Thursday, November 19, 2009

Saarideno- Raaga Vidapi

Here's a Vadiraja composition in a rare raga called Vidapi. This was tuned in this raga by my guru Smt. Lalgudi Rajalakshmi ("mami" as we fondly call her :) ). Mami celebrated her birthday recently (Nov 5) and this is dedicated to her. Sorry that I'm late, mami and here's a belated Happy Birthday to you once again! And thank you so much for all the wealth you've shared.
Please excuse me for any mistakes in the rendition!

Vidapi I think is similar to the Hindustani Raag Bhatiyar in the feel, although the latter includes ga3 and ni3.

Here's an abhang in Bhatiyar by Ranjani-Gayathri:
Priya sisters have also sung a bhajan in this raag, "maare ghar aaoji"...

(I remember a documentary that used to come on Doordarshan years back- on the National Literacy Mission - in the voice of Kavitha Krishnamurthy, and I think that was also Bhatiyar... was a lovely tune and brings back fond memories of the DD days...)

Song: Saarideno
Raga: Vidapi (S R1 M1 P D2 S, S D2 P M1 R1 S)
Thalam: Adi
Lyrics: Sri Vadiraja
Tune: Smt Lalgudi Rajalakshmi

Download here

Thursday, October 29, 2009


Here's Dwijavanthi on impulse: A short aalapanai followed by a song I learnt from a Bombay Jayashree recording years back. (Source of inspiration of the sudden impulse: TNS's mind-blowing RTP that I've lately been listening to like crazy)

Song: engu naan selvaen aiyya
Ragam: Dwijavanthi (Jaijaivanthi in Hindustani)
Thalam: Khanda Chaapu
Composer: Periasamy Thooran


Monday, October 12, 2009

A week with Pt Ravi Shankar: India Calling! at Hollywood Bowl

An abridged version of this post is now in Sruti magazine.

(Pictures courtesy: Anu Sood and Flickr)

That life springs surprises on you may sound cliched, but it is not until it happens to you that you actually know what it feels like. Couple of months ago, I had what I can easily call the biggest surprise of my life till date. Little did I expect a random intro email I sent long ago to a contact here in the Carnatic Music circle; to get me an opportunity to be part of a musical ensemble curated by Pt Ravi Shankar, to perform at "India Calling!" in Hollywood Bowl, LA! It was the tail end of my vacation in India when all of a sudden I heard from a Bharatanatyam artiste, Divya Devaguptapu of Indian Fine Arts Academy, SD, that Pt. Ravi Shankar was looking for vocalists to join his ensemble. I was asked to send a vocal sample for audition, and the rest just fell in place...

September 12th 2009 is a day I can never forget: the day I first met and spent an evening learning some music with the Sitar legend Pt. Ravi Shankar at his house. I was elated, nervous, excited and dazed, all at the same time. I was at a loss for words for a while... Guruji- as everyone there calls him- was ever so warm, affectionate and encouraging though. Nearing 90, his energy and drive are unbelievable. Sukanyaji and Anoushka Shankar were also extremely warm and friendly. (So was their cute little dog Sukhee) There were four other singers, one flutist and one violinist that day. We were going to meet the rest of the artistes in a couple of days, from when all-day rehearsals for a week would start at Guruji's house.

September 14 was when the rehearsals started full swing. Ah, what an atmosphere! I'd never felt so fortunate before... Here, before me, were some of the finest artistes- many from India, some from US. About twenty of us put together in a room doing music all day... I have no words for the experience- felt blessed. Guruji would sit in front and teach us the songs with Anoushka beside him, helping him out. (She was going to conduct the ensemble at the show) Every piece was composed and hand-picked by him and such a beauty! All of them were wonderful raags including Khamaj, Pilu, Bihag, Maj Khamaj, Yaman..And not to mention a small Carnatic piece from "Raghunayaka" in Hamsadhwani!

What I loved most about the experience was that I had the opportunity to spend a whole week with these wonderful artistes, listening to their renditions all day long. I am so glad that the whole thing was an amazing learning experience for me: I'm now able to appreciate Hindustani music a lot, lot more! About half of us were from Carnatic background and the other half, Hindustani. It was a beautiful exchange of ideas and styles. I could clearly see, beyond a point, the two genres seamlessly merging into one another when you could no longer tell the difference.

