Maharajapuram Santhanam

Carnatic Musicians
siddarthcs
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Location: Chennai

#1 Maharajapuram Santhanam

Post by siddarthcs » 22 Jan 2006, 17:01

I am surprised that an authority such as Maharajapuram Santhanam didnt get included....
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Radhakrishnan
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#2

Post by Radhakrishnan » 22 Jan 2006, 19:36

Not only Santhanam,but the whole set of artists,past and present,are not included.
Semmangudi,Alathur brothers,GNB,Musiri,Ramnad Krishnan,DKJ,MLV,DKP,Nedunuri,Voleti,Hyd brothers,Bom sisters,TVS,Seshagopalan,Sanjay Subramaniam,Sudha Raghunathan,Bom Jayasree,Soumya,Nityasree,Mandolin Sreenivas,T.N.Krishnan,MSG,T.R.Mahalingam,N.Ramani,GJR/Viji?.so goes the list?.
Though some of the above artists,with audio files, are included at some other forums,but not at this exclusive one?.most of these artists are popular and their cds are available in the market???one feels the stress should be given to post less popular,but very good artists,as performers or teachers,like Pudukode Krishnamoorthy,whose cds or tapes are not easily available,only private collections,which should be posted here.
Even about Dr.S.Ramanthan,only very sketchy postings,for his vidwat,with no audio files.He was an exceptional character.Very good platform singer,very simple style,no gimmicks of any kind,expert of Kaavadi chintu(one assumes he got Phd in that)good teacher,indeed he was Soumyas guru,in fact when one listens to her,especially songs like Varalanduku,Vande sada Padmanabham,one remembers Sri.Ramanathan.He used to be very pleasant throught the concert.Above all, a wonderful human being,utterly simple,never after money or fame.
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coolkarni
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#3

Post by coolkarni » 22 Jan 2006, 21:22

siddharthcs
get cracking with your views on santhanam.
as radhakrishnan has rightly guessed, we have been slow to warm up to artistes where lots of commercial recordings are available.But we can discuss Santhanam also in detail...
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siddarthcs
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#4

Post by siddarthcs » 24 Jan 2006, 19:02

Maharajapuram Santhanam, was born in 1928 at Sirunagar village, in Thanjavur Dist, to Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer, (one of the greatest exponents of carnatic music) and Visalakshi.

Santahanam had his initial training under Melattur Sama Dikshithar and under his father.

Maharajapuram Santhanam, a beneficiary of the Umayalpuram tradition, kept aloft the enduring values which carnatic music stands for.

{--from musicalnirvana.com--}

His music had a unique pattern and an unparalleled mix of Lakshana and Lakshyagnana. His mellow presentation, the pieces and rendition of ragas, neravals and swaras had a pleasant style of classicism satisfying common and the elite listeners.

Santhanam had an unique style of building up a raga. Vallinam, mellinam of the voice, Karvais and brikhas,meandering and spiriting sangathis were purveyed in such a mix that the hearers felt enthralled.

Santhanam contributed a lot to the music world by composing many songs and thillanas in different ragas like Charukesi, Sivaranjani, Basant Bahar, Revathi, Hindolam, Hamsanandhi, Kanada.
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new_cmfan
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#6

Post by new_cmfan » 18 Feb 2006, 05:50

Thanks for that vrbadri. Do you know who is singing along? Shri Santhanam sounds very young - do you know circa what year was this concert? Did he always sing with someone else singing along with him?
I have heard the dinamani vamsa sung by him and i think Srinivasan (Music Academy concert?) that has the exact same swara patterns - sung exclusively by Srinivasan - thought that was very interesting. I would post that version here - but unfortunately it is a copyrighted version (maybe if i can just -snip- the swaram part - i will try to post it over the weekend just for kicks).
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new_cmfan
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#7

Post by new_cmfan » 18 Feb 2006, 06:50

I guess since this thread is called "Maharajapuram" - i can post this here.

Listen to the Santhanam slokam (#11) posted above by vrbadri first (with particular attention to the 13:00th minute) and then listen to the piece below (btw can anyone tell me whose composition this is?)

http://rapidshare.de/files/13513027/05_Track_05.mp3
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Ecstacy
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#8

Post by Ecstacy » 18 Feb 2006, 14:03

Endowed with an enchantingly sweet voice and dedicated to the practice of classical music in his individualistic style, Maharajapuram Santhanam has earned the admiration of a massive majority of music lovers. He was the second son of his illustrious father, Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer. Fondly called "chinna kothandu" by his family, Santhanam sang with his father in concerts over a number of years from an early age.

