Two Great Legends of Comedy Together in a Comical Song from a Super Hit Movie with Award Winning Performances!

Two great legends of Comedy Chandrababu and Nagesh have featured in this rare appearance together in this comical song from the super hit movie Annai released in the year 1962. The movie was based on a Bengali Play and film which was in turn based on the 1938 Hollywood movie 'The Old Maid' which had been a turning point in the career of one of the most acclaimed actresses of Hollywood, Bette Davis. Both Chandrababu and Nagesh were great legends and had their own rightful place in the history of Tamil Cinema. Both actors had somewhat similar personal lives filled with sorrow due to personal and financial problems. Both were great friends of Sivaji and had acted in several movies with him. Though Chandrababu had acted in a few movies with MGR during the early stages of his career, it was Nagesh who had been MGR's favourite and Nagesh had virtually been part of almost all MGR movies during the 1960s and a few during the 70s.
The movie Annai saw Chandrababu and Nagesh working together in this comical song, though Nagesh had just played a small cameo in the movie. Apparently Bhanumathi had been reluctant to play the role initially since the original character in the Bengali Play and the Hollywood movie had had a negative undertone to it. When AV Meiappan and the directors Krishnan Panchu had made suitable changes to the Tamil adaptation, Bhanumathi had accepted to play the role and she eventually ended up receiving the President's award for this movie. Incidentally her co-star S V Rangarao had also received the President's award for his performance in the movie. The music for the movie had been composed by R Sudharsanam and lyrics were written by both Kannadasan and Koththamangalam Subbu. This particular song was written by Koththamangalam Subbu. The song was sung by TMS, A L Raghavan and L R Easwari.

Haunting Melody! Spellbinding Lyrics! Adapted Song! Underrated Actor! A Timeless Classic Better than the Original!

S A Asokan was born in Trichy as Anthony and joined the Tamil Movie industry in the year 1953 after having graduated from St. Joseph's college in Trichy. Asokan had acted in hundreds of movies during a career that spanned over four decades. He started his career playing lead roles in a few movies and went on to succeed in playing negative, comic and supporting roles in several movies till the early 1980s. Asokan has acted in more than 50 movies with MGR alone. In fact MGR produced a film Idhu Satthiyam in 1963 with Asokan in the lead role, the movie that also saw the introduction of the Hindi Superstar Hemamalini to movies in a small dance role. He has also acted in several movies with Sivaji who had spoken about Asokan's acting ability and preferred to work with him in spite his personal differences with Asokan. Through his memorable performances in mythical roles of Soora Padhman in Kandan Karunai and Duryodhanan in the movie Karnan etched himself in the history of Tamil Cinema. Asokan was instrumental in bringing the famous director A C Thirulokachander into the Tamil Movie Industry. Asokan was great friends with Jai Shankar and partnered with him in producing and staging several plays and stage shows touring extensively across the state. This is a superhit song from the movie Vallavanukku Vallavan featuring Asokan in the lead role along with Manimala, Manohar, Gemini Ganesan, Thangavelu, Manorama and others. Savithri had made a special appearance in an other song in this movie. The movie had been produced and directed by R Sundaram of Modern Theatres. The music for this movie (and all other Modern Theatres' movies) has been composed by Veda. The music has been adapted from the original hit Hindi song Sau Baar Jananm Lenge from the movie Ustadon Ke Ustad sung by Mohammed Rafi.  The Tamil version has been sung by TMS and lyrics have been written by Kannadhasan. Gemini had played a negative role in the movie. Yet another song in the list of timeless classics with a hauntingly melodious music. TMS, Kannadasan, Veda combination has produced a song that is better than the original!

Relatively Unknown Song from an Iconic Super Hit Movie! Perfect Depiction of Tradition and Culture! Truly Relevant to Contemporary Issues!

