Happy Birthday Ilayaraja

A great musician was born on this day in 1943, who affected so many people’s life for good through his appealing music. Ilayaraja is an embodiment of music. He is the one who gave new direction to Tamil Cinema through his music.

With a musically inclined-brother, Pavalar Varadarajan, who headed a musical troupe, Ilayaraja was exposed to music early in his life. He then joined a music college and got trained in music. He specialized in guitar and Trinity College of London awarded him a gold medal for his skills in Western classic guitar.

Then he joined Kannada film music composer G.K. Venkatesh as an assistant. In 1976, he got his break in Annakkali, in which he combined western techniques with the folk music of Tamil Nadu. From then on, it was a remarkable journey marked with many milestones.
Through his career, he has composed music for 4000 songs and for more than 800 films. His name was ubiquitous between the 70s and 90s. He became famous even in the North, which was very tough for a Tamil musician to achieve in those days. His tradition is being carried out by his children Karthik Raja, Yuvanshankar Raja and Bhavadharini.

He became the first Indian to perform a symphony. He began to experiment with Thiruvasagam, a set of Saivite hymns, and presented it in symphony form. Recently, the famous hip-hop band Black Eyed Peas sampled one of his compositions from Sri Raghavendra for a theme song in their album ‘Elephunk’.

Ilayaraja is the pride of Tamil Nadu as well as the whole country and of course, the musical world. wishes this giant of the music a very happy birthday and a healthy long life.


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