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`The Music Messiah' arrives for connoisseurs

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ALBUM RELEASED: K. Pandiarajan of Ma Foi receives the first copy of `The Music Messiah' from Director Balu Mahendra on Sunday. (From left) Na. Muthukumar, actor Nasser, Agilan Lechaman, directors Charan and Cheran are also in the picture. P HOTO: R.SHIVAJI RAO
ALBUM RELEASED: K. Pandiarajan of Ma Foi receives the first copy of `The Music Messiah' from Director Balu Mahendra on Sunday. (From left) Na. Muthukumar, actor Nasser, Agilan Lechaman, directors Charan and Cheran are also in the picture. P HOTO: R.SHIVAJI RAO

Staff Reporter

The album, priced at Rs.350, will be available in all music stores from Tuesday

CHENNAI: "We all follow the same religion and there is, and will never be, a threat of conversion. That religion is Ilayaraaja, and the faithful... like myself... are legion," said director Charan, echoing the sentiments of the fans who gathered for the release of the maestro's music album on Sunday.

`The Music Messiah' album by Ilaiyaraaja is brought out by Agi Music. "It is the fifth Ilayaraaja album being brought out by the company," said Agilan Lechaman of Agi Music. He recalled how the maestro helped their company during its nascent stages.

Director Balu Mahendra spoke on his 25-year-long association with Ilayaraaja, which was `beyond a mere director-music director relationship.' The two greats first worked together in `Moodu Pani,' the director's third film, and Ilayaraaja's 100th.

"His music enriched my films and gave them several new dimensions," he said.

Actor Nasser recalled his experience while Ilayaraaja scored music for his film `Avadaaram.' He narrated how as an eager director, he was not too convinced with the basic structure of the song `Tendral vandu...' which later turned out to be a great hit, and what his fans would call, an absolutely psychedelic number. He said categorising artists' work as success or failure hampered their creativity. "The Tamil film music industry is caught in a fascination for fast-paced numbers. I encourage my son to listen to the maestro's albums to get out of that mould," he added.

Speaking on his admiration for Ilayaraaja, who is currently scoring music for his film `Maayakannadi,' director-actor Cheran said the industry should organise a grand celebration to felicitate the maestro.

Lyricist Na.Muthukumar said the maestro was no different from a Zen master, grounded in profound intellectual and spiritual ideas.

K.Pandiarajan, managing director, Ma Foi, received the first copy of the album.

Agi Music is also working on protecting the intellectual property rights of the composer's work.

The album, priced at Rs.350, would be available in all leading music stores from Tuesday. Ilayaraaja was not present at the function, as he was at Tiruvannamalai.

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