‘If he can copy from himself, he can also file a case against himself’
Chennai: In a bizarre case, which may have no precedent anywhere, Tamil film music director Harris Jeyaraj has moved the Madras High Court against himself for ‘consistently copying from his own works’.
Harris Jeyaraj, who is a leading music composer in South India, has regularly found himself at the centre of the criticism for ‘repeating himself’ in his film songs.
The general belief is that there is just ‘one Harris Jeyaraj song’, which the directors download and then customise to their requirements, not unlike what many of us do with web browsers.
Experts say that if A R Rahman’s songs take time to grow on you, a Harris Jeyaraj’s number has an instant appeal since it has already grown on you.
Harris Jeyaraj’s songs have also provided a major impetus to leading Tamil directors like Gowtham Vasudev Menon who have also carved a niche for themselves by repeating their own films in various versions.
Dialogues like ‘She swept me off my feet’, ‘I want to make love to you’, ‘Ia m crazy about you’ are found in almost every Gowtham Menon film. This kind of creativity has been a clear inspiration from Harris Jeyaraj who has consistently provided the same brilliant stuff to him from Minnale.
But of late Harris Jeyaraj seems to have been caught on a sticky wicket with other music directors like G V Prakash doing a better job of copying him (Harris) than Harris himself.
If Harris can be delivered by others, what is the need for Harris? This existential question must have haunted the music director.
But why this bizarre case in the High Court? When Crank’s News caught up with Harris, he was busy with the music of Nanban, the Tamil remake of Three Idiots, which itself was the Hindi remake of Five Point Something, which is a fictional remake of Chetan Bhagat’s personal life at IIT, which is the fountainhead of all cooked-up remakes, under the title: research papers
‘If I can’t stop myself from copying my works, how can I stop anyone else from copying my works,’ Harris Jeyaraj asked rhetorically, explaining his logic for filing this landmark case. Harris also confirmed that such ideas started forming in his mind ever since he had a chance to work for the Kamal Haasan film Vettaiyadu Vilaiyadu.
Harris Jeyaraj said it hurt to hear people consistently complain that I copy from my own works. ‘This comment is bandied about so casually. But when you listen to one of my latest songs in 7aam Arivu, you will realise that this charge so untrue. I have not copied myself in that number. I have consciously used an A R Rahman number for that’.
Harris, however, said he hated to repeat himself and would say whatever he wanted to in the court, and hence his advocate would brief the media on the details of the case.
Asked how can he sue himself, Harris’ advocate said: ‘If he can copy from himself, I think he can also file a case against himself’.
The advocate added: There is certainly no legal hitch as such in the case. ‘There are legal parallels. The Supreme Court, for instance, has accepted (in the 2G spectrum issue) the clean chit given for Home Minister P Chidambaram by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is technically governed by Home Minister P Chidambaram’.
The advocate added: ‘Also, in the 2G case itself, the Central government is consistently pleading in the Supreme Court that the Supreme Court need not monitor the investigations. Any moment, the nation will get a verdict from the Supreme Court whether the Supreme Court will continue to monitor the case or not. Over all, the Supreme Court itself is being monitored by the Central government.
‘Considering all these issues, Harris Jeyaraj suing himself seems absolutely sane and logical, he pointed out.
The advocate parried a question on whether Devi Sri Prasad and S A Rajkumar would be allowed to implead themselves in this case, as they also have been accused of repeating themselves in their songs. ‘There is no question of them impleading. For, the case pertains to a music director not Xerox machines’, he added matter of factly.
The case, which is expected to come before the First Bench of the Madras High Court today, is most likely send a notice to Harris Jeyaraj based on the writ filed by Harris Jeyaraj.
(Disclaimer 2: Yes, we have repeated ourselves)
(Disclaimer 3: But we’re not Harris Jeyaraj)