Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  fring151 on Tue Jul 23, 2013 6:38 pm

In my view, the blog scenario of Raja is also not very mature, though it is better than others. Here are two reasons:

1.  While most analytical blogs speak positively about his techniques, rarely do they touch on failed experiments. In a mature evaluation, you need to deal with both success and failure.  I think it is time for Raja bloggers to get to that next level

2. Almost all blogs are individual contributions. My view is that, any blog that does deep analysis must go with some theme or the other. Navigating Raja's work over the past 4 decades is very cumbersome. There is a definite need for collaboration when you do some serious research. While forums such as this are at times focused, they tend to lose focus after a while. Collaboration is completely lacking among Raja bloggers/researchers. I have tried unsuccessfully many times to rope fans into a format. Of late, I do most of the slogging of navigating his work. I only seek opinions where I lack expertise.

  Unless the above two happens, the Raja blogosphere will revolve in the same axis and will lose steam after some time.  Trust me, there are not that many low hanging fruits any longer.

Ravinat,
Good point. I think one of the problems is lack of sufficient expertise. While there are several Carnatic jaambavaans and hence much better documentation and analysis of Carnatic and rhytmic innovations in the Raja blogosphere, as far as wcm and jazz goes, these being alien genres, we still don't have enough people with solid wcm knowledge to attempt a large scale analysis. Hence the reason why blogs like yours are rare and much needed! As far as collaboration goes, I have a thought which I wanted to float. Wikipedia entries for Raja's works are woefully inadequate or non-existent. Since most people use wikipedia as an all-purpose reference these days, I think that having comprehensive articles on his works there will go a long way in drawing more people increasing interest in them. How about we start with editing the entries for the "Big three"- TIS, HTNI and NBW. We can think about film scores and soundtracks later. I was thinking of something along the lines of this:
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._5_%28Beethoven%29

Again, the handicap for us here is getting hold of the original scores (staff notation) or transcribing by ear (which I am completely incapable of even attempting with my extremely limited knowledge and experience). We can definitely edit to make it better than http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_to_Name_It%3F or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thiruvasakam_in_Symphony though.

Feedback/criticism welcome!

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  equanimus on Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:20 pm

I think a lot of other things (perhaps from some other discussions Smile) are being mixed up with the initial discussion to which Suresh responded in detail. Nobody said Raaja (early Raaja or what have you) was an extension of MSV! On the contrary, the point I'd made (originally in a few old posts: 1, 2, 3) was on the contrary that Raaja properly transcended MSV's style of music -i.e. in fanboy terms, beat the latter in his own game. Bala (Karthik)'s point was also about Rahman's music owing some things to Raaja (as opposed to offering a return to/continuation from MSV) and I think that's a valid point and needs to be explored.

I'm yet to read Suresh's posts, but pasting my initial response in twitter here as well just to clarify further:

Thanks! Will read the post and listen to the clips but a quick response: my feeling is your argument is that both MSV's music and Rahman's are in the same ballpark in terms of their complexity and depth and unlike Raaja. Which is of course true. But I think the question of lineage isn't so much about the depth of artistry as about elements/tropes that were passed on. By which I mean to distinguish what an artist does to a tradition from what constitutes the tradition. Not everyone carrying forward a tradition from an artist (like Raaja) will be in the same ballpark as the said artist. A modest carryover is not at all uncommon in such scenarios. However how much the elements/tropes established by the said artist informs the successor nevertheless remains a key question. My sense here (from that much laboured post) is that Rahman didn't "deal with" Raaja as Raaja "dealt with" MSV in the earlier times (and properly trascended his music). This is why I'd argue Raaja's music continues to 'haunt' (at least some of) us in a way MSV's music (great as it is) probably hasn't. There was a segue that set out to establish Raaja's music as something that has MSV within itself. I don't think this was the case with Rahman. So much for summarizing the basic point I was trying to make. Now regarding the musical elements in Rahman's music that owes to Raaja, I'm utterly illiterate to talk about it in technical terms, but I'd think specific musical elements that Raaja brought forth in TFM and since then has become part of the TFM archive so to say.

Now to go read Suresh's posts. Smile

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:28 pm

equa,

Didn't respond to what you said in detail on twitter due to space constraints and also work constraints.