Santaanam had his initial training under Melattur Sama Dikshithar and under his father. While joining his father in concerts, he simultaneously completed his schooling from the Town High School, Kumbakonam in 1945.

Though Santhanam's initiation into carnatic music began in 1948, at a marriage, to be quickly followed by a formal debut at the South Indian Club in Calcutta, he emerged as a 'complete musician' only in the 1970s, music critics say.

Santhanam gave a recital at the Thyagaraja Aradhana festival at Thiruvaiyaru in 1952 and made his appearance at the Music Academy in Madras, the Mecca of Carnatic musicians in 1958-59.

During 1960-65, Santhanam served as the HOD of the Ponnambalam Ramanathan College of Music in Jaffna in Sri Lanka.

Endowed with a 'genuine classicism', Santhanam was on the expert committe of the Music Academy for a number of years.

He won several titles and honours, including the
'Padmashri' in 1990,
'Sangeeta Kalanidhi' from the Music Academy in 1989,
Sangeeta Natak Academy award in 1984,
TN Govt's 'KalaiMamani' award.
"Sangeetha Sudhakara" by the Yoga vedanta University at Rishikesh.

A former "Asthana Vidwan" of the thirumala tirupathi devasthanam and the Kanchi Kamakoti Mutt. Sri Santhanam was also bestowed with the "Gana Kalanidhi" by Sri Chandrasekhara Bharati of Sringeri, and "Sangitha Sagaramritha Varshi" by Sri Jayendra Saraswati of the Kanchi mutt.

The forte of Santhanam's singing technique was the art of communicating profound musical expressions with an easy to absorb simplicity. Towards this end he modulated his voice effectively to stress the nuances of a raga sanchara or to bring out the elegance of the sahitya in a song. In his kutcheris one could not discern the distinction between a weighty song and a thukkada, for he treated each song with consummate embellishment that long after he stopped singing the piece, it lingered in the ears of the listener.

Santhanam?s favorite ragam was "Sivaranjani".


It used to be said of Vidwans of yesteryears that their kutcheri pattern was marked by proportion - raga alapana, songs, and swaras. Santhanam was out-and-out a follower of this great tradition. In another aspect too he belonged to the galaxy of Viswanatha Iyer and his contemporaries. He had immense faith in the grandeur of familiar ragas, uplifting the quality of performancc- say Kalyani, Sankarabharana, or Khamboji.

Like his father, Santhanam took classical carnatic music to people in his melodious style and was marching with vigor and determination winning the hearts of overflowing audiences. Without deviating from the classical style of good quality, he made his recitals highly entertaining. He had a rich repertoire of songs. His mellow presentation, the pieces and rendition of ragas, neravals and swaras had a pleasant style of classicism satisfying common AND elite listeners. His many commercial cassettes are treasured in the homes of his admirers as a valuable possession.

Maharajapuram had respect for fellow musicians. The Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer trust founded by him in the name of his father in 1985 has been honouring senior musicians every year with awards and financial assistance and arranging concerts of eminent and young artists.

Santhanam's encouragement and sincere appreciation of the accompanists was as generous as his music was great. He was one who could create the satisfaction of a 4 hour concert in 2 hours. Programming was such that while neraval and swaraprasthanams moved with grace, the alapana threw open the magic casement of the aesthetic charm, the song bridged both.

