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madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Review the latest concerts you have listened to.
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rajeshnat
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Joined: 03 Feb 2010, 08:04

madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by rajeshnat » 18 Dec 2010, 13:41

madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010
------------------------------------------------
Vocal : madurai TN SeshagOpalan
Violin : M.Chandrasekaran
Mrudangam : Trichur Narendran
Ghatam : Vaikkom gopAlakrishnan

Concert duration/day : 3 hours and 20 mins/Saturday

TNS concerts always has a consistent inconsistency in the last decade and there are atleast three stages .

Stage 1:
-------
He takes a significant amount of time to get out of his voice problems and attimes the adherence of shruthi is definitely hitting a tail spin . TNS started with a begada and with swaras it was a depleted begada. The next two were perhaps the extremes of vocal exercises for any vidwan / vidushi to try and tame ones voice. THe sedate sahAnA was not tranquil enough and the bhavam of this lovely krithi was just not coming out well. In the other extreme exercise of tackling one's voice is the rAgam pantuvarAli. Shri TNS gave a fairly good alApana but this krithi I could appreciate more for his penchant of taking a karudu moradana kambAr thamizh , the aesthetics could have been better. THe neraval was short and with swaras he made up well in parts. Mohanam as a RAga is to me the best when you take that right speeed neither too fast nor too slow. Shri TNS took it bit very slow and mOhanam was just good with a sprinkle of swaras , still the voice did not reach the zone of appreciable comfort

1. abhimAna(RS, S) - bEgaDa - patnam
2. vaNdanamu ragunandanA - sahanA - T

3. kai vaNNam ingu kandEn kaal vaNNam angu kandEn (R ,Viruththam ,N S) - paNtuvarAli - Kambar
7 mins alApanai and 5 mins violin return
3 mins neraval in "mEi vaNNathu ... mazhai vANNathu vaLLaLE"
7 mins swaras

4. kshemam kuru gOpAlA (S) - mOhanam - NT
6 mins of swaras

Stage 2:
-------
TNS is a the clear master of subhapAntuvarAli ,and when he sang this krithi I do have a the highest of highest expectation. He sang very good but certainly his pathos filled subhapAntuvarAli with a super open throated singing was missing . Certainly the voice set well from the midpoint of alApana of a rare nAyaki as a main . nAyaki and darbAr if I could say can be bit distinguished with its softer bhAvam and being assertive bhAvam respectively. Certainly nAyaki had nice shades of manOdharmam with a touch of softness. I enjoyed from there on the concert . His intellect and vidwat was matching slowly with his voice and the once shruthi TATA slowly became shruthi mAthA .The neraval in nAyaki is definitely rare ,with a pattern of swaras in NAyaki in that crowded zone of shree- nAyaki etc , shri TNS indeed sang a great main to be rightly called as mahAvidwan. THe PD krithi in hindOlam was just OK .

5. shree sathya nArAyanam - subhapaNtuvarAli - MD
6A. ranganAyakam (R,N,S,T) - nAyaki - MD
13 mins alApana and 7 mins violin return
8 mins neraval in "agaNita suguNa gaNa nata vibhUSanam"
12 mins swaras
6B. tani for 24 mins
7. yArE rangana - hindOlam
Last edited by rajeshnat on 18 Dec 2010, 15:22, edited 2 times in total.

rajeshnat
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOPAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by rajeshnat » 18 Dec 2010, 13:44

Stage 3:
--------
The ICING IN THE CONCERT WAS INDEED BRINDAVANA SARANGA PALLAVI

It is my personal favourite rAGA and what a kalpana there for the next 45 minutes , he came up with 2 rounds of alApana like a typical semmmangudi mama pallavi , it was structured so beautifully, avoiding repitition. Shri TNS has done asura sAdhakam and at times when he sings tAnam with his mouth closed , the pitch is so strong that lot of musicians in present day world dont even get it with their mouth open

THe pallavi line if I am right was in kanda jathi triputa and I loved it , As he was in midway with swaras, I had to walk out of the hall temporarily as I had a late night call due to official work. I did hear patterns of swaras in the rAgas that I have mentioned. Definitely this concert had its golden moment only in the extraordinary rAgA brindAvana sARanga pallavi.He winded up with a viruththam and a thillAna

8.RTP in brindAvana sArangA
2 rounds of alApana for 19 mins with violin return
tAnam for 11 mins
pallavi line was "briNdAvana sArangan bhOOlOka vaikuntan srirangan"
swaras in a medlay of rAgas brindAvana sarangA + nAttai + Arabi + varAli + Ahiri + kApi + neelAmbari
pallavi was for atleast 45 mins
9A. viruththam - candrakowns??
9B. thillAnA - candrakowns??

