Vellai Pookal by A R Rahman, played on Guitar with slides, Hammer ons and Pull offs to make it sound similar to how it is sung. Second part of the article shows you the full lyrics with swaras slides. Here is the PDF with the moves and swaras  .

Below video explains the moves. Notes, swaras and string/fret movements are explained.

Guitarists can naturally use the slides, raga moves, fingering, string/frets as it is. Other instrumentalists and Singers can use the swaras and moves too, since they are explained slow and clearly along with the swaras.

Understanding the moves is the first part whether you sing or play the song on an instrument. Well, that has been done for you … just use it to make music, now!


Tabs for Vellai Pookal

vellai pookal tabs

Below are the swaras with lyrics for Vellai Pookal song from the movie Kannathil Muthamittal, by ARRahman in Raga Hamsadhwani, a pentatonic (audava) raga used both in Carnatic and Hindustani.

In this article, the swaras for each line have been written so that:

  1. any two swaras without a space in between be played with one hit and the remaining as slur (slide/hammer-on/pull-off).
  2. 2) Higher octave S, R, G are written in capital letters. Regular octave is srgmpdn. Lower octave is n’ d’ p’ etc written with swara and a ‘.


Syllables vi zhu ha ve
Swara moves s n’s p prg

Vi is a hit on the regular sa.

n’ is lower octave ni (3rd string 4th fret when C is the Sa, for this song/raga).

n’s is a hit on ni, slide to regular sa, no hit on sa (hit on 3rd string 4th fret, slide to 5th fret, no hit on 5th fret).

p is one hit on regular octave pa fret (2nd string 8th fret or 1st string 3rd fret when C is the Sa).

prg is one hit on regular octave pa, slide to r and ga with no hits on ri or ga (hit on 2nd string 8th fret, slide to 3rd and 5th frets, maintaining the pressure/sustain, with no hits on 3rd or 5th frets).

Below are the frets/ string positions one can use with a standard tuned guitar to play the notes of C Hamsadhwani.

C hamsadhwani notes swaras (vellai pookal)

Song: VeLLai pookkaL

Film: Kannathil muthamittaal
Swaras: s r2 g3 p n3 S

Raga: Hamsadhwani

VeLLai pookkaL ulagam engum malarhavae
rg   g    g    gr      r r rs     s  s      s    sn’ r  s

kizhiyum Bhoomi amaidhikaaga vidi  havae
rg g g      gp    pr  r r    rs  s  s     s sn’ r  s

manmael manjal ve li    cham vizhuhavae
sn’   sn’r    r      r   gr grg sn’  s n’s  p prg

ma la  rae  sombal mu Ri  thu e zhuhavae
sn’ sn’ sn’r  r     r    gr   grg sn’ s n’s  p prg

kuzhanthai vizhikattumae thaayin katha kathappil
p  n      nS  n S  n  p pg    gp   pn p n     p g   gr

u lagam vidiyattumae piLLayin sirumugha si  Rip pil
p n nS   n S n  p pg    gp p  n   n S n   p    pg gp  gr


(R\ and n\ are slides off to the lower frets. see video)

kaatrin paerisaiyil
R   R   R\  r  r  rg

mazhai paadum paadangalum
S   RG  R   R     R\   r     r  rg

o ru   maunam pol inbam ta ru  mo
p nS  n     n\  r  r     r g      p  nS nS

kodi  keertanamum
R R  R\    r r   rg

kavi     kortha vaarthaigalum
S RG  R   R   R\   r     r   rg

thuLi  kanneer pol artham tharu mo
p  nS  n  n\   r  r     r  g       p  nS nS


Stanza 2: have notes similar to stanza1.