This relatively Unknown Song is from the Iconic Super Hit Movie Veerapaandiya Kattabomman which has attained a cult classic status in the history of Tamil Cinema! It is also a perfect depiction of tradition and culture and is truly relevant to contemporary issues almost 60 years after the movie was released! Enough and more has been written about the great performance of Sivaji in this movie. In this particular song Sivaji acts as a fan of his brave and valiant commander Gemini Ganesan's courage in Taming the mighty bull of Vellaiyamma played by Padmini. The story of Vellaiyamma depicting her fondness for her fiercely brought up mighty bull and her admiration and affection for the Courageous Commander who tames her bull, not just serves the purpose of adding a romantic flavor to the movie but also depicts the culture and tradition prevailing in those times. Today's materialistic world and contorted society has transmogrified culture and tradition to such an extent that an individual is rated not by his mental toughness, courage and compassion but by the depth and width of his wallet, credit and debit cards and his bank account! Taming the bull involves as much mental toughness as physical strength if not more. Just as animals can sense and smell fear they can sense calmness and warmth in human beings and tend to be soothed by such qualities in human beings. The story of Vellaiyamma in this movie, shows how a girl will trust a man with these qualities and none better that her trusted and fierce pet the mighty bull to authenticate these qualities! Her fondness for her fiery pet can be seen in this song! The taming of the bull and Gemini's great performance as a multi faceted Actor and Super Star can be seen in this clip. The variety of majestic and mighty Kangeyam Kaalai used in this movie can be seen in this pic. The dialogues in this move have been crafted with so much of passion! The simple dialogue between the heroine and her friend is an example of this by portraying the Courage and Valour of the Commander using just a few words spoken by the heroine's friend (S Muthulakshmi) as soon as Gemini jumps into the stadium to tame the bull! The song has been written by Ku Ma Balasubramaniam and the music for the movie has been composed by G Ramanathan. The song has been sung by P Susheela.

Three Great Legends of Tamil Cinema with a Flair for Comedy! Blessed with Great Comic Timing! End Result One Hilarious Song!

MGR, Nagesh and Manorama have acted in several movies together and have been part of several comic sequences during their individually illustrious and outstanding movie careers. These great legends of Tamil cinema have an amazing flair for comedy and are truly blessed with an intuitive sense of comic timing which is an absolute necessity for any successful actor. There has been enough and more said and written about Nagesh and Manorama's comical talent and their ability to do comic roles. MGR's flair for comedy and his innate ability to do comic roles with effortless ease is something that hasn't been written about much. MGR has written extensively about his journey filled with struggles and milestones and guided by the positive influence and inspiration of great many legends and doyens in the Tamil movie industry. That MGR had been influenced greatly by N S Krishnan both in his personal life and professional life is a known fact. MGR has also mentioned that actors such as Kali N Ratnam of 'Sabapathy' fame, were great influence in his stage and movie careers. If N S Krishnan had influenced MGR to do comic sequences with a social message such as this song, it was actors such as Kali N Ratnam who had influenced him to do comic sequences that were simple yet compelling and acceptable to and enjoyed by all sections of the audience. This hilarious hit song is from the move Chandrodhayam released in the year 1966 starring MGR, Jayalalitha, Bharathi, S A Asokan, R S Manohar, M.R.Radha, Nagesh, Manorama, M.N.Nambiar and others. Though the title of this post says Three Legends - One Hilarious song, there are four other Legends in the background who have contributed to the success of this song! TMS and Seerrghazhi who have sung this song in their own inimitable styles, Vaali who has written this song with such an important social message which is all the more relevant in these modern times, to couples in married life, and MSV who has composed the music for this song!

MGR's Prophetic Advice to His Followers in the Year 1963! Fits the Prevailing Situation Perfectly Like a Bespoke Savile Row Suit Even Today After a Gap of 54 Years!

MGR made it a habit to get completely involved in the process of creation of all the songs in his movies and always sat in during the discussion between the lyricist and the music director during a song's composition. Vaali had mentioned this as a positive influence and had given examples of MGR's positive contribution to the development of lyrics of several songs in several movies in his interviews. Though Kannadasan had not always taken these incidents on a positive note, during the early 60s when the personal relations between MGR and Kannadasan had been on friendlier terms, several super hit songs had been created and composed by this extremely talented team and remain popular till today! This particular song is one such creation by this popular team along with the famous Music Director Duo Viswanathan Ramamoorthy in the movie Panathottam released in the year 1963. Several songs of MGR had proven to be prophetic and had literally predicted the future events and happenings with uncanny accuracy. This song seems to fit the prevailing situation today after the passing away of Jayalalitha, MGR's protégé and the sequence of events that have followed resulting in the current situation fraught with uncertainty. Just listen to the lyrics which seem to reflect the mindset of MGR's followers 30 years after he passed away and offer them some hope and consolation during these uncertain times. The movie was directed by K Sankar and the song was sung by TMS. 

