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During the past years, I have posted the notation to one of my compositions in this space (and sometimes a recording too). I thought of continuing the tradition for this year as well.

Here is a sapta rAga mAlikA varNa, a garland woven in seven rAgas which I composed few years ago. The composition is about gouri, and I thought it was most apt to be share during this festival.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

(Dancing Parvati in brass: Image taken from pinterest.com)

 

The sAhitya is in kannaDa (bordering on sama samskrta), and includes rAga mudre. The lyrics are here.

sarasAngika vAchikAdi nartana chaturE SrI gouri ||pallavi||
suvarNAngi poreyE sadAshiva manOhari ||anupallavi||
gItaroopiNi latAngi ||charaNa||

ಸರಸಾಂಗಿಕ ವಾಚಿಕಾದಿ
ನರ್ತನ ಚತುರೇ ಶ್ರೀ ಗೌರಿ ||ಪ||
ಸುವರ್ಣಾಂಗಿ ಪೊರೆಯೇ
ಸದಾಶಿವ ಮನೋಹರೀ ||ಅ.ಪ||

ಗೀತ ರೂಪಿಣಿ ಲತಾಂಗಿ ||ಚರಣ||

The lyrics describe Goddess Parvati as one who is proficient in various aspects of dance such as Angika, vAchika and praises her as the embodiment of  song (ಗೀತ). The words can also be wrapped around to make her the embodiment of music. (  ಗೀತ ರೂಪಿಣಿ ಲತಾಂಗಿ – ಸಂಗೀತ ರೂಪಿಣಿ ಲತಾಂಗಿ)

You’d have noticed that the rAgas are Sarasangi, Suvarnangi, and Latangi. What about the rest? The Chitte swara is set in a rAga called Dhavalangi, and the ettugaDe swaras are set in the rAgas Latangi, Kanakangi, Dhaivatangi and Syamalangi.

Although I don’t have a good audio to share today, hopefully I will share that at a future date, but for those of you interested, here is the notation for the composition: sapta-raaga-maalike

Wishing all readers of “ಅಲ್ಲಿದೆ ನಮ್ಮ ಮನೆ” a very happy time during this festive season!

-neelanjana

Around this time every year, I have made a post about Tyagaraja. He was born in the town of Tiruvaroor on May 4th, 1767 and after a very musical life, he passed away on January 6th 1847.

Tyagaraja is known for his more than 800 compositions, many of which are in ragas he created. It is sufficient to state that there are very few composers who can match him in the variety and scope. Therefore you can say there is a composition of Tyagaraja for any level of musical maturity – they range from very simple to very complex.

As a homage to this composer, I composed  Varna, set in 9 ragas that Tyagaraja brought to life. A Ragamalika (ರಾಗಮಾಲಿಕಾ, ರಾಗಮಾಲಿಕೆ) – is a type of composition that is quite popular in South Indian classical music. As the name suggests, such a composition is composed in multiple ragas, and so the name Ragamalika, i.e. “garland of ragas”.

As a composition type, they seem to gained popularity from the early 18th century. Muttuswami Dikshita’s father Ramaswamy Dikshita, and his guru Veerabhadrayya are some of the earliest Ragamalika composers.

Then a question may arise about various Purandara Dasa compositions that are sung as Ragamalikas – Unfortunately we have lost most of original structure of haridasa compositions from the 15-18th centuries. And their ragamalika form is more than likely to be of recent origin. But there is some food for thought. Why didn’t Haridasa’s who composed suLAdis , which are compositions in multiple tALas (tALamAlike), think of composing in multiple ragas? They my indeed have, but we can’t prove that beyond doubt/

There are several ragamalika varnas that are very popular on the concert circuit. Valaci Vachci ( in 9 ragas, and hence mostly called ‘the’ Navaraga Malika varna) , and the Ghanaraga Malika Varna are very well known. There have been other ragamalika Varnas as well. And I hope this composition of mine will be a good addition to those.

The sahitya of this AditALa varNa is as follows:

Pallavi : namastE shAraDE dEvI kAShmIra puravAsinI (rAga vAgadhIshwari)
Anupallavi : tvAmahaM prArthayE nityam vidyA budhim cha dEhimE ( rAga bindumAlini)

The Chitte swara is in : rAgas Andolika and Rasaali

Charana: saraswatI sahitE tyAgarAjApte ( rAga saraswati)

The ettugade swaras are set in rAgas jayantashrI , saraswatI manohari , chandra jyOti and ranjani.