Maharajapuram passed away on 24 June, 1992, in a car accident near Tindivanam.
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Sivaraman
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#9

Post by Sivaraman » 18 Feb 2006, 18:07

Santhanam was another great maestro, whose music has moved me immensely to the depths of my soul, particularly his renditions of the OOthukadu Venkatakavi krithis like,"Alai payudhe","Kuzhaloodhi manamellam","Aadathu asangathu vaa kanna" etc.I think nobody else could have done justice to the greatness of Oothukadu compositions like Maestro Santhanam, whose evocative,bhava filled renditions have enthralled rasikas of the past, present and,I am sure, of the future also.
In his own way, Santhanam was a Musical genius, unparalleled in his soulful music, which will live forever.
The first time I heard was in New Delhi, way back in 1969, when I heard him sing an elaborate Brindavana Saranga, the like of which I have not heard from any other musician till date.
In my opinion, without any disrespect to his eminent father,the Late Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer,whose Mohanam was supposed to be great, I think that his son Santhanam achieved much more in the CM world through his melodious and gambheera saareeram, his virtuosity, the devotion and bhava and creative imagination in the sangathis and swaraprastharams, as well as clear diction of the krithis, unlike many stalwarts who garble the words and completely distort the aesthetic beauty of the krithis and the listener is unable to make what they are singing
Sivaraman.
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sangom
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#10

Post by sangom » 05 Jul 2006, 13:04

The sloka "Kasthuri Thilakam" is from "Krishna Karnamrutham" by Leelasuka. It is the 108th. sloka of the second Canto and is usually recited by elders as an equivalent to Dhyana sloka.

BTW can you pl. reupload the Track_05 so that I can hear.

I joined this group recently.
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coolkarni
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#11

Post by coolkarni » 06 Jul 2006, 06:03

a nice moment of collaboration between Semmangudi and Santhanam

http://rapidshare.de/files/25008310/SAN ... GUDI-1.MPG
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bala747
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#12

Post by bala747 » 17 Jul 2006, 06:32

My folks were always big fans of Santhanam's music and when I first started discussing music online, I'd rather admit that I stole money from a blind beggar than admit to liking his music because it seemed that there was a huge section of "purists" on the internet who found his music lacking in depth and variety and were very quick to condemn anyone who said anything good about it.

I was left wondering if my musical tastes were indeed so warped but they couldn't have been because both my grandfather and granduncle (The non-eccentric one) who were big rasikas of GNB and SSI were admirers of Santhanam's singing as well.

Anyway, I suppose part of the criticism comes from the fact that most Santhanam concerts in circulation today seem to feature the same songs ad nauseam. It always seems to be the following:

Kanada varnam
Sri mahaganapathe - Nattai
Paripalaya - Panthuvarali
Dinamani Vamsa - Harikambhoji
Raga alapana in Suddha Dhanyasi followed by Narayana (Neraval at "Krishna krishna...")
Ganamurthey (or Pariyachakama)
Etavunara - Kalyani (or RTP in Kalyani)
Sri chakraraja
Nalinakanthimathim
Thillana of his
etc

I have a few concerts of Santhanam, an especially memorable one which featured elaborate renditions of Durbar (Naradaguruswamy), Thodi (Dasarathey, one of the best renditions of this song), Bhairavi (Swarajathi), Simhendramadyamam (Kamakshi), Mohanam (Evvarura) and Kharaharapriya (Ramanee samanamevvaru) in one concert which ran for almost 5 hours.

Another concert featured a beautiful hindolam (Manasuloni), Sankarabharanam (Sankaracharyam), Thodi (Bharati mamava) and an RTP in Lathangi.

My mother mentioned that in Bombay he once sang a concert featuring an RTP in Brindavana Saranga. (If anyone has this, please let me know.. My dad was too impatient to sit through the whole concert and dragged my mother back home halfway and she hasn't forgiven him since).

There were concerts of his that I found distinctly ordinary (take your pick, anything with Narayana and Dinamani Vamsa would indicate that he is going through the same hackneyed route) but many concerts of his have been rather fantastic.
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knrh05
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#13

Post by knrh05 » 17 Jul 2006, 08:13

coolkarniji,
The SSI-Santhanam clip was fantastic! Can I request more from this concert? Do you know what the occasion was, was it a full concert etc?

knrh05
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coolkarni
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#14

Post by coolkarni » 17 Jul 2006, 09:11

i can put up the audio clip if you wish.video is out of my reach.
( i am a poor man):oops:

they are from old performances for the viswanatha iyer trust -at bombay.

but i have a home in detroit where you can watch it in a few weeks time.
kalgada ... are u listening ??? ;) ;)
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bala747
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#15

Post by bala747 » 17 Jul 2006, 14:18

Nice track though! I mean it was great watching the two sing with such gusto. I never seen Santhanam sing live (he died when I was 10, and although I liked music I was deemed too young and restless to sit through a four hour concert).
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Mahesh
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#16

Post by Mahesh » 17 Jul 2006, 16:25

There was a Coimbatore concert which was uploaded a few months ago, it was in the 70's when Santhanam has a nasal twang to his music. The Panthuvarali [especially the neraval] and Keeravani [Kaligiyunte] was mesimerising. The later part of his life as Bala says was just repetitions to keep the crowd happy.

