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Ashwathnarayanan @ Ramaseva Mandali, Koramangala 08 Apr 2017

Vocal : Ashwathnarayanan

Violin :Pappu Gyandev

Mrudangam :-H S Sudheendra

Ghatam : Phanindra  Bhaskara

List :

01 nera nammiti (varNam) – kAnaDa – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar

02 varAlanDu kommani – gurjari – Thyagaraja ( S )

03 jaya jaya jaya jAnaki kAnta – nAta – Purandara Dasa ( O,S )

04 jnAna mosaga rAdA – pUrvikalyANi – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S )

neraval & swara  @ ‘paripUrNa niSkaLanka niravadhi sukhadAyaka ‘

05 mAmava pattAbhirAma – maNirangu – Dikshitar

06 rAma rAma rAma rAma, rAmA yennirO – vasanta – Purandara Dasa ( S )

07 nA moravina rAdA – gOpriya – Dr S Ramanathan

08 ELa nI dayarAdA – aThANa – Thyagaraja

09 nannu pAlimpa – mOhanam – Thyagaraja ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @ ‘karamuna shara kOdaNDa kAntitO’

10 bArO krSNayya – rAgamAlika – Kanaka Dasa ( Short sketch of mAND)

11 anri ulagam ( tirupavai) – bhImpLAs? – Andal

12 thillAna – chenchurutti – Veena Seshanna

13 srIrAma chandranukku jayamangaLam ( mangaLAm) – madhyamAvati – Arunachala Kavi

Proximity is not the only reason I decided to attend to Ashwathnarayanan today over other established artists at other venues. This year, I have decided to listen to as many youngsters as possible. His name has been coming up for a while as a name to watch out for. And yesterday’s concert fit that bill, perfectly well.

He has a strong powerful voice, with ease of deployment. Very clear diction, synonymous to the school and lineage he belong to, and a solid stage presence. He is very young and a bit of experience and polishing can catapult him into the big league.

He and the crew did a commendable concert yesterday. Very interesting choices of raga, some memorable swaraprasthana for the main, very moving melodious gurjari and some classy neraval for both Purvikalyani and Mohanam.

The area he might need to focus on ( for that matter most of the youngsters) is the kalapramanam. I guess, they carried away with the excitement and tends towards speed over ‘soukhyam’. Manirang, vasanta and aThana suffered from this. It could also possibly due to an over enthusiastic percussion support. Many times, I found HSS playing the beats different from the sahitya pattern, unsettling the flow. Also, each song ended with an unnecessary longer ‘theermanam’ ( or whatever it is called).

Only two alapana ( barring a short mAND sketch) in the evening. He can definitely organise it better. But both were scholarly. Mohanam especially was very good. These youngsters have a lot of ideas, but will have to sort of ‘organise’ these into a smoother delivery. Neraval for both purvikalyani and mohanam were very good. He has such a strong control over the laya, which was evident even in the singing of ‘sahitya’. His kalpana swara patterns were also very impressive, especially the mohanam.

Mamava Pattabhirama was all over the place. For one, he started with some unusual sangatis. The whole song was a bit ‘aggressive’ to my taste. It lost its natural beauty, which is not expected/accepted from some of of KVN’s lineage. He introduced the raga gOpriya to the audience, paying tribute to Dr.S.Ramanathan, whose birth centenary was yesterday. Gopriya is an interesting raga, with notes spread evenly across, making it impossible to do a grahabhedam.  A janya of Rishabhapriya, and not many composition available, apart from the one by Dr.SRamanathan. A nice gesture from the young lad.Post main was a beautifully rendered bAro krSNayya , a tirupavai and Chenchurutti thillana, before mangalam.

Very talented singer with a good voice, clear diction and well groomed manodharma. We will hear more from him and about him in the future.

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Posted by on April 9, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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Pattabhirama Pandit @ Srirama Seva Mandali, Koramangala on 18-Apr-2016

Vocal : Pattabhirama Pandit

Violin : TKV Ramanujacharyulu

Mrudangam : K U Jayachandra Rao

List:

01. shrI patE nI pada – nAgasvarALi – Thyagaraja ( Short Sketch, S )

02. parama pAvana rAma – pUrvikalyANi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @’kanakAmbaradhara karuNAnvita sura’

03. viDalAjaturA – janaranjani – Thyagaraja

04 RTP – thODi – chaturashra triputa, +1 eDuppu

pallavi in rAgamAlika ‘thODi, bilahari, rEvati’

pallavi line ‘ dAsharathE karuNApayOnidhE, ina kula tilakA ‘

rAgamAlika swaras in thOdi, bilahari, rEvati

05 rAma rAma rAma sItA tAma ennirO – tilang – Purandara Dasa

06 kaNDu dhanyanAdE – behAg – Kamalesha Vittala Dasa’  ( A )