Same with the people :) Keeping with the spirit of Guruji's household (with Sukanyaji being a Tamilian) the two languages we could predominantly hear among the artistes as well, were Bengali and Tamil :) It was a lot of fun, each pulling the others' leg now and then. And out of the blue, Guruji and Anoushka would surprise us with a a word or two in Tamil! Ah... I could go on and on about the rehearsals.

We were taken to LA a couple of days prior to the day of the show. Between rehearsals, a bunch of us would go on long walks looking around Hollywood and we had a great time.

September 20th, the day of the event, finally dawned. That morning we had a couple of sound checks in the bowl and that was a tremendous experience! If the empty auditorium could give me goosebumps, I was wondering what it would be like that evening, with the seats full. Even a seemingly insignificant thing like the sound check proved to be an absolutely delightful experience, with each artiste getting to sing/ play anything they wanted, individually for a couple of minutes. Everyone was at their creative best and for once I actually wished the sound check never got over!

Soon it was evening- and we were all finally on the stage. As the dais turned around facing the audience, Guruji was right there in the front, smiling... Finally we were there, ready to present his creations in front of a 25-30,000 strong audience- the feeling I had is indescribable. Never before had I faced such a large crowd. The half hour of our performance went off very well with Anoushka conducting it. The end had a kind of "thani avarthanam" with the dhol and dhaak and was amazing, making all of us want to get off stage and start dancing! The resounding applause after each item was exhilarating- however small a part of the ensemble I was.
And oh, my evening was made extra special by my mom who made it to the show! And thanks so much Karthik for being there :)

Unfortunately, we could not record the event, but some good soul in the audience ("bharathwaj" on youtube) has recorded and uploaded on youtube. Thanks to him, here is a small sample of the event. (You can find most of the other parts too on youtube) Since I guess this was shot from the left side, the right half of the stage is not very well covered. Nevertheless, many thanks to the person who uploaded all the videos.

The rest of the event had Kailash Kher, a Rajasthani folk dance and music, Anoushka Shankar's solo performance and a Bollywood dance item. They were all very enjoyable and needless to say, Anoushka's was a stunner.

At the end of it, I was left wondering if I deserved any of it... anyway, I'll profusely thank my stars (or whatever!) for this totally beautiful, memorable experience with one of the greatest legends of our times, Pt. Ravi Shankar.

These are from the Khamaj piece- my favorite!


Anoushka Shankar, conductor

Subhamita Bannerjee, vocal
Tarun Bhattacharya, santoor
Sudakshina Alagia, vocal
Tanmoy Bose, tabla and dhol
Sandhya Mohan, vocal
Nishanth Chandran, violin
Samir Chatterjee, tabla and pakhawaj
Gokul Das, folk drums (dhaak)
Ravichandra Kulur, flute
Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, sarod
Ramesh Mishra, sarangi
Anil Narasimha, vocal
Kenji Ota, tanpura
Shalini Patnaik, tanpura
Barry Phillips, cello
Aditya Prakash, vocal
Radhakrishnan Ramachandran, flute
Easwar Ramakrishnan, violin
Nirmalya Roy, vocal
Parimal Sadaphal, sitar
Sanjeev Shankar, shahnai
Pirasanna Thevarajah, mridangam and morching
Sindhuja Bhakthavatsalam, vocal

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

poo vaasam- with Karthik Nagarajan

Octaves turns three and I couldn't have found a better song for today.
Its usually hard to pick out a single favorite song for anyone, but I think if I'm asked to do that, its very likely that I'll pick poo vaasam most of the time.
I usually say that once a composer picks a good raga, half the job is done- for the beauty of the raga itself takes care of much of it. But this song, despite being in one of THE most beatiful ragas (vivahapriya/ shudhdha sarang) stands as a wonderful composition in its own right. I'll be ever so thankful to Vidyasagar for creating such an outstanding melody. Everytime I listen to it, I feel so much thought and care has gone into making each and every bit of it. And of course, can't forget the beautiful lyrics!

Not to mention everything else associated with the song: anbe sivam, one of the classiest and brilliant movies in Tamil cinema- and one with which I really relate to; Kamal Hassan- what an absolute genius... and of course, Madhavan who's adorable in this.

