Veturi Sundararama Murthy

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Veturi Sundararama Murthy
Born (1936-01-29)29 January 1936
Pedakallepalli, Krishna Dt.,[1][2] Andhra Pradesh, India
Died 22 May 2010(2010-05-22) (aged 74)
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Cause of death
Pneumorrhagia (Bleeding in lungs)
Other names Veturi
Occupation Poet, Lyricist, Songwriter
Title Dr. (Honorary Doctorate)
Religion Hindu Telugu Brahmin
Spouse(s) Seeta Mahalakshmi
Children Ravi Prakash, Chandrasekhar, Nanda Kishore[3]

Veturi Sundararama Murthy (29 January 1936 – 22 May 2010) (వేటూరి సుందరరామమూర్తి), popularly known as Veturi, was a Telugu writer mostly popular for his film songs. His career in the Telugu film industry spanned more than four decades.[4]

Early life[edit]

Veturi was born to Chandrasekhar Sastry and Kamalamba in Pedakallepalli, near Challapalli, Krishna, in an orthodox Telugu Brahmin family and native of Pedakallepalli village, Krishna District. Veturi is a nephew of the Telugu Research Scholar Veturi Prabhakara Sastri. His grandfather Veturi Sundara Sastry was also a poet.

Education[edit]

Veturi completed his schooling in Diviseema, Jaggayyapeta, near Vijayawada in Krishna district, and SSLC in his grandmother's village. Later, Veturi went to Chennai for his intermediate studies and came back to Vijayawada where he completed his degree in S.R.R. Government College. He was a student of legendary Viswanatha Satyanarayana at this college.

Career as a journalist[edit]

Veturi joined Andhra Prabha as a journalist in 1952, after his education.[5] He learned the basics of editing a news article from his senior at Andhra Prabha, Narla Venkateswara Rao, whom he considers his first teacher. In 1959, he joined a weekly called Andhra Patrika, where Bapu and Mullapudi Venkata Ramana were his colleagues.[6] He was the in-charge of the Cinema section at Andhra Patrika. He also worked for the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee's official daily newspaper, called Andhra Janata, as an editor.

In 1962, he became the first and only Telugu journalist to interview the then Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, who came to inaugurate Srisailam Hydroelectricity project. He covered the speeches of national leaders like Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan. In 1964, he worked as an assembly reporter.

His articles are said to be very catchy and witty. For instance, he referred to the meeting of MLA's in Hotel Dwaraka, near the Andhra Pradesh State Assembly as "Adigo Dwaraka- Evigo Alamandalu" ("This is Dwaraka and here are the cattle") (Telugu: అదిగో ద్వారక). His writing style caught the attention of the film industry due to his prowess in using traditional poetic rules related to alliteration and rhyme for describing current affairs.

Career as a lyricist[edit]

Entry into films[edit]

Veturi had contacts with the Telugu film industry during his days as a journalist. He used to meet veteran lyric writer Dasarathi often. Legendary director Chittor V. Nagaiah offered him a role in his film, Naa Illu.[7] However, two days before the shooting began, Veturi decided not to act as he felt that he was not fit for acting, and wrote a letter of apology to Nagaiah for rejecting his offer. Sri.N.T. Rama Rao, has invited him to join the film industry] as a lyricist. In 1974, he wrote his first song, "Bharatanaari Charitamu" (Telugu: భారతనారి చరితము), in the form of Harikatha, for O Seeta Katha under the direction of the legendary director, K Viswanath.

1970s[edit]

In 1977, actor Sr. N.T.R's Adavi Ramudu showcased Veturi's talent for penning inspirational and romantic lyrics. The album was an instant hit among various audiences. In 1978, K Viswanath's Siri Siri Muvva proved his prowess in expressing diverse emotions with poetry. Aathreya, the leading lyricist in those days, was known to take days for writing a song. Veturi became the first choice for directors and producers too because of his ability to write a song to director's taste in a few minutes. He went on to pen more than 5,000 songs in his career. He wrote more mass numbers for movies like Vetagadu and Driver Ramudu, and classics for movies like Sankarabharanam and Sagara Sangamam. In particular, Sankarabharanam stood as a landmark in the Telugu film industry.

