P.V Unnikrishnan talks about ‘underground release’ and his compositions
Shashi,’ a Malayalam rap song released on Youtube, is generating quite a number of clicks. It’s a comic take on puppy love and already it has been aired on a number of Malayalam music channels.
P.V.Unnikrishnan, the man behind the work, has his reasons for releasing it on the web.
“Currently, in the Malayalam music industry only singers get exposure. There is no platform for nascent composers like me to get my work noticed. Producers are not willing to take risks and that is why I decided to go in for ‘underground release’ ( directly releasing on to the internet). It’s cheap and has wider reach,” explains Unnikrishnan.
‘U.K.’ as he is known, has been training in Carnatic music for the past 13 years under teachers such as Omanakutty and Paravathipuram Padmanabha Iyer. And this passion led in the direction of composing. After much struggle, he released his first album ‘Campus Days’ when he was a first year student of English literature which dealt with campus life in the eighties. “I had to beg money from my friends to get produce the album,” reveals U.K. Following this, he composed ‘Kerala Vandanam,’ which he performed at the closing ceremony of the Kerala University Youth festival in 2007, to much applause.
Recently, he composed music for 15 works of three generations of Malayalam poets such as Kumaran Asan, Vayalar, and G.SankaraKurup for Victers, an education channel.
A number of U.K.’s compositions have appeared as title songs for programmes on TV channels. One has been used as the title music for Jaihind TV’s afternoon show ‘Neelambari’. Another, a one-minute compilation for ‘Star Utsav’ on Asianet Plus, sung by seven singers has an eclectic mix of rap, reggae, aalap and swaram. .R. REGHURAM