The accompanist violinist MC was really good , especially post pantuvarAli , I liked his play for brindAvana saranga alApana he received longer applause than mahavidwan TNS. Trichur nArendran and vaikkom paired up well , perhaps a little shorter tani would have kept me more happy. The sound of percussion did not drown the voices.

The inconsistency aspect of shri TNS is getting a bit larger in the last few years, but nevertheless there are few definite AhA moments, to an extent if this concert was boxed for a 04:30 pm slot (evening #1 prime slot), he would have not had the luxury of time for settling. To an extent concerts that are open ended in the night (as I called once nirvana concerts) gives more scope of excelling and to that extent Shri TNS had this lucky open slot where he could sing 3 hours + 20 mins.

There were 100 to 150 diehard fans of TNS to hear this paid concert, a quarter of them melted with the tani. The hall had a capacity of 1000.Overall mahAvidwan gave a very good to excellent concert for 3 hours and 20 mins(18:25 to 21:45 hrs).
Last edited by rajeshnat on 19 Dec 2010, 20:55, edited 3 times in total.

kssr
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOPAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by kssr » 18 Dec 2010, 14:18

rajeshnat wrote: 3. kai vaNNam ingu kandEn kaal vaNNam angu kandEn (R ,Viruththam ,N S) - paNtuvarAli - Kambar

3 mins neraval in "mEi vaNNathu ... mazhai vANNathu vaLLaLE"
It is " Kai vannam angu (Thadakai vadam) kanden and kaal vannam ingu (Ahalya saaba vimochanam) kanden"
Also, it is "mai" vannathu, tamil name for kaajal - carbon black. It is interesting that Kamban chose "mai" vannam for the bad arakki (rakshasi) and the blackness of the dark clouds which bring rains- "mazhai vannam" for Rama as illustration, although both were dark complexioned!

Nice detailed review. Thanks.

It is rare luck to have TNS sing both his speciality ragams, subhapantuvarali and brindavana saranga in the same concert. In b.saranga, his more frequent presentation is "Soundarrajam" of MD.

nyanasthan
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by nyanasthan » 19 Dec 2010, 12:50

I wish to say that I have been listening to carnatic music since 1940, I have listened to many live concerts of stalwarts like Viswanatha Iyer Ariyakudi, Musiri GNB and others.The review of rajeshnat seems to be very biased in many aspects, I am surprised why he has intended to highlight all the minor deficiencies of the concert in an effective way. TNS did have some voice problem initially which in no way deterred his musical ideas. Though everybody has the right to convey what they feel about a concert , TNS is not an upcoming artist and its improper to comment regarding how a raga should be rendered, the duration, speed, aesthetics and technical matters . The concert on the whole might have had few lapses due to slight voice problem.
Sri seshagopalan s concert was an absolute delight for the connoisseurs and layman.
The concert was unique with its astounding Brindavanasaranga, an amazing Nayaki, what a niraval in nayaki which was outstanding and also a rare treat for the rasikas, who else other than seshagopalan could venture such ragas in a detailed way for alapana, swara and niraval . The unforgettable ragamalika swara in kapi drew thunderous applause from the audience which lasted for few minutes. In most of the places Chandrasekaran was enjoying the concert by constantly saying “aha idukum mela na vasikka enna irukku, neengale paadungo”


If the slight negative points of a concert are strongly emphazised and highlighted it fades away the outstanding charm and remarkable contents prevailing in a concerts.

srikant1987
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by srikant1987 » 19 Dec 2010, 21:56

negative points of a concert are strongly emphazised
It's a lot more fun to do that, somehow! :grin: Of late I'm also taking to the addiction!

And it also gets the reviewer a lot of "calling a spade a spade" applauds too. |( :$ This is in addition to making the review appear like it comes from a knowledgeable rasika.

ksrimech
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by ksrimech » 19 Dec 2010, 22:21

nAyaki as the main followed by brindAvani RTP. wow! Only Seshu can do this!

nyanasthan
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by nyanasthan » 19 Dec 2010, 23:02

srikant1987 wrote:
It's a lot more fun to do that, somehow! :grin: Of late I'm also taking to the addiction!