1980s[edit]

After the surge of his popularity during the 1970s, he went on to work with a variety of directors and actors in the 1980s. He wrote classics for directors like Singeetam Srinivasa Rao, Dasari Narayana Rao, Bapu, Jandhyala, Vamsy and mass numbers for directors like Raghavendra Rao, A. Kodandarami Reddy, Vijaya Bapineedu. He delivered a number of hits for senior actors like Sr. N.T.R, Akkineni Nageswara Rao, Shobhan Babu, Krishnam Raju, Ghattamaneni Krishna and upcoming stars like Chiranjeevi, Nandamuri Balakrishna, Nagarjuna, Daggubati Venkatesh. This golden period in his career saw memorable albums like Saptapadi, Subhodayam, Subhalekha, Sagara Sangamam, Meghasandesam, Mudda Mandaram, Malle Pandiri, Nalugu Stambhalata, Rendu Jalla Seeta, Amarajeevi, Sreevariki Prema Lekha, Ananda Bhairavi, Srivari Sobhanam, Mogudu Pellalu, Chantabbai, Sitaara, Anveshana, Alapana, Mayuri, Amavasya Chandrudu, Janaki Ramudu and Geetaanjali.

1990s[edit]

During the late 1980s, Veturi's mass numbers garnered a lot of response from the public resulting in directors demanding more and more of them. However, Veturi still maintained his balance between classics and mass-numbers with movies like Jagadeka Veerudu Atiloka Sundari, Sarigamalu, Sitaramayya Gaari Manavaralu, Matru Devo Bhava, and Mechanic Alludu. Veturi was given the opportunity to dub many Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi movies. Some of his dubbed albums, for instance Iruvar and Devaraagam, received wide acclaim.

2000s[edit]

During this period, Veturi created classics like Gangotri and Swarabhishekam. His association with young directors like Sekhar Kammula and Gunasekhar produced some memorable albums, like Anand, Godavari, Varudu, and Leader.

Personality and style[edit]

Veturi had great respect for his seniors. He was quoted as saying:

గతమంతా శ్రుతం నాది, ప్రస్తుతానికి అది పునాది
Gatamantā Śrutam Nādi, Prastutāniki Adi Punādi

which translates to "I heard (and learned) a lot of things from great people in the past, and It is the base for my present". He had great respect for the lyricist Acharya Atreya, whom he considered his mentor and guru. In an interview with Gemini Television he said, "Atreya is a much greater lyricist than me. You may find beauty of words and phrases in my lyrics, but Atreya's lyrics have 'life' in them. And this comes only from real experiences and Atreya had much more 'life experience' than me. He was more passionate about tradition and Telugu literature". His relation with veteran composer Ilayaraja is described in his book komma kommakō sannāyi (Telugu: కొమ్మ కొమ్మకో సన్నాయి).

Veturi had a unique style, which only a few have been able to emulate. His style was romantic, imbued with deep emotions.

His turns of phrase are sometimes as delightful as mystifying. To quote an example:

గసగసాల కౌగిలింత
Gasagasāla Kougilinta

which literally means "embrace of the poppy seeds". However, it is more meaningful as "your hug is as intoxicating as opium". Later in an article written by Sekhar Kammula on his relation with Veturi, revealed that those above lines were a prayōgam (experiment), he used words "sagam sagam" and reversed them to "gasam gasam" together became "gasagasāla" that was his brilliance in word play .

He conveys the most inexplicable feelings in simple words. To quote an example, from the film Saptapadi:

అనగల రాగమై తొలుత వీనులలరించి
అనలేని రాగమై మరలా వినిపించి
Anagala Rāgamai Toluta Vēnulalarinchi,
Analēni Rāgamai Maralā Vinipinchi

which translates to "[the music of your flute] pleased my ears once as a hummable tune, later it resounded in my heart as an inexpressible feeling".

His knowledge in classical Telugu poetry is evident from the figures of speech (Alankaaraalu). Here are three verses from the same song as above:

అచ్చెరువున అచ్చెరువున విచ్చిన కన్నుల చూడ
Achcheruvuna Achcheruvuna Vichchina Kannula Chūḍa

([As young Krishna danced on the hood of the vicious snake] in the Lake [named Kalindi], [the onlookers] watched in wonder),

ఆబాలగోపాలం ఆబాల గోపాలుని
Ābāla Gopālam Ābālagopāluni

(everyone [watched] young Krishna),

ఆ రాధ ఆరాధనాగీతి పలికించి
Ā Rādha Ārādhanāgīti Palikinchi

(Radha sang a song of admiration).