07. jagadodhAraNa – kApi -Purandara Dasa

08. mangaLam – saurAStram – Thyagaraja

shLOkam ( mangaLam kOsalEndrAya) – madhyamAvati

Seldom we witness a concert were the second item is taken up as main. Well, I am excluding TMK from this. That lifts the expectation high and it would be a huge task for the artists to sustain the same vigour and standard through out the rest of the evening. Yesterday’s concert of Pattabhirama pandit was one such. What an opening and the first half he had. Beautifully started the concert with a nagasvarali piece after humming through a short alapana in such a moving way. Shripate nee pada was sung very well. He and the team also extended it with some splendid swara patterns. Brilliant start. He soon launched into a classical purvikalyani. Few faster intial phrases moved away to some outstanding passages at the slow speed middle and lower octaves. After a few deliberations he switched the gear with faster akara phrases initially in the lower octaves moving to the higher one. Some breath taking alapana came in at high, full of exquisite combinations and full throated singing. Top class stuff. Ramanujacharyulu was equally brilliant in his turn, largely playing around the same theme and a few improvised takes. Parama pavana rama, was a treat. Very elaborate neraval, at kanakambaradhara was very well done. Kalpana swaras sung at the end was the pinnacle of the performance yesterday. The team jelled well presenting some outstanding swaras. Jayachandra Rao was excellent here. The team was so moved, that Ramanujacharyulu , upon completion of his return, wanted to play along for another rounds before closing down. Unexpectedly, tani was indicated and expectedly Jayachandra Rao played a fitting tani avaratanam.

Having completed only 2 kritis so far, there was an anticipation for a pallavi and I was praying it to be anything other than Keeravani. There was a short janaranjani kriti before pallavi. Thodi it was, but wasn’t one that you talk home about. A fast alapana with few twists and turns came in two spurts, not really impressive. Violin return trid to restore some parity but it was very short to really make an impact. Tanam however was far better.  Both the artists played some delectable rounds of tanam. Interestingly pallavi was sung in 3 ragams. There was no trikalam or any structural intricacies in pallavi execution. Ragamalika swaras followed the same pallavi pattern.

Behag kriti was beautifully sung. A short alapana preceding it was good too. Jagadodharana, which brought in the memory of his legendary guru, was ok. And that ended the concert.

Pattabhirama pandit sang very well. The purvangam of the concert was awesome, and some of those dwindled out as the concert progressed towards the second half. He would have got into the time pressure, and adjusted pallavi to fit into the overall schedule. Very good concert, would have been outstanding with a small tweak in the planning.

 
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Posted by on April 19, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Saralaya Sisters @Sri rama seva mandali, Koramangala 15th Apr 2016

Vocal : Saralaya Sisters

Violin : Kalpana Kishore

Mrudangam : Anoor Vinod Shyam

Morsing : Lakshmi Nayarana

List :

01 shLOkam ( AchAryA pavanO) – nATa

namO namO raghukula nAyaka – nATa – Annamacharya ( S)

02 shObhillu saptaswara – jaganmOhini – Thyagaraja

03 eLA nI dayarADu – aThANa – Thyagaraja (O)

04 rAmachandram bhAvayAmi – vasanta – Dikshitar ( A,S)

05 bhAvayAmi raghurAmam  – rAgamAlika – Swathi Thirunal

06 rAma nAma bhajisita – hindOLam – Gopala Dasa

07 parama pAvana rAmA – pUrvikalyANi – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar ( A,N,S,T)

neraval & swara @ ‘kanakAmbaradhara  karuNAnvita sura’

*I had to leave at this time

I had a bus to catch, travelling overnight. Planning to attend this was an after thought, to squeeze in an hour or two of listening, before rushing home and pack and leave. Inaugural concert of Sri Rama Seva Mandali ,Koramangala. I was pleasantly surprised to know that they have been conducting Ramanavami programs for the last 39 years.

Concert started 30 mins late, due to power unavailability. Every one including the artists waited patiently , entertaining ourselves with the game of ‘machar-catch’.  A sparce crowd at this time, but filled as the concert began.

I had to leave as young Vinod Shyam started his tani avartanam. Hence, this is an incomplete report and my opinion is based on what I heard, while there. Firstly, artists seems to have been finding it difficult with no feedback speakers. That would have impacted their overall performance.

I found most of the kritis were presented on a faster tempo. Speed in general was the essence. Even the short vasanta alapana was super fast. Having said that, the main pUrvikalyANi was presented very well. The alapana, kriti , neraval and Swara ( looked like they cut short a bit) were done in a pleasing manner. I am expecting that the remaining of they concert would have been just as great if not better.

