Composer Midhun Mukundan recorded Lingi Lingi Lingidi without ever meeting Raghu and had to reverse engineer the track, which marks his Telugu debut
Midhun Mukundan's version of popular folk number Lingi Lingi Lingidi has been well received
After making a mark in Kannada cinema with films like Kahi, Ondu Motteya Kathe, Mayabazar 2016, Garuda Gamana Vrishbha Vahana, and, more recently Toby, Midhun Mukundan, had widened his horizons and scored for Mammootty’s Rorschach, which was widely appreciated and opened more doors for him in the Malayalam industry. The music man is now gearing up for his Telugu film debut, having composed a song for the upcoming Kotabommali PS, which is the remake of the Malayalam hit Nayattu. “I am not doing the score of this film as I was not able to take it up owing to my schedules with Toby and Ramachandra Boss & Co. But Lingi Lingi Lingidi is my debut Telugu song,” he says.
Lingi Lingi Lingidi has amassed 1.8 million views and counting since it came out earlier this week, is Midhun’s adaptation of a popular folk song, which had been popularized by singer P Raghu Relare Rela. “Interestingly, I have never met Raghu. I asked the team to do a very clean recording because there are certain qualities that I have to maintain within my production. I had heard an earlier version, which, was not by Raghu but by an elderly local artiste. Director Teja Marni told me about the song and that Raghu had made it popular with his version. Teja wanted the song, but as a proper dance anthem, for which, my only request was that they get Raghu to record at a good studio at the fastest pace that he could, which, in turn, would allow me to make the song a fast number. All I had to start off was Raghu’s voice and everything you hear in the song was added after that. And while the brief was clear that it had to be dance number, I did not want it to lose its rustic quality, so Raghu’s voice remained the main highlight throughout. Everything I have done then was to accentuate his voice and make it a danceable track. It’s very different from the songs I have done before, not only in terms of genre, but also in actual making, as I had to reverse engineer it,” Midhun explains.
This also meant that Midhun did not really have the option of making any corrections or improvisations along the way. “As soon as I got the recording, I sent the file to my sound engineer, asking if he needed any corrections to it, but he said it was not necessary, as Raghu’s voice is so raw and has so much energy in it that it is nice to listen to. Even if I had the opportunity to record him in person, I would have never approached it the way I do with other popular playback singers, where you are trying to perfect every note. Raghu’s Lingi Lingi Lingidi has a lot of off-pitch notes, technically, but I don’t mind that, because that’s what I wanted. He is a brilliant singer and I love his voice. I was very impressed with how he’d sung it and then I added some effects and played around a little on auto-tune to give it a deejay kind of vibe. I did not want it to be so modern that it sounds like a ‘House’ track and is played at a night club; then it loses its rustic quality. Instead, it had to sound like a local DJ playing it, but with my style of making it a dance track. That’s what we went for,” explains the composer, who has also chipped in with backing vocals along with his “lucky charm” actress-singer Chaithra J Achar.