AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Review the latest concerts you have listened to.
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CRama
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#1 AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by CRama »

It is much encouraging to note that after the lock down period, Nada Inbam has started to organise live concerts sans the audience and webcasting through the Parivadini. The accompanists are

R.K.Shriramkumar- Violin.
K.Arun Prakash- Mridangam
Guruprasad- Ghatam
Anirudh Athreya- Ganjira.

List of songs.
1. Shlokam
2.Rama nee samanam evaru- Kharaharapriya- Rupakam- Tyagaraja
3. Kaa Vaa Vaa- Varali- Adi- Papanasam Sivan
4. Ni dayache - Yadukulakambhoji- Adi- Tyagaraja
5. Pranatarthihara-Melaragamalika(chakras 5 and 6)- Adi- Mahavaidyanatha Sivan
6. Bhajare re citta- Kalyani- Misrachapu- Dikshitar
7. Vazhga nirantaram- Ragamalika- Adi- Subramania Bharatiar
8. Kanakashaila- Punnagavarali-Adi-Shyama Shastri
9. Shlokam and Nandanandanam- Hindustani khamaj- Misrachapu- Narayanatirtha
10- Tillana-Purnachandrika- Adi-Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar
11. Mangalam

The concert started with an unusual Rama Nee samanamevaru. No prize for guessing the origin of the idea. Neverthless neraval at the lines Paluku paluku and the cascade of swarams brought verve and weight to the concert. The elaborate raga alapanas of Varali, Yadukulakambodi and Kalyani was much scholarly and there was an element of sowkhyam throughout the concert. Nee dayache- a song I longed to listen for quite some time was presented very neatly. The Melaragamalika starting with Mararanjani was also presented with precision and no aesthetics left out. This is a fitting tribute to the memory of M.S Amma whose birthday is today. The main suite Kalyani was presented in all its glory and the Deekshitar kriti was presented well. I could notice some deviation from the patantharam sung by M.S Subbalakshmi Amma. No neraval and elaborate swaras were done with astounding manodharmam.

R.K.Sreeramkumar on the violin presented absorbing solo essays and interesting violin returns. Arun Prakash was in his elements and the percussion team lifted the concert remarkably. The concert stand out for the intensity, classism, sowkhyam, manodharmam and amazing support from the accompanists. The link to the concert is given below. Please visit the yt link and enjoy the concert and supplement my observations.

https://youtu.be/yAusTVJcX1A

sureshvv
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#2 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by sureshvv »

It was a very fulfilling concert - with a lot of weighty items presented and full justice done to them.

Bhajare chitta was presented differently, a noticeable gait shift. I have not heard this rendition. Felt it lacked the smoothness of the "normal" one.

RKSK had many aha moments, a few during the Kalyani alapana and it seemed like muscle memory took over.

Percussion team was very good. Both KAP and NGP practice the "Less is More" paradigm which adds so much more beauty than "filling the gap" kind of playing.

Overall a most satisfying concert - hopefully presaging an emphatic farewell to the Corona times.

Sachi_R
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#3 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by Sachi_R »

I started hearing it and felt AM was in her element. Thanks for the reviews. I will listen to it carefully.

shankarank
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#4 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by shankarank »

sureshvv wrote: ↑18 Sep 2020, 09:45 Percussion team was very good. Both KAP and NGP practice the "Less is More" paradigm which adds so much more beauty than "filling the gap" kind of playing.
Remaining silent and joining with the setting points of the kriti , becomes predictable after certain point. His style may be unique, but requires emphasis and more naadam / sound production - that will actually fill it. It always feels muted.

sureshvv
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#5 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by sureshvv »

shankarank wrote: ↑20 Sep 2020, 06:20 Remaining silent and joining with the setting points of the kriti , becomes predictable after certain point.
Lots of things in a carnatic concert are "predictable". Not sure if being unpredictable is a virtue that artistes should strive for.