As you may see, the pUrvanga of the varna takes from a traditional stuti of Goddess Sarawathi. The Charana describes her as one who is dear to Tyagaraja.

Here is a renditions of the varna, by Benagluru based artist Uma Kumar:

Another rendition by New Hampshire based artist Ragini Sanath:

Your feedback on the composition is welcome!

-neelanjana

The stats on ಅಲ್ಲಿದೆ ನಮ್ಮ ಮನೆ indicated today was the day with the highest number of hits in the last 7+ years! A quick look showed most of the people were searching for the phrase “Kannada Rajyostava” reached my post from 3 years ago. It’s then I found that I never posted an audio of the Varna (my composition in Raga Madhuvanti) that I promised to do in that post.

Anyway, let me cut the chaff. A Varna is a musical composition that generally has a romantic theme, and the words go as a conversation between two friends, where in the nAyika is telling about her lover to her friend. Varnas are set to music such that they give a very good overview of the various musical phrases any given raga accommodates. Generally sung at the beginning of a concert in multiple speeds, a Varna is often employed by performers as a quick way of ‘getting to the form’ when on stage.

The lyrics of a large number of Varnas are in Telugu, but that does not mean there aren’t any Varnas with words in other languages such as Kannada, Tamizh or Samskrta. Since this is Kannada Rajyotsava, I am sharing a Varna I composed, with it’s sahitya lines in Kannada.

True to the style of Varnas, the lyrics stick to a romantic format. The Varna is in raga Madhuvanti, a northern import to Karnataka sangeeta, and is set to   2 kaLe Adi tALa.  The lines are are inspired by a shloka of Bilvamangala in his classic Krishna Karna Karnamrta.

Pallavi:

ಗೋಕುಲವೆಲ್ಲಾ ಕೊಳಲಿನ ಇನಿದನಿಯಲಿ ತುಂಬಿದನೇ ||
gOkulavellA koLalina inidaniyali tumbidanE

(Translation: He filled Gokula with the melodies his flute)

Anupallavi:

ಅನುಪಲ್ಲವಿ: ಆಕಳ ಮಂದೆಯ ಕಾಯುತ ಗೋಪಿಯರ ತಾನು ಗೆಲಿದನೇ || ಗೋಕುಲವೆಲ್ಲಾ||

AkaLa mandeya kAyuta gOpiyarellare gelidanE

(Translation: The cowherd, won over the hearts of all gopis)

CharaNa:

ಚರಣ: ಮಾತೇ ಮಧುವಂತಿದೆ! ಸಖೀ, ಇವನ || ಮಾತೇ||

mAtE madhuvantide! sakhi ! ivana || mAte||

(Translation: His speech is like honey! Oh my dear!)

The charaNa line was totally my imagination, to include rAga name “madhuvanti” (technically called the ragamudre),

You can listen to a recording of the Varna, played on the flute by Vidwan Vijay Kannan:

https://soundcloud.com/hamsanandi/a-varna-in-madhuvanti

For those of you interested in the notation, click the following links:

A-Varna-in-Madhuvanti (Kannada version)

A-Varna-in-Madhuvanti (Notation in English)

ಎಲ್ಲ ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರಿಗೂ ಕನ್ನಡ ರಾಜ್ಯೋತ್ಸವದ ಶುಭಾಶಯಗಳು!

-neelanjana

Dasara of 2012 is just over. In the past few years, I’d written series of music-based articles in my web spaces, in English, and in Kannada. This year, I was planning out another thematic series along the same lines during the festival but it ended up just being a plan. Or if I look at the brighter side, yay! it’s an opportunity for next year’s Navaratri!  Just the case of seeing the glass half-full or half-empty I guess🙂

Last couple years, I also posted some of my musical compositions on my blog  around the Navaratri time. You can visit those posts from 2009 (Nasamani),  2010 (Ranjani) and 2011 (Bindumalini) by clicking the hyperlinks.

This year, I’m not posting a brand new composition, but am posting an updated one! Earlier this year,  I’d composed a swarajati in the rAga Kamavardhini (also called as Ramakriya and somewhat incorrectly as Pantuvarali).  You can listen to the swarajati here, sung by my friend “IndianMusicFan“.

