Friday, September 7, 2012


The Malayalam film 'Neelakkuyil' was a trendsetter during the first phase of Malayalam cinema history.It was made in 1953 and released in 1954.Up to that period the songs of Malayalam films copied or imitated famous Hindi film tunes  but the original Kerala style tunes with a folklore touch was one highlight of 'Nelakkuyil' which was well appreciated by the audience.Those songs were composed by K.Raghavan and his fame was spread all over Kerala instantly  with that film.The lyrics were written by P.Bhaskaran and K.Raghavan used the most appropriate tunes well suited for the story and also the situation of the sequences.
It was a film which had the theme intended to change the mentality of the people about the caste system prevailed in the State.The need to implement social justice was said nicely by the Directors Ramu Kariat and P.Bhaskaran.
It was the first Malayalam film which employed outdoor shooting.The film earned much accolades,National award etc.The songs of that film are still very popular and seems they will remain  eternal for ever.One of the songs in 'Neelakkuyil' was sung by K.Raghavan itself and that  song was also well accepted.
                                     Music Director K.Raghavan is well known as 'Raghavan Master' and thank God that he is still living among us at his home town 'Tellicherry'(Thalassery) and he is still young at the age of 98.
He was born to parents Krishnan and Narayani at Talasseri.His mother died when he was very young.His father remarried again.Financial condition of the family was poor.His father used to sing Folklore songs during functions in their community and later Raghavan also joined him for singing songs which he enjoyed very much..He got trained in Classical Music and  got trained to play some musical instruments also.
After schooling his maternal uncle took him to Mumbai to find  him a job but after a few months he  returned back and went to Chennai to seek  a job related to music.Soon he got employment at 'All India Radio Station Chennai'  as  player of Musical instrument 'Thamburu'.Even though the salary was less he managed to  get along because he could earn some money by giving musical lessons to children nearby.After a few years he was transferred  to New Delhi Radio Station and in 1950 he was sent  to 'Kozkikode' Radio Station.At Kozhikode Station he got acquaintance with intellectual personalities like  P.Bhaskaran, and Uroob.P.Bhaskaran was a  well known poet and song writer even during  those days and Uroob(P.C.Kuttykrishnan) was  a famous novelist.
As part of the job K.Raghavan had to compose music for songs which he used to perform fantastically well which impressed P.Bhaskaran etc.Thus when P.Bhaskaran planned to direct the film 'Neelakkuyil' along with 'Ramu Kariyat' they 
handed over the music direction work to K.Raghavan.As in the versus "Engane nee marakkum kuyile engane nee marakkum" Malayali people can  not forget the sweet melodious songs of that film.K.Raghavan Master proved that when excellent lyrics are composed with perfection and  well suited  tunes brilliantly, they will remain eternal for ever.
For composing music for films and Professional dramas K.Raghavan had to get permission from the authorities of All India Radio and the formalities took around two months.Only the Producers and Directors willing to wait long  was able to call him for film works.So in his career he composed music for around  sixty films only but the number of film songs are around 400.He composed music for several dramas of K.P.A.C also.The drama songs "Pambukalkku Malamundu Paravakalkkakasamundu"  and  "Thalakku meethe soonyakasam thazhe maru bhoomi" are examples for K.Raghavan Master's magical touch.
                         He utilized singers like Brahmanandan,K.P.Udayabhanu,V.T.Murali,Santha P.Nair, Gayatri Srikrishnan etc. along with other famous singers.
After 'Neelakkuyil' he got appreciation for film 'Nayaru Pidicha Pulival' in 1956 and the song 'Nazhoori palu kondu nadake kalyanam' became a big hit.Afterwards he composed  music for films like 'Koodapirappu,Neelisali,Krishna Kuchela,Unniyarcha,Ammaye kanan,Rebecca etc which all boosted his fame.
"Thumbi Thumbi va va " of Koodapirappu, "Unarunru unni poove" of Ammaye Kanan, "Konna poove kingini poove innenne kandal" of Ammaye Kanan,
"Yerusalemin Nayakane Ennu Kanum " and "Kili vathilil mutti vilichathu katto" of film Rebecca, are all still very  popular.
The songs of film 'Ramanan' in 1967 mesmerized all audiences and all the songs became super hit which are highly popular still now."Ekantha Kamuka ninte manoradham" , "Chapala vyamohangal" , "Kanana chayayil aadu meykan" are all brilliant compositions.
The famous songs "Sakhakkale munnottu"(Punnapra Vayalar)
"Manju Bhashini Maniyara"  (kodungallooramma)
"Ambalapuzha Vela Kandu njan Thampuratty"(Kakkathampuratty)

"Maanathe Kayalil"   (Kalli Chellamma)
"Kari Mukil Kattile"  (Kalli Chellamma)
"Nagarm Nagaram Maha Sagaram (Nagarame Nandi)
"Ekantha Pathikan njan " (Ummachu)
"Nalikerathinte Nattil enikkoru Nazhi Edangazhi Mannundu"(Thurakkatha vathil) etc all became nostalgia for Kerala audiences and music listeners.
In 1983 also K.Raghavan sang a song along with chorus for the  film  'Kadamba'("Appozhe paranjille ")
He utilized only limited orchestra for his songs.He never demanded to write lyrics for already designed tunes.He gave music according to the lyrics and after studying the characters and scenes only.
He got Kerala Government Award  as Best Music Director for film "Nirmalyam"
in 1973.
He got Best Music Director award from Kerala Government for film 'Poojakkedukkatha Pookkal" in  1977.
He got Kerala Sangeetha Nadaka Academy Fellowship in 1981.
He got Best Music Director award in 1986 for Drama Song.
In 1998 he got 'Kamukara Award'.
In 1998 he was presented J.C.Daniel Award for his  lifetime achievements.
In 2006  he got 'Swaralaya' award.
In 2010 he was given 'Padma Shri' Award by Government of India.
This Emperor of Music, Padma Shri K.Raghavan Master is loved and respected by all film goers and music lovers.