Hundreds of Popular Songs! Thousands of Successful Stage Shows! A Career Spanning More than Six Decades! The Unsung Singer with a Unique Voice!

A L Raghavan began his playback singing career in the year 1950 with the movie 'Vijayakumari' under the music direction of C R Subburaman. But he became popular much later with the song "Hello My Dear Raami" which he sang along with the actor/singer J P Chndrababu for the movie "Pudhayal" in the year 1957 under the music direction of Viswanathan Ramamoorthy. He has sung a song in a movie recently in the year 2014 at the ripe old age of 79! He has sung hundreds of songs as a solo singer as well as duets with all the leading Playback Singers of the 50s, 60s and 70s and for all the leading music directors. He was also very successful in conducting musical stage shows along with his popular orchestra, across the globe for over 50 years. He was the playback voice of the famous comedy actor Nagesh and has sung many songs for him in several movies. He is married to the famous actress M N Rajam. This super hit song in which he has sung playback for the superstar Gemini Ganesan is from the movie Paarthaal Pasi Theerum. The movie was a super hit and was released on Pongal Day in the year 1962. The movie had a stellar cast with Sivaji and Saroja Devi as one lead pair and Gemini and Savithri as the other lead pair. The leading pairs were supported by Sowcar Janaki, K A Thangavelu, C K Saraswathi and Kamal Hassan the child artiste in a dual role. With great performances from the entire cast and super hit songs composed by Viswananthan Ramamoorthy,  written by Kannadasan, the movie was bound to succeed at the box office, which it did in great style! The song has been sung so well by P Susheela and A L Raghavan but the fact is no one ever credits A L Raghavan with this song! The general assumption is it was sung by PBS who normally sings for Gemini! A L Raghavan is truy an underrated and unsung singer with a very unique voice!

Child Artiste to Supporting Actress, Negative Roles to Heroine - She Has Done it All! Most Prolific Supporting Actress of All time!

M N Rajam started her acting career a  child artist at the age of seven in stage plays and entered the world of movies at the age of nine in the year 1949 through the movie Nalla Thambi starring NSK and Bhanumathi. Her role as a vamp at the young age of 14, in the super hit M R Radha starrer Ratha Kanneer in the year 1954, proved to be the turning point in her Tamil Movie career. She has mentioned in several interviews that she had hesitated and had been reluctant to perform a scene in the movie in which she was supposed to kick M R Radha who was already a Super Star and senior actor then. But it was M R Radha who had given her the confidence to perform the scene and the movie had gone on to become a super hit movie. After that she had acted with all leading actors of the era, MGR, Sivaji, Gemini, SSR and others. Though she had acted in various roles it is only the negative roles which she had played in hundreds of movies that had got her a name in the industry. This particular song is from the movie Paavai Vilakku starring Sivaji Ganesan, Sowcar Janaki, Pandari Bai, Kumari Kamala along with M N Rajam in lead roles. The film was based on the popular Tamil novel "Paavai Vilakku" by Akilan. The story was known for its twists and turns and complex characters, which were brought out on screen in brilliant fashion by A.P. Nagarajan through his screenplay and by the fine performances Sivaji, Sowcar Janaki, Rajam, and Kumari Kamala and others. But the film had not done well at the box office. This song was the last song that was shot inside the famous Taj Mahal after which permission to shoot movies inside the Taj Mahal has not been given (to other movies) till date. The song was written by Maruthakasi. Music by K V Mahadevan and sung my C S Jeyaraman and P Susheela. This wonderful composition by K V Mahadevan based on Hindustani Classical music is truly a timeless classic!