I understand what you are trying to say. As you say, Raja 'dealt' with MSV, transcended him and established himself. In other words, Raja beat him at his own game. Whereas Rahman did not beat Raja at his own game, but changed the game. While commercially Rahman overtook Raja, there is no sense of musical overtaking, which you have about Raja vis a vis MSV. I know I am simplifying what you said and I hope this is what you meant. 

As far as tradition is concerned, there is probably no system anywhere in the world (with the possible exception of jazz) as Indian film music which can take so many diverse influences and yet display a continuity. And I agree with what you say that some things that Raja established have become mandatory, like the longer interludes which I had mentioned in a earlier post. So in that way, Rahman could not escape from certain things which had become the norm by the time he came in. So in that way what he did and keeps doing is still Indian film music, irrespective of the various external influences that he brings in.

Having said that, as I pointed out earlier, Rahman drew a lot from the standard structures which were available in the pre-Raja era. He also derived a few structures from the standard Carnatic music canon. The way in which Rahman took after MSV is his approach to melody and to the raga. Those were the elements of MSV that we see in Rahman and hence I feel that Rahman is more a torchbearer of MSV tradition voluntarily and involuntarily he had to take some elements of Raja. 

Will probably put up a few more examples to clarify on what I have said.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  ravinat on Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:39 pm

fring151 wrote:
In my view, the blog scenario of Raja is also not very mature, though it is better than others. Here are two reasons:

1.  While most analytical blogs speak positively about his techniques, rarely do they touch on failed experiments. In a mature evaluation, you need to deal with both success and failure.  I think it is time for Raja bloggers to get to that next level

2. Almost all blogs are individual contributions. My view is that, any blog that does deep analysis must go with some theme or the other. Navigating Raja's work over the past 4 decades is very cumbersome. There is a definite need for collaboration when you do some serious research. While forums such as this are at times focused, they tend to lose focus after a while. Collaboration is completely lacking among Raja bloggers/researchers. I have tried unsuccessfully many times to rope fans into a format. Of late, I do most of the slogging of navigating his work. I only seek opinions where I lack expertise.

  Unless the above two happens, the Raja blogosphere will revolve in the same axis and will lose steam after some time.  Trust me, there are not that many low hanging fruits any longer.

Ravinat,
Good point. I think one of the problems is lack of sufficient expertise. While there are several Carnatic jaambavaans and hence much better documentation and analysis of Carnatic and rhytmic innovations in the Raja blogosphere, as far as wcm and jazz goes, these being alien genres, we still don't have enough people with solid wcm knowledge to attempt a large scale analysis. Hence the reason why blogs like yours are rare and much needed! As far as collaboration goes, I have a thought which I wanted to float. Wikipedia entries for Raja's works are woefully inadequate or non-existent. Since most people use wikipedia as an all-purpose reference these days, I think that having comprehensive articles on his works there will go a long way in drawing more people increasing interest in them. How about we start with editing the entries for the "Big three"- TIS, HTNI and NBW. We can think about film scores and soundtracks later. I was thinking of something along the lines of this:
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._5_%28Beethoven%29

Again, the handicap for us here is getting hold of the original scores (staff notation) or transcribing by ear (which I am completely incapable of even attempting with my extremely limited knowledge and experience). We can definitely edit to make it better than http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_to_Name_It%3F or https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thiruvasakam_in_Symphony though.

Feedback/criticism welcome!

 All good ideas. However, the problem of expertise and the lack of collaboration will continue to plague this effort. I remember CSR starting some analysis work on TIS and he has the expertise in both CCM and WCM. I don't know where that effort is at.

  There is another possibility of integrating all the good analytical blogs. If the blog writers can collaborate, there can be a master site, which reproduces the content from the individual sites with the appropriate credits. The key here is to structure the master site in such a way that the reader must be able to educate himself/herself on key musical ideas and how Raja applies them. This will apply to all types of music that Raja touches. This may be more practical as all that is needed is to get permission to reproduce such articles on the master site.

  My writings in Tamil get regularly published on some sites even without any written permission Evil or Very Mad

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  jaiganesh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:48 pm

Raaga_Suresh wrote:app,

To a large extent that is my argument as well. That Raja was different but had to make some songs sound MSVish in order to satisfy people (film people not the common man.) So there were few MSVish songs but people take those up and say Raja extended MSV, which I do not agree upon. He was right from the beginning a different man with his own views. At the same time, I personally feel that his break from MSV was realised a bit more slowly than Rahman's break from Raja. 

