The Voice of Music
#1 “Vetri Nichayam” (Success is definite)
Nothing works more deterring to the growth of cinema, than to bask in the afterglow of nostalgia.
But, if there is something that I’d like Tamil Cinema to bring back from the warehouse of cliches that are slowly getting rusted and covered with cobwebs, it is the rags-to-riches story in one song.
I know it is more of a meme now. But, nevertheless these songs were pretty motivating.
When Annamalai looks at Ashok (Btw, why don’t we name our characters with these names anymore?) with those bloodshot eyes and asks him to note the date in a calendar, I still get goosebumps knowing that it will be soon followed by the most glorious five minutes of Rajinema (Rajini+Cinema… for the ones who might not quite get this brilliant wordplay)
But where is SPB in all of this one might ask…
The thing with SPB is that he is a separate entity in most of his songs. Atleast for me he was so. I couldn’t just look at the song and think it is only Rajini or Vijay or Mohan or Ramarajan who were singing it. I somehow have always felt that Vairamuthu or Vaali and SPB were telling me something through a hero.
I could always look through the facade.
Most of the times it was SPB who sat me down next to him or made me stand opposite him and advised me on how a life should be ideally led.
Without a doubt, this song was elevated by its lyrics and the scenes preceding and succeeding it. However, if not for the fact that it was sung by SPB I don’t know if it would have had a similar impact on me.
Imayamalai aagaamal enadhu uyir pogaadhu
Sooriyan thoongalaam enadhu vizhi thoongaadhu
Vervai mazhai sindhaamal vetri malar poovaadhey
ellaiyai thodumvarai enadhu kattai vegaadhey
It’s hard to find songs like this which spoke about ambition as not such a bad thing. One’s ambition might be triggered for a myriad of reasons and somehow this song made me believe vengeance could also be one of the better motivators.
I have never read philosophy books. I am not a big fan of these Chicken soups for the soul (Always been a tomato soup kind of guy… Sorry for this) books too. Most of the philosophy I’ve known was told to me by Kamal Haasan and Rajini, sung to me by SPB in the words of Vaali and Vairamuthu.
“Ovvoru vidhayilum viruksham olindhulladhe
Ovvoru vidiyalum enadhu peyar sollume”
I have still to come across two lines that are more motivational than these. I could translate this into poetic English, have a backdrop of a sunrise and attribute it to Eminem and this could trend on social media.
Over the past few months, there has been this nagging feeling of something not being quite right in my life. I could see relationships crumbling, friendships tested, loyalties wavering, trust going out of the window and the fear of succumbing to fear.
Generally I listen to sad songs (again by SPB… Unna nenachen from Aboorva Sagodharargal, a personal favourite) to add on to the existing melancholy (I am weird that way)
But then, I needed a boost to feel better about myself. I had to believe that shutting down from unnecessary things was more important than holding on to things that were weighing me down (Insert a weight joke). I had to understand there were people who I assumed were close never quite knew me and were ready to throw me under the bus if and when required. If people didn’t want to know my side, they were invariably suggesting they weren’t on my side in the first place.
Basically, I was in a flucked up place that was getting way too comfortable. I had to understand its like the Devil’s Snare(Necessary Harry Potter reference). I had to let loose and breathe easy.
That’s where motivational songs come in. That’s where Rajini walked in with that slight grey streak on his hair into a dark frame with SPB bellowing the words “Vetri Nichayam”
Whenever I feel down, I just tune into this song to mainly listen to these four lines that lifts me up by my collar (Considering my size, not a mean achievement at all)
“Indru kanda avamaanam vendru tharum vegumaanam
Vaaname thaazhalaam thaazhvadillai thanmaanam
Poimayum vanjamum unadhu poorveegame
Raththamum vervayum enadhu raajaangame”
I might not be as virtuous as Annamalai. I might not be as uptight as Annamalai. I might not be as hardworking as Annamalai. I might not be as good-natured as the milkman-millionaire.
But, when SP Balasubrahmanyam sings
“Vetri nichayam, idhu vedha sathiyam
Kolgai velvadhe naan konda latchiyam”
It is me who walks in an amazingly lit set-up wearing that beige suit with a cigarette in my mouth and hands in my pocket.
I am the one SPB is singing for.
I am the one.