CHENNAI: Kollywood celebrities were shocked to learn that Na Muthukumar has passed away. They called it a loss of an ‘incredible human being’. The city-based lyricist-poet-columnist (41) passed away on Sunday morning at his Anna Nagar residence because of jaundice, and is survived by wife and two children.
With directorial dreams, he came to the veteran filmmaker Balu Mahendra and spent four years as an assistant director, discovering his passion for Tamil literature.
Later, he was introduced as a lyricist in Seeman’s Veera Nadai, and wrote dialogues for the Ajith-starrer Kireedom, directed by Vijay.
Having worked with almost all top music directors in the industry including Ilaiyaraaja, AR Rahman, Harris Jayaraj, GV Prakash and Yuvan Shankar Raja, he had also penned songs for directors like P Vasu, K Balachander and Suresh Krissna.
Films like 7G Rainbow Colony, Thuppakki, Neethaane En Ponvasantham, Madrasapattinam, Theri and so on, made him soar in popularity.
Tamil Nadu BJP president Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, Vairamuthu, actor Vijay and Vivekh were among the many who paid their last respects. Tamilisai said during her public speeches, she often had used Muthukumar’s poems, adding that his work occupied a major place in her reading shelf.
Lyricist Vairamuthu said, “There’s no justice in the court of death”.
He had won the National Award for Aananda Yaazhai from Thanga Meengal, which depicted the sacred bond between a father and a daughter and Azhage Azhagu from Saivam, besides penning songs for more than 1000 films.
What appealed to everybody was that he made poetry and prose sound easy. His works allowed listeners to soak in the beauty of simple lyrics. Even Rajinikanth had praised him for the Balleilakka number that he wrote for Sivaji, sung by SP Balasubrahmanyam.
Critics lauded Muthukumar’s achievements in euphoric phrases but masses steadfastly favoured his simple lyrics as they were easy to roll on lips.
A graduate in Physics, he opted for Tamil Literature in his Master’s and was also working for a doctorate from Madras University. He was one of those busy lyricists who managed to pen more than 100 songs for 36 films in a year.
Muthukumar, who believed in spreading love through verses, lost his mother when he was barely four and father Nagarajan, a school teacher in Kanchipuram, was his inspiration. A distant relative of DMK founder CN Annadurai, maybe, literature ran in the genes.
Some of his literary works include Silk City, a novel, based on four generations in Kanchi, Newton-in Moondram Vidhi, Ennai Sandhikka Kanavil Varathe (collection of poems).