In the above song, it can be observed that the same word is juxtaposed with different meanings. This is a figure of speech in Telugu known as Yamakam (Telugu: యమకం)).

He was known to use a lot of classical objects in fresh similes. Objects like ponnacheTTu (Telugu: పొన్నచెట్టు), Tyaagarāja kīrtana (Telugu: త్యాగరాజ కీర్తన) (Tyagaraja's song), Rutuvulu (seasons), rāgālu (rāga-s) have all been used extensively in his songs. One such song from the film Sundarakanda uses all the grammatical rules of Telugu in a romantic conversation between lovers. To quote an example:

మత్తుగా మల్లెలు అత్తరు చిందే వేళ చంపకమాలలు సొంపులకిస్తావా,
నీ లయలు హృదయమున యమునలైన సమయమున
Mattugā Mallelu Attaru Chindē Vēḷa Champakamālalu sompulakistāvā,
Nī layalu Hṛdayamuna Yamunalaina Samayamuna

Such songs stand as proof of his knowledge in various subjects.

His imagination ranges from highly creative similes like

భూదారిలో నీలాంబరి, మా సీమకే చీనాంబరి
Bhūdārilō Nīlāmbari, Mā Sīmakē Chēnāmbari

to rather base comparisons like

ముడి తీస్తే మూపురం, పరువాల గోపురం
Muḍi Tīstē Mūpuram, Paruvāla Gopuram

His prowess has been proved a number of times, when it came particularly to writing lyrics like those found in SankaraabharaNam (Telugu: శంకరాభరణం).

To quote a few examples from SankaraabharaNam (Telugu: శంకరాభరణం) where he expresses the mind of a devotee singing in rain:

మెరిసే మెరుపులు మురిసే పెదవుల చిరు చిరు నవ్వులు కాబోలు,
ఉరిమే ఉరుములు సరి సరి నటనల సిరి సిరి మువ్వలు కాబోలు
పరవశాన శిరసూగంగా ధరకు జారెనా శివగంగ
నా గానలహరి నువు మునుగంగ, ఆనందవృష్టి నే తడవంగ!

Merisē Merupulu Murisē Pedavula Chiru Chiru Navvulu Kābōlu,
Urimē Urumulu Sari Sari Natanala Siri Siri Muvvalu Kābōlu
Paravaśāna Śiraśūgangaa dharaku jārenā Śivaganga
Maa Gānalahari Nuvu Munuganga, Ānandavṛṣṭi Nē Taḍavanga!

which translates to:

"Oh Lord Shiva, perhaps these lightnings are your smiles, and these thunderbolts are the [sounds of] anklets that ring while you dance. As you dance with pleasure and your head bobs, the Ganga [which resides on your head] seems to be falling to the earth, as you are drenched in the waves of my singing and I in the rain of eventual joy!" (Notice also the yamakam with the word ganga.)

To describe the parting words of a mother (who knows that she would live only for a few days) with her children:

అనుబంధమంటేనే అప్పులే కరిగే బంధాలన్ని మబ్బులే,
హేమంత రాగాల చేమంతులే వాడిపోయే,
తన రంగు మార్చింది రక్తమే తనతో రాలేనంది పాశమే
Anubandhamanṭēnē Appulē Karigē Bandhālanni Nabbulē,
Hēmanta Rāgāla Chēmantulē Vāḍi Pōyē,
Tana Raṃgu Mārchindi Rakhtamē Tanatō Rālēnaṃdi Pāśamē

which translates to:

"Relations are just debts, all these relations will melt like clouds, all those beautiful flowers of spring colors will vanish some day, your nature was changed by relation, yet it would not follow you after a point". This touches the essence of Bhagavad Gita in simple words.

He described Lord Krishna in many songs. To quote one such song:

 చందన చర్చిత నీల దేహ గగనాల సొగసుకు గొబ్బిళ్ళో,
 ఉసురు గాలులను వెదురు పాటలుగా పలుకు వేణువుకు గొబ్బిళ్ళో,
 ఏటి మీద యెన్నెల్లో, ఎన్నెలంటి కన్నెల్లో,
 కన్నె కంటి సన్నల్లో, సన్నజాజీ గిన్నెల్లో,
 వేదమంతా వెన్నలాగా కరిగేవేళల్లో,
 ఏ గీత మాకిస్తావో ఎవ్వరి గీత మారుస్తావో ఆరారే
 Chandana Charchita Nīla Dēha Gaganāla Sogasuku Gobbiḷḷō,
 Usuru Gālulanu Veduru Pātaluga Paluku Vēṇuvuku Gobbiḷḷō,
 Yēṭi Mīda Yennellō, Yennelanṭi Kannellō,
 Kanne Kanṭi Sannallō Sannajāji Ginnellō,
 Vēdamantā Vennalāgā Karigēvēḷallō,
 Yē Gīta Mākistaavō Yevvari Gīta Mārustaavō Ārārē

