Tamil song Tea Podu creates turmoil over ‘tea’
Recently, the promotional song of Thangam Saravanan’s Anjala was released on a celebratory note. Called Tea Podu (Make Tea), the song with an extremely lively beat has now literally caused -- to use a cliche -- a storm in a teacup.
Mami Boys, an independent music group, has alleged that the number has been “stolen” from its repertoire. Mami Boys released what they called Dum Tea at Chennai in 2013. The song was meant to be a tribute to the innumerable roadside tea-shops in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu.
Krisheno, one of the members of Mami Boys, told the media that Anjala had copied the concept as well as the visuals from Dum Tea. He added that his group had even been making a movie based on this concept of tea-shops.
What Krisheno now wants is just acknowledgement from Anjala that the Tea Podu number has been inspired by Mami Boys’ Dum Tea.
Saravanan is amused by this charge and says that Anjala was launched in 2013 and was inspired by his own experiences. The story revolves around the owner of a tea-shop, and many of his characteristics were drawn from Saravanan’s father and grandfather. Both ran tea-shops in Tamil Nadu.
The song, Tea Podu, is a visual tribute to the preparation of tea -- from its very origin to the time it gets into a cup, into the hands of an actual drinker. The video of the song, meant as a promo for the film, shows different people drinking the beverage in several Tamil Nadu towns.
Tamil cinema has in recent years been wracked by allegations and counter-allegations as well as controversies. Charges of plagiarism have been one too many. Sometimes, they are proved, sometimes not.
But this writer has over a period of time seen the way ideas and plot lines have been lifted by Tamil cinema -- and merrily used. Some of these lifts have been from foreign movies, which many in Tamil Nadu might never have seen. Some have been from other Indian titles.
Three days ago, when this writer watched Pasanga 2, some of the sequences and ideas seemed so familiar. He found some similar to those in 3 Idiots, Taare Zameen Par and Anjali.
Yes, there are men like Kamal Hassan who are upfront. He made it clear in the credits that his Thoongaavanam was inspired by the the 2011 French work, Sleepless Night.
Well, coming back to Anjala (starring Vimal) one waits with bated breath to see whether the storm in the teacup will die down. Or will it swirl into cyclonic monstrosity?