Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Those who pursue the hobby of collecting gramophone records will surely admit that Malayalam L.P. records are hard to get nowadays. It appears that Malayalam audio records were released mostly by way of E.P..records and SP(short play) records.which are even now available in antique market and sellers of old items in cities. Music companies, in view of the market limited to only Kerala, had not, probably, released as many Malayalam L.P. records as they did in other languages like Hindi or Tamil.It could also be due to the fact that the development of Malayalam film music industry was a later development compared,e.g., Hindi and by the time it got established, the music cassettes had actually made its dominance. Besides, the high cost of L.P. records and therefore, their slow saleability forced music shops not to stock them in large quantities. Well, the difficulty for us now is that those who are having them are not prepared to part with them!!.

I have a few Malayalam LP records in my collection. While looking at these records I have always wondered how beautifully designed and creative are the paper jackets of some of

them.Two of them stand out. One is the record of film 'SAGARASANGAMAM', directed by Sankarabharanam fame K. Viswanath. The film has music by ILAYARAJA composing a few beautiful semi-classical songs penned by Sreekumaran Thampi and sung by Jayachandran, S.Janaki and S.P. Balasubramaniam and S.P.Shylaja..The front side of the jacket shows the lead artists of the film, Kamal Hasan and Jayapradha, in a captivating dance pose.The other side of the jacket contains the details of the songs and the pencil sketches of two dancing damsels. The record was brought out by a new music company.viz., ACE MUSIC COMPANY,MADRAS.
The second record is of the film 'RANGAM', by I.V.Sasi and M.T. Vasudevan Nair, with music by the maestro K.V.Mahadevan. The film has Kathakali as its background. The front side of the jacket shows the pictures of the lead artists, Shobhana and Mohanlall and the back side shows the details of songs and a rare picture of Mohanlal in the attire of a Kathakali artist. This record was brought out by THARANGINI RECORDS, TRIVANDRUM.

Yes, the jackets of these two records are different because they are not from the familiar HMV mould!

P.S.Click on the photos for zooming them.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I have been away from music with JAYSWORLDOF MUSIC for about two months. Happily, I am back in the midst of my radios, gramophones and records once again. During the last two months I was travelling abroad mainly in U.A.E. and, of course , Kerala. During my travels I was always on the look out for Gramophone records and gramophone accessories etc. Indeed I could get a few rare records and equipments during my search. I would write about the records in due course. But let me show you the picture of an amplifier that I acquired for which I have been on the look out for a long time.

This is a 'TECHNICS V6' 2x70 watts RMS amplifier of the 1980-81 make with
separate inputs for Phono( Magnetic cartridge and Magnetic Coil cartridge), Tuner, Tapes and Auxiliary and tape to tape dubbing. It has provision for 4 speakers (two main and two remote). It is in great working condition and looks brand new without any scratches on the body.

I also got a new gramophone turntable , BUSH MTTI Model. It is a simple

turntable without amplifier and speakers with a magnetic cartridge. It is suitable for attaching to an amplifier and speakers as it has a built-in pre-amp.It is light weight and easily portable and low priced. Well suited for cool personalised listening.

What I could find nowadays is that several music lovers, young and old, are taking a lot of interest in gramophones and records and it is becoming increasingly difficult and costly to acquire them. There is also renewed interest for old valve radios as more and more enthusiasts are acquiring them for their old world charm and for displaying them in their living rooms! Antique shops are still stocking them but they are becoming dearer. Old Malayalam and Hindi LP records are also in great demand. This may not be good news for buyers but for people passionately pursuing it as hobby,increase in the number of their tribe is always a positive development. The pleasure in collecting an item also increases as competition becomes stiffer. Besides, the realization that the value of their existing collection is going up goads them further in their pursuit.