'Kolaveri' Breaches New Grounds
The internet hit 'Kolaveri Di...', sung by actor Dhanush, has crossed the 50 million mark on YouTube | By Mukesh Venu
On Mar 29, 2012


'Kolaveri' still remains a mystery. The song which has been derided by many reputed names in the film and music industry, is still running hot among the masses.On Monday, March 26 the song, sung by actor Dhanush, for the film '3', directed by his wife Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush, had crossed the 50 million mark in number of hits on YouTube. Critics argue that 'Kolaveri Di' isn't actually a song at all; that it is just a meaningless arrangement of words intertwined together using noise in a very amateurish style.

“I can't stand the song. It evokes no sentiments in me and makes me think that people have started enjoying stupid things,” is singer Shaan's comment about the song.

And true enough, 21 year old Anirudh Ravichander, the music composer of '3', had composed the tune for the song in 10 minutes, when director Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush asked for a light hearted song on a failed love. The lyrics were  written by Dhanush in 20 minutes. In half an hour, the record-breaking song was created by the duo. What is it that has contributed to the raging popularity of the song that has breached all borders - linguistic, political and geographical?

“When I was writing down the lyrics, I kept in mind all the English words that are used in the Tamil vocabulary. I just framed them into sentences and that's how I came up with this song,” Dhanush had explained about writing the lyrics that had created havoc amongst music listeners all around the world.



“What got the song such global appeal is its simplicity. The tune of the song could be hummed by anyone from anywhere in the world. Plus the words used can't get any simpler. Forget understanding the meaning when it comes to people who don't know Tamil – how many of us think about the meaning of 'Un dos tres..' sung by Ricky Martin while humming the song to ourselves, or the more recent 'Shamina mina...' by Shakira. What 'Kolaveri' has accomplished is to create the perfect blend of catchy tune and easy words that do not need to be understood to be enjoyed,” opines Shyam, a guitarist.

Yet there is more to 'Kolaveri' than the catchy tune and easily hummable words. The vocals in the song utilise the singing style of Tamil folk culture and the rhythm has been created using ancient folk instruments. Dhanush sings the song, baring the inadequate grasp he has on the English language, a fact that he never was embarrassed to speak about, out in the open. And that's where the true reason for 'Kolaveri' taking over the world lies.

Unlike the 'proud' Malayalis, Tamilians place their mother tongue and their culture above all others. Whatever has come to them from across the seas, have been effectively 'Tamilised' by them, whether it is music or  language. Malayalis still can't bear to think of hearing a rap song in Malayalam, but the Tamil people can and they have done it through a number of emerging talents. The love and persistence with their language has helped Tamil films match Hindi films in global reach, as the non-residential Tamil people still demand only Tamil films, wherever in the world they might be.


What Dhanush has gained in 'Kolaveri' was to touch this 'Tamil' chord with the semi-literates, in and out of Tamil Nadu. The people of Tamil Nadu looked upon MGR as 'kadavul' because of the undying love for Tamil that the legendary actor and former CM had shown in his movies. At present Dhanush's father – in – law is  the holder of that spot, for precisely the same reason. For many millions, Dhanush represents an average Tamilian in his looks and body language. And when he sang 'Kolaveri' beholding the same attitude, the people took it into their hearts wholeheartedly.

In Dhansuh's own words 'Kolaveri' is a song that 'everybody can relate to'. The song was carried by the Tamil people across the world, and the simplicity and its catchy tune composed by the young composer Anirudh assured its appeal among foreign audiences as well.

However, despite the whole world being caught up in the rage of ‘Kolaveri,’ the song has fallen a victim to controversy. It is accused of having been 'inspired' from old melodies and timeless classics. Critics of the song have pointed out that ‘Kolaveri’ is a blatant copy of Ilayaraja’s music from ‘Nayagan’ and there are a lot who have pounced upon the opportunity to reevaluate the authenticity of the song.



In the midst of all the controversy and hype surrounding 'Kolaveri', the film '3' to which the song belongs is gearing up for a mega release with 400 prints in Tamil and another 600 for the dubbed Hindi version. The Rs.25 crore film which brings together Dhanush, the son-in-law of Rajinikanth, with Shruthi Haasan, the daughter of Kamala Haasan, for the first time, is to hit theatres worldwide on March 30. The film is being directed by Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush and is produced by Kasthuri Raja, the father of Dhanush. Cinematography is by Velraj. The film is essentially romantic and is expected to create records in the box office, riding high on the tremendous hype created by 'Kolaveri Di.'

Report Abuse    Report Error    Comments SMS/E-Mail
Bookmark and Share
News Features Columns