Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Hamsadhvani-- my ecstasy pill

Scene 1:
Its one mild late july afternoon and I am about to lose my funding in ECE dept because of some new stupidly weird rule (by the way, I had got the funding in the first place because of another weird reason). The mind is agitated. Should I bring in fund-reinforcements from home? Should I swipe credit cards? Should I try for funding elsewhere?

What do I do? I do the only thing that I can do at this time. I rush to the library, take out my $5 headphones--which I still preserve (Someone I know has a set of $300 worth Bose headphones), and start listening to Hamsadhvani. Instantly, harmones of ecstasy get released in the brain, and it forgets everything and floats away in some some other world of elation, and by the time I come to BMK's 'GAyathi vanamAli', I am swooning with contentment and peace in me..a new strength hitherto unknown... a feeling that all this is but mAya.

Scene 2:
Returning from Wal-mart in the car, I am extremely hungry, with yet another attack of hyper-metabolism, and hands and legs start shaking and body starts sweating. Lucky me that precisely at this moment, The King's "InAde yEdo aiyyindi" is on. What happened for the next 4 minutes or so might be characterised as OOB (Out Of Body experience).

Hamsadhvani, not surprisingly, was one of the first ragas that revealed themselves to me, perhaps it was the first, followed closely by Yaman. It is verily a dear raga, more than a raga to me. It has a personality of itself and I hold converse . Even now, at this hour, as I listen to Hamsadhvani (Pt.Shiv Kumar Sharma's, this time), the mind offers smilar reactions, once again reminding me of those times, when Hamsadhvani was my only friend, philospher, guide, and of course stress counsellor.

Who needs the ecstasy pill anyway when you can have the mother-of-all-ecstasies ?

34 comments:

Random Walker said...

truly! i remember a particular concert version of "manasu karugademi" - composition of Patnam Subramania Iyer by TR Subramaniam....phenomenal song and phenomenal rendition. IR's better Hamsadhwani is undoubtedly "Tarali rAda tane vasantam" from Rudraveena (I will personally worship telugu cinema if they do one more movie like that). Great post, and commendable effort to keep the blog alive!!

Gandaragolaka said...

Yes! Tarali rada is his best, clearly one of the best Hamsadhvanis ever (And Rudraeena is one of the best movies for that matter). Moreso because I was so bored of having to listen to Vatapi-esque (its an actual word in RMIC group now!) Hamsadhvanis.

A kriti by purandara dAsa set to Hamsadhvani, sung beautifully by santAnam --"Gajavadana beDuve" also comes to mind when I think of Hamsadhvani.

Do you remember the shlokam from Swarnakamalam "Angikam bhuvanam yasya" just before the "natarajane" song? Another top class Hamsadhvani by IR.

Gandaragolaka said...

manasu karugademi?? hmm... couldnt find it... any links?

yadbhavishya said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
yadbhavishya said...

@Ganadaragolaka
Spare that poor guy. Whose post-listening experience is greater do you think?

Yes, quite a few MDs, when they gave a sincere attempt, Hamsadhwani sounded like never before. Rahman's pieces like 'Marumallello' in Amrutha and the female interludes in the songs 'Thirakkatha' (En swaasa kaatre) and 'Naa inti mundunna' (Gentleman). 'Taralirada' was one such great (yes, me likes the continuous violin strain in the background!)

Also not to forget a gem of a Hamsadhwani by the inimitable Raj-Koti in the movie Jayammu Nishayammura. It is to say the least, fantabulous.

You can listen/ get it here.
http://eng.utah.edu/~penugond/O-Chilaka-JNR.mp3
DO LISTEN

Gandaragolaka said...

poor raguman... I wish he didnt take to singing-- well he could still atone by making someone else (preferably female-- sujatha, perhaps) sing marumallello.

Nevertheless, the times of En swaasa kaatre, sangamam, and Kandukonden kandukonden were magical.

Also, the raj-koti song is not getting downloaded.

Random Walker said...

