Popular veena artiste and a good friend and mine Revathy Krishna who presents concerts with good film songs and I met PS yesterday at her residence in Chennai. Though I have met her earlier, this meeting was very momentous to me. We were there by 7 pm and how nice, there were no other guests or VIPs there. We were waiting in her office room and in another ten minutes PS entered with a warm smile.
PS was surprised to know that RK was playing film songs in veena and enquired about the sruti alignments for playing film songs in veena and when the conversation between RK and PS with RK praising PS for many of her songs and so on was going on, my mind was filled with PS songs and her voice in the 1950s in thaaye idhu nyayama, ennaippol pennallavo, puriyaadha inbham, chinna arumbhu malarum, chinnanchiru kannmalar, etc. and when she looked at me in between I mentioned her Yaar paiyan melody thandhai yaaro thaayum yaaro (MD T S Chalapathy Rao) ...I sang the full pallavi and told her that whenever I listen to this song when PS says 'thoonguda' when the pallavi ends in jaalakkaaraa thoonguda in that song, I would also fall asleep, she paused for a while ....padathula Savitri paaduvaanga...but when RK mentioned about Thamizh engal uyiraanadhu from Poompuhar, she asked..naana paadinaen andha paattu...(!).
PS expressed her wish to present a full programme with RK with her voice and veena in a unique programme to be organised in a grandiose scale. Both I and RK were thrilled and looking at her with amazement, at
this unexpected gesture from a person of PS stature and whom we adore and admire, she continued...kandippa TMS adhula participate pannanum, appuram orchestra roma nalla irukkanum, illainna TMSukku kovam vandhudum, enna vaasikkaraanga ivangannu sollittu keezha irangiduvaaru...we were dumb-struck.
And before leaving, I gave a neat print-out of this Kuyilukku kireedam and read out the lines...
...‘I have no words to say….’ stammered a delighted Suseela (Sun News). Well, that may be, but we sure have plenty to say …. For who else is more deserving of this coveted civilian honour than this unassuming nightingale who has been a treasured companion for generations of fans, the ageless voice that has lulled us to sleep with the songs that throbbed with the warmth of motherhood, encouraged us to pursue our hopes and ambitions with words of affection and faith, wiped our tears of failure and disappointment with solicitous songs of consolation and care, coaxed us to soar on flights of delicious fantasy with verses soaked in romance and love, mirrored the angst that follows thereafter with empathetic lines of longing and loss, instilled the confidence to build our lives again with prophesies of a better morrow, escorted us across the threshold of marital bliss with auspicious lines of blessing, and watched amusedly as we discovered the miracle of parenthood with songs that reflect the related pride and joys… verily, laden with her mellifluous bounty, Suseela laces the rim of the circle of roles that life enjoins us to don….. Far from being an inaccessible celebrity, Suseela has lived each day, each moment of our lives alongside us, with her alluring songs as constant alter egos that laugh, cry, hope, rue, love, hate…in short, live… with us, inside us…
her eyes widened and said...ada romba nalla irukkey. We were there for nearly about an hour and left but her awe-inspiring presence and her unassuming demeanour still linger.... puriyaadha inbham!..