For this song, I could only think of Karthik's voice... and when I heard his recording, I was just amazed. His parts can really pass off as the original, I would say. (I totally loved Vijay Prakash's rendition by the way!)
I've been wanting to do this song for long but never found a good karaoke... So thanks, Karthik for the patience to fix the karaoke track to make it sound as good as the original, and of course for all the efforts in mixing.

This one's probably the most fulfilling cover I've done till date. Here's hoping that you enjoy it too.

And as this blog completes three years today, many thanks to friends, fellow bloggers and well meaning critics who have kept it going through all the hits and misses :)

Song: poo vaasam
Film: anbe sivam
Music: Vidyasagar
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singers: Vijay Prakash/ Sriram Parthasarathy (two versions), Sadhana Sargam

Mixing of this version: Karthik Nagarajan

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Interview at Audio India

Jo has been conducting interviews with music bloggers at Audio India. Check out mine here when you get a chance!

Friday, August 28, 2009

anbendra mazhaiyile with Rashmi Nair

Murali suggested I do this song and created a karaoke for it. Then thought it would sound nice as a duet. Asked Rashmi and she was immediately up for it.

Can't resist mentioning Meera's eagerness to do the mix and and especially her super fast completion of it!

Thanks Murali for spearheading this and valuable inputs on doing overlays, backing vocals and such; Rashmi, for joining in and lending your lovely voice; and Meera for a very fine finish!

Here's how we've divided the portions: (S is me and R Rashmi)

(BG humming: S & R)

S: anbenRa mazhaiyilae agilangaL nanaiyavae adhiroopan thoanRinaanae
S: vaikkoalin maeloru vairamaay vairamaay vandhavan minninaanae

R: viNmeengaL kaNpaarkka sooriyan thoanRumoa pugazhmaindhan thoanRinaanae
R: kaNNeerin kaayaththai senneeril aatravae sisubaalan thoanRinaanae
R: anbenRa mazhaiyilae agilangaL nanaiyavae adhiroopan thoanRinaanae
S: (adhiroopan thoanRinaanae)
R: poarkoNda boomiyil pookkaadu kaaNavae pugazhmaindhan thoanRinaanae
S: (pugazhmaindhan thoanRinaanae)

S: kalvaari malaiyilae kallonRu pookkavum karuNaimagan thoanRinaanae
S: nootraandu iraivinai nodiyoadu poakkidum oLiyaagath thoanRinaanae
S & R: irumbaana nenjilum eerangaL kasiyavae iraibaalan thoanRinaanae
S & R: mutkaadu engilum pookkaadu pookkavae puviraajan thoanRinaanae

R: anbenRa mazhaiyilae agilangaL nanaiyavae adhiroopan thoanRinaanae
S: (adhiroopan thoanrinaanae)
R: vaikkoalin maeloru vairamaay vairamaay vandhavan minninaanae
S: (vandhavan minninaanae)
S: anbenRa mazhaiyilae agilangaL nanaiyavae adhiroopan thoanRinaanae
R: (adhiroopan thoanRinaanae)
S: vaikkoalin maeloru vairamaay vairamaay vandhavan minninaanae
R: (vandhavan minninaanae)

And here we go...

Song: anbendra mazhaiyile
Film: minsaara kanavu
Music: A.R.Rahman
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singer: Anuradha Sriram

Karaoke track created by Murali Venkatraman
Mixing by Meera Manohar

Sunday, August 09, 2009

khamoshiyan gungunane lagiin

This is a relatively less known number by Rahman from 1-2-ka-4. The movie bombed at the box office I guess, but had some good melodies- including this one and sona nahi na sahi.
Found an excellent karaoke track for this one on an esnips page... and it was a long pending idea to do a duet with fellow blogger Rajesh Raman and it somehow never took off until this one.
Needless to say, Rajesh is remarkable. One of those singers who we should be lucky to have here, among us.
A little about the original: A sensational duo, Sonu and Lata have sung this. Lata, despite the shake and all other age related factors sounds so expressive. I wish I could isolate her singing from her voice...
Sonu: Amaaazing as always. Check out a live version by them at the Unity of Lights concerts with Rahman here: Sonu is adorable! :P

Now, here's our's :) Let us know what you thought. This was recorded a long time back- we kept going back and forth on mixes... finally decided to pick the best one and put it up... Many thanks to Rajesh's friend Arun Varma for his efforts in mixing this.

