Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Miscellaneous topics on Carnatic music
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shankarank
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#101 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

RSR wrote: 29 Jan 2020, 09:31 There was a time immediately after the second war, when the Stalin Govt gave special honours to mothers giving birth to many children. Fertility cult was associated with that.
So that makes it a good word huh! He blessed it , I see :lol:
RSR wrote: 29 Jan 2020, 09:31 But still, Eugenics does play a part as recognized by the Shastras. ( Essays of a biologist- Julian Huxley).
Huxley points out the socially detrimental trend of the decline of the intellectually equipped section of society being swamped by the broods of brutality, paaNi and plain mules. Marx opines that Primitive communism was an impediment to development of productive forces and forced labour was a precondition for material progress.
We can discuss this without getting too much scientific reasoning :lol: , just plain and common notions of liberty - which was there in true sense eons, before written or sampradaya constitutions! :lol: .

People left to themselves sort themselves out - OK! Nothing more!

Equality, equal treatment etc. - slogans are being subverted and twisted. A private citizen has no obligation to treat anybody equal to anybody else ( this also takes care of the complaints regarding those who didn't accompany Women musicians!). Equalilty , equal treatment only applies to those who are accorded powers under the constitution - the government and their agencies - it is a limitation on those powers! Now the buddhi-jivis have gone beserk to divine rights beyond any sense - right to work, right to breathe, right of rivers to flow etc. etc.

A Constitution has to limit itself - and private spaces (cultures, religions) can set the rules. Let the people sort it out. Especially since the modern constitutions are written after Nuclear world order.

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#102 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by sankark »

Ranganayaki wrote: 28 Jan 2020, 07:12 I remember this thread, but I haven’t gone over all of it one more time.. Have we made a list of the specific Varnam s or javalies that could be considered offensive? Who are the composers, which period did these compositions occur in? What are the other works of the same poets like? Could they be a product of the period when music and dance were associated with the decline of the devadasis? This type of information may help us make personal judgements according to our taste.
On the topic of camouflage - leaving the tangents to shAstrams, progeny and other stuff - out

AI understand, you wourld prefer that when someone translates from language A (telugu) to language B (tamil), it would behove to make sure that the rawness/bawdiness/crassness doesn't come through but use language that elevates/smoothens/glosses over. Isn't that a form of camouflage (இடக்கரடக்கல்/euphemism/imputing a paramAtma-jIvAtmA to punidham-ify just simply worldly songs) too to accommodate language B audience?

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#103 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by sureshvv »

The frequency at which the youngsters say "sh*t" nowadays - wonder if they will say that in their native language.

shankarank
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#104 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

@sureshvv - growing up post liberal tamizh movie generation in down south, even in an English medium school, I know how most youngsters conversed! You can see that in You tube even today in many political channels when tempers run high! A tamizh movie dialog teaches abuse words to Hindi-wallah in a humorous scene - forgot that?

Is this a surprise to those who have lived around in Chennai? Isn't that the worst language? :lol: Oh you are talking about the educated elite !!?? I see ! :lol: .

Well, well I remember you talking about the institute in Madras?? Just remember the Hostel once ;) :lol:

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#105 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

As regards language, we see that old tamizh works had description of beauty and love in them. A question came up in whatsapp ( music teachers!) as to why SrI tyAgarAja did not compose in tamizh when he lived there and was likely able to converse in that language. Quickly dismissed as unsuitable language and not the Italian of the east - don't know when this was said?

First of all we have tamizh mUvars who have composed already before that and in most cases musicians are able to render them like the kritis of the trinity. With particular attention to alignment/adjustments they could be very much enhancing. They will fit the Ariyakudi spot #3 - the one down batsman of Carnatic kutcheri! The ball would have worn a bit, pitch turn(pun intended) data available, like the voice has settled down. Especially the rUpakam ones. That is enough to make Carnatic music.

As to why tyAgaraja didn't, we underestimate the effort required! One has to be proficient in the literary works of the language, which I am not sure tyAgaraja was. Just because it was spoken does not mean one can compose in it.

In all of rasikas we have one composer - Arasi. In all of my school batch , may be two or three batches before and after, there was one guy trying pudu-kavithai with our tamizh teacher.