You will already know this but for the sake of younger folks, we must talk about the situation in which Raja worked in. There was decent level of resistance to him in the film field. When he was given the first film 'Annakili' by Panju Arunachalam, there was opposition from Panju Arunachalam's brothers itself. They wanted to listen to the song with full orchestra before approving Raja. So Raja hired Balaji Kalyana Mandapam in T Nagar, practised with his group and only after hearing the whole orchestra they approved him as the MD for the film. Those were the days of MSV and Shankar Ganesh. So Raja had to tread bit slowly and had to satisfy lot of people in his initial days before he could start dictating terms.

Rahman, on the other hand, had no such issues. He was already a successful jingle maker and was very much in demand in the ad world. (Raja on the other hand was an assistant MD to GKV). He also got the full backing of influential TF folks like Balachander and Maniratnam, who had an axe to grind against Raja. Later Rahman got the backing of the hotshot debutant Shankar and also top producers like Kunjumon and Ratnam. So Rahman did not have any pressure to sound like Raja. (We must give credit to Rahman also here since he ensured his new sound was different and people asked for it.)
Raaja sounding MSV like is a tiring discussion for me..
Leave Annakkili and devraj mohan panju films - I take Bhadrakali  or Bhairavi - I dont see any MSV trace. And D_M tune is tune - there is no Raaja tune or Rahman tune or msv tune - It is just a pattern - Any d***head can create a tune. why dont you start humming or whistling and stay tune to a single scale or 'raaga' - voila we have a tune. Biggest difficulty is to make the tune progress meaningfully, define context, explain story and et al - This is where a composer is required. Sankar ganesh and likes simply formed a tune, handed it over to musicians and singers to make it a composition. Raaja has been doing it all by himself as he knows what composing is and what song formation is , from his playing for shoba chandrasekhar stage play days - And yes he has deliberately sounded like CR subbaraman or G Ramanadhan - for songs like Naan sirithaal deepaavali - but again watch closely, it is use of singers and instruments - thats all - the composition can be taken as is, singers changed, instrumentation redone and ppl will say - it is a different beast - because thats what ppl are - they listen and form an impression in their mind - what kopinaath calls 'nostalogy'. And MSV update or MSVishness of raaja is just that - ppl trying to see MSV through a Raaja prism.  If they are able to find, then it is the greatness of the old man and power of their nostaloginess. period.  On a humorous note, I have seen quite a few recent tunes of Raaja that had traces of SARajkumar in them ;-)
Coming back to composition - Raaja wanted to be a true composer in john williams mold and he has become one while trying to feed this attention span challenged junta with 'catchy' songs that break the flow of the story without 'breaking' the flow of the story (wonder what a torture it must have been). Right from the annakkiLi days Raaja has been hell bent on creating an organic musical entity with every element of the song/music - adding to a part of the picture that he paints - to better understand we have to go back to the NEPV thread where V_S gave a good explanation on the art history movement and how a single artist working in vacuum of his mind creates a work of art which is a(n) amalgamation/tapestry of harmonious ideas. And if an element is causing a rift in the amalgamation, Raaja has shown boldness that only befits a great composer in fixing it - IT could be not using a celebrated singer/musician/poet and we have examples of it all well known. Has he not compromised in this - Yes - out of various reasons he has -and when he has, you can see him balancing it with lushness in some other area - My friend keeps telling me that the first interlude magic of saaindhu saaindhu is to compensate for u1 and I have been having many arguments with him on that - but i have seen this pattern when a shoba chandrasekhar/bhavatharini/latha rajinikanth have been asked to sing - he does that consciously to hide and when the voice is the central element in the song , he has never compromised in patching up or bending over backwards to get back a singer. 
So that is contrary to the line of argument that Raaja doesnt 'menakkettufy' like ARR for a song - FALSE. He does for the song in a film - not for a song in his discography - not for posterity - but for the film and its economic and creative boundaries - if a more crisp sound spoils the rustic nature of the song, he doesnt go for it - but for a historical movie - he knows that the crispness adds to grandeur and follows it relentlessly. And yes a computer generated digital sound will be more crisp and a recorded live instrument will have an element of analog noise - probably that is where the 'jeevan' is and Raaja lets that get in to his recordings. As far as synth - it is a compromise he has done to keep him accessible to low budget movies through late 90s and 2000s and like Hulkster - I have no issues to 'soappu dappa' sound for there is a full meal in the 'whole composition' compensating for the compromise.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:53 pm

