Girish Puliyoor is a famous poet, lyricist and media person. He began writing poetry at the age of nine. His rendering poetry is unique as it echoes the rhythm of his native land. He has been greatly influenced by Chattupattu (the ritual chanting of Kani tribe). His poetry has gained wide acceptance as it reflects contemporary issues, from ecological imbalance and globalization to degeneration of cultural plurality. He is an ardent follower of Idassery, ONV and Kadammanitta; the three stalwarts in modern Malayalam poetry.
Girish Puliyoor was born in 1966 at Uzhamalakkal – Puliyoor in Nedumangadu, Thiruvananthapuram into a traditional family which practised ayurveda and folklore. His father Puliyoor L. Sreedharan Nair and his forefathers were renowned ayurveda physicians. After completing MA (English Literature) from the University College, Trivandrum in 1989, he plunged into literary activities. Meanwhile he continued to be an English tutor in many eminent parallel colleges that also helped him popularize his poetry.
His writing turned into a more serious phase from 1985 onwards. His first collection of poetry ‘Ottayante Hrudayam’ (The Heart of a Rogue Elephant) was published in 1998 with an illustrious foreword by ONV Kurup. Mampoo Manakkanu(It smells the mango flower) ‘Nee Varunnilla’ (You Are Not Coming), Aadu Pambe, Kadam Kelu Pambe (Oh! Serpent, You Dance and Listen to the Debts), ‘Veesiyadikkuka Katte’ (Oh! Wind You Blow with Power), ‘Orikkalenne Nee Vilichunarthanam’ (You Should Wakeup Me Once) , ‘Snehathinu Thelivukalilla’, (Love has no proof at all) are his other poetry works. The first part of his autobiography titled ‘Oreyoradhyayam’, (Only one chapter) is now ready for print.
Kunchupillai Award (1988)
N.N. Kakkadu Award by Kerala University (1989)
A.R Rajarajavarma Kavitha Award (2000)
V.T. Kumaran Puraskaram (2002)
K.P. Brahmanandan Sahithya Puraskaram (2012)
P. Bhaskaran Foundation Kavitha Award (2011)
American viewers award for the best Lyricist (2002)
Adoor Bhasi Cultural Forum Award for the best Lyricist (2011)
Girish Puliyoor has translated his own poetry into English which will hit the stands soon..
He began writing lyrics when he was only a school boy. Those lyrics were hymns to god which he recited at his home. Later in 1988 he penned a song for an international level college youth festival competition which won him prize. In 1991 he wrote for Anuragamanjari, Onam Festival Songs for Yesudas (brought out by Tharangini Records ) and it became a tremendous hit. He then went on to write title songs for more than sixty serials including ‘Paithozhiyathe’, ‘Nizhalukal’, ‘Porutham’ etc. ‘Onappeeli’ is a famous Onam festival songs’ album released by East Coast Audios, the lyrics of which have been penned by him.
Gireesh Puliyoor has been a live commentator of ‘Sabrimala Makaravilakku festival’ and ‘Attukal Pongala’, which are telecast worldwide, they being the revered Festivals of Kerala. His commentary asserts social realities and recalls a mythological past instead of inspiring blind beliefs and superstition among the public. Doordarsan, Kairali TV and Mathrubhoomi TV have all provided platform to the poet to display his narrative skills. He is an expert in voice modulation and spot narration.
Gireesh Puliyoor has had a brief stint with acting too. His deep-toned voice which aids him in narration has helped with his acting too. He has acted in three serials and in an album ‘Safia’ as a muslim fakir, which features a song under the same title produced by Eastcoast Audios. He has also remained a radio play actor (voice actor) since 1992 in AIR.
Voice – over artist:
From 1987 onwards, Girish started trying his hand in giving voice-overs. He has already dubbed for hundreds of documentaries. He began giving voice-overs when he was with C-dit, Trivandrum, the Kerala government undertaking to promote technology and culture. His voice infused life into ‘Devaragam’ a series of episodes in Kairali TV, about the life and achievements of G. Devarajan, the stalwart in Malayalam music industry. For the last five years, he has been rendering voice to Loka Kazhachakal, a series of travelogue in a television channel which has been running a hit.
Girish Puliyoor has penned scripts for many documentaries and radio programmes. In 1990 he wrote script in the form of Pulluvan song (Pulluvan pattu) and sang it for ‘Serpent -the mother goddess’, a documentary directed by Santhosh Sivan about Mannarassala, the world famous serpent temple, that fetched him a National Award. He has scripted for many programmes in Doordarsan and various TV Channels.