@ yadhbhav -- yeah... for the first time i sat down and re-listened carefully to "naa intimundunna"'s interludes.. the second interlude on jaltarangish instru is infact hamsadhwani - immediate reaction was -veedi thassarao na boddu playing with sankarabharanam janyas!!

@gandar - i have a TRS version of manasu karugademi (but he was old and coughing most of the time-nevertheless extremely wonderful swaras), other HS's I know include namAmi vighna vinayakam, of course who will forget vataapi, mandolin srinivas's vinayaka, and ofcourse Annamacharya's vandeham jagat vallabham... I'm sure there are tons more...

Random Walker said...

http://www.sangeethapriya.org//season2005/seetha/seetharajan.html

the first song is manasu karugademi... not a bad version.. although i suspect a little change in lyrics - interesting to note that karnatik.com doesnt list manasu karugademi by PSI in its list of hamsadhwani songs...

i will try to upload TRS version -- amazingly different version....

Random Walker said...

hehe.. one more... couldnt control myself. let me see the love in yoir eyes - hamsadhwani, colonial cousins

Gandaragolaka said...

The only colonial cousins' Hamsadhvani I know is "Will you be my lady"... wonderful strings! I love that one.

Are we talking the same thing?

Gandaragolaka said...

@vidya:
Finally downloaded the song

@PRC
apparently not! They r different.

Also, I just happened to remember my first hamsadhvani-- it was some thumri on TV that I happened to listen to, when I was very young, by Shobha Gurthu (I guess!)--the vatapi-esque 'aaj bhar sakhi aankhon mein anjan'. The lyrics and the tune sort of stayed with me though I had no idea what it was and who was singing.

There is one more early morning radio song --"Namo Namo gaNanAyakA, namo namo shubhadAyakA"
very pleasing.

And finally, not to forget "Sri raghurAm, priya raghurAm" from Shanti nivAsam.

It is nice to see so many comments after a long long time!! Where are Aakarsh and flute??

yadbhavishya said...

you did not tell me how that Raj-Koti song was? I cannot recall if I made you listen to it earlier.

...and of course we cannot ignore 'THE Vaataapi' by GNB. No Rajadhani express nor a slave driver can match the speed and the grunting respectively, no?

Gandaragolaka said...

Its a very good composition from an objective POV, but I like longer and a bit slower phrases like those in "Lady" of colonial cousins (its there in musicindiaonline).

Also, I was waiting for you to mention chandana brothers ad.

yadbhavishya said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
yadbhavishya said...

Good catch that.

Ya the line "Shubhamantu adugidadi chandanapu bomma", I could never forget. Only later knowledge could match it up with Hamsadhwani.

Music Fan said...

the first thing I did after reading the blog was to stop what I was doing and go listen to Innade edo ayyindi.... aah such a wonderful song.... after reading the comments section I realized that I like a lot of hamsadhvani based songs (without my knowledge).... tarali rAda is a beautiful song... thanks guys for reminding me of all those gems...

Gandaragolaka said...

@vidya:
Anna... the lyrics of O chiluka... eej it 'veturigaL'? Very nice!

@mf:
well, Hamsadhvani is a raga like that. I would be really glad if you can go on to make your own mental-algorithm of recognising simple ragas like Hamsadhvani.

Anonymous said...

here is an excellent rendition of Vandeham by sri nedunuri garu....great swaras!
http://rapidshare.de/files/36328311/02._NedunuriKrishnamurthy-_Vandeham-Hamsadwani-KChapu-Annamaachaarya.mp3.html

Music Fan said...

Hey gandaragolaka...

yes I am trying to get to that stage... i do not have any technical musical training... just dabbled with it for a very brief period in childhood.... but I guess after listening to so many songs sometimes I seem to recognize songs with similar raaga...I know this one is very easy but I heard "Tu chanda mein chandni" from reshma and shera and later sometime I heard "kesariya balma" from lekin and felt they both are same raaga.. googled to find out that they both are indeed based on same raaga(Mand).... but those are kid's steps compared to u guys....

