valayar Director: P.N.Menon Screenplay/Story: Malayatoor Ramakrishnan Year:1973 Singer: K.J.Yesudas

Day 334: OMG6: Chakravarthini

Chakravarthini is a soothing song and considered one of the evergreen numbers of the duo- Devarajan, and Vayalar. This song always reminds me of 'Hum Ko man ki shakthi dena' by Vani Jayaram from Guddi starring Jaya Bahduri. They are both set in the same raga of Kedar (will check it with my musician friends).

The movie is based on the story by Malayattoor Ramakrishnan who btw, is related to paternal side of my family. The film had Madhu, Roja Ramani, Raghavan, Sudheer, Adoor Bhasi,Adoor Bhavani and others. The film was remade in Tamil with Kamal Hassan called 'Paruva Kalam'

Enjoy both the versions here.

Movie: Chembarathi (Hibiscus)
Music: G. Devarajan
Lyrics: Vayalar
Director: P.N. Menon
Screenplay/Story: Malayattoor Ramakrishnan
Year: 1972
Singer: K. J Yesudas (solo), female version : P. Madhuri

Day 333: OMG5: Chandrakalabham charthi urangum

Dr. K.J.Yesudas is known as Gaana Gandharvan in Kerala. He has given some of the evergreen songs and most of his solo performances are still favorites of many million fans.

This song features Prem Nazir. The movie had Jayabharathi, Adoor Bhasi, T.R.Omana, Bahadoor and others.

Movie: Kottaram Vilkkaanundu (A palace to sell)
Music: G.Devarajan
Lyrics: Vayalar
Director: K. Suku
Screenplay: Jagathy N.K. Achari (trivia: Jagathy Sreekumar's father)
Year: 1975
Singer: K. J. Yesudas

Day 332: OMG4: Kananachayayil adu meykkan

You are not a true Malayalee if you haven't heard of Changampuzha and his Ramanan. 
Yes, you heard that right. 
Ramanan, Changampuzha Krishnan Pillai's masterpiece is considered one of the best works in Malayalam literature. It was written as an elegy on the death of his dear friend, Edappally Raghavan Pillai, yet another poet. Published in 1936, this work became one of the bestsellers and still remains so in Malayalam literature. He has inspired many of the later poets like Vayalar Ramavarama and others. 
The movie had Prem Nazir, Sheela, Adoor Bhasi, Madhu, Usha Kumari and others.

Movie: Ramanan Music: K.Raghavan  Lyrics: Changampuzha  Director:D.M. Pottekat  Story: Changampuzha's Ramanan  Year: 1967 Singer: P.Leela and K.P. Udayabhanu 

Day 331:OMG3: Utharaswayamvaram

I love this song because of the raga- Kharaharapriya (hopefully I have guessed it right). Song set to tune by the great V. Dakshinamoorthy, this is from the movie- Danger biscuit. Starring Prem Nazir, Adoor Bhasi, Paravathoor Bharathan, Sadhana, and Sukumari among others, this was a cop story.

Movie: Danger Biscuit (Interesting use of English titles)
Music: V.Dakshinamoorthy
Lyricist: Shreekumaran Thampi
Director: A.B.Raj (trivia: father of Saranya Ponnvannan)
Year: 1969
Singer: K.J.Yesudas

Day 330: OMG 2: Ellarum Chollanu

There would not be any Malayalee who hasn't heard this song. This is from the movie Neelakuyil, a landmark cinema in Malayalam film industry. Before this movie came along, most of the movies produced and directed copied the plots of successful Hindi and Tamil movies. The music was also a copy of these movies.

This movie changed everything and created a new wave.  This is the first movie to win a National Award for Malayalam cinema. It won the President's Silver medal too. The film marked the debut of Sathyan and Miss Kumari, P.Bhaskaran and others. The music was also a turning point in the film music industry as the director used the Malayalam folk tunes and Carnatic music. Such a beautiful movie and music! I love all the songs (about 9 of them) from this movie.

