Happy Onam 2019! Onam, the wonderful ten-day long festival celebrated by Malayalees around the world has begun. Onam brings along with it a real sense of spiritual unity as, though based on Hindu mythology, the festival is celebrated by Malayalees of all religions. The highlights of the ten-day-long festival are the Songs, the Pookalams (flower carpets), the food and the prayers. A festival celebrating renewed hope and a new beginning, Onam is a tribute honouring the King Mahabali who is welcomed back by his masses. The happiness in the air is multiplied manifold as in Kerala, schools, public and private offices are given holidays for the entire duration, so that people may spend time with their family and enjoy the festivities. As the final day ‘Thiruvonam” is nearing (it happens to fall on September 13), we want you to enjoy the festival with these best and top 10 classic Malayalam songs that represent everything that Onam is about.
Songs are a huge part of the Onam celebrations, especially when combined with the classical dances.
There has always been a tradition in Malayalee households to follow a fixed ritual on the Thiruvonam day. Family members begin the day with a fresh Pookalam, a visit to the temple and then come back home and turn the music on. In the 1980s and 90s, the Onam song tapes used to sell like hotcakes. Even today the tradition is not lost. Many non-Malayalees don’t realise what an integral part the Onam songs play in the entire celebration. The speciality about the Onam songs is the fact that unlike other modern music, these songs get better and better as they get older. All of the songs in this top ten Onam songs list are absolute favourites among folks in Kerala. In fact, Malayalee children seem to have lapped them up almost like nursery rhymes. Whether or not you celebrate Onam, we urge to give these beautiful melodies a try. The list does not get any better than this, so let your hair down and enjoy the celebration!
Manasinullil Oru Onam
At the first place on our list is this highly expressive song sung by Yesudas. The song represents the feeling that people experience while celebrating Onam. A feeling of joy, celebration and togetherness.
Onam Vanallo Ponnonam Vanallo
This song earned its spot on our list for spelling out our joy on Onam being finally here. Enjoy this joyful melody that celebrates the coming of Onam, a truly special event in the year, bringing along with it fun, hope and happiness. Join into the celebrations, with this song, and have a memorable day.
Onam Varavayi Keram Thingum Ulsava Naal
Another song on our list that celebrates the coming of Onam, while keeping in mind the components of modern music. A relatively newer song, “Onam Varavayi Keram Thingum Ulsava Naal” enshrines the happiness of the youth and the pure undiluted joy that children experience. This is a rare song on our list. It is difficult for novel songs to enter the list of staple Onam songs, however, the qualities that the song encompasses has ensured that the song bags a place on the list.
Pookkalam Kanunna Poomaram Pole
This is another great song sung by Malayalam’s evergreen singer, Yesudas in the year 1992. A metaphorical song full of comparisons, this song definitely makes it to our top 10 Onam songs list. the song revolves around the flower carpet or ‘Pookalam’ that is the signature symbol of the festivities.
Atham Pathinu Ponnonam
This song has been written by Mankombu Gopalakrishnan and sung again by veteran singer, Yesudas. As the first nine days of celebration near an end, this song celebrates the tenth and most important day of Onam, ‘Thiruvonam’.
We have a very beautiful song ‘ThiruvonaPularithan” sung by an artist Vani Jairam and released in the year 1975. The song celebrates the various rituals followed during Onam. This is the perfect song to start with on the ‘Thiruvonam’ day.
Poovili Poovili Ponnonamayi
This song was sung by KJ Yesudas and picturised by Prem Nazir. The song fits right into the list as it celebrates the harvesting done by farmers of Kerala. The song is from the film Vishukkanithat released in the year 1977.
Para Niraye Ponnonam
This beautiful song sung by Yesudas & Sujatha is an absolute crowd favourite. Along with being sung very popularly, performers get inundated with requests to sing this song. You don’t need to go any further to know why! listen ahead and enjoy the catchy melody.
This gem of a song definitely deserves in the list as this is very best of Onam playlists. Written by Sreekumaran Thambi for the album Ulsva Ganangal and produced by Tharangini, this song is an evergreen favourite of music lovers It was composed by Raveendran and sung by Yesudas.
Maveli Naadu Vanidum Kaalam – Onappaattu
The song represents everything that Onam stands for. The spirit of Onam and the egalitarian nature of the festival are truly showcased in the song. The beauty of the song doesnt just end there, the song which is actually called ‘Onappaattu’ and starts with the lines ‘Maveli naadu vanidum kaalam’, does not have a verified author. Thats right! The question as to the original author of ‘Onappaattu’ is a matter of intense debate amongst Malayalees. The debate is over whether or not the song as we know it today was written by Sahodaran Ayyappan in the early 20th century or modification of the already existing original version written by an anonymous poet. Whatever, might be the answer, this is one song without which Onam remains incomplete.
(Credits for Video links: Music India Corporation and Saregama South)