.
srikant1987 fun differs from cheap thrill. Rasikas can be knowledgeable but they can not write authoritative reviews as though they are erudite scholars in music.

CRama
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by CRama » 20 Dec 2010, 16:26

Nyayasthan pechu mikavum nyayamanathu

doyoucare
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by doyoucare » 20 Dec 2010, 23:03

ksrimech wrote:nAyaki as the main followed by brindAvani RTP. wow! Only Seshu can do this!
Help me understand. Why is this a big deal? Is it because:
1) People have tried this before and failed miserably?
2) Brindavani is a Hindustani raga whereas Nayaki is a truly carnatic raga (whatever that means)
3) Or were you just implying musicians don't follow a main with an RTP?

doyoucare
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Joined: 07 Jan 2009, 23:11

Re: madurai TN SeshagOPAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by doyoucare » 20 Dec 2010, 23:07

rajeshnat wrote:Stage 3:
--------
The ICING IN THE CONCERT WAS INDEED BRINDAVANA SARANGA PALLAVI

Shri TNS has done asura sAdhakam and at times when he sings tAnam with his mouth closed , the pitch is so strong that lot of musicians in present day world dont even get it with their mouth open
Not disputing that Shri.TNS has done asura sadhakam, but how do you sing tanam with your mouth closed?

kssr
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOPAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by kssr » 22 Dec 2010, 10:52

doyoucare wrote:
Not disputing that Shri.TNS has done asura sadhakam, but how do you sing tanam with your mouth closed?
Do you not moan and groan when in pain with your mouth closed? Some people's groan is musical :)

shyamala3091
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by shyamala3091 » 22 Dec 2010, 14:05

jokes apart, last year there had been a Lec Dem by Vidwan sri T V Gopalakrishnan sir at Music Academy, he explained the varieties of tanam in detail, few types of tanam were rendered by keeping the mouth closed, The special methods of rendering different types of tanams were explained by him beautifully.

it is not neccessary that all the concerts of a musician should be a successful one but the concert of senior vidwans will definitely contain highest musical values , I personally feel that it will be useful if our attention is focused on musical related matters rather than criticizing unwanted aspects.

litmus
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by litmus » 22 Dec 2010, 16:36

srikant1987 wrote:
It's a lot more fun to do that, somehow! :grin: Of late I'm also taking to the addiction!
nyanasthan wrote:
srikant1987 fun differs from cheap thrill. Rasikas can be knowledgeable but they can not write authoritative reviews as though they are erudite scholars in music.
How do you know that the rasika in question is NOT an erudite scholar?

He has clearly said why he has written what he has. You have disputed it. There is no need to question the level of knowledge. Unless you are implying that this was a deliberate attempt to besmirch the "maha vidwan's" name.

ksrimech
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by ksrimech » 23 Dec 2010, 04:36

doyoucare wrote: Help me understand. Why is this a big deal? Is it because:
1) People have tried this before and failed miserably?
2) Brindavani is a Hindustani raga whereas Nayaki is a truly carnatic raga (whatever that means)
3) Or were you just implying musicians don't follow a main with an RTP?
1) I haven't heard nAyaki as a main item. I have hardly heard any one render kalpanaswarams except for nI bhajana gAna rasikula. Here he has done neraval also. Even hearing darbAr as main rAgam with neraval and kalpanAswarams is a rarity these days.
2) I haven't seen this combination in any concert listing.
3) I have heard some of the finest RTPs by Seshagopalan, particularly in brindAvani/brindAvana sArangA. Of course, I'm not claiming that no one else sings better. But believe me he has done a pretty good job before. I don't know how he sings now as I haven't heard him live since 1999!
4) I could accept a bit about your point 2 but not points 1 and 3. Do you think my "wow" meant that? :o After listening to so many concerts (live and recorded), if I still thought that way, I would say its only "abaddham". It was only a "wow" to the song listing he choose to render.
5) Why do you care? I assure you I'm not a die-hard fan of Seshagopalan.

sangeethamquest
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by sangeethamquest » 26 Dec 2010, 12:28

fun differs from cheap thrill. Rasikas can be knowledgeable but they can not write authoritative reviews as though they are erudite scholars in music.
I agree 100% with this view. If you know please sing and show how it should be done. Else better to respect our senior vidwans. They may not be at their best all the time, they are human, agreed. But who are we to say so?
It is easy to write (no effort required). But we should stop and think are we competent to comment? I heard Sanjay say that TNS is Sachin of carnatic music. What more do you need? He is fit to comment.

