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A King Without Royalty: Ilaiyaraaja Fights For His Due

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

A King Without Royalty: Ilaiyaraaja Fights For His Due
Past Bonhomie |
A King Without Royalty: Ilaiyaraaja Fights For His Due
outlookindia.com
2018-12-08T10:48:21+05:30

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.

Ilaiyaraaja’s blunt anger and choice of words had many fuming that the maestro had become greedy in his old age. The outrage on social media was matched only by the silence of other composers, many of whom cite him as their musical inspiration. None of them came forward to back Ilaiyaraaja’s allegation that the Indian Performing Right Society (IPRS) had failed in its duty of...

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