Song: Khamoshiyan gungunane lagiin
Movie: 1-2-ka-4
Music: A.R.Rahman
Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri
Singers: Lata Mangeshkar, Sonu Nigam

This version mixed by: Arun Varma

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Vande Mataram

Here's a short piece also recorded with my sister couple of weeks back. Its vande mataram in raga Khamas as rendered by four of the best Carnatic musicians of our times. Listen to that here:

Here's our version:

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Seattle- Episode 2 :)

Enjoying my summer break with my sister... after albela sajan last time, we recorded this old Kannada song from the 80's today. Beautiful song set primarily in Shuddha sarang/ Brindavana saranga.
Thanks Sumi, for the choice of song.

Do let us know what you thought about this :) And whether you could tell who's who ;)

Here goes...

Song: Theredhidhe mane
Movie: Hosabelaku
Music: Ranga Rao L M
Lyrics: Kuvempu
Singers: Janaki S, Vani Jairam

Download here.

Friday, June 26, 2009

I cannot...

I am writing this on impulse, but I shall go on...

Its all been about screaming out to people what I CAN do. "Listen to me!", "I can sing too!" and about "getting an audience". Bah!
How egotistical.
Some days back, a dear friend from high school- Janani- requested me to sing the song "bhor bhayi" by bade ghulam ali khan. Very enthusiastically, I checked out the youtube link she gave me, of the Delhi 6 version rendered by Shreya Ghoshal. I heard the song and was dazed for a while. Then I heard it again. And then again.
The next day, with a lot of reluctance, I started to try singing it. I am glad I did that, for two reasons: one, it made me realize the greatness of the singers even more, and two, it made me realize, all over again, how grossly inadequate I was. After a whole day of trying to perfect it, I'm left feeling so angry and disappointed with myself. So angry that I want to say out loud, that here is something I CANNOT do.
All this while, I respected Shreya for the golden, silken, flawless voice she had. And that was it. People had often told me that my tone was similar to her's, and having covered some of her songs, I thought I wasn't too far behind. HAHAHAHAHA.
This song- bhor bhayi just made my respect for her go up ten times. This girl can SING! Wish I could do half as well as her.
Okay, time I stopped and gave the link to I am talking about:

You know what's worse: the mind knows it all- this is Gujari Thodi- Thodi minus pa (i.e Shubhapantuvarali in Carnatic minus pa); so there's no grounding, M2 to D1 transition is difficult; starting phrase itself is dmdndmgrs at lightning speed. The mind understands it completely. But the vocal chords don't. It is SO annoying.

Janani- I'm sorry; I hope there comes a day when I've mastered this song.
On the other hand, sometimes (many a time actually), I feel I should just get into music research and stop singing. Or at least stop till I get somewhere close to where I want to be, with my singing. But no, the Ego won't let me do that. I'll be happy if my ego even lets this post remain to see the next day.

Michael Jackson- RIP

I can't believe a world phenomenon can just end like that. So soon.
MJ brings back a lot of childhood memories. Thanks to my sister, I would listen to a lot of his music as a kid. I still remember lazy Sunday afternoons playing Heal the World or Dangerous or Jam. Often, a bunch of us, neighbour kids would get together and dance to Black or White- trying to do that famous step crisscrossing arms and legs :)
I still love listening to his songs. Wish he had the chance to make that come-back!
The world sure will sorely miss him...
Michael Jackson- RIP.

Friday, May 22, 2009

oru naal oru pozhudhu

This is a relatively rare song, one of Rahman's earliest. Swarnalatha's sublime voice enhances the beauty of this song. I love the way the song meanders on, in a most pleasing, soothing manner.
Having unearthed this song recently, I realized kannaamoochi was not after all Rahman's only nattaikurunji (sorta)!
Ripped off portion of the "interlude" and created a track.
I hope I've done some justice to this lovely song.

