Chronology of Vani Jayaram's Tamil Film Songs
- by Saravanan 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979

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Coming to 1974, lets have a cursory glance at how the others fared this year. PS was continuing unfazed with lots of hits from films like Sivagamiyin Selvan, Kanmani Raja, Thirudi, Vani Rani, Thirumangalyam, Urimaikural, Roshakkari, Rajanagam etc. SJ, basking in her regained popularity, was not far behind, singing memorable numbers like "Kanniley enna undu"-Aval oru thodarkathai, "Konja neram ennai maranthen"- Sirithu vaazha vendum, "Ennodu kannan yen pesavillai"-Thaai pasam, "Anbumikka mapillaikku"-Engal Kula deivam, "Ilamai naatiya salai"-Kalyanamaam kalyanam , "Angey varuvathu yaaro"-Netru indru naalai etc. LRE gave some good songs like "Mandhaara malarey"-Naan Avan illai, "Adi ennadi ulagam"-Aval oru thodarkathai, "Aadikku pinne"-Sivagamiyin Selvan, "Oorgolam pogindra"-Akkarai pachchai, and "Marandhey pOchu"-Aththaya Mamiya.

Soolamangalam Rajalakshmi, proved though it was 1974, she still could not be written off, by singing her way into the hearts of discerning music lovers. Who can forget her 1974 songs like "Ezhuthi ezhuthi pazhagi vandhen" and "Therodum veedhiyile" from Gumasthavin Magal, "Sonnale vaai manakkum" from Thanga Valayal and "Kalyanam oru vizha" from Tiger Thathachari (for which film she was the MD as well). Jikki testified that her voice was intact in "Edhai ketpatho edhai solvatho" and "Poomalai ondru"-Paththu maadha bandham. Bhanumathi sang her own songs, as usual, in Paththu maadha bandham and Thaai Pirandhaal. Jayalalitha too sang 2 songs - "Iru maangani pol"-Vairam and "Chithira mandabathil"-Anbai thedi.

So lets come to VJ's songs this year:


Malligai en mannan mayangum - Deergasumangali
Indha pennodu pirandhadhu - Samayalkaran
Pon mana chemmalai - Sirithu vaazha vendum
Sippiyile Muthu - Anbai thedi
Thaththi chellum muthu kannan - Thanga Padhakkam

Kannadi amma un Idhayam - Paadhapoojai
Sugham Sugham ithu - Paadhapoojai
Naan solla vandhen - Pudhiya Manithan
Enakkenna manakavalai - Sorgathil thirumanam
Aagayam mazhai pozhinja - Dhikkatra Parvathi

Enna kutram seitheno - Dhikkatra Parvathi
Anbu Meghamey - Engamma Sabatham
Vaa ilamai azhaikkinrathu - Engamma sabatham
Enna maharani - Ungal Viruppam
Unakku naan sondham - Unnai thaan thambi

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Malligai en mannan mayangum - Deergasumangali
Singers:VJ - Music:M.S.Viswanathan

VJ's first super hit, which made everyone sit up and take notice of her.

The film starred K.R.Vijaya, Muthuraman, Major, Pushpalatha, Sivakumar, Jayachitra, Jayasudha and others. A good old "Family" story, with its share of joy and sorrow. Other songs in the film were "Aayiram aayiram aandin munne"-SPB,PS&Chorus and "Deergasumangali vaazhgave" - PS and MSV versions.

Muthuraman doesn't think too high of wife KRV's people, who are country bumpkins. When the whole set of them gatecrash into their house, Muthuraman finds that he has no place to sleep, and so must sleep in the open. He is miffed about it. KRV, sensing his mood, gently shakes the jasmine creeper, so that the flowers fall on him, and sings this lovely song to pacify him.

K.R.Vijaya, in a TV interview, said that this was her favorite song. Quite understandable!

Uma Ramanan, too gained by this song- in the sense that "Malligai" along with "Thaththichellum muthu kannan sirippu" was the song which Uma regularly sang to housefull halls in the initial years of AV Ramanan's performances!

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Indha pennodu pirandhadhu - Samayalkaran
Singers:VJ&SJ - Music:M.S.Viswanathan

Minerva Movies' Samayalkaran was a rather shoddy remake of Rajesh Khanna's famous "Bawarchi". Mu Ka Muthu played the tamizh bawarchi.