Movie: Neelakuyil (The Blue Cuckoo)
Music: K. Raghavan
Lyricist: P. Bhaskaran
Year: 1954
Director: P.Bhaskaran and Ramu Kairat
Screenplay: Uroob and P.Bhaskaran (mentioned this because this is one of the first and ori…

Day 329: Old Malayalam Gems (OMG): Ayala porichathundo

Malayalam film music has evolved with time. Initially, with the great musicians like Dakshinamoorthy, M.S.Baburaj, M.K. Arjunan, M.S.Vishwanathan and G.Devarajan Malayalam cinema industry saw a new wave of compositions. Together with prolific lyricists, the old songs remind the listeners of the good old days. Later part of 70's saw the rise of younger composers like Johnson, Raveendran, Ilayaraja, Ouseppachan, M.G.Radhakrishnan, Shyam and so many other composers. Even today, after a good 40-50 years of time listening to these songs makes us feel much more happy and calm.

 I love listening to old Hindi and Tamil as well. There are many a number of sites that discuss these old gems from Tamil and Hindi probably due to the reach of their film industry. So, I thought its time to start collating the best from old Malayalam songs. Well, I should also thank my friend Sylvian Patrick for inspiring me to do such a series. He runs a brilliant blog (now his website!) with varied topics. One…

Day 328: Almost a year of Maheshinte Prathikaram

Malayalam cinema has always been a part of me. The move to the far west has made it my most sought out companion to fight off loneliness. In 2016 Malayalam cinema industry saw a whole range of wonderful releases. One of the best among them was Maheshinte Prathikaram. Among the lead actors of recent times, I love Parvathy, DQ, Nivin, and Fahad (love that name!). Fahad has given some wonderful performances in all his movies. This was one of the much-awaited hits of Fahad in recent times- Maheshinte Prathikaram.

It is almost a year since the release of this movie and I think it will be known like Manichitrathazhu and other gems from the past in the coming years. This movie was the directorial debut of Dileesh Pothan, an AD of Aashiq Abu. With Shyam Pushkaran's terrific screenplay based on true events (life of Thampan Purushan of Cherthala), brilliant music (background and tracks) by Bijibal, and stellar performances by the entire cast, Maheshinte Prathikaram is a sweet movie to watc…

Day 327: Stories that inspire - J.K. Rowling

We all face rejection in our life. The only aberration is that we all face it at different stages of our life. Most people fight it their way and a few others leave it for the universe to decide. Among those who fight it, we have a few who rise and shine like a star and a few others like a meteor. As we all inhabit this world together, we are part of a joint family. Hence, the stories of such successes after failures have to be shared so as to inspire the others in this family to do their best. Even though each story and journey is unique and probably will never work for most others sharing such stories can inspire us to make our decisions, choices and feel positive.

One of my favorite story is about J.K. Rowling. Watch this success story of her in this short video. It is a fun watch with the easy cute doodling as they narrate her story. I cannot imagine a life without Harry Potter and the memories I have of reading this from my school days until today with the same passion and inter…

Day 326: Soulful Sunday : All things soulful!

What is soulful, my friend?
Is it when you love the imperfect you?
or is it when you hope for the best
even when you under stress?
Is it when your spirits are dampened
yet you rise up like a Phoenix?
or is it when you celebrate
being alive and free?

My friend, I have realized
a soulful life is all that and more.
It is when you shake yourself free
of the demons eating the insides of you.
When you hold your dearest,
close to your heart, yet let go.
When you forgive the past
and cherish the present.
When you love without any confines.
And are thankful for the
morning light and the all the smiles.

© Meena Arvind 2017

Day 325: Silly Saturday

Ah! If I were to write down the list of all things silly and embarrassing that I have done in my life, I am sure the list is going to be long. That doesn't mean I regret it because everything is a lesson . However, for this post, here is the here is one of the silliest things I have done in my life. In one of our home visits, we had to go out to shop for a few things. I was tired after the long trip and was running a slight temperature. So, despite being excited about the shopping trip, I was physically tired. We got off the public transport we took and stopped at the store which we wanted to go to. Then a couple other shop hops we were almost done. As we stepped out, we were debating if we should explore the other side of the market street which was a great place for shopping or should we head back to the station to take the train back home. The shopper in me wanted to shop more but my physical self wasn't that excited. It was like a tug of war and finally the shopper in me …

Day 324:Friendly Fridays

Friendly Friday here is going to be about a song on friendship by Bruno Mars. Dedicated to all those who are blessed with such lovely friends. Hope y'all like it!

Video Courtesy: YouTube:

Day 323: Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday!

