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A King Without Royalty: Ilaiyaraaja Fights For His Due

Composer Ilaiyaraaja fights for his due, and the industry shows cracks

Past Bonhomie A King Without Royalty: Ilaiyaraaja Fights For His Due

Lakhs of Tamils tune into his music bef­ore going to sleep. Successive generations swear that his romantic songs will remain etched in the popular consciousness as love anthems. Even today, no live orc­hestra show in Tamil Nadu is complete without at least a dozen Ilaiyaraaja songs spanning over three decades.

And yet, the 75-year-old doyen recently had to plead openly that he needed to be paid royalties for public performances of his songs. “It is my creation, and when you earn money from that, should I not get my due share from that?” he asked in an emotional video post. He also ­cautioned that failure to honour his request would lead to legal action.

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