Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The big pronunciation debate!

Recently, I asked one of my friends about his opinion of Star Singer program. To my surprise, he said he 'wanted' to watch it, but avoids it due to the 'horrible' Malayalam pronunciation of the anchor, Ranjini!

On the contrary, in my opinion, her pronunciation is the program's one of the most selling points. While hardcore Malayalees like my friend watch it with bemusement, youngsters raised outside Kerala understand and appreciate this genre of Malayalam better. I can very well testify to this from my experience. I see more and more youngsters in our locality, who hardly speak Malayalam, tune in to Star Singer program. They find the show quite natural, enjoyable and entertaining with Ranjini on the stage as the anchor.

The Malayalam language has changed a lot ever since the visual media invaded the households. Many words have become archaic. Many have been borrowed from English. Pronunciation of words have changed. Linguists may call it corruption or bastardisation, but one cannot ignore the impact of this new kind of Malayalam on youngsters! I am pretty sure that in the near future our language will not be the same again. Whether this is good for the language is debatable.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Unforgettable Children's Songs!

If my memory serves me right, it was in the year 1984 that my elder brother brought home a bed type Panasonic tape recorder cum cassette player. We children were so excited that we spent day in and day out listening to the only album he brought along with it, an album from Tarangini. The songs were immediate hits amongst us. The singers were Yeshudas, Geetu and the now indisputable number one female singer Chitra! I still remember the melodious songs that captivated the imaginations of us, children.

പണ്ടു പണ്ടൊരു കൊക്ക് .. പണ്ടാര കൊക്ക്
പഞ്ചമി കുളങ്ങരയില്‍ ഭജനമിരുന്നു..

and

പണ്ടൊരു പുഴയരുകില്‍ .. പവിഴമല്ലി തളിരിതളില്‍
ഉരുണ്ടു വീഴാനൊരുങ്ങി നിന്നു.. ഒരു തുള്ളി മഴവെള്ളം

and

മീന മാസത്തിലെ നട്ടുച്ച നേരം .. ഒരു പുഴയോരം
തൊണ്ട വരണ്ടു .. .. .. പണ്ടൊരു രാജസിംഹം

and the others.