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Song of the Day # 638

From: bb on: Tue Jun 14, 2005 11:17 pm

Song of the Day: Honey Honey from neechal kuLam.

Listen to the song

- Saravanan writes:

‘honey honey’ from neechal kuLam.
Sung by Saibaba & P.Suseela
Music by Dharapuram Sundararajan

* * * *

Even as I was becoming besotted by tfm, there was one music that I already knew and liked, and it was ABBA. As a child, I used to watch wonderingly while my elder cousins played ABBA albums all day long. They learned the lyrics by-heart and sang along, and discussed the songs animatedly. More surprising was that even my father was drawn by the magic- I still have with me the cassette in which he had recorded the ABBA songs that he liked- on the sleeve he had jotted down in his distinct handwriting the list of tracks. I remember reading ‘voulez vous’ and puzzling over its pronunciation. I was too young to follow the lyrics, but was mesmerized by the music. Sometimes even now when I happen to catch ‘I have a dream’ or ‘Fernando’ or ‘Chiquitita’ on the local FM’s late night requests, I go back to those days when Björn, Benny, Agnetha and Anni-Frid had the world under their spell.

And one such timeless number of ABBA is ‘Honey Honey’. The song was written and recorded in both Swedish and English. The lyrics were written jointly by Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus and Stig Anderson.

Honey honey, how you thrill me, ah-hah, honey honey
Honey honey, nearly kill me, ah-hah, honey honey
I'd heard about you before
I wanted to know some more
And now I know what they mean, you're a love machine
Oh, you make me dizzy

… and so it goes. The song, sung by the 4 singers, was recorded in 1973 and released as a singles album, along with ‘King Kong Song’. It also featured in ABBA’s famous ‘Waterloo’ album released in March 1974.

Listen to the song here:

* * * *

It was this catchy number then, that Dharapuram Sundararajan chose to adapt when he was called upon to compose the music for neechal kuLam. neechal kuLam (1979/Mariamman Creations) was the film in which Suman made his debut. He was studying B.A. (Literature) in Pachayappas College at that time and was also teaching Karate when he bagged this film. Master Shekar, Major Sundararajan, VKR, Surulirajan, Gracy, Indirani, Abhilasha and Manorama were his co-actors in the movie. Dialogues were by Kanakashanmugam. The film was directed by veteran T.R.Ramanna.

Dharapuram Sundararajan was a trained and talented singer, but fame and fortune eluded him all his life. He made a mark in the few songs that came his way, and then faded into oblivion. He composed music for 3 films- Hello Partner (1972), neechal kuLam (1979) and ottu maangani (most probably unreleased).

Among the songs of neechal kuLam, ‘aadi pathinettu aaduthu poonchittu’ by SJ is the only song I can remember listening to on the radio. ‘aathukkuLLE ooththu aaduthamma naathu’ is a breezy folk number by MV & VJ. ‘kattazhagai thottaal enna, kannathilE ittaal enna’ (SPB/PS) is a dreamy, caressing number.

Dharapuram Sundararajan’s adaptation of ‘Honey Honey’ is fetching. The simple interludes are well crafted. The deliberately feigned demureness is so delightful in dulcet PS, while Saibaba (Did you know that he is T.S.Baliah’s son?!) sounds urbanely suave.

I discovered this song in one of my CDs- it was a CD that I had forgotten all about; it has songs from kaaLi kOyil kabali, kannitheevu and neechal kuLam- all obscure movies with songs long forgotten. Did ‘Honey Honey’ find any airtime, at least in the days immediately following the film’s release?

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