SINGAPORE 60's: ANDY'S POP MUSIC INFLUENCE: ON THE MUSIC N MEMORY TRAIL IS MY OWN BLOG N ROLL PROJECT. NOSTALGIA IS PERSONAL HISTORY N PICTURES TELL STORIES. (I DO NOT OWN THE RIGHTS TO YOU-TUBE VIDEOS, AUDIO TRACKS OR IMAGES. THEY ARE UPLOADED FOR EDUCATIONAL AND ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY. MOST ARTICLES AND SOME IMAGES ARE ORIGINAL, COPYRIGHTED AND LABELLED SUCH. KNOWLEDGE IS FREE. COPYRIGHTS ARE NOT. ANDY YOUNG. November, 2008).





Sunday, July 22, 2012

Paul Ponnudorai: Singapore PR: Honored By TIME




                                            Uploaded by Paul Ponnudorai on Mar 15, 2009

There are so many websites and blogs about this great man that my short posting about him today is actually a show of respect I have for this rare gem of the East.  For more detailed reviews, just key in his name and a long list of connections awaits the surfer.

Paul Ponnudorai had passed on at 51 on Saturday, July 7, 2012. Known as one of the best entertainers this side of the Pacific, the virtuoso guitar player and inspired singer defied "musical boundaries with disarming easiness".

Although he was born in Ipoh, Malaysia, this musician of Indian heritage became a Singapore PR and was active in our local clubs and pubs since the early 2000s. 

According to a write-up, Ponnudorai dismantled, restructured and reshaped timeless songs to make them his own. Those who knew him personally said that he was a man of rare intelligence with an "encyclopaedic memory" and wisdom with "a cross-cultural view of the world".

Honoured even by *TIME Magazine he was described as the greatest musical interpreter of our time.  His approach to music is refreshing, always with spontaneity and sincerity. "His ability to dice songs up, look into their hearts and perceive the common veins connecting every genre has won the attention of top international players who go to Singapore on tour."

Musicians like harmonica genius Toots Thielemans, top drummer Billy Cobham, guitarist Tommy Emmanuel and vocalist Bobby McFerrin have all heard and seen him in action. 

Trumpeter Wynton Marsalis (image 3) while watching Ponnudorai's performance, was so taken by this musical genius that he took his instrument and jumped on stage to play beside the guitarist for two nights!  Performing solo, he used to play at Swing Bar at Cuppage Terrace, Harry's @ Esplanade and was last seen at Live! @ Bojangles at Tanglin Shopping Centre.

Strangely enough, he only recorded one album. Called Right On Time (2005) Ponnudorai selected most songs from the 60s/70s and they include:

1. Joshua Fought The Battle Of Jericho 2. Delta Dawn 3. Misty 4. Detroit City 5. Henry Koh's Lullaby 

6. Theme From the Godfather 7. Kansas City Blues 8. Rhythm of the Rain 9. Can't Buy Me Love 10. Love Potion Number Nine 

11. Killing Me Softly 12. One Room Country Shack 13. House of the Rising Sun 14. Five Hundred Miles 15. Sitting On Top of the World.

According to the liner notes, all tracks were recorded in the first take, without the guitar or vocal overdubs except for the guitar solo on "Henry Koh's Lullaby".  The bass lines, chord progressions, solos and vocals flowed from Ponnudorai naturally. But don't expect the standard treatment as a song like Rising Sun went into funk mode, Misty was given a Bossa-Nova-Cuba treatment and Delta Dawn was Stevie Wonder style.

I heard him but only once. As a singer guitarist, he was awesome! God's gift for our Singapore nightclub scene... Now he's gone. Rest in peace, sir. Have you heard him play?

Images: CD Cover, Google.

Information from:

(1) *TIME Magazine World. Grace Notes: Liam Fitzpatrick:
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1619102-1,00.html

(2) http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/ponnudorai

24 comments:

MICHAELWARRENASIA said...

Paul had churchy roots, we shared them in Ipoh, the only guy who could turn a high mass into a Rock my soul party...

Rest well dear friend!

CALVINRAJ6 said...

Dear Paul Ponnudurai ...

Rest in peace. Truly a legendary guitarist. Malaysia never appreciates real, true hard-working talent.

LYNN151HAJ said...

RIP... Paul a greta child prodigy discovered by RTM at age 14 (I think).

I was mesmerised too then by his finger style. wonder if anyone has that video...

READ CONNECT said...

REQUEST FOR INFORMATION

Hi Andy,

Would you have any contact details for Steve Farram please ??

