Friday, 13 January 2017

Learning how to squander

Given the rather crowded phalanx of artists (particularly young ones yet to fully establish themselves) that is at the vanguard of Carnatic music today, squandering an opportunity to perform in front of a discerning audience is sacrilege; yet that is exactly what a bunch of youngsters did at the recent YUVA festival organised by Sri Rama Lalita Kala Mandira. 

The line up was quite star-studded. A master in his own right: Sikkil Gurucharan; Old gun on the circuit, but new to Bangalore - AS Murali; Debutant Mahadevan ShankarNarayanan; The 3 generation Trio on Violin; and another artist on Debut season at Bangalore - Dr. Padma Sugavanam.

All the artists had full 3 hours each to show their potential and make a mark on the rasikas of Bangalore. Except for Junior Shankarnarayanan, the other 3 vocalists squandered the opportunity through a trimmed performance.

The full 3 hours slot was used by none, non-co-operative voice adding to the issue with one of them, missing pre-concert discussion to sing an RTP with the other and at last but not the least, peeping into lyrics even for a tried and tested kriti, dropped my thrill of following up my Chennai season attendance.

But while whatever that was presented was aesthetically crystal clear, I left each of the concerts wanting more and in a disappointed mood.

It's a coincidence, writing this review on the birthday of one of Bangalore's most famous and favoured sons was born. The most popular meme on THE WALL which I have come across goes "when your name is Rahul, make it Dravid and not Gandhi!"

Sad to see a bunch of Rahul's move the Gandhian way.....

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

2017 Jan 10 PadmaSugavanam BKRaghu BCManjunath SNNarayanaMurthy @ RLKM

Vocal: Vid. PadmaSugavanam
Violin: Vid. BKRaghu
Mridanga: Vid. BCManjunath
Ghata: Vid. SNNarayanaMurthy

01 brOchevArevarE srI ranjani Adi tyAgaraja (O)

02 kUDArai vellum pUrvikalyANi shir gOvinda undanai (ti) pUrvikalyANi Adi ANDAL (O)

03 srI ranganAtham upAsmahe pUrNachandrika Adi m.dhIkshitar (CS)

04 shashi vadana bhakta candrajyOti tyAgarAja (A)

05 ninnAda nEla nIrajAksha shri rAma kannaDa Adi thyAgarAja
Swara at ninnADa

06 sarasijanAbha murare tODi swAthi thirunAL (A, N, S)
Nereval at muravAri

07 chinna nAdenA chEyi kalAniDhi Adi tyAgarAja

08 rAga tAna pallavi mOhana chaturaSra tripuTa 2 akshara eDUpu
mOhana muddu rangayya ... Nannu brOvavayya
Ragamalika in Lalita... nATakuranji.... HamsAnandi...varALi

09 ugAbhOga followed by Isha ninna charaNa bhajane dEsha kanaka dAsa

10 tillAna khamAs

11 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi tyAgarAja

2017 Jan 09 HKNM HNB PrithviBhaskar GSRamanujam SSrisaila VSRamesh @ RLKM

Violin Trio: Vid. HKNarasimha Murthy, 
         Vid. HNBhaskar 
         Vid. PrithviBhaskar 


Mridanga: Vid. GSRamanujam 

Ghata: Vid. SSrisaila 
Morsing: Vid. VSRamesh 

01 dwijAvanti varNa Adi paTNamaDai krishNa Iyer (O)


02 vAtApi gaNapatim bhajEham hamsadhvani Adi m.dIkshitar (S)

Swara @ vAtApi

03 jananI ninnuvinA rItigauLa m.cApu subbarAya shAstri (A)


04 enta muddO enta sogasu bindumAlini Adi tyAgarAja (A)


05 rAja rAja rAdhitE nirOshTa tiSra Eka muttaiah bhAgavatar


06 upacAramulanu cEkonavayya bhairavi rUpakA tyAgarAja (A, N, S, T)

nereval @ kapaTa nATaka sUtradhAri

07 rAga tAna pallavi kAnaDa khaNDa tripuTa


08 jagadOdhArana ADisidaLu yashOdha kApi p.dAsa (O)


09 VenkatAchala nilayam sindhubhairavi Adi p.dAsa


10 bhAgyAda lakshmi bAramma madhyamAvati Adi p.dAsa


11 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi tyAgarAja


Sunday, 8 January 2017

2017 Jan 06 ASMurali VishweshSwaminathan SaiShivu BhagyalakskshmiMKrishna @ RLKM Shankranti Festival

Vocal: Vid. AS Murali 
Violin: Vid. Vishwesh Swaminathan 
Mridanga: Vid. Sai Shivu 
Morsing: Vid. Bhagyalakskshmi M Krishna

01 vIribONi varNa bhairavi khaNDa aTa pachchimiriam Adiappayya (O)

02 vAtApi gaNapatim bhajEham hamsadhvani Adi m.dIkshitar (S)
swara @ vAtApi

03 smaraNe ondhe sAladhE malayamArutha rUpaka p.dAsa

04 rAvE himagiri kumAri kanci kAmAkSi varada tODi Adi syAma sAstri (O)

