Source: The Hindu; Author: Venkatesan Srikanth; Photo Courtesy: V. Ganesan

If some Delhi music lovers enjoyed analysing the greatness of Madurai Mani Iyer, others went back to the devotional roots of classical music. Mention these songs to any ardent Carnatic music lover — “Kaa Vaa Vaa” (Varali), “Thaaye Yasodha” (Todi), “Yeppo Varuvaro” (Jonpuri), “Vellai Thamarai” (Bhimplas), “Karpagame” (Madhyamavati) and the “English Note” — and the name that would instantly come to mind is the legendary late Madurai Mani Iyer. Madurai Mani Iyer popularised these songs and his listeners would repeatedly request him to sing most of them in all his concerts. Mani Iyer was born on October 25 1912 and his centenary is being marked by events spread over a year in different parts of the country.

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SAK Durga. Photo: V. Ganesan.