MSV had given a couple of good songs. Mu Ka Muthu's "Sondhakkaranga enakku romba perunga" was very popular. Other songs include the classical "Naan paadidum kavithaiyin"-TMS and "Unakkum ragasiyam"-TMS & PS.

This song seems to be a dance competition. I like it a lot, especially as it had the two great female voices- SJ & VJ coming together for the first time. How spellbinding it is to hear them in this semi-classical song, making swift swara sancharas one after the other, giving us a rare musical treat!

VJ: Indha Pennodu piranthathu nadanam
Ival kannodu vilainthathu nalinam
Ithil ennodu inai sollum pennmai
Ingu ennaalum kidaiyaathu-unmai!

SJ: Aada vandhaal oru azhaguchilai
Ival adimaiyendraanathu nadana kalai
Theda vandhaal ingu thani perumai
Ival sirpigal sedhukkaatha uyir padhumai

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Pon mana chemmalai - Sirithu vaazha vendum
Singers:VJ&TMS - Music:M.S.Viswanathan

VJ's first song for a MGR film - the Pillayar Suzhi for a short but glorious chapter of VJ's songs for MGR starrers. The movie was directed by S.S.Balan- S.S.Vasan's son. Starred MGR and Latha.

Other songs include the alluring "Konja neram ennai marandhen"(TMS,SJ) and the appalling "Mera naam Abdul Rehman"(TMS).

VJ starts off the song: Pon mana chemmalai pun pada cheithathu yaaro, athu yaaro?
Un manam enbathum en manam enbathum vero arivaaro?

(Going by the words, it would seem that MGR is either physically hurt or upset about something and Latha is trying to nurse/pacify him), but she apparently has other designs as well, going by her next lines:

Unnai oru sei pol naan thaalaatta
vanna chiru sevvaayil then ootta
thiru meni nalamaagalaam, thigattadha sugam kaanalaam
vilagaamal naam uravaadalaam!

Immediately, MGR seems to recover sufficiently to sing:

Mannavan en manam pun pada seithathu kanne undhan kanne
kannathin muththathil kaayangal aaridum penney pasum ponney!!

A different type of nursing - nothing clinical about it!! Nonetheless, a gentle, melodious duet.

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Sippiyile Muthu - Anbai thedi
Singers:VJ - Music:M.S.Viswanathan

Muktha Films' Anbai Thedi, directed, of course by Muktha V Srinivasan, starred Sivaji Ganesan, Jayalalitha, Major Sundararajan, Vijayakumari, Srikanth, Subha, Manohar, Manorama and others. It was a Deepavali release of 1974. The other songs were "Chithira mandabathil"-TMS-JJ, "Budhdhi ketta ponnu onnu"-TMS-PS & "Ammavum appavum vellai poonaigal"-Pushpalatha.

Sivaji, the younger brother of Vijayakumari is given to daydreaming and hallucinations. This nature of his leads to the child of Major and Vijayakumari getting kidnapped. The child seems to be lost forever. Sivaji is reformed due to the efforts of his sweetheart JJ, who ties on him a supposedly magical talisman. He becomes a new man and marries JJ, on the understanding that they would hand over their first born to Major and Vijayakumari, to compensate their loss. Though JJ agrees to this, when she is expecting her child, she feels miserable that she will have to part from it as soon as it is born. It is in this context that she sings this song, drawing analogies from the epics, in an effort to console herself.

Sippiyile muthu athu sippikkenna sontham
Thennaiyile ilaneer athu thennaikkenna sontham
Ongi varum mullai athu oru kodiyin pillai
Eduththukkondu ponaal athu kodikku sondhamillai

Janakan magal illaiyadi vedhavathi Seethai
Vedan magan illaiyadi Valliyenum kothai
Iruvarume pona kathai irandu vazhi paathai
Ezhuthiyavan ezhuthuvittan enakku enna vaathai

Karnanenum vallalukkum annai sonthamillai
Kannan ennum deivam kooda irandu veettu pillai
Annai enna annai ithil thandhai enna thandhai
Aanaiyidum thalaivanukku eedu inai illai

Beautiful lyrics, drawing apt mythological parallels. VJ brings out with understanding, the misery of the expectant mother who has to give away her child. Hark at the tremulous variations in her voice. Listen to the suppressed outrage in "Annai enna annai, ithil thandhai enna thandhai", and the resignation to fate echoing in the line "Aanaiyidum thalaivanukku eedu inai illai".

