Witnessed one old style Orchestra (in Malayalam we call it a Ganamela) near the Kodambakkam railway station at Chennai last month. The volume was high, and when I came to the scene it was one guy singing an old sad Tamil song with all his emotions put into it. I didn't know the song, I couldn't figure out the lyrics but I got the "feelings". Guy was in white and white. So were the others on the stage. The Orchestra leader had a black coat over his white shirt, and kept swinging his arms in the air. I sat in the front along with some locals, while many people who passed by showed their discomfort by closing their ears with their fingers.
Then there was newer and faster numbers (sang by someone who wore a white t-shirt and white pants), and old MGR numbers ("Naan Aanaiyittal.." that was the only song I knew. There was a couple of "once more" shouts after that song) The crowd, though small, was happy. That included me.
The emotion man came on the stage again, and some younger ones booed him. Guy didn't give it a damn, he again threw all his passion into the sad, sadder, saddest song. Later I spotted him behind the stage going for a tea or a cigarette, and I went and told him the song was good. He was happy, and thanked me, but the expression was like "I knew it was good.. It had to be good". Yes, it had to be good. Thanks, Bhaskar. Thanks other singers. Thanks the organizers.