Also the tamizh kingdoms waned and did not have the contemporary-ness to express the theme in acceptable cultural terms. We don't know what would have happened, had their reign continued. Well we have a clue, when tamizh cinema started providing the forum , you can see how the lyrics expressed themselves. Mostly unpalatable to the conservatives, even the 70s , 80s ones!

From tamizh composers then, What we got were all bhakti based works after the power waned. Simply the same thing happened to Telugu, as the trinity came about when the kingdoms waned and became indigent!

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#106 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

sankark wrote: 29 Jan 2020, 19:27

On the topic of camouflage - leaving the tangents to shAstrams, progeny and other stuff - out

AI understand, you wourld prefer that when someone translates from language A (telugu) to language B (tamil), it would behove to make sure that the rawness/bawdiness/crassness doesn't come through but use language that elevates/smoothens/glosses over. Isn't that a form of camouflage (இடக்கரடக்கல்/euphemism/imputing a paramAtma-jIvAtmA to punidham-ify just simply worldly songs) too to accommodate language B audience?
Is this addressed to me? Is the “you” me? I see no connection between what I wrote and this response. I wrote at a point when I could still understand a couple of points of view, to ask what I thought were relevant questions that - if answered - could guide us to individually make up our minds on this question. But since then this thread has devolved into verbal diarrhea which is totally incomprehensible to me. So I have no answer to this post, nor anything to say.

Pratyaksham Bala
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#107 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

There is a separate thread on the Javali referred to in Post #1 of this thread - 'Samayamide ra ra'. That was active during 2008-09:-
viewtopic.php?t=7662

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#108 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

This thread !

On 5th April 2011 vgovindan started this thread.
Within three days, there were 71 posts.
With Post #71 of 7th April 2011, the thread went silent.

After nearly 9 years, it was revived on 27th Jan 2020 !
And within three days added 30 more posts !

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#109 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

@107
@108
@Pratyaksham Bala
Thank you very much for the above posts.
The thread cited by you, in 107, says it all. ( posts by 'vasanthakokilam','rShankar'.
I have not gone through the meaning of ALL the 700 songs of Thyagaraja Swami. Leaving alone the tuning pattern of javalis, tillanas, padams...( he did not use those patterns) I do not think, he ever used coarse sentiments and wordings ( such as pawing and nailing stuff).
@arunk
has problems in relating to the bakthi aspect of Thyagaraja swami's songs. As the songs are mostly on Ramayana theme, most Indians may not have such issues. ( atheists, agnostics , dialectical materialists ( they should not have- however- if they take into account the social and historical context). and such may have. ).
There is no easy solution in sight. except evolving a new pattern for vocalists, Raga Allpanai and all such items without involving words can be sung and the lyrical portion can be played in an instrument. either by the singer or the accompanist. There are quite a few musicians who can sing the song in swarams alone. Why not? That might make CM acceptable to universal audience.
That might be a solution to javalis, tillanas, and such too.

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#110 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

@105
@shankarank
As to why tyAgaraja didn't, we underestimate the effort required! One has to be proficient in the literary works of the language, which I am not sure tyAgaraja was. Just because it was spoken does not mean one can compose in it.
Yes. Agreed.

Howewver , Thyagaraja Swami's Telugu is said to be of 'not literary' quality.
Not every one whose mother tongue is Tamil, can be a Tamil poet.
The Trinity are valued for their 'tuning' prowess. and not so much for the quality and uniquness of their literary output.
After Kamban ( 1100 AD), what is the need for Arunachala kavi? Just that the latter's songs had been tuned.
Atleast Sundara Kandam of Ramayanam should have been set to easy tunes. At least the lovely Dhyana Slokam.
Why were not such things attempted by our music composers -pre 1900?
Just as it is not easy to write like Kamban ,Ilango and Barathy, it is not easy to compose music like the Trinity.
Papanasam Sivan might have been the only vak-geyakara of Tamil . some one who writes the lyrics and composes the music too.
and even sings it. His Tamizh is not all that good. and his music -tuning is sometimes good, not always. That may apply to the Bard's kritis and tunes too!

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#111 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

RSR wrote: 29 Jan 2020, 11:09 @Pratyaksham Bala
...By the way,
1) Kindly remove the linc given to your tamil 'poetry' ( @69 in this thread) , It is inexcusably vulgar , insulting and arrogant on a very very erudite and dedicated scholar in this forum Sri.V.Govindan.
mods are requested to remove that at the earliest.
You have used harsh words.
Please mention which Tamil 'poetry' of mine, you are referring to ?

