Mudhi Mudhi

There is a reason why Ilaiyaraaja is next to God for many, especially those who are musicians - Amateur or Professional. Playing any of the track in any given Raaja song is not only a very challenging and enjoyable experience, its also a very addictive one. One which would shift your allegiance to him for good.. Don't trust me? Try yourself at your risk..

So when I heard the new song "Mudhi Mudhi" from Paa, two things struck me at once. First is the simplicity of the tune.. Just with predominant usages of Poorvanga notes of Mohanam (i.e., D, E and F# in this case) how he repeatedly comes up with innovative tunes. Such varied syncopation with such limited resource is like trying to (successfully) create 80 combination with 3 inputs while mathematics claim only 8 is possible; Second is the arrangement that's behind this tune - which is a stark contrast to its simplicity.

"Mojo" of an average listener is so much high now a days that I am sure websites and reviews are already blaring with how "Jazz"-ish and "Cool" this song sounds. So I decided to take a shot at how Jazz it really is..

Although Jazz is not an alien in this part of the world, it has been mostly used in commonly appreciable Swing or Cool jazz styles. But without any shade of doubt, its not usual that you will find such high quality free flowing jazz chord progressions in regular Indian film music. The spontaneity is mind blowing that the tune is certain to motivate the keyboardist to cut loose and bring out his best. Not to scare you with the following chords, but the song's prelude in DM7th is an indication of what to come. GM7th, Bm6th, Bm (9th), A6th, D (9th), A (9th), F# sus (4th), an inversion of C#m 7th (without the perfect 5th note) are some of the chords used in this song !

To demonstrate these chords, I quickly threw in an inbuilt rhythm in my keyboard and arranged the accompaniment track first. Then I played the lead melody of the song. It was a cool tune to play because I haven't had the chance to use Pitch Bend so effectively in a while. The inherent melody of the song which toggles either side of E provided ample scope for this. Then I played the chords in yamaha DX Piano tone on top of this with a higher volume (So its heard better in isolation) and recorded it. Because in the original song even though you hear them, its still very easy to overlook them.

Actually I have taken a hybrid version of the chords from both Shilpa Rao's and Shaan's version. Hopefully (and rightfully) this would demonstrate the genius of Raaja for the new listeners who never heard him before.

You can watch it in Youtube here.

With Love

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