Published: 06th July 2018
One video changed his life, how Rakesh Nooranad caught the attention of his idol Shankar Mahadevan and netizens
It all began when his friend shot a video of him singing. Rakesh Nooranadu, a daily wage labourer, is now a celebrity in his hometown and will soon be debuting in the Malayalam and Tamil music indus
While the US celebrated the fourth of July in all its glory, the sleepy town of Nooranad in Alappuzha too sprung to life. Rakesh Nooranadu, a 30-year-old loading worker, whose talent, until now, remained camouflaged amidst the ordinariness of the town, emerged from his cocoon with a beautiful rendition of the popular Tamil hit Unnai Kaanadhu Naan and social media cannot seem to get enough of it.
His rendition of the Vishwaroopam song was so evocative that the likes of Shankar Mahadevan, Kamal Hassan and Gopi Sundar have already contacted him, promising a befitting platform for his exceptional talent. The video, which has close to 12 lakh likes and over three lakh views, is still being widely shared and has opened up numerous avenues for the singer.
"All this is nothing but God's grace, and I truly didn't imagine it would create such a buzz," says Rakesh, when asked about the unprecedented success of the video. "In fact," he continues, telling us about the moments that led to his fame, "it was my friend Shameer who urged me to sing that and later, his wife uploaded it on Facebook. That's all I know."
Along with the opportunity to sing in Malayalam and Tamil movies, several Malayalee associations around the world are also eager to whisk him away for an onstage performance. "Along with all these musicians and well-wishers, I have been contacted by numerous Malayalee organisations as well. The Indian American Malayalee Association has also offered to sponsor my trip there for a performance," informs Rakesh, who has only performed so far on smaller stages.
But obviously, people don't just wake up one day with talent like this! For this untrained musician, music was something that he had to sidetrack when he was younger because of, well, priorities. "I studied till tenth standard and after that, I quit my education to help my family. I started working from then on and right now, it is my brother and me who shoulder the responsibilities of our home," says Rakesh, who lives with five others.
When asked whether he would consider music as a full-term career now, Rakesh says that he is still unsure. "To be honest, all this attention is a little overwhelming for a simple guy like me, but as promised by these great singers, if I could share a platform with them, surely it would be a blessing," he confesses, hopeful of his future.
And this isn't the first time netizens have come together to identify hidden talents from the remote corners of God's own country. In 2013, in a similar instance, the video of P Chandralekha, then a homemaker, singing in her kitchen while holding her son went viral, fetching her several opportunities to sing in mainstream movies. It sure seems like social media is the place to be in this day and age.
Listen to his song here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGEafd3IF-A