Another thing that fascinates me about his playing is that he seems to have a unique and distinct hook for every kriti. It is not a "standard" technique that is applied regardless of the kriti.
His style may be unique, but requires emphasis and more naadam / sound production - that will actually fill it. It always feels muted.
Good audio/sound reproduction especially a must for mrdangam. Of late I am finding that the middle of the hall provides a much better experience than the corner :D

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#6 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by Sachi_R »

CRama and Suresh,
You know the salubrious climate in Bengaluru. Right now, around 4:30 PM, these is a chilly breeze making me close windows and curl up warmly. I just finished eating Congress Kadalekai (a famous spicy thing rechristened recently as Modiji kadalekai)and sipping exquisite Srinivasa coffee.

And I am listening to Amritha.
After a well-executed but rather pointless long ragamalika (Pranatartihara), she has taken up Kalyani. He voice is so mellow. Ideal to listen to on a languid and cool afternoon. Her voice has a silken smooth texture as she brings in beautiful filigree in her phrases effortlessly. She presents Kalyani not as a flashy Bollywood star or an overly made-up Bharatnatyam danseuse (rather heavy around the middle) or an esoteric unapproachable Devi perched on Vindhya parvata. She presents her like the indescribably beautiful Kanchi Kamakshi.

Her raga essay was so satisfying I had to switch on my phone from sleep and write this. As I write this she has begun her song Bhajare Re chitta.... The mood is exactly as Sri. Dikshitar tells me.

Hope you can join in my mood. For music, mood is everything.

shankarank
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#7 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by shankarank »

sureshvv wrote: ↑20 Sep 2020, 13:43 Good audio/sound reproduction especially a must for mrdangam. Of late I am finding that the middle of the hall provides a much better experience than the corner :D
Halls have their own hurdles to handle. In fact you cannot increase the Mic. volume beyond a point , else it is going to start to feedback and boom! So a certain natural volume production is necessary and an artiste cannot depend on Mic. amplification totally!

Here we are talking about recording volume! That matters these times? or No? That itself is low! And I know that cannot be increased via amplification as that is not the solution.

Mridangam approach seems to be providing light special effects. If this music is only about rAgA, they should just render Alapana. Have the courage to do it. Why do they have to render compositions to Rhythm?

shankarank
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#8 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by shankarank »

sureshvv wrote: ↑18 Sep 2020, 09:45 Bhajare chitta was presented differently, a noticeable gait shift. I have not heard this rendition. Felt it lacked the smoothness of the "normal" one.
This is part of the pet SSP project of the YACMers and the notations taken there dogmatically, as if that is some final word!

And there has been a prevailing chorus from musicologists on how some authentic versions are in danger of being lost!

I have pointed out (another big post in GD) how the passages, "nija rUpa dAna daksha" and "aruNAM" - the latter taken for neraval here , are incongruent! Extra Avarta for the entire passage.

It seems they have a challenge here to render neraval "as composed" and it is some feat to do so! Well if it the composition initial setting is a good smooth playing one, there is no issue with that restriction.

But the speed of this rendition not as slow as the art gallery speed of the famous art monger/collector/displayer! It is sort of a good optimal speed of rendition, slow enough for the musician to express herself.

Nothing against Vid. Amritha Murali here. Let me just record from my personal side that it is a very delectable rendition that she gave!

I am just writing against the tendencies of this musician generation as a whole - how they are thinking with music!

A kind of museum / art/ preservation / cult movement is taking spot here!

Somebody like RKSK who knows the sense of the sampradaya needs to involve himself more from that angle. He is playing his humility here - "I don't have the authority to change stuff" - but we do have general sense from SrI dIkshitar's own composition - how the tALa pragnya is - where some general principle can be gathered.

He composed in Sanskrit - to top it all - and you think he would be unhappy if we changed for good?

Sachi_R
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#9 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by Sachi_R »

Dear Shankaran,
it is rather early in the day and I am. almost regretting reading your post 😁

Are you implying:
1. SSP need not be the last word?
2. Slowing it down makes it art gallery stuff and robs it of authenticity?
3. YACMers are appropriating to themselves powers to change versions and practices in a such a way they are disorienting music and even offending Dikshitar's sensibilities?
4. None of the above?
5.?