05 pAlimparAvadELarA Arabhi Adi tiSra naDai Pallavi Sesha Iyer (A, S)
swara @ pAlimpa

06 O jagadambA Anandabhairavi Adi shyAmA sAstri (O)

07 kalayAmi hrudinanda kannaDa swAtitirunAL

08 paTTi viDuva rAdhu nA chai manjari Adi tyAgarAja

09 EtA vuanrA nilakaDa nIku kalyANi Adi tyAgarAja (A, N, S, T)
nereval and swara @ shrIkaruDagu tyAgarAja karArcita

10 iDadu padamtUkki khamAs pApanAsam sivan

11 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi tyAgarAja

2017 Jan 04 MahadevanShankarnarayann SrinidhiMatur ArjunKumar @ RLKM Shankranti Festival

Vocal: Vid. Mahadevan Shankarnarayann 
Violin: Vid. Srinidhi Matur 
Mridanga: Vid. Arjun Kumar

01 jaya jaya gaNapati hamsadhvani gaNapati sachidAnandA (S)
swara @ jaya jaya gaNapati

02 mAmavasadA varade nATakuranji rUpaka s.thirunAL (S)
swara @ mAmava sadA

03 rAma bhakti sAmrAjaya shuddhabangALa Adi tyAgarAja (S)
swara @ rAma bhakti

04 anupama guNAmbudhi aTANa khanda chApu tyAgarAja

05 pAlisamma muddu SaradE shrIranjani Adi purandaradAsa (A)

06 abhayAmbAyAm sahAna tripuTa m.dhIkshitar (A, S)
swara @ abhayAmbAyAm 

07 marivEre dikkevaraiyya rAmA shaNmukhapriya Adi paTNam subramaNya iyer (A, S)
swara @ sannutAnga

08  mOhana rAma mOhana Adi tyAgarAja (A, S, T)
swara @ mOhana rAma

09 rAga tAna pallavi latAngi
pallavi line: madhurabhAnshini latAngi rAja mAtani  . . . madhurApuri vAsini
rAgamAlika swaras in dEsh, sindhubhairavi, 

10 ETra kalangaL edir pOngi midalippa (ti) nAdanAmakriya chApu ANDAL

11 tA tadhIm tadhIm tanadhirana... tillAna shaNkarAbharaNa ?

12 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi tyAgarAja

2017 Jan 02 SikkilGurucharan BaluRaghuram RajeshSrinivasan CPVyasaVittala @ RLKM Sankranti Festival

Vocal: Vid. Sikkil Gurucharan 
Violin: Vid. Balu Raghuram 
Mridanga: Vid. Rajesh Srinivasan 
Khanjari: Vid. CP VyasaVittala 

01 calamEla jEsEvayya nATakurinji mUlevIdu rangaswamy nattuvanAr

02 BhAramA i baluni hamsanAdha Adi GNB

03 ETi yOchanalu kiraNAvaLi Adi tyAgarAja

04 kA guruguha shaNmkha kOsala m.cApu kOTIswara Iyer (A)

05 mAmava paTTAbhi rAma maNirangu M.Eka m.dIkshitar

06 marugElarA O rAghavA jayanthashrI Adi tyAgarAja

07 rAga tAna pallavi shaNkarAbharaNa Adi (R T T)
Ananda pUrNa bOdOham shivOham sachid
rAgamAlika in vasantha, naLinakAnti, varALi, Anandabhairavi, AbhOgi...in short cycles

08 Ananda pUrNa bOdOham shaNkarAbharaNa Adi sadAshiva brahmEndra (S)

09 manadai orumai vasantha TALA COMPOSER?

10 tillAna sindhubhairavi srImushaNam rAja Rao

11 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi tyAgarAja

Sunday, 20 November 2016

2016 Nov 20 SanjaySubrahmanyan SVaradarajan NevyveliVenkatesh AlalthurRajganesh @ MANMF



Vocal: Vid. Sanjay Subrahmanyan 
Violin: Vid. S Varadarajan 
Mridanga: Vid. Nevyveli Venkatesh 
Khanjari: Vid. Alalthur Rajganesh 

Organiser: M A Narasimhachar Music Foundation
Venue: Our School, Bangalore

01 chAla ninne kEdAra k.aTa Tiger Varadachari

02 tuLasIdaLa mAyAmALavagauLa rUpaka tyAgarAja (S)
Swara @ sarasIruha punnAga

03 srI kumAra nagarAlaya ATANa Adi swati thirunAL (A)

04 abhimAna mennadu galgu bEgaDe Adi patNam subramhaNya iyer(A S)
Swara @ abhimAnam

05 onde manadali bhajisi chArukEshi Adi p.dAsa (A)

06 narasimhuDu kamalAmanOhari Adi mysOre sadAshiva rAo

07 rAga tAna pallavi nAgavalli m.cApu
22 kharaharapriyA janya Aa: S R2 M1 D2 N2 S /  Av: S N2 D2 M1 R2 S
Pallavi line muruga  tirumAl magizhum maruga Shiva kumAra
RagamAlika : shrIranjani ..  hindOLa .. malayamAruta ... HamsAnandi 