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#112 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 09:58 #111
Howewver , Thyagaraja Swami's Telugu is said to be of 'not literary' quality.

The Trinity are valued for their 'tuning' prowess. and not so much for the quality and uniquness of their literary output.
Well here we go again. Music is not just tuning, just like poetry is not just the content (in terms what it conveys via meaning!) or the words. As soon as you said literary quality, you are into appreciating something beyond it's meaning - how the sound and stringing of words is formed nicely. The quality of thyagaraja swami's poetry should be evaluated in the context of requirements of a "musical" composition - the kriti lakshana. Many treatises have been cited which have the requirements , but from a practical standpoint - I would simply take a leaf out of his kriti - sogasuga mridanga tALamu: yati viSrama is good enough. I had raised this in my childish/boorish attempt at this here : viewtopic.php?f=9&t=24554

Take any kriti:

http://thyagaraja-vaibhavam.blogspot.co ... akela.html

See how first the ending stanzas join back to the pallavi refrain. Just recite it with tALAM with not a single melodic note. You will see the music in it.

This was so powerful, it took people eons to understand Sri dikshitar's music even though dIkshitar had a good tALA pragnya of his own. SrI dIkshitar took some work to be brought to Carnatic kutcheri stage.

Essentially the musicians earn their living using this rhythmic quality. May be that is why the musicologist called it Entertainment.

Otherwise padams and jAVaLis outght to have been so popular. Look at the depth of rAga in there. Alapana should have been popular. Only few musicians could stand with either of it!

So you cannot compare thyaagaraja svAmi's poetry with real poetry of ancient times.
RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 09:58 Atleast Sundara Kandam of Ramayanam should have been set to easy tunes. At least the lovely Dhyana Slokam.
Why were not such things attempted by our music composers -pre 1900?
Just as it is not easy to write like Kamban ,Ilango and Barathy, it is not easy to compose music like the Trinity.
It cannot be done for the same reasons explained above. You don't set things to tune. Music must already be there. See how easy it is to tune AruNagiri's tiruppugazh. Tuning is no big deal once you learn some amount of music via already tuned works!

My teacher taught vaidEhi sahitam to set of students , I think in rAgA pIlu. It will be nice to be sung in an informal event by students. But it will hug beats, it won't stand in a professional setting. It will be at a bAla pAThAm level!

That's why you need Arunachala kavi. He already had music , even if tunes were lost. Tuning is NOT the only music - it is not a big deal.
RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 09:58 Just as it is not easy to write like Kamban ,Ilango and Barathy, it is not easy to compose music like the Trinity.
Papanasam Sivan might have been the only vak-geyakara of Tamil . some one who writes the lyrics and composes the music too. and even sings it. His Tamizh is not all that good. and his music -tuning is sometimes good, not always. That may apply to the Bard's kritis and tunes too!
SubrahmaNya Bharathi song, we need another Papanasam Sivan to take some ideas ( but not get too deep and emotional, not aim for completeness, take some core idea may be) and a do a kriti based in Bharathy's poetry. Not sure if that will strike a chord. Needs attempted. That is the tough part. Tuning is just coloring, now that a pallete is available.

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#113 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

@112
@shankarank
1) My mother-tongue is Tamil and cannot say much about the Bard's music's literary quality.
( Dr.V.Raghavan tries to defend the literary quality of Sathguru's compositions in his thesis).
His aim was definitely not to be a poet. He had a message which can be conveyed only through lyrics.
And lyrics without tuning would not have been the right medium to reach the public.
That logic and rationale applies to all the CM composers. ( Trinity and pre-Trinity)
--
Not for mere argument sake. I am sharing my genuinely felt experience. That- tune is entirely distinct from theme, literary quality and the layam, My reference is records like
Janaki Ramana, Intha sowkyamu, koluva maragade
maanasa guru guha , maamava maadhava deva, saarasa dhala nayanaa
All these were heard 65 years back in radio and even today, I do not know word-by-word meaning etc.
Is it merely a subjective experience?
I have not come across any Tamil kriti like these.
-----------------------------------
Almost all families know the Dhyanaslokam of Sundarakaanda paaraayanam.
https://sites.google.com/site/dhyanaslokam/home
https://sites.google.com/site/dhyanaslokam/home/slokams
I am longing for a nice translation of those stanzas in chaste Vaishna thamizh. Sanskrit scholars like you, PB, arasi madam, Bakthim Dehi can help.( they should know both Sanskrit and Literary Tamil, especially Vaishnava Tamil)

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#114 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

@RSR
Please reply to Post #111.