The Greatest Legend of Tamil Cinema! A Life Characterized by Phenomenal Success and an Endless List of Episodes of his Compassion and Kindness!

MGR is undoubtedly the greatest Legend of Tamil Cinema! On the occasion of his 100th birthday this song serves as a true tribute to him and his legendary kindness, compassion and amazing philanthropy. His life and career in the Tamil Movie industry is filled with phenomenal successes and in equal measure if not more, of episodes of his kindness in which he has helped innumerable individuals both from with in and outside the Tamil Film Industry. Every single person who has talked about him during various interviews has narrated at least one unique incident of  his kindness and big hearted nature with out fail. From legends such as Nagesh to Ranga Rao to the lyricist Muthulingam who has written just a few songs in comparison to the other great lyricists, there is no end to the list of people all of whom MGR has helped financially. His act of kindness in which he had helped Ranga Rao is similar to Lord Krishna having helped Kusela! Apparently Ranga Rao who had been facing financial difficulties during the later part of his career was finding it difficult to conduct his daughter's wedding. Though Ranga Rao had not been in good terms with MGR during that period, based on the advice of his friends he had visited MGR's residence, with an intent to ask MGR for his help. But due to his hesitancy because of his strained relation ship with MGR and fearing that MGR might turn down his request for help, Ranga Rao had returned home with out asking for help. But MGR being the great human being he was (is) had sent the required jewels and money for the proper conduct of the wedding to Ranga Rao's house, having come to know the actual reason for Ranga Rao's visit to his residence from his associates!  MGR had helped so may individuals in need with out their having even asked for help just by sensing and understanding their needs and difficulties! Truly amazing! This song from the movie Engal Thangam was written by Vaali. In Vaali's own words, after having written the first line of this song Vaali had been toying with several words and phrases to express this great quality of MGR in the second line of the song. As a coincidence Karunanidhi who was MGR's greatest political adversary during the later stages of his career, had visited the sets of the movie and Vaali had mentioned his inability to come up with the words of a second line, which would correctly express the great philanthropic quality of MGR. It was Karunanidhi who came up instantly with the second line, 'Ethaiyum Alavindri Koduppavan', which when translated literally means, "There is no limit to the quantum of his philanthropy"! Words are not sufficient to pay tribute to this great Legend! Music by MSV and sung by TMS and P Susheela.

Legendary Actress and Queen of Comedy! 5000 Stage Appearances and 1500 Movies! Reigned Over Tamil Cinema Like No Other!

Gopishantha Manorama reigned over Tamil Cinema like no other in a career that spanned over six decades which saw her featuring in over 5000 stage appearances and acting in more than 1500 movies. She was featured in the Guinness Book of World records in the mid 80's when she crossed the 1000 movie mark. She has paired/acted with comic actors across three generations which is no mean achievement considering the fact that in a male dominated movie industry very few actresses tend to last and be active for just a few years during their entire career! Having acted with the likes of Anna, Karunanidhi and SSR during her stint as a very successful stage artist known for her playback singing and emphatic dialogue delivery she went on to pair with comedy actors across generations starting from MR Radha, KA Thangavelu, VK Ramasami to Chandrababu, Nagesh, Cho to Suruli Rajan, Thengai Srinivasan to the likes of Kishmu Gowndamani and Kumari Muthu during the 80's and 90's. Known fondly as 'Achi' amongst her fans she is rated very high by her contemporaries and co-stars. Nagesh wit whom she has paired in more than 50 films had mentioned in an awards ceremony that he considered Manorama as a female version of Sivaji. The same feeling has been echoed by Jayalalitha, Cho, Sivakumar and several other Co-stars of hers. She also sang playback for herself in several movies under various music directors. This is one such song from the movie Thillaanaa Mohanaambaal in which she has acted and sung playback for herself under the music direction of K V Mahadevan. The movie is a classic super hit and you can read more about this movie in an earlier post here.

Group Dancer to Supporting Actress to Leading Lady and Super Star in 161 Movies on an Unbroken Stretch! Six Decades of Continuous Success and Stardom!