08 tumbam nErkayil dEsh bhAratidAsan

09 virtuttum KunDram  (rAgamAlika  kAMbOdhi, kApi, sindhubhairavi)

10 virpperu vizhavum kanjanum mallum sindhubhairavi Adi Tirumangai Azhvar

11 kANa vENDAmO iru kaN shrIranjani rUpakA pApanAsam shivan

12 nI nAma rUpamulaku mangaLa sourAshtra Adi thyAgarAja


With the previous 3 concerts already covering (and uncovering) many popular rAgas in the buildup to the last concert of the season at MANMF, Vid. Sanjay had, I believe come prepared to deliver a stellar concert. I'm sure he and his team desist repeating any tracks, and recent performances across the country and last 4 visits to Bangalore by this team had already addressed the popular ones. Hence, the lookout for surprise was there from the very first moment.

The 3 musketeers (with Guruprasanna) team had already swept over the Bangalore audience a fortnight back; they were back (this time with Alathur Rajganesh) to achieve the same fete once again. The team occupying the stage 10 mins before the scheduled start! Minimum fuss over the sound system, added Bonus minutes (which I believe is far more valuable than the bonus minutes by the current generation telephone operators).

The very first note heard on Vid Sanjay's voice indicated it would kEdAra. A brief outline and he started off with the first fireworks for the day. A grand 2 speed presentation of Tiger Varadachary composition in khaNDA aTa was a treat to the audience. I don’t remember any artist presenting it for Bangalore audience in the last decade.

Even without a brief hum of mAyAmALavagaula, team directly dwelled into tuLasidaLa. Vid. Sanjay and Vid. S Varadarajan explored the rAga through its interesting swara patterns.  While Vid. Sanjay had already presented a fine set of swaras as muktyAi, Vid. Varadarajan added grace to it while he performed his response. Obviously, it evoked a louder applause from audience, Vid. Sanjay expressed his happiness through his trademark smile towards violinist.

aTANA, was taken up for first of the 4 rAga elaborations of the day. A brief one without any clues for the song to follow.  maharAja swAthi thirunAL composition in this rAga was presented (for the first time to Bangalore Audience as far as I can remember) by the team. No embellishments were added to the presentation.

Sub main of the concert was bEgade composition by PSI, which was preceded by a fairly long AlApane. Quite a few tricky sanchArAs were presented during AlApane and swara prastAra.

ChaArukEshi as the main and a Kannada composition by Purandara dAsa (coinciding with Karnataka Rajyotsava celebrations in the state reaching its pinnacle) was a nice choice. Vid. Sanjay had sensed the mood from the organizer / audience who were more from the local vernacular background as compared to other venues / sabhas of the town. No embellishments followed the composition.

pUrvikalyAni composition by rAmnAD srinivasa Iyengar was picked up without any AlApane. The detailed swara prastAra indicated it would turn out like what happened in nAdasurabhi (a tani for a song that did not have an AlApane to precede). Detailed 2 solo rounds and a series of smaller cycles kept the audience in the good grip. The usual exodus during tani paved way for all the while standing audience to find some place for the upcoming musical treat.

Filler composition in kamalamanOhari paved way to the highlight of the day.

An RTP in nAgavalli . . .  which sounds similar to ShrIranjani initially when you hear, but on a longer sample- provides a distinct image of itself that’s devoid of any resemblance to shrIranjani / AbhOgi. The rAga and tAna were in no means smaller to a popular rAga RT. Full 23 minutes was consumed to do justice to the rAga. Every time when Sanjay presented something interesting, Varadarajan improvised it. I believe, Sanjay is the only Vidwan whom I have come across who creates a camaraderie for each of the accompaniments to excel on the stage.

pallavi with an eDupu (1 beat ?) in misra cApu was presented to its selected pure scale. No rAgamAlikas were added during pallavi line elaboration. Sanjay and team stretched the boundaries of anulOmama / vilOmam. The intricate tALa pattern took a couple of rounds of cycling, before landing at the right beat. Sanjay was heard talking to (pepping) himself. The first rAgamAlika swarAs presented a distinct feature from the previously elaborated nAgavalli. Mastery over the rAga was well demonstrated by both Sanjay and Varadarajan.

It was already 3 hours by then ! tunbam nEgayil in dEsh was presented in full fervor.

A detailed rAgamAlika pasuram presenting the childhood antics of Krishna was presented well.

On request from the organizers, Sanjay and team presented 2 more compositions in sindhubhairavi and shrIranjani.

The concert drew close with the customary mangaLa song at the end of 3.5 hrs of blissful music.

What a concert it was for all the thrills and frills. There were audience who stood all 3.5 hrs for such soulful music. I can bet they would have been ready for another 3 hrs for such music if it had immediately followed!


This would probably turn out to be my last concert of the year as the season shifts to Chennai. See you next year with more concert reviews. Wish you musical days ahead as a very eventful 2016 enters the last few weeks.