చెంగావి రంగు చీర – Chengavi Rangu Cheera

I have received requests from several people regarding transliteration. As of now, for some respite, you could copy-paste the lyrics into Google Translate and read phonetically.

The current generation really doesn’t have an intuitive feeling for the fan following of ANR back in the heydays (It is hard to pinpoint considering his ~70 year film career, something rivaled only by this artist. Do watch his last film మనం when it is out, which features three generations of the Akkineni family). Encores in theaters and ANR cosplay were a common sight, but I would be totally missing the point if I didn’t mention that it was this craze that provided the impulse to transform Tollywood into a full-scale industry. No wonder, he was awarded the Padma Vibhushan for his contribution to cinema.

I myself have seen only ‘Devdas’ but am no stranger to his songs. This one has fond memories especially while playing Antakshari as it was the only one which came to mind for ‘చ’. Catchy tune, rigid dancing postures, forced lip sync, weird dance props…This song really captures ANR’s style. Before I begin, I humbly bow to him for all what he has given to Telugu culture and may his soul rest in peace.

చెంగావి రంగు చీర కట్టుకున్న చిన్నది
దాని జిమ్మదియ్య దాని జిమ్మదియ్య
అందమంతా చీరలోనే వున్నది

చెంగావి = saffron colour
జిమ్మ = excess (not to be confused with జిమ్మడ – which actually stands for జిహ్వ పడిపోను. The dictionary lists a hilarious usage : ఆడి జిమ్మడ. సీకటి మాటున సెయ్యట్టుగున్నాడు.)

‘The petite one has worn a saffron saree!
Rid it of excess! Rid it of excess!
The beauty is completely in the dress’

మెరుపల్లె వచ్చింది నా ఇంటికి
నన్ను మెల్లంగ దించింది ముగ్గులోనికి
తలదాచుకొమ్మని తావిస్తివి
పిల్ల దొరికింది చాలని ఇల్లాల్ని చేస్తివి

మెరుపల్లె = మెరుపు + వలె (యణాదేశ)
తావ = home

The first two lines might sound ambiguous. I interpreted them as ‘She came to my home like a flash of lightning and she slowly brought me down to my feet’
‘I gave her a roof over her head
Found a woman for yourself and thus made her a housewife’
(Pardon the blatant sexism according to modern standards)

ప్రేమంటే నేర్పింది పిచ్చివాడికి
దాంతో వెర్రెత్తిపోయింది కుర్రవాడికి
పిచ్చివాడనే పేరు చాటున మాటువేసినావు
పిల్లదాని పెదవి మీద కాటువేసినావు

వెర్రి = madness
చాటు = publicize

‘She taught what love means to the fool.
With that, he went mad even more.
You really lived up to your notoriety as an imbecile
And bit the lips of the innocent lady’

సరసంలో పడ్డాడు ఇన్నాళ్ళకి
అబ్బో సంగీతం వచ్చింది బుచ్చిబాబుకి
తెరచాటు తొలిగింది పరువానికి
అది పరవళ్ళు తొక్కుతూ పాడింది నేటికి

తెరచాటు = curtain
పరువము = maturity
బుచ్చిబాబు = a term of endearment used for males
పరవళ్లు త్రొక్కు = flow swiftly (filled with euphoria)

‘Finally fell in the trap of lust
Oh! He is even starting to compose
The curtain has dropped finally to maturity
And it has flowed swiftly, at last, today’

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