Super Singer – This week

Vijay TV’s Super Singer was a mess-up this week.

– The show organisers formed three groups, Chennai, Kovai and Madurai. Each had five participants.

– On Friday, one from each group was eliminated except for the Chennai group.

– Harish, one of the best singers in the whole competition, from the Chennai team, walked out of the contest for personal reasons. It’s probably the same with Archana Iyer too.

– The groups were askd to perform two songs. One to show their harmony strengths. Two for the creativity.

– Chennai team performed Pachai Niramey and Madapura[Pathiban Kanavu]. Gowtham Bharadhwaj making those romantic twists, in the beginning of Madapura, seemed silly. Gowtham is a fantastic singer except that he is super artificial when he talks. And I think, he believes that he is probably the only good looking guy in the contest.

– Kovai team did a fantastic job of performing Kurukku Chirthavaley and Sorgam Enbathu Namakku. The Sorgam song rocked given the fact that they were dancing and singing it. Swathi of Kovai team is one helluva singer.

– Madurai team also did a good job. They sang Pani Vizhum Iravu and Kaatril Varum Geethamey. Rajini and Anitha are probably the best singers of this team.

Vani Jayaram, who was chief guest for this week’s show, didn’t enjoy the dancing and singing of Kovai team. She voted Madurai team as the best group singing team. And I think that wasn’t right in my opinion. Kovai was the best. One could see that from the reactions of Anuradha Sriram and Sreenivas.

– After all this, the lousy thing happened. As a part of their elimination strategy, each contestant was asked to vote-out one of their group members. This was only for the Chennai and Kovai as they lost out to Madurai Team. The results are to be announced next week.

If only Chinmayee, who is MCing the show, could shout a little less especially the bramandamaana kural thedal bit, a little bit, it might seem much better. Gayathri Jayaram on the other hand, in hosting the Vijay TV’s Grand Master show shouts her soul out. Shouting seems to be an essential quality for becoming a TV host in Tamil media.

Vijay TV’s Super Singer

Vijay TV Airtel Super Singer Yet another show on the American Idol format. First it was Indian Idol and now it’s Vijay TV’s Airtel Super Singer contest. The winner of this super singer contest will get a chance to sing for Harris Jayaraj. The show runs from 8 pm every friday and saturday on Vijay TV.

Believe me this show is good. Just damn good. Not because this show is about music but the tamil touch to this international format is just exciting. And we have some super dooper singers amongst us.

The other day, a participant named Gowtham sang, Rahman / Hariharan’s Malargale song. I haven’t heard such an amazing control like that from an amateur singer. Nice balance and amazing sangathis. If one was watching this from the first week, they would understand how many singers we have in the country. Though the first round participants included many weirdos, atleast half of the crowd was nice stuff. As of now, the contest is on the fourth round with 20 or 24 contestants. And as it moves forward, its going to be more interesting.

In the initial rounds, the judges included SP Sailaja, Sreenivas, Maalathy and many others. After prelims it’s Anuradha Sriram, Sreenivas and Unni Krishnan. While its a nice trio, Anuradha seems to be too bossy and wouldn’t allow the other two to do the talking. I’m sure someone would let her know as the show moves on.

Instead of a screwed up film review or a kadi serial, I prefer to spend two hours a week for some nice music contest. Worth the time spent. With such shows, Vijay TV is slowly becoming the best channel for true entertainment. Two years from now, I would expect Vijay TV not to top prime time TRP ratings but to a gather a loyal viewer base.

The story of pasta and morunjchaatham

cheesecake factory

I’m the typical south-indian morunjchaatham[curd rice] types. Not very keen on what I get to eat except that I’m a veggie. My wife, on the other hand, is a food junkie – the food channel types – the pastas, the teriyakis, the pitas, the paninis, the calamaris, the polentas and whatever. And she is a fabulous cook who makes sure that I get my share of onion rava masalas and aviyals and vatha kuzhambu and whatever you-get-to-eat-only-in-chennai including rava kesari, puffs, aama vadai and home-made ‘samsa‘[remember pammal k sambandam].

