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Gaana is a type of Tamil song, often accompanied by the percussion of Dappan koothu. It is characterised as a fastbeat song, with less emphasis on meaning, sung at a celebration. Initially, this was very popular with Indians from Chennai to relax while doing stressful work. It gained further popularity when a few songs were used in Tamil cinema. Though the song sung doesn't have any meaning, there are a few unique signifiers of Gaana which include:

  1. It should not have more than 4–5 words per line.
  2. The words at the end of lines should be rhythmic.
  3. It must be sung at more than normal pace, so that words are not clear. This is mandatory for the lines containing some words.
  4. It should be accompanied by the beats of dappa or the metal sheets of a bus or train.


As it gained momentum in the Chennai culture, it became inevitable for the troop singers to sing some Gaana songs in any orchestras that were arranged for a wedding reception, an organized event, college cultural programs, like saarang, techofes, and even in the celebaration of Ganesh chadurthi.

Students from most of the colleges in Chennai and surroundings will sing the gaana in the bus and train they use to commute to college from their home. They choose buses or trains because singing attracts the attention of 'the figures', a term used in Chennai for pretty girls, and they need the metal or windows of the vehicle to generate a beat.

A famous gaana Music Director is Deva, and recently the singer Ulaganathan became popular with the Chithiram Pesuthadi song.

Few gaana lists from Tamil cinema

  • bagalu bagalu
  • Vetalapota Sogkula
  • Vantenda Palkaran
  • Aal thotta Boopathi
  • App Ela Aila Sa
  • Kai Kai Kai Vikira
  • Appadi Podu Podu
  • Vaalla Meenukum Vilangu meenukum
  • Vitha vidhama soapu seepu kannadi
  • Alai adikkuthu
  • Naka Mooka
  • Oororum puliyamaram
  • mozha mozhanu
  • kannadasan kaarakudi

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