From 1987 to 1995, he was a tutor in English Language and literature in various Parallel Colleges in Trivandrum. His stretched timings at the college, sometimes nearing 12 hours, where he addressed a near hundred students , has helped him with the modulation of his voice. It has come handy to him while singing and reciting poems on the stage.
For him, reciting poetry has come as a family lineage. His ancestors were folk singers and performers. Ayurveda and art merged in the family. Though a man with numerous vocations, it is reciting poetry that is closer to his heart. His recitation is not ‘raga-based’ but `raw-rendering’, that flows spontaneously out of natural talent, echoing the notes of nature.
Puliyoor Herbal Centre (Puliyoor Herbal Oil)
Living up to the family tradition, Girish Puliyoor has also been practicing Ayurveda. He turned Murukavilsom Vaidyasala, founded by his father to ‘Puliyoor Herbal Centre’. The Puliyoor Herbal Oil brought out by this centre has many takers. It is a unique herbal combination effective for Sinusitis, dust allergy, dandruff, hairfall, sneezing, vertigo, premature graying and sleeplessness. It is also known to expedite hair-growth. The Herbal Oil is for external application only, promising good results. The herbal oil is to be applied in a prescribed quantity on the scalp before bath which brings down many hair problems and gives surprising results for the users.
A traditional mix of leaves, roots, seeds, flowers and stems of selected medicinal plants, the herbal oil has as its main solvent boiled (virgin) coconut oil. Almost all head ailments are cured by the continuous usage of this herbal oil for six months. Direct consultancy is available on demand. Puliyoor Herbal Oil stimulates brain nerves and reduces giddiness caused due to the excessive use of mobile phones and computer. It provides rejuvenation for the eyes and ears also.
The air pollution and unhealthy life style have added to hair problems. Which is why Puliyoor has taken up the promotion of this herbal mix as a service to the society.
Taking only a meager profit and making it available to all, he has made it his mission. The manufacturing the herbal oil is supervised by a team of BAMS doctors. Girish Puliyoor himself is aware of all stages of manufacturing since he has been assisting his father at the vaidyasala since childhood. The experience of 30 years in the making and packing of the combinations have made him an expert in the field. Being an ayurveda expert means being a real friend of nature. So, in him we find a blend of poetry and ayurveda which are quite natural and fruitful. All combinations in ayurveda are written in beautiful slokas (poems) that naturally makes a reader acquainted with beautiful symbols and rhythm of the language. So in his own words, his ayurveda physician-father made him a poet, by singing hundreds of ‘slokas’ and revealing their beautiful hidden meanings. Blending tradition with updated knowledge has therefore become his life’s mission.
Puliyoor Knowledge Centre:
Not only health but all achievements of mankind are stored by way of knowledge so that it is passed over to the generations. It is Puliyoor’s dream to start a centre which will collect, preserve and study all traditional knowledge’s. And he is well on his way to achieving it.
It is an Audio–Video production firm owned by Gireesh Puliyoor to popularize poetry and folksongs. Traditional medicine songs (Marunnupaattu) will be safe for ever if they are sung and stored using modern technology. However, the important and immediate venture of Diamondrise Creations is the production of a CD of ‘hymn- poetry’ of Sree Narayana Guru. The metrical and literary beauty of Guru’s poetry had attracted him from a very early age.
Being a programme presenter on Kairali TV for more than four years, Puliyoor has got the opportunity to know and interview great personalities from different walks of life. ‘Kavya Sangeethika’, a series of episodes in Doordarshan to popularize the poetry of ONV, Vishnu Narayanan Namboothiri, Sugatha Kumary and Kavalam Narayana Panicker has also widened his media works. ‘Kavya Sangeethika’ is set to continue on Doordarsan with the presence of other famous poets like Satchithanandan.
Kathaparayaunneram (The Story Time) in Victers Channel run by the Govt. of Kerala was also a popular educational programme presented by Girish Puliyoor that told hundreds of stories to a student audience from different schools. The stories told were from ‘Panchathanthram’ and Jathakakathakal’. These episodes remain exemplary models of the tradition of story telling which is almost an extinct skill now. The stories from a distant past narrated to a present young generation was a wholesome experience for the story teller too.
Writing and reciting poetry keeps Girish busy. He is very keen to connect fore-gone days with the present in his own possible ways.