Unfortunately my attempts to trace Adrain Tills on behalf of my father have come to nothing & thus i wondered whether Mr Farram might be a possible link !

Thanks for your help.

Andy Lim* said...

FROM ADRIAN C. TILLS POSTING

It's a pity. There is a small group of players for Sing60s music actually.

I shall write to Steve Farram if you include your email address which will not be revealed nor published on this blog.

Thank you for visiting.

ALLAN THOMPSON said...

Dear Andy,

I have been following your blog and I am pleased that you and your colleagues had a very successful convention. CONGRATULATIONS.

Best wishes,
Allan.

Andy Lim* said...

Thanks Allan for the kind words; without your presence on the blog I wouldn't have been invited.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

This post has been rejuvenated on FB. It's been 5 years since this great guitarist passed on.

Thank you, my friend, Jimmy. Don't you think so? One of the best musicians this side of the Pacific? Jennie Law too. Thanks.

JENNIE LAW said...

Agree with you Andy

STEPHEN HAN said...

I agree with you that he had a wonderful voice. Sad he is no longer with us.

BENSON FRANCIS said...

RIP Brother

NEWS CENTRE PK said...

JULY 10 2012 NEWS CENTRE PK

Famous legendary Malaysian guitarist Paul Ponnudorai, 51, died due to organ failure— a latent infection. Here comparisons could be made with José Feliciano, the Puerto Rican singer-guitarist who had 1960s hits with stylish remakes of songs like California Dreamin’ and Light My Fire.

No doubt, Ponnudorai is better. Once Time magazine described Ponnudorai as “quite possibly the greatest musical interpreter of our time”, the Ipoh-born guitarist came to prominence in the 1980s as a sought-after club performer.

Right on Time, Ponnudorai’s first album—mostly covers but with a couple of originals, which was released in 2005. While the guitarist’s music ability was across the board and he was able to shine in all genres—from blues and rock to jazz and bluegrass and pop.

The wake held Saturday from 2 pm onwards at the Gui Yin Funeral Parlour at Jln 222, Petaling Jaya. It has been decided by the family members that the funeral is scheduled for Monday. Ponnudorai leaves behind his wife, 91-year-old mother Kamalam, four brothers, three sisters, nieces, nephews and a host of fans.

LOKMAN LORD LOKMAN said...

RIP. my. fren Paul

JIMMY APPUDURAI CHUA said...

He is brilliant. and his voice.

suresh segaran said...

Good to see his talent through his nephews these days.

ROBERT SURIYA (LEAD 'NAOMI AND THE BOYS') said...

The Best Ive heard and got to know in the Far East- He was a Superb Guitarist and vocalist. So sad to lose Him.

FLOYD FRANCISCO FERNANDES said...

known him though his days in Singapore and when he visited and did a contract in India as well...no one like him. R.I.P Paul, you are missed.

JASON AMO said...

Gone but not forgotten ❤️ u will be remembered brotha ...

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

THANKS TO THIS LONG LIST OF SUPPORTERS WHO LIKE THE POST AND THE LATE PAUL:
Irene Hoe
Romito Mendoza
Singlobal Balraj Gopal
David Lim
Jazzy Chico
Davychandavy Chan
Joseph Goh
Rose Khoo
Robert Suriya
Leslie Wilson Joseph
Ravi G Ganesan
Jerry Fernandez
Tony Ng
Joe Peters
Raymond Cho
Jennie Law
Jimmy Appudurai-chua
Renee Aziz Ahmad
Heidi Yeo
Duncan Vincent D
Kevin Pereira Jr
Kesh Kaeser
Gerard Victor Emmanuel
Stephen Bertie Santa Maria
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Madan Theertha Pathy
Sean Snik Corkins
Dianne Guerzo
Bibiana Peter
Albert Sirimal
Cathy Suello
Benson Francis

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

A BIG THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO COMMENTED, ESPECIALLY THOSE READERS FROM FACEBOOK.

46 SHARED THIS POSTING ON FACEBOOK.

I wasn't able to download the many names since quite a number of FB subscribers are in Privacy Mode.

Again many thanks to all who responded.

RIP brother Paul.
You are loved by all.

mohd shukri yusof said...

RIP My class mate... Paul.

IRENE HOE (JOURNALIST) said...

Loved that man

DENYSE TESSENSOHN said...

Tommy Emmanuel too was profoundly sad at the news of his death. Both he and his engineer were convinced he was world class. And he sang better than Tommy when they jammed!

DENYSE TESSENSOHN FACEBOOK said...

SHARED POSTING:
Denyse Tessensohn
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Paul Berlandier
Cyrus K Medora
Harry Tan
Gerry Pereira