Saroja Devi made her debut in Tamil Movies as a group dancer in the movie Thanga Malai Ragasiyam which had Sivaji and T R Rajakumari in the lead roles in the year 1957. Earlier she had made her debut in the Kannada movie industry in the year 1955 as a supporting actress. It was MGR who gave her a major break and a grand entry into the Tamil Movie industry as the second heroine in the super hit movie Nadodi Mannan along with Bhanumathi as the other heroine. From then on Saroja Devi went on to star in 161 Movies as heroine and leading actress in a continuous and unbroken stretch. She had 28 back to back hits with MGR till the time Jayalalitha replaced her as MGR's favourite Leading Lady and Co-Star. During this prolific and extremely successful stretch, she had several hits with Sivaji and Gemini as well. This particular song is from the super hit movie Puthiya Paravai starring Sivaji, Sowcar Janaki, M R Radha, V K Ramasami, Nagesh, Manorama and others along with Saroja Devi. Music by Viswanathan Ramamoorthi and Lyrics by Kannadasan. P Susheela who has sung this song had once mentioned during a stage performance that this song was one of her favourite songs from among the 15000 or so songs sung by her till date! Saroja Devi went to perform supporting roles in several movies during the 90s and till recent times.

Freedom Fighter, Journalist, Thespian, Composer, Playback Singer, Writer, Director - Successful in Every Pursuit! One of the Legendary Doyens of South Indian Film Industry!

Nagaiah was an active participant in the Freedom struggle and movement during the 1930's. He was a legend in the history of the evolution of Telegu Stage, Drama and Theatre having written, produced and directed several successful Telugu plays during the late 30's. He also acted in these plays apart from composing music and singing in these plays! He was the first Superstar of the Telugu Movie Industry due to his phenomenal success with his first few movies produced by Nagi Reddy under the Rohini Pictures Banner. He was later instrumental in the setting up of the famous Vauhini Studios. He acted in more than 350 movies in all the major South Indian languages. He acted in several super hit Tamil Movies as a character artist. Sivaji had great respect for him and he featured in several super hit movies of Sivaji Ganesan such as Motor Sundaram Pillai, Shanthi, Deiva Magan, Iru Malargal, Thillaanaa Mohanaambal to name a few. This song is from the movie Ramu a 1966 release, directed by A. C. Tirulokchandar. The film features Gemini Ganesan, K. R. Vijaya and Master Rajkumar in lead roles. The film was produced by AVM Productions and music was composed by M. S. Viswanathan. All the songs were written by Kannadasan. The film was a super hit. The film was a remake of Hindi film Door Gagan Ki Chhaon Main. During the filming of the climax scene apparently the child artiste Master Rajkumar got caught in the fire and it was the director A C Tirulokchandar who jumped into the fire and rescued the child! One can see the involvement with which Nagaiah has performed this song. Two great voices, Seergazhi and TMS, complete this fantastic team of legends who have come together to create this song. No wonder the song is such a classic, never failing to strike a chord every single time we listen to it even after 50 years since its creation!

Supremely Talented! Effortlessly Versatile! Career-Long Superstardom to an Eternal Place in the Minds of the People!

Jayalalitha was an undisputed Superstar during her entire career with back to back super hit movies with all leading actors spread over the mid and late sixties and the seventies. For someone who was a self declared reluctant actress her truly amazing success is due to her supreme talent and confidence combined with effortless versatility while facing the camera. Be it a mature performance as a young patient enamored by the kindness and compassion of her doctor in her debut Tamil Movie Vennira Aadai or a Casually Confident and Glamorous performance and making it count opposite MGR with his dominant screen presence in Ragasiya Police 115 or a performance that combines all the earlier mentioned characteristics with an innate sense and understanding of humour, in one of the best performances of her career as one of the four glamorous daughters of Thangavelu, paired for the first time with the great Sivaji Ganesan in Galaattaa Kalyanam, she excelled in all these different genres with effortless ease! She had several notable performances during the seventies such as Vandhaale Maharasi, Anbai Thedi, Needhi, Engiruntho Vandhaal to name a few. Se had several super hit movies pairing with Gemini Ganesan, Jaishankar, Muthuraman, Ravichandran and others. This song is from an all time super hit movie Aayirathil Oruvan opposite MGR. This is yet another movie in which both Vaali and Kannadasan had written the lyrics of different songs. This particular song was written by Vaali. Music was by Viswanathan Ramamoorthy.  She will remain permanently etched in the hearts of her ardent fans and followers eternally!

