Early Life of Kavi Kunjara Bharati
His ancestor actually came from Tirunelveli district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. His parents actually lived in a village of Perungarai in Ramanathapuram district. It was said that the entire village was a gift from Maharaja Ragunatha Sethupathi to their family. His given name was given as Koteeswara Bharathi, after the name of his grand father. The name of his father was Subramanya Bharathi. His father and grandfather were also popularly known musicians as well as his maternal grand father, Nandanur Nagabharathi.
His father, Subramanya Bharathi and grandfather Kotiswara Bharathi were also scholars in Tamil language and Sanskrit language. His parents were actually, for long, wanting a child and as a result prayed weekly at the Murugan temple in Kodumalur (near Perungarai) and the child was considered to be blessed by Lord Muruga.
Kavi Kunjara Bharati, during his childhood, was taught Sanskrit language and also Tamil Language. With his brilliance and knowledge in poetry, skills for language and music, he also developed an intellectual relationship with the then renowned poet Madurakavi Bharathiar.
Works of Kavi Kunjara Bharati
The compilation of his work includes Azhahar Kuravanji which is in praise of Maliruncholamali azhahar, "Adaikkala malai" and Kayarkani malai" in praise of Meenakshi Amman and Tiruvangaada Malai "in praise of Lord Venkatachalapahi. One of his other breakthrough contributions was known as "Perinbha Kirthanaigal". Some of his works are also available providing a quick look of his incredible compositions. In the beginning the Azhahar Kuravanji was released with full notations by his illustrious grandson Koteeswara Ayyar in 1916 along with the Skaanda puranam and Perinba kirtahanigal in three volumes. Koteeswara Ayyar is also famously known for composition of 72 Melakarta ragas. There was terrible confusion regarding the names of two composers as they have almost the same "mudrai". To avoid this confusion, Kavi kunjara Bharathi used "kavikunjaram" as his mudrai and Koteeswara ayyar's mudrai was "Kavikunjara Dasan". In fact the first volume of the 36 sudddha madyama melakarthas by Shri Koteeswara ayyar - called "Kanda ganamudham" is dedicated to his maternal grandfather Kavi Kunjara bharathi. A more recent version of Azahar Kuravanji was released by K. Nagamani, the son of Koteeswara Ayyar.
Kavi Kunjara Bharati died in the year 1896.