Susie’s Fab Five | Songs of Dawn

Songs of Dawn in Malayalam Cinema
The Break of Dawn from Ulsavapittennu (1989)

I was just driving out of the garage to go to work at 5.30 am. The car window was down, and the cool, crisp air blew in my face. I wound the window up, and turned right, driving out of the gates. The sun was just coming up over the horizon, and the car stereo was playing “Arayilotta mundudutha Penne“, a song which I have heard innumerable times before. But this time the new sun just rising in front of me coincided with the lines “Aadimaasa Pularippenne“, and it struck me that this song is not about Jayabharathy in an Ottamundu, as I always imagined.

It is about an enchanting and lustrous new day dawning for us all! In fact, the whole song was about the day, how it starts out, and how it ends. That song made my day. It made me think about my favourite dawn songs. And here they are, in no particular order.

Arayilottamundudutha Penne from Oru Sundariyude Kadha (1972).

In the scene we see Jayabharathy running away from a homeless man singing the song. I think the beautiful imagery of the song has been totally wasted in its picturisation.

Suprabhaatham from Pani Theeraatha Veedu (1973).

P Jayachandran / Vayalar / MS Viswanathan.
When I think of dawn, this is the first song which comes to mind. The freshness of Jayachandran’s voice, and the natural beauty of Nilgiris, and a happy Prem Nazir all rush back to my mind every time I hear this song.

Udayagiri Chuvannu from Aswamedham (1967)

P Susheela / Vayalar / Devarajan
Aswamedham was a milestone in Malayalam cinema, bringing the plight of leprosy patients to the attention of the masses. All songs in this movie were hits. But when I hear this particular song, it brings to mind the peachy sky of a new dawn (the charioteer of the sun drawing the flaming ball across the sky with the accompaniment of its thundering celestial hooves, heralding a positive, new beginning for all life on earth.

Prabhaathamallo Nee from Chandrakaantham (1974).

MS Viswanathan / Sreekumaran Thampi / MS Viswanathan.
MS Viswanathan has an important place in Malayalam film music, not just for the captivating compositions from way back in 1953 , all the way to 2007. He has also sung many emotionally charged songs for us, right from the unforgettable “Kannuneer Thulliye” in Pani Theeraatha Veedu (1973) to the most recent “Nadannu Nadannu” with Kavalam Sreekumar in Kunjananthante Kada.

“You are the breaking dawn, while I am dusk, our dreams the same,” sings he. “You smile as the lotus while I wallow in the tears of the water-lily. Singing the same tune, yet never able to kiss each other.”

Ushasse Neeyenne from Paadasaram (1978)

KJ Yesudas / AP Gopalan / Devarajan

Dawn, if you had not awakened me, I would never, never have woken up. Every new day is a new beginning. Let’s look forward to tomorrow.

Please write in with your favourites.

16 thoughts on “Susie’s Fab Five | Songs of Dawn

  1. It is strange but some of our older heorines has different names when they acts in different languages . some examples :

    Usha Kumari – Malaylam and in Tamil – Venniradai Nirmala

    Shobhana ( old chemparathi fame) Malaylam and in Telegu – Roja Remani

    Unnimary Malayalam and in Tamil & telegu – Deepa

    can any one say some actress also

  2. Thanks Susie . These are all the songs comes in to my mind also there may be lot but i just couldn’t remember . Most beautiful is of course Suprabhadham from panitheeratha veedu , and of course padma theerthame . I like songs related to sandhya . Like the song Sandhya mayangum neram my most favourite song from Achani . it also give special feeling when we hear Gramma Chantha piryum neram some thing is always happening in my mind very nostalgic feeling or visuals of Gramam dipped in bright orange sun light and the market place . just imagine when u hear Gramma chantha piriyum neram and hear bandhooree it is too much !

      1. Sorry i thought it was from Achani sorry i was talking about the mallika banan thanntte villu eduthu just got confused with that song .Yes there is no snadhya in that song !

    1. Thank you for your kind words, kishkooapple.
      You are right, there are several beautiful “Sandhya” songs in Malayalam Cinema. Saagarame Shaanthamaaka Nee is just one of my favourites among many..

  3. Dear Susie
    Happy to see your songs of dawn. As you pointed out, Suprabhaatam from the film paniteeratha veedu is the first among the equals in your list. Three songs of G Devarajan and two from M S Viswanathan. Udayagiri chuvannu from the film Aswamedhum is a rare song you found eligible to be included here. Ushasse Neeyenne Vilikkukillengil Orikkalum njaan unarukilla… is also another song worth mentioning. Let me remind you that there is another song which starts Ushasse Ushasse Udikku Vegam Udikku (Film Ganga Sangamam) a much more pleasing song.

    Hoewever, you can include these songs also here
    1. Prabhatam Vidarum (Film Velutha Kathreena) A sweet melody of K J Yesudas composed by G Devarajan in Ravichandrika Raagam. Sreekumaran Thampi the poet says … Udayam illatilla Asthamanam Unaru Manasse Unaru. Please listen to the virutham in the movie version which starts yadaya dahi dharmassya… edited in the record version of the song
    2. Anjali Poo (Film Bheeghara NImishangal) A simple melody by M S Baburaj composed for the lines of Vayalar. See the second anupallavi – Anjana Cholayil Neeraadi .. Azhinja Mudiyil Poo choodi ..unni sooryane eliyil eduthum kondu udayam poojaykethi
    3. Padmateerthame Unaru (Film Gayathri) the song that earned a national award for K J Yesudas in the year 1973 ?.
    4. Vinnile Kaavil Pularumbol (Film Priya)
    5. Suprabhaatamaayi Sumakanyake (Film Prethangalude Taazhvara)
    6. Ashtamangalya Suprabhaatattil (Film Chennay Valarthiya Kutty)
    7. Kaithapuzha Kaayalile (Film Thriveni) – The film starts with this song. One of the finest song that depicts dawn; along with it lines and music that refreshes all of us

    B Sajith

    1. Hi Sajith
      As usual, your suggestions were thorough, and very interesting. I am familiar with most of these songs, but I have never heard the songs Ushasse udikku nee from Ganga Sangamam, Anjali Poo, Vinnile kaavil, or Ashtamangalya Suprabhaathathil.

      However, Padmatheerthame Unaroo should definitely have been on my list, it is one of my favourites. Kaithappuzha Kaayalile surely has beautiful visuals. I like that, too.


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