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Thaththi chellum muthu kannan - Thanga Padhakkam
Singers:VJ&Saibaba - Music:M.S.Viswanathan

VJ too deserves a thangapathakkam for this enchanting song.
Who can forget Inspector Chowdhury, Lakshmi or Jagan? I remember being awe-struck when, as a child, I saw this film for the first time on Madras DD. Mahendran's script, originally for a drama, made into a classic film. Sivaji, KRVijaya and Srikanth assumed larger than life proportions.

MSV, came up with excellent songs, as usual. All of them became popular. Nallathoru Kudumbam-TMS & PS, with the change in tempo whenever TMS sings - with the lyrics beautifully bringing out the feelings of the mother and the father vis-a-vis their wayward son - is an unforgettable song. TMS's Sumaithaangi saainthaal is a gem. Sodhanai mel sodhanai, with Pramila's "Mama ..." dialogues, is a typical Sivaji-TMS tearjerker.

Coming to Thathichellum- the HMV tape gives the unabridged version. It begins with Sivaji reciting "Twinkle twinkle little star ...".

VJ then begins

Thaththichellum muthu kannan sirippu
alli thaalaattum annai petra madhippu
vilayaatu pillai konda thudippu,
engal varungaalam avan konda poruppu

In the interlude, Saibaba sings the rhyme again.

The usual radio version fades as VJ sings "Anbukkey ellai ananda mullai", and you can just catch the "Thaththi chellum" feebly. However, the HMV version has one more stanza- It goes like this:

Kuthu vilakku annai vadivam
Muthu vilakku pillai paruvam
Pathu vilakku thandhai uruvam
endru vilangum engal kudumbam
Thaththi chellum ....

Surprise! Surprise! That's not all. VJ also sings, with Saibaba, the same "Twinkle twinkle little star", not once, but twice! And her English, like her tamizh and other languages she sings in, is flawless!

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Kannadi amma un Idhayam - Paadhapoojai
Singers:VJ&PS - Music:Jaya-Vijaya

VJ's first song with PS. It goes like this:
(PS starts off first and VJ follows)

Kannadi amma un idhayam,
en kanne, naan adhai paarthaal,
en mugham kaattum,
deiveega bandham nam uravu,
ennaalum theyaadha nilavu.

I love it when they go high in the line "deiveega bandham nam uravu", and come down with "ennalum theyaatha nilavu" and then a humming. Wonderful!

The film starred Sivakumar, Jayachitra and Kumari Padmini (or was it Jaya?). Anyway, the two are sisters. Interestingly, in a discussion on Bhim Singh, Subbu says this film was by Bhim Singh. Also, he says there are also solo versions of this song, by VJ (happy) for Jaya and PS (pathos) for Jayachitra.

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Sugham Sugham ithu - Paadhapoojai
Singers:VJ&TMS - Music:Jaya-Vijaya.

The song (ragam:Anandabhairavi) goes like this:

VJ: Sugam sugam ithu
TMS: Naan suvauthu rasippathu!
VJ: Then pazham pazhamithu
TMS: En pasiyai valarpathu!
VJ: Kanna unnaal kanden nannaal
TMS: Kanney unnaal kanden ponnaal

Jaya-Vijaya were a duo, who had earlier composed music for "Shanmugapriya" (1973) - it had the famous "Kundrangal aadi varum"-PS. If I remember right, they also composed music for the controversial "Pappathi"(1979) stg: Jaiganesh and Rathidevi.

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Naan solla vandhen - Pudhiya Manithan
Singers:VJ&SPB - Music:???

Puthiya Manithan starred Jaishankar, with perhaps, Jayasudha. I have seen it as a child, but don't remember the story. This song too, I have heard a couple of times in the late 70s on Ilangai Vaanoli and not since then.

Now, thanks to, I am hearing it after many years. It is a melodious duet by SPB and VJ.

VJ: Naan solla vandhen, nalamaana seithi
Vaikasi matham, kalyana thedhi
SPB: Janaki-Sri Ramanin kaathal nayagi allavo
Naan kettukkonden, nalamaana seithi
Naan kandukkonden-nee enthan paadhi

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Enakkenna manakavalai - Sorgathil thirumanam
Singers:VJ - Music:???