Song: oru naal oru pozhudhu
Movie: andhimandhaarai
Music: A.R.Rahman
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singer: Swarnalatha

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Kurukku Siruththavale

Our own blogger Star -Murali Ramanathan- is back to active blogging :)
After Uyire- my very first duet in this blog, and then kaaththirundhaen, here's another duet with him, a Rahman number again- kurukku chiruththavale. Set in ragam Vaasanthi (with some slips into Mohanam) this is a beautiful rustic/ folkish song and has two of the most beautiful voices- Hariharan and Mahalakshmi.
Here's our version. Hope you like it.

Song: Kurukku Siruththavale
Film: Mudhalvan
Music: A.R.Rahman
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singers: Hariharan, Mahalakshmi Iyer

This version mixed by: Murali Ramanathan

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Wish this weekend never ended...

So rejuvenated with all the beautiful music that I've been getting to hear in the past three days along with a bunch of good friends...
The Indian Fine Arts Academy, San Diego has been doing a wonderful job of getting some of the best artistes from India to perform here. My first year here, and I thoroughly enjoyed it- felt like home away from home.
The highlights this time were M.S.Gopalakrishnan and Dr.M.Narmada - violin duet, S.Sowmya and Sudha Raghunathan - vocal solo concerts and Ravikiran and Irshad Khan with a jugalbandhi. While they were all fantastic, some particular pieces deserve a special mention in my opinion.
While Narmada's purvikalyani was outstanding, Irshad Khan played a beautiful solo in Rakeshri- one of his own compositions. I loved the choice of raag! The jugalbandhi defied tradition and they chose the unconventional Kharaharapriya/ Kaafi thaat. Needless to say, absolutely brilliant performance (although I wish Irshad Khan rested his hands for a bit more, allowing the others to play :) )
What I liked best about Sowmya was the piece in Varali (Ka va va)- although not a favourite for me, I loved the way she handled it. The swarams were so intelligently structured, alternating between different gathis/ nadais.
The grand finale was Sudha Raghunathan. I don't have to do more than just mention the name to convey anything about how the concert was. Perfect choice of songs/ ragas- most were favourites :) Maathe in Khamas, Shrichakraraja in Shivashakthi, elaboration of Shankarabharanam followed by Swararagasudha, innudayabarade, bhavayami gopalabalam and kurai ondrum illai were the highlights. The last two nearly moved me to tears and left me craving M.S.Subbulakshmi's voice (which I am listening to as I type this). Some songs are immortalized by some people and you don't want to hear them in anyone else's voice. Nevertheless, Sudha of course did an amazing job.
Sigh... all good things come to an end.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sonnaalum with Karthik Nagarajan

sonnaalum kaetpadhillai is one of those mesmerizing songs that I call "black holes" - once you start listening to it, it just sucks you in deeper and deeper till the point of no return. What a brilliant song with two of TFM's very best voices- Harini and Unnikrishnan. When it comes to female singers in TFM, the two that I simply adore and worship and Chitra and Harini (who to me is "Shreya of the South" ). While I've sung a quite a few of Chitra's songs, I've sung only one of Harini's so far (manam virumbudhae), that too in the good old days when I hadn't started recording digitally. I'm so glad I finally got to do one more.

Welcome Karthik Nagarajan- with whom I've sung this song- to the world of audioblogging. He's an incredibly talented singer I got introduced to, through a common friend. Do visit his blog that he's started recently to listen to some more of his songs.

Many thanks to Swati and Anil.B.S for the karaoke track. Anil had created this track for Swati and Ali who did a beautiful Hindi version of this song sometime back. Do listen to that one too,here.

So here is our version, up for you.
This song goes out especially to my dad- he totally loves this song, lyrics and all, and listens to it with the same involvement that he has while listening to a Carnatic concert :)

Song: sonnaalum kaetpadhillai
Movie: Kadhal Virus
Music: A.R.Rahman (ONE AND ONLY!)
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singers: Harini, Unnikrishnan

This version mixed by: Karthik Nagarajan

Monday, March 16, 2009


Pity that hailing from Bangalore, I haven't done a Kannada song till now... Growing up, Kannada was the second language I learnt and having lived in Bangalore all my life, Kannada holds a special place for me :)
I've finally managed to do a Kannada number now with Jo - Jotheyali. This is a HUGE hit from the 80's and till today, any important function in the city like Rajyotsava day, and this is the song that blares out through loudspeakers. The late Shankar Nag who was the hero in this film still has a huge dedicated fan following and almost every Kannadiga adores him.
I've always loved this song, and long after I got a karaoke track for it (thanks to Madhu), requested Jo to do it thinking his voice would suit the song. I think he has done a great job of it, taking care to get the pronunciations right. Let us know what you think of this one!
(The tune was recycled by Raja recently in a song in the Hindi movie Cheeni Kum-like all the other songs in the movie- called Jaane do na. Hope to record that sometime as well...)

