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Hear Shadow and Light’s First Tamil Song ‘Yaarum Illai,’ Featuring Singer Haricharan

The New Delhi fusion duo add a signature sonic touch to the song about journeying

Anurag Tagat Jun 19, 2020

Shadow & Light (left) collaborated with Haricharan for their latest song "Yaarum Illai." Photo: Ishani Das (Shadow & Light); Courtesy of the artist (Haricharan)

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In 2018, New Delhi fusion duo Shadow and Light were on their first U.S. tour and connected with vocalist Haricharan, one of the most sought after names in South Indian film music. Producer-keyboardist Anindo Bose and vocalist Pavithra Chari had already been toying with the idea to write a Tamil song and a possible collaboration bolstered their resolve more so.

Their new song “Yaarum Illai” involved Haricharan not just as a voice, but also as co-composer and lyricist, whose enigmatic verse comes in the second half of the breathy, piano-led track. Bose says, “His voice compliments Pavithra’s vocals beautifully on this one.”

For Chari, she got “more clarity to get started” on a Tamil song once they connected with Haricharan. She adds about singing in Tamil, “It was slightly challenging for me because I feel I need more fluency and proficiency in the language, and also for Anindo to understand the narrative so that the arrangement could be composed accordingly. But we are very happy with the final result – this motivates us to write more pieces in Tamil!”

Coincidentally bearing references to rains, “Yaarum Illai” talks about “the journey that artists go through as they seek inspiration to create something new.” Haricharan, who was specifically impressed by Shadow and Light’s songwriting sensibilities, was more than keen to work with them. “They make it look cool and they don’t try too much to impress their audience. I have worked with so many musicians all over the world but this made a lot of sense,” he says.

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The song also took about a couple of years because the duo were busy with gigs (“and our wedding,” Bose adds) and have now released the song – their first since 2018 album Sabar was out – to coincide with Chari’s birthday today. Bose adds, “We still want to release the album, but later in the year and in the coming months, we will be releasing more singles.”

Watch the video for “Yaarum Illai” below. 

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