which translates to: "We dance on seeing the sky-colored body scented with sandal, we dance for the Divine Flute which converts purposeless breezes (also means the breezes of life) into melodious music of your flute (meaningful lives). When moonlight reflects on the water of Yamuna, among the gōpikas who dominate the moonlight, within the sight of gōpikas, in the bushes of jasmines; When [the knowledge (cream) of] vEdas melts like the creamy butter, only you can decide which lines [of Fate] to change, and which lines (Gita) to teach (Bhagavad Gita)"

He uses prāsa(Telugu: ప్రాస) (rhymes) to a very good extent. Despite that, he keeps the feel of the song simple and clear. An example among the many thousands that he wrote includes this:

 నరుడి బ్రతుకు నటన, ఈశ్వరుడి తలపు ఘటన,
 ఆ రెంటి నట్టనడుమ నీకెందుకింత తపన
 Naruḍi Bratuku Naṭana, Īśvaruḍi Talapu Ghaṭana,
 Ā Renṭi Naṭṭanaḍuma Nīkendukinta Tapana

which translates to "Man's life is but an act, God's thought is the action. Knowing this, [O heart], why do you get so anxious?"

He is known for his experiments in writing lyrics. One such example is using a rule from Telugu prosody or Chhandassu(Telugu: ఛందస్సు) for the spell of a demon in his song (from Geetaanjali):

 ఓ బాలా, మసజసతతగ శార్దూలా
 ō Bālā, Masajasatataga Śārdūlā.

Sometimes, one needs very keen ears to understand his experiments. An example which many people probably would not know is:

 కాస్తందుకో, దరఖాస్తందుకో, ప్రేమ దరఖాస్తందుకో
 Kāstandukō, Darkhāstandukō, Prema Darakhāstandukō

In this song, the beautiful alliteration is such that each word is a part of the next word. Yet, they have totally different meanings. None of them is out of context.

He is known for his naughty lyrics. His fans call him chilipi vēṭūri(Telugu: చిలిపి వేటూరి) for the same reason. A few examples include:

 నగుమోము నగుమ
 Nagumōmu Naguma

(referring to actress Nagma in her movie).

 గగన ఝగన
 Gagana Jhagana

which rhymes with traditional,

 ఇందు వదన, కుంద రదన, మంద గమన, మధుర వచన, and సొగసు లలన
 Indu Vadana, Kunda Radana, Manda Gamana, Madhura Vachana, Sogasu lalana

Sometimes, they are thinly veiled suggestive references too.

To quote an example:

 కొండకోనల్లో మాటుగా ఎత్తుపల్లాలు తెలిసెలే
 Konḍākōnallō Māṭugā Ettupallālu Teliselē

He uses creativity for all sorts of songs ranging from an obscene song (example follows)

 ఆ అంటే అమలాపురం
Ā Anṭē Amalāpuram

to a mundane duet (example follows)

 పక్కా Gentleman ని, చుట్టాపక్కాలే లేనోణ్ణి
 Pakkā Gentleman ni, Chuṭṭapakkālē Lēnōṇṇi

to a serious emotion (example follows)

 తార తారకి నడుమ ఆకాశం ఎందుకో
 Tāra Tāraki Naḍuma Ākāśam Endukō

to devotional songs (example follows)

 ఓం నమఃశ్శివాయ
 ōm Namaḥśśivāya

Every word he uses has a well defined, concrete purpose.

Usually, the lead stanzas of his songs (pallavi) (Telugu: పల్లవి) are catchy and keep dancing on the listener's tongue. Many such verses/phrases are used quite frequently in even normal discussions (Example: abba nī tiyyanī debba) (Telugu: అబ్బ నీ తియ్యనీ దెబ్బ).

Relations with other artists[edit]

Veturi had cordial relationships with the bigheads of the industry. He worked with all classes of directors, producers, music directors and actors ranging from stars to debutants. In his book Kommakommako Sannayi, he describes his relationship with some of the music directors, singers, lyricists, actors and directors. He was a teacher-like figure for many artists in the industry.