Here goes- Jotheyali- dedicated to all the Kannadigas out there! How I miss home...

Song: Jotheyali
Film: Geetha
Music: Ilaiyaraja
Lyrics: Udayashankar
Singers: SPB, S. Janaki

This version mixed by: Joseph Thomas

Friday, February 27, 2009

E Shwasalo

"M.S.Shankar's Supremes" was a popular light music troupe in Chennai in the 70's and 80's, started by their lead drummer Shankar, and my uncle Devanathan who was the lead singer and accordion player. In 2007 the troupe revived its music and did a couple of shows- after twenty five years or so. One of them was in September 2007 at the Madras Music Academy, for an event put together by the Indian Telugu Association to felicitate veteran Telugu actor Chandra Mohan. I performed with them at the event, and one of the songs given to me was E Shwasalo. I heard the song and decided it was impossible to do it- given Chitra's pitch and the complexity of the swaras at the end. I somehow managed to pull it off there and got some good feedback too. (I imagine though, that people were probably just being nice to me :P)

I find a lot of similarities between this song and ThaththiththOm from Azhagan (what I recorded some three years ago). To start off, its the same team - Keeravani (aka Maragathamani aka M.M.Kreem) and Chitra. Also, both are classical/ raga based and both have very complex swaras at the end and both conclude with slow, soft lines. I have no words for Chitra's singing and this is yet another song that reinforces the belief in me that she is not human! I don't understand how a human voice can have this much breath control and flexibility and ease at such high notes. Like Murali was saying, music directors seem to have used Asha's, Lata's and Chitra's voices like a violin!

I stumbled upon a very good karaoke track for the song recently. Although am not exactly a huge fan of this song, I decided to try recording it just for kicks. So here it is. Obvious disclaimers apply :P
Also, this is my first song in Telugu, a language I don't know, so I apologize for any goof-ups in diction.

Song: E Shwasalo
Movie: Nenunnanu
Music: Keeravani
Lyrics: Sirivennela
Singer: Chitra

Download here.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Rahman- the phenomenon

It feels like yesterday- the fresh sound of a simple, beautiful, innocent melody: "chinna chinna aasai"... What an absolutely fantastic journey it has been!
All this worldwide attention was long due and I'm elated that he's finally got so much of it now!
Although I think Slumdog is certainly not his best (we all know the phenomenal music he's produced earlier in Tamil and Hindi films), I see the Oscars as a sort of cumulative reward for his 15 or so magnificent years in music and stand up to him in awe, admiration and adoration.
Love you, Allah Rakha Rahman!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Birthday, Ma

Two songs for the occasion.
One, for her and another, composed by her :)

For the love of Khamas... :)
Song: uyirum neeye
Music: A.R. Rahman
Lyrics: Vairamuththu
Singer: Unnikrishnan
Movie: Pavithra

Download here.


Song: ariyadhoru karu nisiyil
Composition and lyrics: Vijayalakshmi Bhakthavatsalam
Raagam: Ragamalika (Behag, Sindhubhairavi, Chandrakauns, Simhendramadhyamam, Darbari Kanada)
Thaalam: Khanda Chaapu



அரியதொரு கரு நிசியில் என் மனக்கண்முன்னே
கரியநிற சிறுவன் வந்து பாட்டொன்று கேட்டான்
யாரை நான் பாட? யார் வந்ததென்றேன் ...
பேரைக்கேள் அதுசொல்வேன், கண்ணன் நான் என்றான்!
ஆலிலையில் படுத்துறங்கும் இடையன் நான் என்றான்
மாலும் நான், மாயன் நான் - என்னை பாடென்றான்