Yet again, who was the MD? I think the song was picturized on Latha.

Enakkenna manakavalai
inippillai kasappum illai
ithu oru thuravu nilai
mazhayile nanaikiren
veyilil kaaigiren

Has VJ speaking English in between- "No mother, no father, we don't bother" and again "Where we begin, where we end, then and there, we have no friend".

VJ superbly brings out the frustrations and disappointments which the heroine has undergone and her "don't care" attitude at present.

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Aagayam Mazhai Pozhinja - Dhikkatra Parvathi
Singers:VJ - Music:Veenai Chittibabu

Navatharang's Thikkatra Parvathi(1974) starred Srikanth and Lakshmi. It was directed by Singeetham Srinivasa Rao, and based on a story by Rajaji. The film won the National Award for the Best Tamil Film, and also won the Film Fare Award in the same category, and also fetched the Best Director Award for Singeetam Srinivasa Rao.

"Bharat Ratna" Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari (1878- 1972) was a great man in every sense - a zealous patriot, a trailblazing social reformer, perceptive thinker, profound scholar and author. As a writer, Rajaji was awarded the Sahitya Akademy Award. Rajaji's lucid translations of the Ramayana and Mahabharata will find place in most urban Indian households. His other popular works in English include Baja Govindam, Thirukkural, Upanishads, Hinduism - Doctrine & Way of Life and The Geeta. His book on Marcus Aurelius is held as a celebrated treatise. His "Stories for the Innocent" makes irresistible reading. He has written around 30 books in both English and Tamil. Many of his stories had social messages, espousing eradication of evils like untouchability and dowry system. In Thikkatra Parvathi, he advocated total prohibition, by detailing the havoc caused by drink.

Singeetham Srinivasa Rao (born 21 Sep 1931) is among the most popular directors of Southern India. Thikkatra Parvathi was his second film, Neethi Nijayithi(1972) being his first. After Thikkatra Parvathi, it was Kamal who brought him back to Tamil with Rajapaarvai in 1981. Singeetam's runaway Telugu hit Sommokadidi Sokokadidi(1978) was dubbed in Tamil as Iru Nilavugal. Later Singeetam distinguished himself in films like Pesum Padam, Apoorva Sahodarargal, Michael Madana Kamarajan, Magalir Mattum etc. He has directed more than 55 films in Telugu, Kannada and Tamil. His latest experiment is an animation feature film, Pentamedia's "Son of Aladdin" (scripted by Mark Zaslove). Singeetam is now excitedly doing the spadework for 3 different movies: a Science Fiction film in Telugu, another film called "Traffic Jam", and Kamal's next film titled "Krishnaleela". Asked about his age, he laughs and says "I think like a 21 year old!".

The music for Thikkatra Parvathi was by the renowned Veena Maestro Dr.Chittibabu. Chittibabu was said to be a child prodigy who gave his first fullfledged performance when he was barely 12 years old. He was trained by the great Emani Sankara Sastri, and blossomed into one of the most acclaimed Veena players of his generation. While his traditional pieces are soul stirring, his innovative works like "Musings of a Musician", "Solitude", "Rhapsody", "Rendezvous & Old Memories", "Fairy tale", "Royal Salute", "Temple Bells/Serenade" etc showcase the genius in all his glory.

Chittibabu was no stranger to Tamil film music. His veenai was the mellifluous backbone of Sridhar's Kalaikkoyil. Thikkatra Parvathi, was perhaps the only film he independently composed music for, and though he gave a wonderful musical structure to the story, his work went largely unnoticed, perhaps due to the film coming a cropper. In fact, VJ was amazed when I mentioned this film and her songs in it!

And Chittibabu chose VJ to sing both the songs that he envisaged for the film, an acknowledgement by one great artiste of another great artiste's talents.

"Aagayam mazhappozhinja aathukku kondattam" is a song that details vividly, stage by stage the joys of expectant motherhood and nature's magic called childbirth. Chittibabu's imaginative composition and innovative interludes make this song a timeless miracle. Each charanam has a different structure; the entire song delights in its unexpected turns. VJ brings such evocative moments to the song, it has to find place among her best efforts. Listen to the exuberance each time she sails into your heart with "Pulla perum kaalam vandhaa ponnukku kondaattam", and let us discover anew this forgotten masterpiece.

