Vijayakant’s films featured some of the finest songs, from ‘Antha Vanatha Pola’ to ‘Rasathi Unna Kanatha Nenju’

Music director Ilaiyaraaja composed some of the Tamil film industry’s most memorable songs for Vijayakant

Updated - December 29, 2023 10:48 am IST

Published - December 28, 2023 12:07 pm IST

Vijayakant in ‘Chinna Gounder’

Vijayakant in ‘Chinna Gounder’

Etho Ninivugal Kanavugal Manathile Malaruthey; Kaveri Ootrakavey (there are some thoughts and dreams in my mind like the fountain of river Cauvery). This song in Agal Vilakku, Vijayakant’s second film with late actor Shoba, encapsulated the actor’s aspirations. The music was scored by Ilaiyaraaja, who composed some of the Tamil film industry’s outstanding songs for Vijayakant, who ostensibly possessed none of the attributes of a film hero. A slim, dark coloured Vijayakant, however, had a rustic charm and somehow reaped phenomenal success first in the film world, and subsequently in politics.

Also read:DMDK founder Vijayakant’s death LIVE updates

Once, when he was asked how his films featured some of the best songs, Vijayakant wondered how one would rate the outstanding songs in the films of Ramarajan. “It is Ilaiyaraaja’s contribution; I never specifically asked him anything. I would offer suggestions only for stunt scenes,” he said.

Antha Vaanatha Pola Manam Padaicha Mannavaney in Chinna Gounder in some way echoed the sentiments of the evocative Then Pandi Seemayile Therodum Veethiyile in Kamal Haasan-starrer Nayagan and the lyrics captured what everyone saw in Vijyakant’s personality; his ability to be charitable and not turn away anyone who came to him for assistance.

Also read: Why is Vijayakant called ‘Captain’? A throwback to the actor’s 100th film

Before Ilaiyaraaja, Thoorathu Idi Muzhakkam, a film for which Salil Chaudray worked as a music director, gave the Tamil film world the memorable song Ullamellam Thalladuthey. The film was also screened at the International Film Festival of India.

Vijayakant was lucky to have the lead role in the film Vaidehi Kaathirunthal, a film still celebrated for all its seven songs by Ilaiyaraaja, who was particular to use all the songs in a single film; director R. Sundararajan apparently wrote the story keeping in mind all the songs. Vijayakant, in the character of Vellaisamy, benefitted immensely from the film. The songs including Rasathi Unna Kaanatha Nenju, Intraikku Yen Intha Ananthamey, Kaathirunthu Kaathirunthu continue to haunt audiences even after four decades.

Amman Kovil Kizhakkale is another musical treat. Poove Eduthu Oru Malai Thoduthu Vacheney, Chinna Mani Kuyile, Kaalai Neera Poonguil were also mind-blowing compositions. Vizhiye Vilakontru Etru in Thaluvatha Kaigal captured the finer aspects of a romance scene.

Ninaive Oru Sangeetham might have faded from the memory of the generation that watched the film, but comments on social media sites still praise the songs Eduthu Vacha Paalum, Pagalile Oru Nilvinai Kanden Athu Karutha Nila and Ettramaiya Etham and capture the actual impact they had on listeners. Mayanginen Solla Thayanginen from the film Naane Raja Naane Manthiri is another example in which the popularity of the song drowned the title of the film. Sinthiya Venmani Chippiyil Muthachu and Kaan Karunguyile in Poonthotta Kavalkaran represent two extremes; one a melody, and another, a folk tune, both wildly popular.

Also Read: Vijayakant’s funeral LIVE updates | Thousands gather to pay their last respects

Captain Prabhakaran paved the way for his political career in a big way, and in no small measure thanks to the story, but also the songs. Paasamulla Paantiyeray and Aatama Therottama are packed with energy. Similarly, Chinna Gounder — both the film and songs — served the purpose of his political career well.

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