πŸ™

shankarank
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#10 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by shankarank »

Let me take it one by one:
Sachi_R wrote: ↑22 Sep 2020, 05:37 1. SSP need not be the last word?
Well there is the lived tradition of rendering albeit varied and multi-version out there! There is MSS, KVN, and a Brinda-Mukta family version also around? Those should not be examined? Nobody is saying follow one of them and sing like this or that musician, but they dropped all of it and went straight to the book, as if it confers some authenticity to it.
Sachi_R wrote: ↑22 Sep 2020, 05:37 2. Slowing it down makes it art gallery stuff and robs it of authenticity?
No. As one Vidvan quipped, if you lit up Agni very high, you should be prepared to do Ahutis for it :D
Sachi_R wrote: ↑22 Sep 2020, 05:37 3. YACMers are appropriating to themselves powers to change versions and practices in a such a way they are disorienting music and even offending Dikshitar's sensibilities?
They are not appropriating and changing or offending anybody. I am not being some emotional rabble rouser here. But a certain post modernism with a critical examination of "texts" is being practiced. Contrary to listening experience, sAdhana etc. - Alien to our land and culture!
Sachi_R wrote: ↑22 Sep 2020, 05:37 4. None of the above?
- I suppose answer is YES and I clarified why so ;)

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#11 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by Sachi_R »

Then I agree with you Saami!
I think the criterion for what is good music is entirely its appeal in the moment to the listener.

I have found myself enjoying very disparate versions of the same song and sometimes not enjoying the same song by the same singer in the same version because... I don't know.

I do see a pattern though in the YACM anthem to change the world. As long as they don't hammer it saying "our way or the highway", let them be 😊

By the way I like this version too by Vijay Siva:
https://youtu.be/4zvFGqU0WLI

(Wasn't he also a YACMer!?)

shankarank
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#12 Re: AMRITA MURALI IN NADA INBAM ON LINE CONCERT-15 Sep 2020

Post by shankarank »

Sri Vijay Siva's rendition was in a good pace.

But the issue remains same - odd number of Avartas for aruNAm and unnecessary impedance @ nityAM and a beat hug at kalyANIm instead of atItam and one Avarta pause there and 5th Avarta concluding with SarvANim. Usually odd number of Avartas are frowned upon and many schools avoid that in kORvais. Here the mAtrA counts of various phrases don't warrant that also.

A printed material may have copy editing mistakes and such and may have been done in a rush. KVN in his neraval spends lot of time in nija rUpa and sings aruNAm only once in even number of Avartas with kalyANim taken atItam to achieve the same. MSS same thing as well.

It is not that the sound of it is not relished. Extra kArvais do ring the rAgA out. But when rhythmic flow is impeded that takes something away. Especially when neraval starts to be done on the same line.

My point about using the YACMer reference is this whole promotion on SSP began with sangeetham.com and internet era with some pangs of deficiency felt over lack of documentation and "see here we have this great SSP" the redeemer of all sampradAya. As though all the sung and listened experience means for nothing.

And now added to it, new claims are being made against the changes done by the rendering traditions based on some hegemony Caste supremacy etc.

In reality much of the sense of layam comes from Isai vELLalars and their practice. Then there was this eerie posting in Sangeetham.com that rang true:

"Sri diskshitar taught all other than brahmins mostly and we got his compositions intact, whilst SrI tyAgarAja taught all brahmins and we got it all mutilated"

Ain't we still talking about that? If there is indeed a Caste/community issue , the issue is of mediocrity and not hegemony.

For a community that was custodian of "aksharas" (letters) that is indeed a disgrace.

In the whole scene there was only one mAhAtma who pursued excellence, that is Kanchi paramacharya himself who sent the likes of SrI BalakrishNa Sastrigal in our direction , without which we wouldn't have known much about all these!

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