There is an AIR recording, where he sings his own composition in Hansadhwani on Lord Ganesha [Sadasivan maindane ..] and a short but sweet Shankarabaranam with yaaro endennamale an Arunachla Kavirayar composition. Any one has this recording? It also had an Atana inbetween.
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rajeshnat
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#17

Post by rajeshnat » 17 Jul 2006, 20:40

For me the entry point to CM is only because of Maharajapuram Santhanam. Though from 89 to 92 , he went with a fairly set pattern of songs (as Bala747 puts it), but certainly they were all sublime in pitch , melliflousness of his voice evident everywhere .Certainly I have never seen anybody yet who could use the microphone to such modulation, as much as what he has used. I could remember lot of his concerts from 1985 till 1992

Few unique observations that I have only seen from him .

1. There were few PantuvarAli's that I have not heard yet from any one else other than Maharajapuram Santhanam .(Sundara Tara Deham and Ramuni Maravakave with superb neravals and swara prastham )

2. One great Mohanam alapanai's once in Mylapore Fine Arts or NGS in mid 80's where it touched me and I was amazed.

3. Any Brindavana Saranga be it a viruttam or a sublime Swaminathena of Dikshitar.

4. One viruttam "Kanda Guha Shanmugha" ending with a basanth bahar tillana.

5. When I was a gallery boy, his Bho Sambho in revati or the tillana or the aparadhi naa nalla of Purandaradasar .

6. His ragamaliga's Shirabdhi Kanyaku or Sarangan marugane or Nalinakanthi mahim.

7. OVK's Shanmughapriya Varamonru thantharulvay , a lovely rendition with excellent diction.Still not heard anyone sing that

8. Few Ganapathi krithis especially Uchiste Ganapathe in Bowli(not heard yet).

9. Few tukkada krithi's of YazhpAnam Veeramani especially "Chinna Kani Kanna" which is usually followed by a viruttam in Br Saranga + Subha PantuvarAli.

10. An outstanding raga alapana followed by Jayadeva Ashthapathi "Anilatharala kuvalaya" in a raga that I was told as Vishwapriya which took me 5 full years to discover.

11. One kalyAna Vasantham --"Sri Venkatesa" A dikshitar krithi .

12. Lastly his own compositions sivaranjani tillana or his chandrasekara saraswathi in hindolam .

On the flip side , few ragas that I found not that appealing

1. Bhairavi -- Heard a swarajathi Kamakshi , looked very uninspiring.

2. Not heard a good todi from him. One RTP in Todi(1987 Academy) , in an objectionable pallavi line "Entharo Mahanubhavulu" was quite boring too.

On a personal note ,it took me atleast 10 years to start appreciating other musicians, and I had a wrong fixation that he only was the greatest...
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bala747
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#18

Post by bala747 » 17 Jul 2006, 21:41

Talking about the ragamalika Ksheerabdi kannige.. up until 1989 my grandfather's favourite ragamalika was GNB's Dikkuteriyaada..

But once he heard Santhanam's Ksheerabdi Kannige, he would virtually run towards the speakers to hear it again.

But he would insist on only hearin SAnthanam's 1989 rendition. He would say that it was so great that even if he sang it again it wouldn't be as good.

It had to be that one 1989 rendition.
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knrh05
Posts: 159
Joined: 05 Feb 2010, 20:52

#19

Post by knrh05 » 19 Jul 2006, 07:04

It's time to get to know kalgada, I suppose! Is it possible to upload the audio track if it is not too much of a bother?

