Tamil Poet Vaali Biography
Vaali ( born T. S. Rangarajan on 29 October, 1931 ) is a Tamil Poet and Lyricist who writes Tamil Poetry and Film Song Lyrics. Most recently he has extended lyrics for a couple of songs in Engeyum Kaadhal for the music of Harris Jayaraj.
Vaali has also acted in several films, most notably Hey Ram, Parthale Paravasam and Poi Kaal Kudhirai. Vaali was recently nominated for a Padma Shri for his literary work.
Vaali, whose real name is Rangarajan, was born in an Iyengar family at Srirangam in 1931. His father’s name is Srinivasa Iyengar and his mother is Ponnammal. Vaali was an artist and he worked at All India Radio ( AIR ).
Vaali holds the record for having written most number of lyrics in Tamil. Vaali has written lyrics for hundreds of songs. Vaali is a prolific writer as well; Vaali has written books like Avathara Purushan, Pandavar Bhoomi, Ramanuja Kaviyam, Krishna Vijayam, Kalaignar Kaviyam, Krishna Bhakthan and Naanum Indha Nootrandum.
Vaali was adept in painting, which inspired his friends to give him the name “Vaali”.
Vaali has not only written lyrics in pure Tamil, but all sorts of folk, hip – hop, rhythm and blues as well. Vaali has also mixed other languages in Tamil songs. The legend goes that Vaali at one time in his life was contemplating suicide due to immense poverty when he heard the lines of the song “Mayakkama Kalakkamma” from the movie Sumai Thangi, penned by Kannadasan.
The lines “Unakkum keezhey ullavar kodi ninaithu paarthu nimmadhi naadu…” changed his mindset and renewed his determination to live a new life.
Vaali has said that there were once 24 hours but no food to eat and next came a time when he had enough on the plate but no time to eat.
Actor Kamal Haasan had asked Vaali to pen the lyrics for a love song for the film Apoorva Sakotharargal. Kamal asked him specifically to pen a love failure song.
Vaali penned the lyrics and gave them to him. But Kamal wasn’t satisfied as Vaali felt the depth of emotion conveyed through the lyrics failed to match the intensity of the situation in the film.
And so Vaali reworked his lyrics, until finally at his sixth attempt Vaali wrote the lyrics and angrily flung his writing pad and said, “Ithukku Mela Ennala Ezhutha Mudiyathu” ( “I cannot do better than this” ). This song, “Unnai Nenachaen Paatu Paaduchaen Thangamae Gnanathangamae…”, subsequently became a hit.