Well, #TBT has become a popular hashtag on Twitter and Instagram and other sites.  I haven't felt like using it on any of those pages yet but thought let me do a different kind of #tbt for this post.
#tbt for me is about nostalgia. Things that i am nostalgic about are the moments and those beautiful days with my mom and brother. I am not including dad here not because I have less love for me (not at all!!) but because he was the one at work and it was always the three of us most times. For me #tbt is not just the things that i used as a little girl, or a teenager, or even as a young adult. It is everything that is packaged together- the smell from the past, the voice of my brother (the younger age voice), my mom and dad, the smell of those old books, the habit of keeping my personal diary and many more. It is nostalgic to listen to the old jingles that played on the tv or radio. It is nostalgic to think and relive the moment where I sat down to eat 'ila ad…

Day 322: Wordless Wednesday : Yum!

Not a great pic but one of my favorite - Ashoka halwa. It is special because it is made by my brother:) Yum! 

Day 321: Timeless Tuesdays: Dasettan's timeless gems

A few things in this world are timeless. What more is apt for today-10th of January than Dr. K.J.Yesudas's songs. They are timeless and will remain so in the years to come. Of course, the music directors/composers play a crucial and the biggest role in why or how a song becomes timeless. However, having said that, Das uncle/Dasettan (as he is known) is truly a blessing to the world of music. 
Growing up listening to Malayalam songs, it is hard for someone to have not heard his name or songs. He has over 7500 songs to his credit and he has won seven National awards, five Filmfare awards, State Awards for more than 43 times, Padma awards and also has won the hearts of audience of all age groups. He has sung in many languages and I don't think the Bollywood composers used his  talents well enough. I also like the Ilayaraja and Das uncle combos. There is some pure magic there. 
He has also rendered devotional songs and performed Carnatic concerts. Oru neramenkilum is one such son…

Day 320: Munchkin Monday : Little Claire and her adorable voice

The coming week starting today until Sunday will be a series of special posts. The days of the week will have a prefix of my choice and that will lay the theme or plot for the post. So, today is Munchkin Monday. Why munchkin? Well, I love little kids and babies and this is an informal term for them.

Today's post is about a little munchkin I saw online. She is an internet star and is around 3-4 years of age. She performs and sings Disney songs with her dad and they are adorable.

Their YouTube channel is called Claire and the Crosbys and the subscription list and likes they recieve with every post is a proof of her adorability. I see a succesful and talented singer in her and I am sure she might also be good for voice overs- especially the animated movies.

Here is one the videos that I saw and loved. It is a song from Tangled. It amazes me to see how a three year old has learnt her lines and has rendered it so beautifully. Pitch is one of the most important trait for a good singer.…

Day 319: Christmas Colt

I know I have discussed my reading saga on this blog many a number of times. However, I am not sure if I have ever mentioned about one of the first children's books that sowed the seeds of becoming a writer (It is still a dream). This book is also the reason for my love for horses. Well, otherwise, I had never been near one while back home in India. The book is called, 'Christmas Colt' by Mallory Stevens. I must have been 13 when I read that book. I am grateful for my parents to have taken both my brother and me to a library during our younger days as none of the schools I studied ever had a good collection and nor did they encourage children to use it well. Even though the book is for young children up to 12 or maybe a 13 year (at max), I think most of us would enjoy it even as an adult (at least for a one time read). 
The book is about a little girl called Chrissie and her dear horse. It had the magical charm of christmas and as a child I was transported to the stable a…

Day 318: Some ramblings on social comparison and gratitude

Can I ever be you? I don't think so. I am a different person and so are you. So is each one of us. We are all running our own race, a few of us are running marathons, a few of us are walking at our own pace, a few hopping all around with no strings attached. Some of us are attached to our family and will run with them on our mind and for a few others, it is a lonely walk and whatever we decide we do as we tread.

However, we try to stop and pause as we meet others who are on this journey. We weigh in ourselves with others to determine our strength and personal worth. It could be on attractiveness, financial status, professional or educational growth, status in society, friends, family, intelligence and so on. This in psychology is understood as social comparison.

