Lalgudi Jayaraman’s son and daughter - Krishnan and Vijayalakshmi - are a contented duo. They miss their father at this crucial hour but are happy with the way the book has shaped up. “It is beautifully written. We were not there in Appa’s formative years and were very young when his star was on the ascent. We travelled to a different era and lived through all those moments during the interview sessions,” says Krishnan.
“Appa actually enjoyed himself reliving those years,” he adds. “His memory was so sharp he came up with all the information. Lakshmi has documented everything so meticulously with rare objectivity, considering the fact that she always admired him and that her daughter was his disciple. I should thank Viji for the book because it was her idea to have a biography written and she roped in Lakshmi Devnath.”
Viji is all praise for the writer’s stupendous effort. And her research. “I always wanted Appa’s life to be documented because of its rich lineage. There was so much to be told and recorded. An article in Friday Review led me to Lakshmi Devnath and we couldn’t have timed it better.
“Kudos to HarperCollins for giving such a beautiful form to the book. We thank them for adding the CD to the book. It has such unique tracks. Appa’s mind was so agile that when we were searching for the right GNB link, he said, ‘Did you take that Malavi?’ This was in the early Sixties and he remembered it.
“Appa was always thankful to two people: Yehudi Menuhin, who presented him a violin in 1965, which Appa used till 2006, and whoever discovered the recording device. ‘It is a live evidence, Sathyam that posterity can rely on,’ he would say. The CD becomes relevant in this context.