As I told equa, Rahman derives from older structures and builds on them many times. I had given a couple of MSV like song structures earlier. Now for a couple of Carnatic music based structures. Here again, please don't fall into 'this is copy' type of trap. All I am saying is that Rahman takes these raga outlines and the approach to the raga and then builds his song. (Raja generally tries to break away or not take any standard structures.)

Here is the lovely melody, 'enge enadhu kavidhai': 
Here is Venkatachalanilayam in the same Sindhu Bhairavi: 
Rahman song takes a different turn in the charanam but the Sindhu Bhairavi of the pallavi owes a lot to Venkatachalanilayam song

Here is the national award winning 'uyirum neeye' from 'Pavithra': http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NovCNFS1O1M
Here is 'brochevaarevaru raa' based on the same Khamas: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghza3IFbg54

Here again I am talking about only the pallavi part. If you sing 'brochevaarevaru' a bit slowly, you can hear its affinity to the Pavithra song. Again Rahman goes off in a different route, where Khamas is not too visible. Wherever it is visible, it is very close to 'brochevarevaruraa'.

There may be an argument which may come up saying the similarity between two songs in the same ragam is not surprising and that I could be over reading the 'coincidence'. First the phrasings are very similar and the color of the raga evoked are similar. Here is an example of how the same Khamas ragam can sound very different:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vu2LNUQR_Fg

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  jaiganesh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:08 pm

At the risk of sounding slanderous - the song uyirum neeye would have turned out different had any other non carnatic sabha singer had sung it.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:18 pm

jaiganesh wrote:And yes a computer generated digital sound will be more crisp and a recorded live instrument will have an element of analog noise - probably that is where the 'jeevan' is and Raaja lets that get in to his recordings. As far as synth - it is a compromise he has done to keep him accessible to low budget movies through late 90s and 2000s and like Hulkster - I have no issues to 'soappu dappa' sound for there is a full meal in the 'whole composition' compensating for the compromise.

 Amen to that. I guess along with you and Hulkster, I also share the same sentiment wrt Raja's synth usage.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:20 pm

jaiganesh wrote:At the risk of sounding slanderous - the song uyirum neeye would have turned out different had any other non carnatic sabha singer had sung it.

 LOL. I get that feeling for most of the songs sung by him Smile

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  jaiganesh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:30 pm

Funny thing is that he sits as a judge and then lectures that the rendition sounds a tad too carnaticesque - pray why is that so?
Now the point i am trying to make is - the song was improvised and all the raagaa shades u hear were there because the singer 
had the knowledge of the raaga and brought it in. Listen to any recent song and observe that singers with no carnatic background struggle to maintain a semblance of tune
 by the same composer who gave songs like this early on. All of that is glossed by extra sound layers, musicians pitching in.. maraththil maraindhadhu maamadha yaanai.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Drunkenmunk on Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:08 pm

Monsieurs, point taken. Developing into one of the best threads ever. Please continue the discussion. Shall add on points wherever I feel so.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  jaiganesh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:16 pm

I agree that while raaja broke new grounds, he cooperated with the rest of the market which was still operating in old style.
However his songs are having one unique aspect - that of being 'tied in' packaged neat and having a well defined beginning, middle and 
an end - kinda like a neatly written script for a scene- This dramatic packaging is partly an aesthetic sense and a part of necessary dramatic 
device. When dramas evolved into film, a medium of abstractness, the musical cues had to change as well - his songs essentially worked marvellous
as cues - cues catered to the new medium of film - no longer were the cues hyper dramatized like old school stage plays - nor were they clueless
 elevator music style fillers - they were driven by the character, rooted in context and played the role of author if they needed to. That in a filmi style
 a huge departure from MSV/KVM and offcourse anyone else who succeeded him and another reason for the thread title.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  fring151 on Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:56 pm