Gandaragolaka said...

@sriram:
Yes... very nice swaras. Try also listening to raghunAyaka of santAnam at musicindiaonline-- only, try not to concentrate on his pronounciation ('ragu', instead of 'raghu', etc)... hope I havent jinxed your experience!

@mf:
Mand is typically not a starter's raga. If you are able to recognise that, then you may be well on your way. Keep us posted on any of your discoveries of this sort (major, minor, all have their importance!).

Anonymous said...

raghunAyaka of santAnam!
i am not able to find on miol :(

Gandaragolaka said...

shall I send it your gmail id on your profile?

Anonymous said...

yes please! thanks in advance...

Music Fan said...

gg,

sorry for the late response... thanks for the encouragement... i know myself so I think the mand discovery was merely a lucky guess... but will definetely keep u posted on any interesting observations...

one question.... pls. answer me if u can... what raag is "aaj ki raat" song from new Don movie based on? Any ideas?

Gandaragolaka said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Gandaragolaka said...

mf:

The song you mentioned doesnt adhere to one particular raga.. in fact, a large chunk of it is not based on the raga-structure of the Indian Classical Music system.

However, I could find something of academic interest:

1) At the begninning-- "shaam hai, jaam hai, aur hai nashaa". If you concentrate on the the 6th syllable (the 'hai' after jaam)-- the way she extends the note and gradually lowers the frequency and then says 'aur hai nasha'-- this gradation in frequency is called a 'meend', and this particular meend is strongly reminiscent of Hindustani todi (carnatic Shubhapanthuvarali) and Jog (carnatic NaaTa).

2) this is a surprise: 'kyon dhaDaktA hai dil' is 'sa-sa-saa ni3 pa ga3' very hamsadhvani like... only missing ri2. But just after that a shruti-bhedam seems to have been done here on Hamsadhvani scale (n2 becomes upper s) and panchamam is introduced and a scale congruent to hindustani Gorakh kalyan (s r2,m1,d2,n2,d2,s::s n2 d2 p m1 r2,s) is produced.

Of course, all this is balderdash unless confirmed by our sith lord 'Darth-walker' (a la PRC).

Kedar.

Music Fan said...

Hey gg,

thanks a lot for the response.... I was intrigued by the "kyon dadhaktha hain dil" line in the song and wanted to know more about it.... I went back and heard the meend ...good catch...

sapere vivere said...

What's the ragam of Ilakkanam Maarudho- Nizhal Nijamaagiradhu. I have heard guesses ranging from Hamsanadham to Shyam Kalyaan to Saraswati to Saranga, as varied as the emotions that sweep through this number...confusion, love, perplexity, innocence, anguish, hope; its an awesome number.

Gandaragolaka said...

The song itself is that way... it has shades of many ragas... and sometimes no raga at all.

However, I could make out a lot of Shyam kalyan in charanams.

It is very interesting that such lesser known Hindustani ragas were already adapted in ther south.

Sketchy Self said...

hathavidhi...hamsadhwani is another of those ragas that slip under the radar for me...i love it every time i listen to it, but never quite peg it down to hamsadhwani...

my best memory of listening to hamsadhwani was an instrumental performance at our college for a tech festival (fancy that! i think darth-walker and yadbhav had a lot to do with making that happen), with a veena lead and mridangam and violin (i think) accompanying...and the two (very pretty) daughters/students of the lady playing the veena sitting in the front row keeping taalam with their hands...chilly hyderabad night...aaha...goosebumps even today!

Gandaragolaka said...

So... alive, thou art still. Honoured I am.

suraj said...

What a lovely post + comments. Hamsadhwani is indeed divine. I love it in all forms.

@random walker, Let me see the love is very cool. No harm in professing u'r love for it. As u might know, they chanced to get Ustad VM Bhatt to play the solo.

Diwakar said...

Does anybody have a link to a good rendition of Gayathi Vanamali?

The one by BMK on musicindiaonline isn't complete.

Thanks.

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