Other trivial observation was the selection of tala. One could name this as a thematic ‘rUpaka tALa kacheri’. If I remember correct, 5 of the first 6 kritis were set to roopakam. So much so that i started searching for roopakam compositions in purvikalyani while the alapana was going on. I could have mistaken and I am open to corrections…

One takes from this concert was the new violinist on stage. I was given to understand that she has returned from US and this is her first concert in Bangalore since. She did a good job and some of her play during pUrvikalyANi were delectable.

I am listening to ‘Rama nAma bhajisita’ for the first time. I heard, Smt. Seethalakshmi Venkateshan has set this dasar pada ( Gopala Dasa) to tune. Similarly, the opening nATa kriti too was one that is not often heard.

Note: This is prepared and written using my handheld device. No proof read done. Many mistakes can be found. I will edit and correct those on my return.

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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K S Narayanaswamy , Nadaloka @ Indian Heritage Academy 10 May 2014

Vocal : Palakkad K S Narayanaswamy

Vocal support : P K Goutaman

Violin : Annapoorni Subramanian

Mrudangam : Anoor R Dattatreya Sharma

Song List :

01.  sAmi nI tODi (varNam) – pantuvarALi – Rangaswami Nattuvanar  ( short sketch)

02.  gOpAlaka pAhimAm – rEvagupti – Swathi Thirunal ( S )

03.  nAdasudhA rasambilanu – Arabhi – Thyagaraja ( A,S )

04.  marivErE gati – Anandabhairavi – Shyama Sasthry ( A,S )

05.  mAmava sadA janani – kAnaDa – Swathi Thirunal ( A )

06.  pAhiAm SrI rAjarAjESwari – janaranjani – Maha Vaidyanatha Iyer

07.  rAmA nI samanamevvaru – kharaharapriya – Thyagaraja ( A,S,T )

08.  mAyA gOpabAla – kApi – Mahakavi Kuttamath ?  ( O )

09.  thillAna ( Dhim nanana tillillana tillana )- brindAvani – Balamuralikrishna

10. mangaLam – saurAshtram – Thyagaraja

11.  madhyamAvathi raga sketch

Many years ago, I heard Sri Palakkad K S Narayanaswamy in a short concert, organised by a resident association part of their Vinayaka Chaturthi. I was so impressed that day, as he presented a pristine, chaste concert on that day. The vachaspati is still fresh in my mind. That probably, helped me to decide on attending this concert, among another three-four equally tempting options. I was out on the road and managed to reach just in time for the concert. Which also means, I missed the earlier event of the evening in which a Music CD ‘nAdasudhArasam’ was released.

Sri K S Narayanaswamy,  one of the torch bearer of the Semmangudi bani, presented another pleasing concert. The right measurements in which he sang each alapana, the kalpana swaras with the stamp of the bani and the precision with which each sangatis were sung were the hallmark of the concert yesterday. May be due to the nature of his singing, this wasn’t an energetic exhilarating affair. It was very sedate, probably too sedate for a regular concert. The low level of the hall amplification added to the subdued affair. Adding to it, there was no neraval to get me excited.

Concert started with a rather obscure varnam, followed with the revagupti kriti. He sang few rounds of swarams too. Quickly launched to a short arabhi alapana. Nadasudharasam was very good, so was the crisp rounds of kalpana swarams. Anandabhairavi alapana was top class, taking us through some beautiful passages. So was the kAnaDa alapana. A quick janaranjani came in as a filler, a much needed reprieve after many slow songs. Kharaharapriya was main with a detailed alapana, very majestically rendered. Kriti was equally elegant, with all the sangatis were very moving. I was expecting the neraval, as he did not sing neraval for any of the earlier kritis. There was a quick one-two on the stage between the violinist ( who is his daughter) and the artist and to her visible displeasure ( and a reassuring nod from the disciple who was accompanying him)  he started the kalpanaswaras, which was very good. Dattatreya Sharma, who did his best to liven up the proceedings, played out a good tani avartanam. His percussion support was of high standard. Post main was rather short, consisting a kApi kriti and a thillana. In the chaotic and noisy scene of carnatic music, listening to such concerts are very refreshing indeed.

I did buy the CD, which was released earlier in the evening, sung by the same team on the stage, post the concert. Listened to it over last evening and today morning and I can recommend the same to every one who is interested in listening to this vidvan.