One more track I want to open up w.r.t music is how Raaja builds a composition. Take any song. Again, the one that comes to mind is Poongadhave. The interludes, apart from the nadhaswaram and thavil in the first and the violin-flute "it-kills-my-soul-every-frikking-time" counterpoint at the end of the second interlude, there are violins that keep playing. As they play, a flute adds on to the violin which does not stop. This to me is akin to building a fort brick by brick. The way Raaja constructs a composition. Even other than constructing a song the way Suresh mentions (the whole song being a WCM idea with every instrument contributing equally including the voice and the tune), I find this "constructing a song layer-upon-layer" to be a Raaja style which I don't hear in any other Indian composer. I find this an art worth emulating.

D_M,
This is something I have noticed too. Glad that you brought it up here and in your blog. This is perhaps not the right place, but anyway, we have already moved beyond the original scope of this thread and since this is the most active thread currently, we might as well talk about it here. Besides, this is not entirely off-topic and probably reinforces Sureshji's argument about the whole song being a single organically conceived piece with logical building blocks, which might not be the case if the interludes were improvised by individual instrumentalists (not saying anything wrong with that).

The thing with Raja's building block (Nice coinage D_M!) structure where he employs it is that even without the additional bricks being laid, we don't feel like we are missing anything!The poongathave violin ostinato sounds delightful enough without the flute joining in. He is actually spoiling us by providing an additional flute layer.Any wonder that we have such unreasonable expectations from other MDs!? Here are a few other places where he does this.

1) I often notice that he likes to build upon ostinatos patterns. Notice the beginning portion of the first interlude of "Etho mogam" and the ending portion of the first interlude of "Valayosai" to see what I mean.

2) Ilamai ennum poongaatru. When SPB sings the first two pallavi lines after the prelude, there is no chorus accompaniment. This is only introduced when he repeats these lines.

Also Sureshji,I am actually almost convinced with the argument of continuity between MSV and ARR styles with respect to song structure and form with IR being the singularity. But there is still some unnamable feature to ARR's songs (even in the examples you gave) that makes it sound different (to me) than MSV's. I am not sure how much it has to do with singers, synth usage and crispness of recording.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  jaiganesh on Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:35 pm

Poongadhave example is apt - it has a tremendous opening , whirlwind first interlude and a sorrowful second interlude with violin jumping in - indicating the tragedy it is going to end up in - did Raaja add it as an afterthought - no as he knew the story in advance before composing - that detail and every bit of it seeps into every song - you split open a raaja song, you find context, characters, traits and emotions - a monumental story telling achievement in the pretext of a song. That pain/melancholy that pierces you when you hear azhagiya kanne - is magically put in/programmed - It is a miracle and in my opinion - not thought and done - but subconsciously inserted by Raaja's mind..

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Drunkenmunk on Wed Jul 24, 2013 12:22 am

1) I often notice that he likes to build upon ostinatos patterns. Notice the beginning portion of the first interlude of \"Etho mogam" and the ending portion of the first interlude of "Valayosai" to see what I mean. wrote:
2) Ilamai ennum poongaatru. When SPB sings the first two pallavi lines after the prelude, there is no chorus accompaniment. This is only introduced when he repeats these lines.

cheers  terrific examples, each of them. Even in Edho Mogam's second interlude, an acoustic guitar is restless and it continues but a flute is added on and what a flute it is providing a strange calm over the restless guitar, as though narrating that the inner violence the Mogam is causing is masked by the flute that overarches and exhibits itself in the calm the pair are exhibiting on the outside. We see them calm and hence the flute takes over and conquers our senses. But what starts out, the guitar, is the true reflection of what they feel. He has done this in many many songs. Kunnathe in Pazhassi Raja again, which first Raaga_Suresh mentioned in one of my old blogposts on Sundari Kannal Oru Sedhi where the beat is restless (to exhibit the inner restlessness of the Queen who is waiting for her man) but the tune is calm on the outside because she is the Queen and cannot jump around like a kid but has to exhibit a regal calm. In an Edho Mogam, in spite of Krishnachandar Embarassed the song is an all time classic. Precisely because of mind blowing story narration devices through the music.