I go to the extent of saying stop reviewing TNS and other Senior vidwans.

Let us do our bit to encourage the great artists and not pull them down.

shyamala3091
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by shyamala3091 » 26 Dec 2010, 16:36

After sangeethamquest's review i too wish to share one incident, when TNS performed Mahakavi Bharathiyar songs at vanavil centre during 90's, the doyen of carnatic music sri semmangudi mama had been present, he enjoyed the concert and appreciated TNS in front of the public by saying "unai madiri paada innoruthan Pirakkanam".

sureshvv
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by sureshvv » 26 Dec 2010, 22:52

nyanasthan wrote: Rasikas can be knowledgeable but they can not write authoritative reviews as though they are erudite scholars in music.
Don't know what you mean by "authoritative". The only authority they need or have is a keyboard and an internet connection.

Don't know what you mean by "cannot". Actually they (we?) do it all the time. Both here and elsewhere. Don't think you will be successful in stopping it.

sangeethamquest
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by sangeethamquest » 28 Dec 2010, 02:50

...
Last edited by sangeethamquest on 28 Dec 2010, 03:03, edited 1 time in total.

sangeethamquest
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by sangeethamquest » 28 Dec 2010, 02:57

I may have been a bit harsh but I had nothing against Rajeshnat or his reviews. He does take the trouble to write detailed reviews and I am sure he knows music.

However we as rasikas need to recognise that great people like TNS are rare gems in terms of their music. We need to make them heroes of the highest order and if we want our current or future generations to emulate them we need to appreciate them, reward them, and sing praises of them to the maximum capacity, only when youngsters have heros and idols will they try to emulate them.
Sadly, most kids nowadays have stock market scam artists (like Harshad mehta) as idols. Anyone who can make quick money (never mind how) is a hero.

Can we comprehend what TNS has done to carnatic music. How many concerts he has given? how many years he has been singing? how many quality students he has produced? how many rasikas have been blown away with his music? It is unimaginable for me to comprehend what he has done let alone think of trying to do what he has done. How much sadhakam, thought and practice must have gone into this how many hours and years of effort? all for what? for whom?

I know somone who has 450 concerts of TNS and I am told that is a small number.

While most of us still struggle to tune the tambura to perfection we have no hesitation in picking on somone who does not have shruthi. Does that require any effort?

Do we want to change TNS? Does anyone go to his concert and expect him to have perfect shruthi? do we want discourage and pull him down? ........do we ever wonder why our greats like Semangudi, KVN and other great artists discouraged their children and students not to take up this art form? I wonder if they died hating this art. Who is responsible for this? Could we the rasikas be responsible.

The first question KVN used to ask Pattabhi (his well known student) was how much percentage did you get in your last school test? and if the answer was less than 80% he was asked to go back to Bangalore without a class. KVN mama insisted that music should only be after studies (more like a hobby).

We are the only country that I know that tries to pull down our heroes especially in music and sports.

Do we want all great artists to think like this?

sureshvv
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Re: madurai TN SeshagOpAlan@Mudhra on Dec 17th,2010

Post by sureshvv » 28 Dec 2010, 03:41

sangeethamquest wrote: However we as rasikas need to recognise that great people like TNS are rare gems in terms of their music. We need to make them heroes of the highest order...
They already are... A couple of writers (or a couple hundred) here cannot make or take away their contribution.
and if we want our current or future generations to emulate them we need to appreciate them, reward them, and sing praises of them to the maximum capacity, only when youngsters have heros and idols will they try to emulate them.
More important to be honest to one self, so youngsters see how important that is.
Do we want to change TNS? Does anyone go to his concert and expect him to have perfect shruthi? do we want discourage and pull him down?
I think you grossly over estimate the consequences of the reviews here and under estimate the single minded resolve of leaders in the field. I am sure much harsher words were said about them by much more qualified and influential people at various stages of their career.
do we ever wonder why our greats like Semangudi, KVN and other great artists discouraged their children and students not to take up this art form?
Thats probably due to the financial situation. You can help by buying tickets, CDs and sponsoring concerts etc. Not pointing out their shortcomings when you see them is not going to help.

I wonder if they died hating this art.
Doubt that very much.
We are the only country that I know that tries to pull down our heroes especially in music and sports.
Happens everywhere. Not a consolation, though.

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