Sunday, January 31, 2010

Tribute to S. Rajam

On Jan. 29, S. Rajam, musican, musicologist, guru and artist passed away after 91 years of graceful living and serving arts in various forms.

I have been to S.Rajam's place on the Nadu Street, Mylapore on three occasions, on various assignments. I have seen him giving a touch to one of his old paintings, of which we wanted a picture for the Kutcheribuzz dance guide book. I had been to his talks on a few occasions. I have listened to his Naganandini raga kriti 'Sathaleni dinamulu' at a lec-dem session.
All this after a piece I wrote for Mylapore Times in 2005. Those were times I enjoyed writing occasionally for the weekly tabloid on my own and of no assignments.

Earlier, I had known him as a good musician and a good painter, through my mother who looked for classy music legends and listened to them in her times of learning and singing music. She passed on the 'sangeetha gnanam' (which is beyond singing and practising) to us.
Later living in Madras, I had the opportunities to listen to many finer artistes including S. Rajam. At the Painting Exhibition organised by The Prakriti Foundation (2005), I saw much more than his usual paintings and listened to him with my mouth wide open, the stories behind each of his paintings.

His life in his own words, as captured by Lalitha Ram is here.

The scanned copy of my article in Mylapore Times is below. The issue carried a cover picture and a big story inside. It was one of the happy moments in my life.
I dedicate those moments to the grand man of music and arts as a tribute.


Ram said...

Wonderful write-up.

I'm still trying to come in terms with his loss.

While I try to console myself with so many wonderful moments I shared with the legend, it is still hard to believe that I wouldn't see the man sitting in his stool, leaning over his paintings, when I visit Chennai next time.

Vasanth said...

This article sums up the life of the artist Rajam, not just a musician. Such articles are hidden in many personal racks. Wish them available online for broader reading

Vanitha Sundaram said...

Nice tribute...

P.S.G.Rajan said...

I have heard from him about the white skin and snake skin etc when he painted navagrahas. But this write up is a wonderful tribute. Recalled at the apt time. Thanks for this.

Prabhu said...


Nice One.


vj said...

I have his periyapurnam illustrated....for children. so different ( done in ajanta mural style)