This category has folk lyrics presented with simple orchestration and tabla (simple or complex) for rhythm. The flavor is by way of flute, guitar, bells, violins and synthesizer embellishments!
This is the most poplar flavor, where Raja uses freely his tabla based rhythm arrangement with flute, shehnai and violins throw n into the mix. The trouble with this flavor is that it has too many examples and is impossible to list them all. Some of the top of mind examples…
Maman Oru Naal Malligapoo Kuduthan, Uchchi Vagudeduthu from Rosapoo Ravikaikari (1979)
Oothakathu Veesayile, Vadatha Rosapoo from Gramathu athiyayam (1980). The Oothakathu Veesayile track has the bass lines standing out, though not as much as Naan Erikarai. All the usual Raja elements such as synthesizer, guitar arrangements are present. Vadatha Rosapoo is known for its guitar work.
Adi Aathadi, Rasave Unnai Nambi, Antha Nivathaan from Mudhal Mariyadhai (1985) – all these tracks have a colloquial lyric and has extensive orchestration by Raja. The track Antha Nivathaan even has some intricate counterpoints in its prelude!
Maalai Karukaiyil from Neethiyin Marupakkam (1985). This track uses violins and synthesizer extensively.
Chinnamani Kuyile, Poova Eduthu from Amman Kovil Kizhakale (1986). The first track uses a duffle but the second track is a simple tabla based song. Note that both these songs use guitar and synthesizer extensively which has nothing to do with folk.
Madurai Marikozhundhu Vaasam from Enga Ooru Paatukaran (1987). This track uses the shehnai, violins and synthesizer extensively.
Naan Erikarai from Chinna Thai (1992). This is a classic example of bass guitar usage by Raja where the bass guitar stands out. This song has a rich orchestration complete with synthesizer, violins and guitar.
Padasa kolusu from Thirumathi Palanisamy (1992). This track uses bells, violins extensively in its interludes.
Kannil Edho Minnaladichiruchu from Pon Vilangu (1993). This is a track with simple orchestration.
Aathorathile, Manu Tholuonnu, Rokkam Irukkara from Kaasi (2002).These are simple tunes with simple orchestration.
In the example s cited in this section, there is extensive use of non-folk instruments such as violins, guitar, bells, synthesizers to embellish the folk lyric. This adds flavor to the music and makes it very interesting.
The clip below has interludes from 4 tracks we discussed. Maaman Oru Naal, Oothakaathu veesaiyile, Raasave Unnai Nambi, and Aathorathile. All of them are backed by tabla and have extensive flute use. I avoided tracks that have heavy violin usage. That’s Raja’s Vennila flavored Cleverfolk…