Also, if we observe, such building blocks contribute to a polyrhythm (as in Megam Kottatum) or a counterpoint (Valaiyosai, Poongadhave, Etho Mogam). His approach to counterpoint can also be diversified. He has handled invertible counterpoints too (which I don't think any other Indian film composer ever has and such innovations put him in an exclusive bracket). He also has a gazillion straight counterpoints littered across his oeuvre. In songs like Poongadhave, there are 5-6 different counterpoints in that one song only. If one is to do a study of the total number of different counterpoints Raaja has handled, olagam azhinjurum. Coming to the point, his straight counterpoints also I'd categorize into 2 sub divisions.

1. The straight counterpoint where the two tunes start out simultaneously giving an ethereal effect.
Examples:
a) Poongadhave Thaazhthiravaai's prelude: http://splicd.com/aKCbGH6ejGA/4/28 the two sets of violins produce one of the greatest counterpoints ever in IFM. But they occur together from start to finish like conjoined twins.
b) Poomaalaiye ThOL SEravA's prelude: http://splicd.com/Jho-kmjA2Yw/0/12 the sets of violins, though not conjoined as in the earlier case, start with a slight gap. They are still twins born seconds apart.

2. The straight counterpoint where one tune starts, builds an effect and keeps going and is joined soon by another layer of tune that adds on to it like a younger sibling.
Examples:
a) Poongadhave Thaazhthiravaai's interludes: http://splicd.com/aKCbGH6ejGA/82/98 the flute joins 10 seconds later and adds to the violin, which we spoke about.
b) Your Edho Mogam example: Second interlude: http://splicd.com/bkfzw5dyKYw/176/189 starts with the guitar and is joined by the flute. The flute though is the chella kuzhandhai which overshadows its elder guitar. But that is a layer necessary for the story.

And many many more like Poongadhave's second interlude too and Valaiyosai's first interlude (FTW!). And if we notice, Etho Mogam has a lighter effect compared to a Poongadhave or a Valaiyosai. It is rural and depicts a rather simple folks' story. The music is apt (though complex beneath the lightness due to the flurry of emotions inside and outside). Valaiyosai is an urban romance and hence the score is more openly soaked in WCM concepts and hits us as such whereas Edho Mogam touches us as a folk composition first with underlying layers of WCM genius.

cheers such mind numbing layers within layers (counterpoint is itself a layer in a song. Within a counterpoint, so many sub layers which also aid in story narration adding sub text to the film itself elevating it further by just the music). Idhelaam unimaginable for any other composer. Not that they are bad. Naushad la start senju ARR varaikkum everyone has been a wonderful musician and very deserving to be in that all time pantheon. But this guy is a separate beast who deserves a separate Thirisangu Sorgam just for him.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  kiru on Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:00 am

All right.. very interesting topic. I like conceptual things and let me share my 'arivujeevi' comments :-) (Seriously, please pardon any musical/technical inaccuracies and feel free to whip me..it is just my enthusiasm for the subject :-) )
* Rahman's song structure - is nothing new. It is as old as the early days .. Maintain a tempo and sing a tune out. 
* IR's song is not really a 'song' per traditional sense. It is more like WCM compositions, setup in to different movements. Prelude, Charanam, Interlude, pallavi are equivalent to movements. That is why I think he can completely skip any percussion instruments in the interludes. (as long as he maintains the raagam through out he is fine, I think)
* Based on above two points - Rahman did not break away from IR. He is just doing the old/standard format of a song. Except that the rhythm Rahman uses are all from libraries or programmed in drum machines or sometimes even extracted from another hit english song (when some famous drummer is not playing for him). The surface sounds different to people who have been listening to real instruments for a long time (albeit recorded not so well).
* Re: MSV and IR - my personal opinion is IR is MSV Version 2.0. There may not be commonalities in tune structure but the whole song structure and the inspiration to go WCM comes from MSV. As I have mentioned here earlier, IR has mentioned, it is MSV who taught him what a song should be structured like. MSV is a teacher to IR. It is blasphemy to say IR trumped MSV. But then again there are very smart students who come up newer concepts learning the basics from their teacher.
* Re: ARR and MSV - I think IR learnt music/film song basics from MSV and developed on this. It is like taking a Computer Science Algorithms course and then doing programming. ARR is like, look at old code and come up with a newer or better code :-)
* Also adding to jaiganesh's point on 'menakettufying' (isn't that mEnikeduthufying ?) - I think IR is more hardworking than Rahman !!!! You should not work hard on a song. You should work hard on learning music, which IR continues to do even today.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Drunkenmunk on Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:27 am

Raaga_Suresh wrote:Continuing on the raga affinity between MSV and Rahman, SPB once sang 'ilakkanam maarudho' and showed how seamlessly it flowed into 'malargale malargale':
'ilakanam maarudho': http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnRb4kqhHQY
'malargale malargale' : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnqSfDkiig4

Again, don't get into the copy argument. I am not making it here.