Many people consider him the most complete lyricist in the history of Telugu Film History. Even his competitors called him guru. Fellow lyricist and a legendary lyricist himself, Sirivennela praised him as a source of inspiration.[8] He isolated Veturi as the one who broadened the horizons of a Telugu song.[9] Sirivennela wrote a 4-page article in a Telugu monthly magazine Haasam explaining the breadth and depth in Veturi's poetry. Being a competitor, he ended the article saying: "aakaaSaannaakramiMchina aayana bhaavanaapaadaaniki, bhoogOLaanni aakramiMchina aayana bhaashaapaadaaniki bhaktithO aMjali ghaTistoo "naa mooDO paadaanni nee nettina peDataa" aMTunna aayana taaMDava paadaaniki bhayaMtO namaskaristoo, mummaaru mokkutoo"(Telugu: "ఆకాశాన్నాక్రమించిన ఆయన భావనాపాదానికి, భూగోళాన్ని ఆక్రమించిన ఆయన భాషాపాదానికి భక్తితో అంజలి ఘటిస్తూ "నా మూడో పాదాన్ని నీ నెత్తిన పెడతా" అంటున్న ఆయన తాండవ పాదానికి భయంతో నమస్కరిస్తూ, ముమ్మారు మొక్కుతూ") which roughly translates to "I pray unto your two feet with devotion: one who has occupied the sky of imagination, one which has occupied the earth called language; and with terror, I pray salute the third foot which he says he would keep on my head".[10] This is in reference to Vamana, an Avatar of Vishnu.

Veteran director K. Viswanath referred to him as brother.[11] Director Sekhar Kammula referred to him as his guru.[12] Actor, writer and director Tanikella Bharani referred to him as a manifestation of Saraswati in male form.[13] Acclaimed director Mani Ratnam, who worked with him for Geetaanjali, praised him as one of the best he has come across.

Veturi was very flexible with remunerations while working with young and upcoming artists, which made him very approachable and close to almost every director and producer.[14]

Awards and honors[edit]

Veturi received several national and regional awards for his contributions to literature and films. He has been conferred an Honorary Doctorate in the 23rd convocation of Acharya Nagarjuna University.[15] In 2007, he received the Jandhyala Memorial Award.[16]

bust of Veturi at Tummalapalli Kshetrayya Kalakshetram Vijayawada

National Awards[edit]

He got the National Film Award for Best Lyrics for the song "Ralipoye Puvva" (Telugu: రాలిపోయె పువ్వా) in the film Matrudevobhava,[17] making him the second Telugu film lyricist to achieve the distinction after the revolutionary poet, Sri Sri. In 2006, he declared that he would return the National Award if Telugu is not given the status of Classical Language by the Government of India.[18] In 2008, the Government of India declared Telugu as a classical language.[19]

Filmfare Awards[edit]

He received filmfare award for the song, Uppongele Godavari (Telugu: ఉప్పొంగెలే గోదావరి) in the 2006 movie, Godavari. In 2008, he received the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award.[20]

Nandi Awards[edit]

He received the Nandi award for best lyrics, from the Government of Andhra Pradesh, seven times. They are listed here.

  1. Song: Maanasa Veenaa Madhu Geetam (Telugu: మానసవీణ మధుగీతం), Movie: Pantulamma, Year: 1977
  2. Song: Shankara Nadasarerapara (Telugu: శంకరా నాదశరీరాపర), Movie: Shankarabharanam, Year: 1979
  3. Song: Brundavani Vundi (Telugu: బృందావని ఉంది), Movie: Kanchana Ganga, Year:1984
  4. Song: Ee Duryodhana Dushaasana (Telugu: ఈ దుర్యోధనదుశ్శాశన), Movie: Pratighatana, Year: 1985
  5. Song: Pavuraniki Panjaraniki (Telugu: పావురానికి పంజరానికి), Movie: Chanti, Year: 1991
  6. Song: Aakaashaana SuuryuDunDaDu (Telugu: ఆకాశాన సూర్యుడుండడు), Movie: Sundara Kanda, Year: 1992
  7. Song: Odanu Jaripe (Telugu: ఓడను జరిపే), Movie: Rajeshwari Kalyanam, Year: 1993
  8. Song: Uppongale Godavari", Movie: "Godavari", Year: 2006

Manaswini Awards[edit]

He received two Manaswini awards.[21]

  1. Song: Venuvai vachchaanu (Telugu: వేణువై వచ్చాను), Movie: Matrudevobhava, Year: 1993.
  2. Song: Aakaashaana suryudundadu (Telugu: ఆకాశాన సూర్యుడుండడు), Movie: Sundarakanda, Year: 1992.

