It is the birthday of the Johnson master who gave Malayalam soulful immortal songs. Master Orma, who conquered the hearts of Malayali with his beautiful songs, has given many songs to be remembered forever even after 12 years. Antipumaman, Anuragini, Azhake Nin, Akashamake, Atiwakate, The First Time I Met, How Long Have I Been, Raja Hamsame, What Black Eye Color, One Touching, Swarnamukile, Syaam Verruku Syaam, etc. How many songs master Johnson has composed the melody for?
Johnson, who came to cinema as a disciple of Malayalam cinema’s Devasangeetam G. Devarajan, is the composer who has composed the most music for Malayalam films after Devarajan. Johnson was born on March 26, 1953 in Nellikunnum, Thrissur. He was a chorister at St. Sebastian’s Church in Nellikuman and showed talent in guitar and harmony at an early age. He was the conductor of the troupe Voice of Thrissur formed by Johnson and some friends in 1968. After his education, Johnson came to Madras and became an assistant to Devarajan Master. Johnson Devarajan, who did not study music scientifically, started his music studies under the instruction of his master.
Johnson’s entry into the film world was by composing background music for Bharathan’s film ‘Aravam’. He became a freelance music composer by composing the music for the film ‘Ina Yethedi’ directed by Anthony Eastman. Although the songs in the first film were not well-received, the Malayalam film world recognized Johnson Master’s talent with Jail, Parvathy and Premageethaman.
The Johnson master’s role in making films such as Nadu Parkan Vrinthopups, Eor Minminungin Nrununguvattam, Vadakkunokientram, Naam Gandharvan, Kirayam and Chamayam into superhits of the time cannot be forgotten. With the collaboration of leading directors like Padmarajan, Bharathan, Sathyan Anthikad, Kamal, Lohitadas and Balachandra Menon, Malayalam cinema got a handful of good songs that can be remembered forever. Johnson, who has been a regular presence in Padmarajan films since the film Kadubithi, has composed music for 17 Padmarajan films.
He has composed music for more than 300 Malayalam films and has received many awards. Johnson is the only Malayali to win the National Award twice for composing background music. He also won the Kerala government’s best music director award three times and the best background music award twice.
After a brief hiatus from the music world after the nineties, Master made a comeback in 2006 with the film Photographer. He then composed music for the films Gulmohar and Natakame Ulakam. Master Johnson passed away on August 18, 2011 at the age of 58 after a heart attack. He returned with many sweet songs to remember Malayali forever.