Thanks!
knrh05

i can put up the audio clip if you wish.video is out of my reach.
( i am a poor man):oops:

they are from old performances for the viswanatha iyer trust -at bombay.

but i have a home in detroit where you can watch it in a few weeks time.
kalgada ... are u listening ??? ;) ;)
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coolkarni
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#20

Post by coolkarni » 19 Jul 2006, 09:02

audio track.. yes i will do it
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knrh05
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#21

Post by knrh05 » 20 Jul 2006, 00:55

Thanks!
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rajeshnat
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#22

Post by rajeshnat » 05 Oct 2006, 16:35

Interesting Incident that I heard thru grapevine about the jAmbhavAn MaharAjapuram Vishwanatha Iyer (MVI) in the context of swati tirunal navarathri mantapam concert.

A long time before when MVI was somewhere in Tanjore district,at that time his sishya SSI being a principal of the swati tirunal music college wanted to get more sanmAnam (fame and money) to MVI . So MVI was invited much before the concert date in Trivandrum by SSI and he was given a semi-royal treatment . It was and is customary to sing only Swati Tirunal krithi's and SSI knowing that MVI does not know Swati Tirunal krithis , arranged his prime disciple TM ThyagarAjan (TMT) to teach krithi sahityam of Swati Tirunal to MVI.

TMT,as per SSI's instruction used to visit on the first day to MVI's guest house and wanted to help MVI to learn few sahityam of Swati Tirunal . MVI excused saying "today my throat is not good ". The next day TMT again went for which MVI said "In kerala it is raining and is not conducive for my throat , I would prefer the sunshine of Tanjore". TMT the junior sishya was caught in between SSI's instruction and MVI's reluctance. The days rolled by and MVI just gave excuse after excuse.Not sure if he learned even one.

The D Day rolled. The crowd thronged to hear MVI , known for his manOdharmam . SSI and travancore royal family were present . MVI started with a hamsadhwani . He sang a detailed pantuvarAli alApanai . Most were expecting Swati Tirunal's sArasAksha or saraseeruha . But MVI sang one of his favourite siva siva yenarAdha , a thyagarAja's composition .

Then a detailed arAbi alApanai was sung. The audience expected Swati Tirunal's narasimha, but MVI sang a detailed ThyagarAja's joota murAre. He went on and on without singing even one krithi of Swati Tirunal . I am told that the travancore royal family got up and left some time during the concert (pantuvarAli???).

Incidentally at the end of the concert SSI went to MVI and said "You could have sang sArasAksha in pantuvarAli" for which MVI replied sArasAksha and siva siva yenerAda are just one and the same.The bottomline , one can see MVI's love of ThyagarAja krithi in one side of the spectrum or one can spot him as he was very adamant in not even singing one Swati Tirunal composition and breaking the tradition . Certainly to me MVI had his own individuality and ways to protest .

Note: I may have not got the krithis absolutely right and not sure about when MVI said to SSI about both pantuvarAli(T and ST) are same ,but this incident is true.If some one can add color and bring more authenticity claims , please do that.
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kumaran.nadesan
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#23

Post by kumaran.nadesan » 05 Oct 2006, 17:19

Repetitive as it may be but Santhanam is still amongst the greatest of vidwans. Inspite of my ignorance, I've increasingly tried to grasp the magnificence of artistes such as CBV, AKI, GNB, KVN, MMI, RKS, etc., but I still have a soft spot for Santhanam. His renditions of Oothukkadu Venakatasubaiyyer's compositions, as someone else previously mentioned, and Tamil keerthanaigaL in general are superb and was one of the main reasons that drew me to carnatic music in the first place. He is spectacular. I had the opportunity to hear Maharajapuram Ramachandran in Toronto last year but it wasn't the same :(
Last edited by kumaran.nadesan on 05 Oct 2006, 17:45, edited 1 time in total.
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kumaran.nadesan
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#24

Post by kumaran.nadesan » 05 Oct 2006, 17:24

Speaking of whom, some nice clips posted by coolcrave on YouTube:

Raraama inti / Asaveri / Adi
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fh--sekhQA8

Charangatham endru nambi vandhen / Gowlai / Adi
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jMy73fxlwk

Eru mayil / Hamsanadam / Khanda Chapu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_79UBfBL0s
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jayaram
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#25

Post by jayaram » 05 Oct 2006, 21:52

kumaran.nadesan wrote:Speaking of whom, some nice clips posted by coolcrave on YouTube:
Eru mayil / Hamsanadam / Khanda Chapu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_79UBfBL0s
Eru mayil is in Hamsaanandi, not Hamsanaadam.
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