Listen to the swarajati by clicking here

Thanks to the Samskirtam group on Facebook, I met  Sri Mahesh Bhat, who recently wrote a very beautiful lyric for this swarajati, just in time for Dasara 2012.  Here it goes:

पल्लवि:

तव मृदुलम् पदयुगलम् मम शरणम् शिवे जननि
तव मृदुलम् पदयुगलम् मम शरणम् परशिवे जननि
तव मृदुलम् पदयुगलम् मम शरणम् जय परशिवे जननि ॥ पल्लवि॥

अनुपल्लवि:

कल्याणानाम् वितरणि पापे मयि ते करुणा भवतु ॥॥

चरण १:

ईशनायिके लोकपालिके इन्द्रवन्द्य पदसरसिज लसिते
दितिसुत गजगण विदलनचतुरे सदा निवस मम  हृदि गुहजननि ॥१॥

चरण २:

कुवलय  दलसम सुरुचिर नयने निरुपम परिमलयुत मधुचषके
अतिधवल – रजतगिरि – वरनिलये कलशजनुते मधुमथनसोदरि ॥२॥

चरण ३:

साधकजनतापरमशुभदे लोहितसुमनोनिचतेकलिते
पायसमुदिते मधुरहसिते  जनिमृतिहरसुधे कलिमलहरणि ॥३॥

चरण ४:

संसारे परमविषमे संतापो दहति हृदयम्
एहि त्वम् तुहिनगिरिजे तापम् मे शमय ललिते
नीरागमतिरायातु मयि वेदादिनय संस्तुत चरिते
नाकलोकशोकहारिसुबले चारुचंद्रभासमान चिकुरे!  ॥४॥

If you are interested in the notation along with sAhitya, click this link:  A Swarajati in Kamavardhini

Finally here is a video slideshow from the “Bombe Habba” at our home during Dasara 2012:

The background music for the slides is also played by IndianMusicFan,  the first part of a varna that I composed sometime ago. To listen to the entire Varna, click here: Kalyanimalaika Varna .

-neelanjana

 

Rajyotsava. Novermber 1st. A day no Kannadiga would forget. Last year, on Rajyotsava, I posted this video of Vidwan Ragavan Manian singing a varna in Kannada language that I composed. That varna had the sAhitya taken from a well known vacana of Basavanna – ನಾದಪ್ರಿಯ ಶಿವನೆಂಬರು. You can  click here for the notation of that varNa in rAga nAgaswarAvaLi.

This year too, I am posting another composition of mine which I did a while ago, since it has gone through some “quality testing”! This too is  a varna with lyrics in Kannada. No audio or video this time, because I don’t have one worthy of posting🙂.

This varNa in rAga Madhuvanti, and set to Adi tALa. And, this time, the sAhitya lines are mine, although indirectly, they are inspired by a shloka of Bilvamangala in his classic Krishna Karnamrta.

Varnas generally have very limited sAhitya, and often have romantic themes. This one is also not an exception, and you could think the lines as being said by one gopika girl of Gokula to another.

Pallavi:

ಗೋಕುಲವೆಲ್ಲಾ ಕೊಳಲಿನ ಇನಿದನಿಯಲಿ ತುಂಬಿದನೇ ||
gOkulavellA koLalina inidaniyali tumbidanE

(Translation: He filled Gokula with the melodies his flute)

Anupallavi:

ಅನುಪಲ್ಲವಿ: ಆಕಳ ಮಂದೆಯ ಕಾಯುತ ಗೋಪಿಯರ ತಾನು ಗೆಲಿದನೇ || ಗೋಕುಲವೆಲ್ಲಾ||

AkaLa mandeya kAyuta gOpiyarellare gelidanE

(Translation: The cowherd, won over the hearts of all gopis)

CharaNa:

ಚರಣ: ಮಾತೇ ಮಧುವಂತಿದೆ! ಸಖೀ, ಇವನ || ಮಾತೇ||

mAtE madhuvantide! sakhi ! ivana || mAte||

(Translation: His speech is like honey! Oh my dear!)

The charaNa line was totally my imagination, to include rAga name “madhuvanti”🙂

Here is the notation of the Varna for those interested:

A-Varna-in-Madhuvanti (Kannada version)

A-Varna-in-Madhuvanti (Notation in English)

-neelanjana

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