Filmography[edit]

He wrote thousands of songs as lyricist for many successful Telugu films. He has also acted in very few films in cameo roles. He acted as a fake swamiji in a film, which succeeded in producing good comedy. He also penned Dialogues along with writer Jandhyala for the movie sirisirimuvva.

1970s[edit]

  • O Seeta Katha (1974) (lyrics: Bhaaratanaarii Charitamu (Harikatha))
  • Adavi Ramudu (1974) (lyrics: Krushi Vunte Manushulu Rushulautaru)
  • Pantulamma (1977) (lyrics: Maanasa Veenaa Madhu Geetam)
  • Siri Siri Muvva (1978) (lyrics: Andaaniki Andam, Eavari Kevaru Ee Lokamlo, Gajje Gallumantuntae, Jhummandhi Nadam Sayyandi Padam, Maa Voori Devudamma, Odupunna Pilupu, Raa Digi Raa Divi Ninchi)
  • Gorintaku (1979) (lyrics: Komma Kommako Sannayi)
  • Sankarabharanam (1979) (lyrics: Sankara Nadasareena Para)

1980s[edit]

  • Manchu Pallaki (1982) (lyrics)
  • Subhalekha (1982) (lyrics: Raagaala Pallakilo Koyilamma Raaledu Eevela Endukammaa?)
  • Khaidi (1983)
  • Manthri Gari Viyyankudu (1983) (lyrics: Manasa Sirasa née namame padeda ee vela, Coconut manaku dosti okate asti raa, jabaru dasti cheste nasti raa, Chi chi po papa oppulakumma , Koluvainade urki korivayinade maa kobbarikayala subbarayude , Emanani née cheli padudane , Sala sala nanu kavinchanela )
  • Meghasandesham (1983) (lyrics: Aakaasa Desaana Aashada Masaana)
  • Mundadugu (1983)
  • Sitaara (1983)
  • Rustum (1984)
  • Agni Parvatam (1985) (lyrics: Agni Parvatam, Ee Gaalilo)
  • Anveshana (1985) (writer: Edalo Laya, Keeravani, Ekanta Vela, Ilalo Kalise)
  • Chantabbai (1986)
  • Padamati Sandhya Ragam (1986)
  • Pratighatana (1986) (lyrics: Ee Duryodhana Dussaasana Durvineeta Lokamlo)
  • Aakhari Poratam (1988) (lyrics: Tella Cheeraku, Eppudu Eppudu)
  • Marana Mrudangam (1988)
  • Geetaanjali (1989) (lyrics: Jallanta Kavvinta Kaavaalile, Nandikonda Vaagullona, Jagada Jagada Jagadam, Om Namah Nayana Shrutulaku, O Paapaa Laalii!, Aamani Paadave Haayigaa)

1990s[edit]

  • Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka Sundari (1990) (lyrics: Abba Nee Teeyani Debba)
  • Chanti (1991) (lyrics: Pavuraniki Panjaraniki)
  • Gang Leader (1991)
  • Nirnayam (1991) (lyrics: Mila Mila Merisenu Tara')
  • Dharma Kshetram (1992) (lyrics: Koramenu Komalam Sora Shobanam and more songs from this film')
  • President Gari Pellam (1992) (lyrics: Nuvvu Malle Teega, Paruvala Kodi, Manduri Ambothu, Aa Oddu Ee Oddu, Umma Kavali, Kandirrega Nadumu Daani)
  • Sundarakanda (1992) (lyrics: AakaaSaana SuuryuDunDaDu SandevELakE)
  • Govinda Govinda (1993) (lyrics: O Naveena)
  • Matru Devo Bhava (1993) (lyrics: Raalipoye Puvva Neeku Raagalenduke)
  • Mechanic Alludu (1993)
  • Super Police (1994)
  • Ramudochhadu (1996) (lyrics: Maa Palle Repallanta, Gumma Gumma Muddu Gumma, Vareva, Guvva Koose Puvvu Poose)
  • Iddaru(1997)
  • Ravoyi Chandamama (1999) (lyrics: Nanda Nandana, Jagadajam Jawani, Swapna Venuvedo, Mallepuvva, Leta Leta, Love to Live, Jhummani Jhummani)

2000s[edit]

Books[edit]

sirikaakolanu chinnadi[edit]

This book was originally a "musical play" telecasted on the All India Radio. The story describes the culture and people during the time of the king Krishna Deva Raya through the story of a Devadasi.[23] The original play has music by the great music director Pendyala Nageswara Rao. One can see the beauty of Telugu language in this book.