முன்னை வினைதீர்க்கும் முதல்வன் அவன் அறிந்தேன்
பின்னை வினை போக்கிடும் பரமன் என்றுணர்ந்தேன்
இடை ஜாதியில் வளர்ந்த வசுதேவன் மகன் அவன்
குடையாக குன்றெடுத்து மழையினின்று குடி காத்தான்
பேய்முலை நஞ்சுண்டு மாயய் தாயை மாய்த்தான்
வேய்ங்குழலில் கானம் செய்து ஆவினம் மெய் மறக்க செய்தான்


கன்றெறிந்து கயவனை கண்டழித்த பாலனவன்
காளிங்க நர்தனத்தால் கடியதொரு விஷம் களைந்தான்
வெண்ணையுண்டு மண்ணையுண்டு அன்னையிடம் கட்டுண்டு
உண்ட வாயில் அண்டம் காட்டி அற்புதம் செய்தான்
பல பெண்டிர் துகில் மறைத்து புளகாங்கிதம் அடைந்தான்
ஒரு பெண்ணின் மானம் காக்க துகில் மிகவே கொடுத்தான்


தூது சென்று தூயவரை துணை நின்று காத்திட்டான்
தீது செய்த தீயவரை தோல்வியை தழுவச்செய்தான்
வேதாந்தம் தனை உரைத்து விஜயனை வெல்லவைத்தான்
விஷ்வரூபம் காட்டி அவனை ஆட்கொண்டான்
அன்றவன் அவனி காக்க ஆயனாய் அவதரித்தான்
தொன்று தொட்டு இருப்பவன் இன்றென்னை பாடச்சொன்னான்

தர்பாரி கானடா:

விளையாட்டு பிள்ளையாய் வினையெல்லாம் களைந்தவன்
வேதாந்தியாய் நின்றான் வாய்மை வெல்ல வழி சொன்னான்
ஆதி அந்தம் இல்லா ஆண்டவன் இவனே
அண்ட சராசரங்களும் ஐம்பூதங்களும் இவனே
யாதுமாகி நின்றவனை நான் பாடினேன்
காலன் என்னை தீண்டும்போது கடுகி வந்து கரை சேர்ப்பான்
என்னை பாடச்சொன்னவன் கடுகி வந்து கரை சேர்ப்பான்

Ma and Pa, my music is all yours'.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

If I were shut in a dark room...

The worst thing to do when you have a deadline approaching is go to bed with headphones on, playing "serious" music. I think the music will put me to sleep in time, but it engulfs me...chasing sleep out of my system...
Anyway, great- here I am, at 1 am craving for more of Harini... (its a pity she doesn't sing as much these days), and came to a realisation: if, some day I'm shut in a dark room with no way out and given a choice of just three songs I can listen to, they'd be: thenral vandhu ennai thodum, poo vaasam purappadum penne and enakkenna aerkanave.

Umm.... really...? Never mind- am in an inescapable Hamsanadham mode now!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Final Solutions- with TSJ

TSJ I guess are not too new to the audio blog world here. They've been making some innovative music and I particularly liked their song "azhage" in Blogswara V3.

Earlier last year, they contacted me for doing a small vocal piece for the background score they were composing for a Mahesh Dattani play called Final Solutions performed by East Indian Follies. The play was staged in Idaho in September 2008.

Do check out their website to hear the music and for more details on the play.
I think they did a great job of it!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Gruhabhedam... again

Here is an AWESOME gruhabhedam demonstrated by Prince Rama Varma:

Once the concept of gruhabhedam is clear, doing it with linear (monotonic) ragas is fairly straightforward- say between Mohanam and Hindolam. But here, its two vakra ragas (i.e. with scales where swaras don't exactly monotonically increase or decrease) which is what makes it so special! The "pa ma2 pa ga3 ma1 ga3" phrase of Behag mapped to "ga2 ri2 ga2 sa ri1 sa" of Sindhubhairavi was so revealing!
What's more, the inflections (or "brighas"/ "gamakams") of the swaras match too!

Music is beautiful. Math is beautiful. And the two put together- ah, bliss!

For those interested, here's an earlier post of mine where I'd explained the concept of Gruhabhedam (albeit overly simplified)-

(Note: It was only later that I learnt from Shri.Kumaresh (of Ganesh-Kumaresh) that the word "Shruthibhedam" for such transposes is a misnomer, for it only means what it literally means: change of shruthi, and nothing more)