 
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Posted by on May 11, 2014 in Concert songlist

 

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Hemmige S Prashanth @ Sri Rama Seva Mandali, Koramangala 21 Apr 2013

Vocal :Hemmige S Prashanth

Violin : Jyothsna Srikanth

Mrudangam : K U Jayachandra Rao

Ghatam : Phanidra Bhaskar

List:

01.  nera nammiti ( varNam) – kAnaDa – Ramanathapuram Srinivasa Iyengar

02.  nIkELa dayaraDu – sarasAngi – Ramaswamy Sivan ( S )

03.  koluvaiyunnAdE – bhairavi – Thyagaraja ( A,S )

04.  nannu viDachi – rItigauLa – Thyagaraja

05.  sItApatE na manasunA – khamAs – Thyagaraja ( A,N )

neraval @ ‘ prEma jUci nApai pedda manasu jEsi

06.  tatvameruga tarama – garuDadhwani – Thyagaraja

07.  rAmA rAmA guNasImA – simhEndra madhyamam – Swathi Thirunal ( A,N,S,T )

neraval & swara @ ‘muni mAnasa dhAma mrgamada sulalAma

08.  kaNDu dhanyanAdE – behAg – Kamalesha Vittala

09.  gOvardhana giridhara – darbAri kAnaDa – Narayana Theertha ( O )

10.  SLOkam ( srI rAghavam daSaratha tanujam) – sindhubhairavi

yAkkE bandidiva lOkara anubhava – sindhubhairavi – ? (mudra was Sridhara vittala)

11.  mangaLam – saurAshtram – Thyagaraja

Cherthala Ranganatha Sharma was scheduled to perform as per the original notice. One had to sneak out of the neighboring hall where Gayathri Venkataraghavan was singing, to listen to Ranganatha Sharma. Only then, I noticed the small white sticker covering the name of Ranganatha Sharma, which had a hand written name Hemmige Prashanth. I’ve heard his name many a times, but haven’t listened to him before. A touch disappointed by seeing the change of name, but have decided to give him a try. Had I not stayed back, the loss would have been mine. What a splendid concert he gave with the equally brilliant accompaniment. In the fottball parlance, he is the ‘Super Sub’ scoring goals and securing a permanent seat ( in my mind at least).

However, the concert scheduled to start at 6:30 did not begin in time, thanks to the non-arrival of the violinist. I was wondering if this calls for another substitute for violin as well. Now the concert is delayed, I went back to listen to Gayathri Venkataraghavan ( by then the tani avartanam and the short speech was over) and completed the remaining pieces of her concert.

The violinist hadn’t arrived even now, and the organiser informed that she is stuck in traffic and should reach in next 10 min. The wait was long and there was no sign of she turning up. The rest of the artists took podium and settled themselves. As appropriate, they began the concert sans the violin accompaniment. A varnam and a short Sarasangi kriti came with few rounds ( cant say rounds as he was singing it alone) came. Stopping for a brief period after each kriti, with many eyes turning to the direction of the entrance, they team continued the concert with the third piece. A short little alapana in bhairavi came, with no sign of the violin. As he started the kriti singing pallavi and anupallavi, Jyothsna rushed in to join the team. A brief stoppage was filled in with the percussion artists, allowing her time to settle on stage and get her instrument tuned.

While I would not know the real reasons for her delay, coming in 45 minutes from the scheduled time does not  go well with the professionalism. I should add in haste that she played beautifully from the moment she joined the team, thus elevating the concert to a different level.

A melodious nanu vidachi had all the participant coming together. This paved way for a delectable concert then on. A classy khamas, with a shortish alapana and a splendid neraval ( he did not sing kalpanaswaras here to my disappointment) had some of the characteristics of his guru. After a fast filler in Garudadhwani, he started the main alapana of the day.

My heart skipped a beat after the initial phrases. I shared a quick glance with Phanindra on the stage. I just had two back to back Keeravani as main in less than 24 hrs and was in no mood to listen to a third in less than 2 hrs. Luckily, he chose the ‘pratimadhyama’ ragam of keeravani. Simhendramadhyamam alapana was decent, could have been a bit more elaborate considering it the main. His effort was complimented well by Jyothsna with a brilliant alapana. To me this was one of the highlight of the concert. Swathi Thirunal’s kriti was sung well with very well executed neraval and kalpana swaras. Tani Avartanam was fabulous. Both Jayachandra Rao and Phanindra excelled in their turns, apart from providing apt support for the overall impact of the concert.

Post main was superb. Behag devarnama was classy. The darbari Kanada with a short mesmerising alapana he gave before the kriti for Govardhana Giridhara was great and a stupendous Sindhu bhairavi slokam followed with another kannada kriti ( not heard this before) concluded the concert.

At the end of the concert, one might even thank Ranganatha Sharma for not appearing. “Hemingway” Prashanth  ( as one colleague heard me) made the day.

 
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Posted by on April 22, 2013 in Concert songlist

 

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