As you land in the US [though that was a while ago], you get overwhelmed by the types of food available. From Japanese to Continental to the typical American food, there is just too much lying around. In the last one year, I found myself saying no to most dishes but still enjoying the vegetarian dishes offered by all each type. I even found myself eating greek food. And it’s called, Kolokythokeftethes which is: Zucchini & Cheese Croquettes. So as I acquired tastes from distant lands, I found myself falling in love with Pasta.

Pasta, the Italian pride is probably my most favorite type of food after the south indian thaali. Just like all great types of food, pasta can be made in different shapes and sizes. The pasta dough can also be made of different flours ranging from Unbleached White Flour to Brown Rice Flour to Mung Bean Threads. Just like a barbie doll, you could decorate it however. Add Garlic and Herbs or dump Strawberry or even chocolate, pasta would still be great to eat.

At first, I hated the word Macaroni. When I had my wife serving plain Macaroni, I preferred to eat Rava Uppuma. Next time she added some Marinara Sauce to it. Since then pasta was my love. Marinara Sauce is made of Italian tomatoes, garlic, basil [the italian tulasi] and oregano [for the aroma]. Now I can eat just about any pasta ranging from Macaroni to Capellini to Spaghetti to Rigatoni to Fettuccine. All I need is a cup of Marinara sauce.

Other than my home which is pasta headquarters these days for me, I also like to have it in the Cheesecake Factory. CC Factory is one famous restaurant chain in the US that dictates the next modern American food. Time had an exclusive coverage on Cheesecake Factory, couple of weeks back. CC Factory truly keep changing their menu regularly and every time your there you find a lovely dish. So here in the US if you want to know if a certain dish is a good one, check to see if CC Factory had it on their menu or not. If it was there, its sure is hot stuff.

Surprisingly its one of the few places where me and my wife love the food. Its usually me who is choosy about food, partly due to my veggie habits. So you could be sure that Cheesecake factory serves food for people on either side of the food spectrum. I heard they serve lovely cocktails too. And some amazing appetizers like the Chilly Cheese Sticks and Bruschetta [Freshly Baked Pizza Bread Topped with Fresh Chopped Tomato, Red Onion, Garlic, Basil and Olive Oil]. Needless to say they have some lovely cheesecakes, one of which is the lovely Tiramisu Cheesecake.

I’m finding myself in an urge to try out such high calorie food these days. But then at the same time, I also buy 2 Gallons of Fat Free Milk from Costco. Just to underline how crazy a desi could get.

Tanjore Big Temple Documentary

I’ve been looking for this a long long time. The first time I saw this documentary was couple of years back on Discovery channel(or was it NGC). Since then I have been looking for this and finally found it at Google Video. One of the pleasures of browsing the net at wee hours of morning, like 3:56 am on a saturday.

This documentary, The Lost Temples of India, talks about Raja Raja Chola and how he built the Tanjore Big Temple. Running for over 52 minutes, this is pure treasure, especially if you love the temples and their architectures. There is a lengthy dramatization on how they would have moved the 80 ton single stone to the top of the gopuram. Those 360 degree helicopter shots of Tanjore Gopuram explain in detail the class of architecture used. Just amazing.

I’m positive that it would be worth the time spent.

தடங்கலுக்கு வருந்துகிறோம் !! As I

தடங்கலுக்கு வருந்துகிறோம் !!

As I ponder over life’s important questions, also trying to answer some of them, you might want to watch Pudhupettai or gulp a davara full of suda suda coffee.

I hate such hyped posts before taking a hiatus. Something that’s not my natural self. Still. It might be over a week or two before I bounce back with the usual enthusiasm. Or maybe more. Or may be much lesser. Who knows where these questions might lead me to ?