From a very young age, we develop as irrational beings and the size of someone else's pie or toy will make us feel that we are left with nothing in this world. These ought to change as we grow and mature but does it? …

Day 317: 50 years of golden music

When I first got a chance to listen to A.R.Rahman, I was probably a 9 or 10 year old back home in Trivandrum. The lack of options at home to stumble upon cinema music was compensated by the set of friends in the neighborhood who owned walkman and stereos that played new music. The very first song that both my brother and I got to listen was the one from 'Kadhalan'- mukkala mukkabla laila, oh oh laila ! At that age, all I understood was 'Jurassic Park' as that was a movie that was popular among everybody during that period. It was one of my first and only exposure to Hollywood movie for a very long time. The song stayed with us even as we did not get to listen to it often. Then on a random day we stumbled on to songs from Roja on television. We usually never watched much of television and on a rare holiday occasion, Roja music was played because of it's National Awards. I surely felt very celestial listening to the songs and I am sure he stayed on my mind from then…

Day 316: Demonetization- who is bearing the pain?

November 8, 2016 will be set as a phenomenal date in the history of the world. Too many things changed everywhere and sometimes these turning points will lead humanity to a new horizon. Ah, but don't ask me if it is for the best or the worst. In the United States, a businessman trumped the world by becoming the president elect of United States of America. While this was making waves all around the world and most countries especially India's national media had all their eyes and ears on to happenings here in the US, the Prime Minister decided to play a master stroke and took all by surprise. He decided to bring in a new 'change'- demonetization of two of the largest denominations of Indian currency. Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000  was nullified and that is almost 86% of Indian currency.

So, those who saved these notes in their piggy banks or inside their wallets or inside secret stashes at home had to find ways to get that changed. Most of India tries to keep cash in hand for eme…

Day 315 : What's on your bucket list?

Bucket List. A term that has become popular much after the famous movie with the same title in 2007. The term would have probably taken after the euphemism 'kick the bucket', which was again popularized in the movie, 'It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world'. The 2007 movie was a massive hit and how would it be not? It had Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman in the lead. The term was meant to have a list of things you wish you can do before you leave this world.

It is like a goal list that can evolve as you grow and change perspectives in life. I used to have a wish list that worked as a to-do list mostly like a work list for short-term goals. However, off late, I have decided to make one and keep it as an ever evolving list.

The first one on my list as of now (that was from the past too) is to get my biggest degree in life. Hopefully I will tick that one off my list soon.

Do share your thoughts on your list and how do you plan on getting it all checked out.


Day 314 : Swindlers !

A recent article in the NYT was a shocker. It is about the call center scamming of Americans. Big cities like Mumbai host a plenty of call centers and all these off shore outsourcing benefits countries like the US. A phone, a PC, insurance, baggage claims from airlines, etc., are all outsourced to such call centers. And when you pick the call, an Adam, Sandra, John who talks to us are actually, Prem, Sandhya, or Prakash from India. Just like companies with a good intent (that helps finding a lost baggage or insurance claim), there are many companies whose sole purpose is to scam in the name of Federal government. Taking the cue that US citizens have a great regard for its police and government and are petrified at the thought of being questioned by these officials, these scammers get their way to the bank accounts with just a few confusing information. Apparently, such companies have been able to swindle almost $300 million dollars from Americans. With the help of two whistleblowers, …

Day 313 : Fading Red

You were that little red color on my canvas,  now I see you fading off.  Is it your way of saying that you are bored  to be coloring my space and have found newer artwork to decorate? 
My canvas is now losing its charm and at times I am trying to recreate everything,  just like in the past.  Those moments of mirth and happy reflections,  simple conversations and many more creations. 
You have moved on to forge newer allies,  in bigger canvas mounted on larger frames.  For you I might not matter much,  but do remember, you were my favorite lucky charm. 
I miss you my dear red splash,  but I will have to keep moving on,  finding newer colors to adorn my wall.  I will find peace in the faded spots for they are trinkets of life's bitter traps. 
© Meena Arvind 2017

Day 312: Happy New Year 2017!


Happy New Year. So, we have already walked into the next year. One more year around the sun. And it is 2017. Now, 2020 doesn't seem that far away and 2010 seems like very much in the past. So, whenever I say not so long ago, I was back home working, it is now over 7 years. The social media sites and other means of communication makes these moments seem so seamless that I always miss out on the timeline and still believe that things that happened in 2010 was just in the recent past. Well, that takes me to the last year's challenge I set for myself. For the blog's 10th birthday, I wanted to write a #365day post and I should have completed it last August. However, my journey took a sudden halt with a lot on my plate and it didn't get done. It was so erratic that I did not even write a post on the 10th birthday! Now time has just moved ahead and the blog is turning 11 in 2017. The last post was 311th one and I am only 54 posts short of completing this challenge. I pl…