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Enna kutram seitheno - Dhikkatra Parvathi
Singers:VJ - Music:Veenai Chittibabu

This haunting song holds the record of being the only film song that had lyrics penned by Rajaji himself. VJ says humbly that this was great honor for her, to have sung Rajaji's lines. He was a good writer, as we have already seen, and his "Kurai ondrum illai maraimoorthi kannai" is a song that has been immortalized by MS Subbulakshmi. "Enna kutram seitheno" too has some arresting lines. Chittibabu has chosen the Harmonium here to accompany VJ as she embarks on her soulful song. Hark at the despair that she brings into each line, especially when she almost breaks down in the last repetition of "ariyaaro ampuviyil".

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Anbu Meghamey - Engamma Sabatham
Singers:VJ&SPB - Music:Vijayabaskar

Vijaya Bhaskar had made every one sit up with his grand re-entry into tfm with his score for "Kalyanamaam kalyanam".(The TMS-SJ "Ilamai naatiya saalai" is a classic) VJ didn't have any songs in it. However after this, she sang in almost all VB's films. Indded she was his "Assthaana Paadagi" and this combination invariably struck gold.

Anbu meghamey is a lovely duet-almost has an ethereal air about it. VJ's lines

Kaanatha thunai kaana vandhathu iravu,
kaiyodu kai serkka vandhathu unravu


Kalyaana sorgathin radham vandhathu,
kaneril nee sonna kathai vandhathu

are spellbinding.

The picturisation was a big let down, though. I have been hearing this song for ever so long, but only recently, the last time I went to India, I got to see it, on one of the channels.

I found that Panju arunachalam has remade his "Engamma Sabatham" as "Vanaja Girija" almost 20 years later! (He had done the same thing before too, remade his own "Hello Partner"(1972) as "Ellam Inba mayam" (1981).

Vidhubala and Jayachitra are sisters, whose mother has a score to settle with the father of Muthuraman and Sivakumar. Hence these two try to trap the brothers into marrying them. Jayachitra pretends that she recalls memories of her previous birth or something like that, in order to attract Sivakumar. She then walks in the night, as though in a trance, and Sivakumar follows her, and they sing this song.

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Vaa ilamai azhaikkinrathu - Engamma sabatham
Singers:VJ,TMS,PS&SPB - Music:Vijayabaskar

TMS-PS for Muthu-Vidhubala and SPB-VJ for Siva-Jayachitra. Vijayabaskar must be complimented for one aspect- All the 4 singers get exactly equal number of lines- no partiality here!

The songs starts with the TMS-PS pair, with VJ coming in the first saranam - her lines:

Malarum idhazhgal kulira kulira,
mayangum uravu valara valara.

Four great singers, making it a memorable song.

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Enna maharani - Ungal Viruppam
Singers:VJ&SPB - Music:Vijayabaskar

A good comedy film. Jaishankar and Jayachitra, with a number of comedy actors as well. The other duet "Manjal poosi", by Kovai Soundararajan and LR Anjali was a bigger hit.

This song goes like this:

SPB: enna maharani, azhagu, azhagu, azhagu
innum sila neram pazhagu pazhagu pazhagu
VJ: mun pin ariyaatha uravu uravu uravu
moha mani neram ithu oru pudhu kathai

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Unakku naan sondham - Unnai thaan thambi
Singers:VJ,SPB&Chorus - Music:Vijayabaskar

Can anyone help with the starcast of this film? Of course, the more popular song from it was the SPB-Vasantha number "Manivilakke maanthalire".

This song, apparently is when the heroine plays with some kids. She blindfolds herself and tries to catch them, when the hero (who else?) suddenly appears and she lays her hands on him, by mistake, of course!

Starts off like this:

Unakku naan sondham
enakku nee sondham
pirikka yaar undu,
anaithu kollungal
olindhu maraindhaal
valaithu pidippen

Then VJ asks the kids "Varalaama" to which they first reply "Vendaam" and then say "varalaam".

I think that covers 1974. Can any one think any more VJ songs from this year? Please come forth. We'll next see 1975, which was a very important year for VJ as the highest laurels came her way.

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