Just taking a few songs from my bank to extend your logic. Again not accusing any copy business here since these are MSV's and ARR's songs I like a lot and are certified hits and are very well done from ARR.

Aadaludan Paadalai Kettu: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqeX54Wmvgw
Moondrezhuthu Ketta Vaarthai: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYphZa2aVUs

Muthu Kulikka Vaareeyala: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BiD6xmKQcwg
Naadhir Dhinna: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XscR4mqqwc

Ennai Yaar Endu Enni Enni: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtrOLDpmaT8 (note the interludes)
Dichotomy of Fame (Rockstar): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZvGMRWhS4c

Angam Pudhu Vidham: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqD6SRwLHuE
Sambo Sambo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r0z9Up1GdZ4

Down to Innum Konjam Neram and Netru Aval. Yes, ARR's soul is indeed close to MSV's soul. Raaja is definitely a startling departure in soul, content and structure if we don't cherry pick and look at the broader, overall picture (case in point being your Chella Pillai Saravanan to Kaalaiyile Maalai Vandhadhu transition) and that IR's owed his tune aesthetics to Hindi more than MSV with Salil da and SD Burman being cases in point (Yeh Dil Deewana and an Inji Iduppazhaga and a Dheu Utche Kara Tootche and a Manidha Manidha, also not saying IR was a svayambu while ARR followed MSV's soul Smile ). Just that w.r.t Tamil film music, IR's musical sense was a different kettle of fish and also IR's approach to an overall song was entirely different in IFM itself like you mention. Just convincing myself with these examples here for and against Smile

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Wed Jul 24, 2013 11:03 am

D_M,

You have brought up an important point which I also wanted to talk about. That neither Raja nor Rahman or for that matter MSV being 'swayambu'. Each had their influences and they too those influences and moved the genre forward in their own way.

Raja's influence from North is definitely present but Raja being Raja, he takes it and converts into something totally different. If SPB/Raja had not told us, we would never have known the affinity between 'yeh dil deewana' and 'inji iduppazahga'. It was also mentioned in another interview that 'puthu maapillaikku' had its idea coming from 'naa parthdhile aval oruthiyai dhaan'. Seems that Kamal wanted a song similar to 'naan paarthadhile' and Raja gave him 'pudhu maapilaikku'. Again they are totally different.

In your list of Raja influences you can also add, 'ore naal unai naam' having an affinity to 'lag ja gale' of Madan Mohan and 'aaru adhu aazham illa' having its soul in 'oh re taal mile nadhi ke jal mein' of Roshan. 

In essence, we need to find how each of the MDs was influenced by what went past and analyze how they changed the tradition and expanded its base. I know that very fanatic members of all tribe want to insist that their idol never took any inspiration from anyone and was a totally original genius. we can safely ignore those arguments Smile

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Wed Jul 24, 2013 11:53 am

Fring151,

I can understand your confusion. Maybe my approach is probably a bit strong Smile In the sense that I am not meaning an almost one to one correspondence with MSV. It is more like the soul of how Rahman creates a song is MSVish in nature. He has his own signature, which he has worked towards. The same way that you can make out a G Ramanathan song from MSV song, you can make out that Rahman song is different from MSV's because of the signature. Yet, when you look deeper, beyond the stylistic attributes, Rahman is more closer to MSV. I hope this is clear.

