As a college girl, Sanah Moidutty was obsessed with the songs composed by A R Rahman for Mani Ratnam-film 'Guru'.
She used to often perform tracks like 'Barso Re' for her friends at college. Little did she know, that years later, she would sing a song in a Mani Ratnam–ARR film, the much-awaited Ponniyin Selvan 1.
In the film that hits theatres on September 30 this year, Sanah has sung the Malayalam version of the song 'Chol,' the track that goes 'Bol' in Hindi in Shreya Ghoshal's voice and as 'Sol' in Tamil, sung by Rakshita Suresh.
This is the fourth Rahman song of Sanah, who has sung for him earlier in the films 'Mohenjo Daro' and 'Twenty Four'.
“I happened to visit Chennai for the recording of the upcoming Malayalam movie 'Dear Vappi,' which has songs by Kailas Menon. Soon after I was back, I contracted COVID-19 and had to be in quarantine. Due to severe sore throat and flu, I had even stopped my regular riyas. That's when I got the call from 'Ponniyin Selvan' team to sing for the film!” says Sana.
She confesses that she was doubtful whether she would be able to pull it off. “But, I went for the recording soon after my quarantine period was over. They had already recorded the Hindi version by Shreya and that was my reference. It's an unusual, fun track that's like a tease between friends and I loved singing it. I feel so blessed that I could sing for an A R Rahman–Mani Ratnam film, whose collaborations I loved even in the past,” she remembers.
Sanah, who is familiar to Malayalis the best through her cover versions of yesteryear Malayalam songs, has won both love and criticism for her take on the tracks.
However, she observes that with time, the listeners have been more accepting.
“For example, as compared to the past, my most recent cover version of the song 'Onnam Ragam Paadi' won more positive comments. And there will always be people who feel singers need not do cover versions of yesteryear classics. I understand where they come from. At the same time, I have always said that I sing these tracks because I love them, not for the sake of any comparison between the old and the new versions.”
A while ago, she also debuted as a composer through the independent Tamil song 'Kangal Oya'.
Sanah's upcoming songs are for the Tamil film 'Paper Rocket' and Anand Deverakonda's Telugu film 'Highway.'