A Comical Song from A Hilarious Comedy Movie Inspired by a Classic Novel from the Greatest English Comic Writer of All Time!

This is a hit song from the super hit Comedy Movie Kaasethaan Kadavulladaa starring Muthuraman, Manorama, Srikanth, Lakshmi, Vennira Aadai Murthy, Sasi Kumar, MRR Vasu and others. The movie had been directed by Gopu who had once said in an interview it was Jayalalitha who had introduced him to the works of the great comic genius P G Wodehouse. This particular movie which is his directorial debut is loosely based on the famous novel 'Leave it to PSmith' by P G Wodehouse. The music for the movie had been composed by MSV. The lyrics had been penned by the ever youthful Vaali. The plot of the movie is as follows: Parvathi (Manorama) is an extremely domineering second wife of Sivaswamy (Vennira Aadai Moorthy) and controls all his money treating him with scorn and disdain. When Sivaswamy's son Ramu (Muthuraman) (son of his first wife) requires a sum of Rs. 3000 for his Sister's husband, she refuses instantly. With all round need for money for various different needs, Ramu and his cousin Shekar (Srikanth) hatch a plot with their childhood friend Appaswamy (Thengai Sreenivasan) who pretends to be a fake swamiji in order to get to Manorama's Secret safety locker and steal a sum of Rs. 50,000. Meanwhile Rama (Lakshmi) is an orphan whose Guardian is the doctor of a mental institution. When Rama wants a conduct certificate, the doctor bungles and hands over the certificate of Rama Prabha who is still recovering from a mental condition. Rama arrives at Parvathi's house to work as a secretary and Parvathi sees the certificate and decides to keep Rama at her house to humour her fearing her insanity (Courtesy Wikepedia). With great performances by all the actors the movie is very watchable and truly a family entertainer. This song is sort of the title song of the movie and is hilarious like most of the other songs in this movie.

Can See a Bright Future Ahead! Two Great Geniuses at Work Again!

This is a hit song from the movie Pachai Villakku, starring Sivaji, SSR, Vijayakumari, Nagesh, SV Ranga Rao and others. It is yet again the classic combination of Sivaji, TMS, Kannadasan and Viswanathan - Ramamoorthy. Though Nagesh is not singing the song, watching his reactions to Sivaji's singing and actions one can truly understand his clalibre! The same is true for another song from the same movie Kelvi Piranthathu Andru. If you listen carefully you can hear the sound of the train whenever you see the train in the visual! That is the kind of involvement of the entire team in the making of a film that was the norm and what you got in that Golden Era of Tamil Cinema and hence you were never disappointed with the quality of any film after watching it. The movie was directed by A Bhim Singh and was released in the year 1964. The famous Editor B. Lenin is Bhim Singh's son.

Three Distinctly Different Roles in a Single Movie! Only One Actor Could Have Carried it Off with Such Class and Conviction!

This is a hit song from the movie Deiva Magan starring Sivaji, Jayalalitha, Nagesh, Major and others. This song features Sivaji and Jayalalitha and other supporting actresses. In fact many of these supporting actresses made it big in the silver screen and in the small screen in their own little separate ways. The 'Mala' in this song is the actress Bhanumathi (not to be confused with Bhanumathi Ramakrishna) who acted in several movies in supporting roles and in many TV serials as well. The combination of MSV and TMS has produced yet another hit song. Sivaji's performance as the father and two sons (Triple Role) is one of the most unforgettable performances in the history of Tamil film industry! This song begins with a small clip in which there is a humorous interaction between Sivaji and Nagesh as a prelude to the actual song. Sivaji is supposed to have drawn inspiration from the mannerisms and behavior of the famous direct C V Sridhar for his role in this movie as the youngest son!


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