Also I must mention that I am talking about the early Rahman. The post 2000 Rahman is different with only an occasional foray into MSV territory, like the Rockstar piece which D_M linked.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  fring151 on Wed Jul 24, 2013 6:29 pm

Fring151,

I can understand your confusion. Maybe my approach is probably a bit strong  In the sense that I am not meaning an almost one to one correspondence with MSV. It is more like the soul of how Rahman creates a song is MSVish in nature. He has his own signature, which he has worked towards. The same way that you can make out a G Ramanathan song from MSV song, you can make out that Rahman song is different from MSV's because of the signature. Yet, when you look deeper, beyond the stylistic attributes, Rahman is more closer to MSV. I hope this is clear.

Also I must mention that I am talking about the early Rahman. The post 2000 Rahman is different with only an occasional foray into MSV territory, like the Rockstar piece which D_M linked.

Sureshji,
Not at all. I find your arguments very convincing and rational. Honestly, I had never thought about the connection in song structures till you brought it up and illustrated with some fantastic examples.

Even in Edho Mogam's second interlude, an acoustic guitar is restless and it continues but a flute is added on and what a flute it is providing a strange calm over the restless guitar, as though narrating that the inner violence the Mogam is causing is masked by the flute that overarches and exhibits itself in the calm the pair are exhibiting on the outside. We see them calm and hence the flute takes over and conquers our senses.

Yes, hence the possibility of hearing many conflicting and complex emotions in many of his songs. No other person can work such magic with the combination of violins, flute, guitar and the human voice, period.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  app_engine on Wed Jul 24, 2013 8:56 pm

Looked at the "old place" after a long time and was amused to see an old friend complaining about this thread Wink

Wondering if I should change the title to include GR, KVM, VR in the chronologically pre-IR times and HJ, YSR, GVP in the chronologically post-IR times Laughing

Why single out (rather double-out) only MSV-ARR? 

Aren't we discussing -in a broad sense - how IR does not fit into this "composers' timeline thingy"? 

Isn't he an extraordinary phenomenon in TF history to engineer the carving out of an exclusive "TFMD" history?

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Drunkenmunk on Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:12 pm

app_engine wrote:Why single out (rather double-out) only MSV-ARR? 

Aren't we discussing -in a broad sense - how IR does not fit into this "composers' timeline thingy"? 

Isn't he an extraordinary phenomenon in TF history to engineer the carving out of an exclusive "TFMD" history?

adhukku badhil dhaan Sureshji vechuttaarE. GR, CRS, SN tayathukku poyi nalla munnOkki vuttuttArE. PinnOkki pEsa perusA edhuvum illa post-ARR. HJ, GVP and all are ARR clones. Their music has no soul, sounds vampish and the ones trying to imbibe IR today like an Imman are succeeding but even then, their own identity might be in question as to what they bring to TFM and how disruptive they are. I think argument is rejitted there. And you said MSV and ARR because that is how folks are aware today.

I'm sure if one reads the full thread, things will be clear and the title is only an excuse to thrash out TFM from aadhi mudhal kaalam till date.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:29 pm

fring, D_M,

Raja bringing in multiple emotions in a single song requires a series of posts. I have some songs lined up but too much work. Will do it soon.

I can safely say that Raja is unique in the annals of Indian Film Music because of this aspect. Because he can get multiple emotions going in a same song. I personally can't find any other MD who can do this with such class and such consistency.

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  app_engine on Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:30 pm

Well, it doesn't hurt to quote the pazhaiya veedu here, like I do often, selectively...(perhaps the first time someone is directly referring our forum there, though no link is given):

venkkiram at hub wrote:
ராஜாவுக்கான இன்னொரு தளத்தில் "எம்.எஸ்.வி, ரஹ்மான்" இசையமைப்பாளர்களை ஒப்பிட்டு ராஜாவின் இசை வீச்சு பேசப்பட்டு வருகிறது. சிலரின்(வழக்கம்போல) கருத்துக்கள் சுவையானதாக இருக்க, மற்றவர்கள் எல்லாம் இதுதான் வாய்ப்பு என எம்.எஸ்.வி, ரஹ்மான் தங்கள் இசையால் பெற்ற புகழ்மாலைகளின் மீது சேறள்ளி(வழக்கம்போல) பூசுகிறார்கள். நடத்துங்க. உவமைகள்(!?!) எல்லாம் கலக்கலா இருக்கு!

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Re: Why IR is NOT simply someone between MSV-time & ARR-time

Post  Raaga_Suresh on Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:46 pm

app,

Ha Ha Ha. The usual suspects. freeya vidunga

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