From MS Viswanathan and Ilaiyaraaja to Santhosh Narayan and Anirudh, Tamil cinema has a tradition of composers singing for their own albums. Even as the trend has caught on of late – thanks in part to auto-tune and the increasing tolerance of audiences to off-key singing (YSR anyone?) – composers singing for other music directors seems to be a relatively rare phenomenon. Yuvan Shankar for AR Rahman (‘Kadal Raasa‘ – Maryan), Anirudh for Yuvan Shankar (‘Shut Up Pannunga‘ – Balloon) are exceptions rather than the rule.
However, one combination stands out – that of Anirudh Ravichander and Sean Roldan – two composers who have come to represent the latest iteration of Tamil music. Both of them often sing in their own compositions, but in a nice twist, they have sung in each other’s compositions as well.
Here are four songs that have come about as a result of this combination.
‘Kannana Kanne‘ – Naanum Rowdy Dhaan (2015)
This song marked the first collaboration between composers Sean Roldan and Anirudh as Roldan sang for Anirudh. The song starts off mellow, gradually gaining tempo, reflecting Nayanthara’s emotional arc in the video.
‘Edhuvarayo’ – Kolamavu Kokila (2018)
Yet another Anirudh composition sung by Sean Roldan and featuring Nayanthara, the song was overshadowed by the other not-so-original track from the movie – ‘Kalyana Vayasu‘. A look at the YouTube comments shows that the song continues to grow in popularity.
‘On Nenappu‘ – Kathanayagan (2017)
Anirudh Ravichander and Sean Roldan switch roles in the song. Though the lyrics comprise mainly of ‘Tanglish’ which by now has been thoroughly exhausted and exploited, it is refreshing to hear Anirudh anchor a light-hearted song in Roldan’s style.
‘Karukku Kallangolu‘ – Neruppu Da (2017)
Released alongside Kathanayagan, the film is about the lives of firefighters and the song is a typical intro song for the hero. Despite the largely forgettable music, Anirudh’s singing saves the day.