Song of the Day: Radha kaadhal varaatha from naan avan illai.
Sung by SPB & Chorus. Lyrics by Kannadasan. Music by MSV.
For more on the movie:
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Baths, wine and Venus bring decay to our bodies;
but baths, wine and Venus make up life!
- epitaph in Gruter's Monumenta
Ramaswami ‘Gemini’ Ganesh (17.11.1920- 22.3.2005) will live on in our hearts as the eternal romantic, the kaadhal mannan. He has passed on peacefully, content with the life that he led to the full. As his daughter Kamala Selvaraj put it with quiet dignity, “He lived well. And he died well, with his loving family around him, praying for his soul to rest in peace”
And as Gemini Ganesh was bid adieu with a solemn state salute, curtains have been drawn on a glorious era of Tamil Cinema. He started as a chemistry tutor at Madras Christian College and switched over to becoming a casting assistant in Gemini studios; and after frustrating years of waiting for a good break, he found success in the tinsel world. His understated, yet brilliantly evocative performances in films like missiyamma, peNNin perumai, kalyaNa parisu, thEn nilavu, meeNda sorgam, kaRpagam, sumaithaangi, iru kOdugaL, kaaviya thalaivi and punnagai will forever be held in awe. And ‘naan avanillai’ which Gemini Ganesh produced is bestowed with one of his finest performances ever.
“True to life” was the widely heard snide comment at the time naan avanillai was released. But then Gemini Ganesh was never furtive, even in his personal affairs. In fact, apropos his personal life and relationships, he probably would have procliamed 'naan avanthaan!' Accepting candidly that “Gemini Ganesan is not a Rama, he is a Krishna”, he is known to have said that while he never went about in pursuit, if it was offered to him on a salver he with savor it readily, and with relish! In another interview, he said, with a roguish twinkle, that he would often remark to his image on the mirror: “dEi Ganesa, nee koduthu vechavanda!”
In the recent film adidhadi, Tirupathi (Satyaraj) a 50 year old underworld don who falls in love with a girl half his age, is seen going to Gemini Ganesh to seek advice on how to go about wooing and winning the girl! That is the kind of an icon of romance that Gemini has become!
Gemini Ganesh’s philosophy was simple, to quote: “I believe man is made to live a good life and enjoy it”. And he did enjoy it, every bit of it!
- An incomplete list of Gemini Ganesan songs in SOTD:
Konjum Salangai - Singaara vElanE dEva http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/23.html
Ramu - NilavE ennidam nerungaadhE http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/72.html
manithan maaRavillai - inbamaana iravidhuvE http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/203.html
veLLi vizha - kaadhOdu thaan naan paaduvEn http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/225.html
Ganga Gowri - aadhi naathan kEtkindraan http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/254.html
KappalOttiya thamizhan - kaatru veLiyidai kaNNamma http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/255.html
Bhagyalakshmi - maalaip pozhuthin mayakkaththilE http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/345.html
meeNda sorgam - thuyilaadha peNNondru kaNdEn http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/327.html
Parthiban kanavu - andhi mayanguthadi http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/323.html
Manamaalai - nilaiyaaga veesudhE http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/290.html
naan avan illai - manthaara malarE http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/288.html
Sumaithaangi - manithan enbavan dheivamaagalaam http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/280.html
iru kOdugaL - punnagai mannan poovizhik kaNNan http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/363.html
meeNda sorgam - kalaiyE en vaazhkkaiyin http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/439.html
Kalyanap parisu - thuLLatha manamum thuLLum http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/488.html
kaNavanE kaN kaNda dheivam - anbil malarndha nal roja http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/494.html
punnagai - naaLai naamoru http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/583.html
Ganga Gowri - andharangam naan aRivEn http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/425.html
unakkaaga naan - iRaivan ulagathai padaithaanaam http://www.dhool.com/sotd2/533.html