Aal Aayaal

(Translation on request for S)
This is not an original song created for SoLo -World of Siva; the movie uses the remix version by Masala Coffee (YouTube link) who is one of the 11 (!? 😯 ) music directors for the movie. The lyrics were written long back by a celebrated Malayalam poet/lyricist/theatre director Kavalam Narayana Panicker. The first time it appeared on screen was in a 1982 movie, Aalolam, where he was the lyricist. I am unsure if this song was already a naadan paattu (folk song) at that point or not. Here is the YouTube link to the version his son, Kavalam Sreekumar, sings for the album Kavalam Kavithakal. I remember learning this beautiful song in grade school music class and was surprised I could recall most of the lines which appear in SoLo. Just shows how the simple tune and words stay with you through the years! I love how the tempo quickens up at the end and we had so much fun doing that in the music class as a group. Ah, fond memories! 🙂

To listen to the song, click play:

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]
Kulippanaayi kulam venam, kulathil chenthaamara venam
Kulichu chennu akam pookaan chandanam venam
[The pond is needed for taking baths, there should be lotus in the pond
Sandalwood paste is needed for going inside after the bath]

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]

Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane
Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane

Poovu aayaal manam venam, poomaan aayaal gunam venam
Poovu aayaal manam venam, poomaan aayaal gunam venam
[A flower needs to have fragrance, a deer needs to be good]
Poomaanini maargal aayaal adakkam venam
[Beautiful ladies need to exhibit decorum]

Naadu aayaal nrupan venam, arike manthrimar venam
Naadu aayaal nrupan venam, arike manthrimar venam
[A land needs a ruler, he needs ministers as well]
Naadinnu gunam ulla prajakal venam
[The land also needs good citizens]

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]

Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane
Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane
Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane
Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane

—-The song in the movie ends here (at least the version I saw on YouTube) —-
———– Here is the translation for the rest of the Masala Coffee video. ————

++Yudhathinkal Raman nallu, kulathinkal Seetha nallu
Yudhathinkal Raman nallu, kulathinkal Seetha nallu
[Rama is the best on the battleground, Seetha is the best on the family front]
Oonurakkam upekshippan Lakshmanan nallu
[Lakshman is best at sacrificing his sleep and food]

Padaykku Bharathan nallu paravaan painkili nallu
Padaykku Bharathan nallu paravaan painkili nallu
[Bharatha is best at leading the army, birds are good at flying]
Parakkunna pakshikalil Garudan nallu
[Garuda is the best one in the flying kind]

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]

Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane
Ey thanthanaane thanthanaanaane

—————-Translation for the rest of the original lyrics —————-

Mangattachanu*** nyaayam nallu, mangalythinu swarnnae nallu
[Mangaattachan is best in imparting justice, gold is best for weddings]
Mangaathirippaan nilavilakku nallu
[The lamp is best to keep the room lit]

Paaliyathachanu**** upaayam nallu, paalil panchasara nallu
[Paaliyathachan is best at providing answers, sugar is best in milk]
Paaraathirippaan chila padavi nallu
[Some positions held are better at not being seen]

Aal* aayaal thara** venam, aduthoru ambalam venam
Aalinnu chernnoru kulavum venam
[Aal tree needs a retaining wall, a temple close by
and also needs a pond near it]

*Aal is a fig tree found in tropical/subtropical climates, revered as sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism. There are usually two kinds found near Indian temples – peepal and banyan trees. Sometimes they exist first and temples are built near/around them. They are beautiful trees and they grow really tall, spread out and have aerial roots hanging down the branches. Banyan trees’ aerial roots are strong enough to support humans standing on them and look like extra trunks. Both banyan and peepal have beautiful heart shaped leaves.
** Thara literally translates to floor, but here it means the retaining wall you put around the big banyan tree. It is usually a few feet(3-4) above the ground and can provide seating to people who visit the temple if they wish to sit. Aal thara is where gentlemen in the area used to gather every evening to talk about the happenings of the day – discussions ranging from local gossip to intense political debates. Not sure how much of it happens anymore in this fast paced world.
++The next two stanzas are referring to the epic Ramamyana.
***Mangaattachan was a prominent minister of the king/Samoothiri of Kozhikode (Northern Kerala). There are lot of legends featuring his quick wit with which he used to handle other kings for Samoodiri. (Blog link containing stories)
****Paaliyathachan is not an individual, but a post held by the oldest member in Paliam Nair/Menon family. They were overloads of vast areas of land in the Cochin kingdom and held influential positions under the king. (Wiki Link)

+ Image copyright to the original uploader.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Anonymous says:

    Very clear explanation..

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