Veturi was introduced to director K. Viswanath through this book and later their combination was a big hit. N T Rama Rao was so impressed by the story of this book that he wanted to make it as a movie. It is believed that there were some discussions on the script but the movie was never produced.

komma kommakO sannaayi[edit]

A book titled komma kommakO sannAyi was published by "Veturi sahitii samiti". This book contains 27 articles written by Veturi celebrating his association with some famous personalities in the Telugu film industry. It also contains description of some of his songs. The personalities covered include the following:

  1. Music directors: Pendyala Nageswara Rao, Saluri Rajeswara Rao, K. V. Mahadevan, Adi Narayana Rao, Ramesh Naidu, Rajan - Nagendra, Chakravarty, Ilayaraja, MM Keeravaani & A.R.Rahman
  2. Singers: S._P._Balasubrahmanyam
  3. Lyricists: Daita Gopalam, Samudrala (Sr), Atreya, Dasarathi,
  4. Actors: Nagayya, Jagayya, N. T. Rama Rao & Relangi
  5. Directors and producers: Nagi Reddy, Jandhyala, Bapu - Ramana

Many of these articles were originally published in a Telugu magazine called Haasam. Veturi's prowess in Telugu language & literature and his vast knowledge of Carnatic music can be seen in this book. Veturi often quotes many of his own lyrics in this book and those examples offer a glimpse of his genius. In particular, his explanation to the song Swararaaga gangaa pravaahamE (Movie: Sarigamalu) is a master piece.

This book is not an auto-biography of Veturi, as some people think.

Personal life[edit]

Veturi was married to Seeta Maha Lakshmi and has three sons: Ravi Prakash, Chandrasekhar and Nanda Kishore.[3] He was a devotee of Ganapathi Sachchidananda Swami and often visited Swami's ashram in Mysore.

Filmnagar land controversy[edit]

In March 2010, Veturi openly criticized the Film Nagar Cooperative Society officials for not handing over the 1000 sq.yard land that was allotted to him about 28 years ago.[24] He alleged that several juniors and ineligible people were given plots ahead of him. He was allegedly offered a double bedroom flat for 15 lakhs.[25]

After his death, noted singer Mano and senior actor Vijay Chandar demanded the government to give the land to his family.[26] President of the Telugu Desam Party, Opposition Leader, Chandrababu Naidu appealed to the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Konijeti Rosaiah to do justice to the veteran lyricist.[27]

Death[edit]

Veturi died of pneumorrhagia or Pulmonary hemorrhage (internal bleeding in lungs) at a private hospital in Hyderabad on 22 May 2010 (aged 74) at about 9:30 p.m. local time. He was admitted to the hospital two days earlier and was kept in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) there as his health was deteriorating.[28]

His death shook the Telugu Film Industry. Directors like K. Viswanath, Raghavendra Rao, Dasari Narayana Rao, Sekhar Kammula, Gunasekhar, YVS Chowdary, R. Narayana Murthy, S. S. Rajamouli; Actors like Jamuna, Murali Mohan, Jayasudha, Chiranjeevi, Balakrishna, Mohan Babu; Producers like D. Ramanaidu, Ashwini Dutt, Allu Aravind, Nagendra Babu; Writers like Sirivennela, Tanikella Bharani, Chandrabose, Suddala Ashok Teja; Music composers like M. M. Keeravani and politicians like Chandrababu Naidu, Bandaru Dattatreya were among those who paid last respects to him.[26] Others like Akkineni Nagarjuna, Mahesh Babu, Jr. NTR, Sumanth, expressed their condolences on Twitter.

Legendary director K. Viswanath, who introduced Veturi to the film industry, stated that "his works would please even the gods".[26] Director Sekhar Kammula, who worked with him to deliver some critically acclaimed songs, wrote a 4 page article in the daily Sakshi describing Veturi's death as his "personal loss".[29]

References[edit]

External links[edit]