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#115 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

@RSR
Don't try to justify your folly.

Sri V Govindan started the Javali thread and refered to a Telugu Javali, giving the transliterated version of a few lines, and also its translation in Tamil ! Within three days and 60+ posts, he somehow got offended by the trend of dicussions, and said in Post #62 “Good Bye - as for this topic is concerned.”

Next day, on 7 Apr 2011, Sri vgovindan followed this up with post #443 in ‘Kavidaigal Thread’ where he conveyed. in Tamil, his frustration and unhappiness with the author of the Javali and those who support/enjoy such creations.
---
Moderator clarified that Sri vgovindan’s post refers to the Javali thread, and also gave the link.
I joined the Moderator in Post #445 to clarify once again that Sri vgovindan’s post #443 refers to the Javali thread.
---
Now, foolishly you drag my name and make nasty comments.
The subject of discussion was the Telugu Javali (referred to Sri vgovindan in the Javali thread) and its author & admirers, NOT any of my poems.

Accept your mistake and apologize for your silly tantrum.

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#116 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

No.
This is the link to your poem.
https://sites.google.com/site/4techstrial/home
The offense is obvious.

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#117 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 12:15 And lyrics without tuning would not have been the right medium to reach the public.
It would help if you point out any intent of thyaagaraaja swami to preach and reach out his message. He only taught his Sishyas. There is one dAsarati RNamu where he talks of his music making him shine in distant lands. We should not imagine some grand plans in their minds. Was he a politician or rabble rouser or what?
RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 12:15 ( Dr.V.Raghavan tries to defend the literary quality of Sathguru's compositions in his thesis).
Any scholar will try and make his case. Literature is not science and it is left to you to be persuaded. What I meant was we should not place wrong expectations in a different context like sangItam.

May be Telugu language ( as in tyagaraja kritis) is a camouflage for Carnatic music :lol: . And the way it is going, tamizh will be soon ;)

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#118 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

@117
@shankarank
I am afraid that the Bajan Sampradya and Ramayana discourse background of Thyagaraja Swami is being ignored by you.. He had a large number of disciples , including Subbaraya Saastry and 'Manambuchavadi'. He did not teach for income. or fame That was his way of spreading his message. Only at a very late stage of his life, he traveled, that too on the invitation of Upanishad Swami .
All the biographies of Thyagaraja that I read, stress his spiritual mission. Great souls may or may not leave their place to take their message to the people. Dasa singers were wandering minstrels.
But, neither Shyama Sastry nor Thyagaraja cared much to leave their place. What do we gain by treating them as mere music composers?
------------
Ramakrishna Paramahamsa always stayed in Dhakshineswar temple only. Shirdi Saibaba never left Shirdi. Ramana Maharishi did not even talk much.

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#119 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

Here we go round the mulberry bush, mulberry bush, the mulberry bush...

Shankarank,
May be Carnatic music is a camouflage for Karnak--Johnny Carson lives on--this is as off topic and 'what in the heck' as it can be. Ah, but it isn't offensive :)

PB,
Watch your BP. KuTTich chuvaril muTTikkoLgiRa kadaiyidu…. :roll:

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#120 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by rshankar »

arasi wrote: 31 Jan 2020, 21:35Here we go round the mulberry bush, mulberry bush, the mulberry bush...
Or is it 'pop goes the weasel'? :lol:
arasi wrote: 31 Jan 2020, 21:35May be Carnatic music is a camouflage for Karnak-
Wasn't it Tanjai Ramiah Das who said 'kaDu kaDuvena mugam mARudal karnATaka vazhakkam anRO'? :)

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#121 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RSR »

@120
'pazhakath theriya veNum...ulakaip paartthu nadakka veNum.'
It was a very nice song with nice tune.
'pala vaarthaikku oru vaarthaiyum , pathile sollak koodaathu!'
---------
kupchip .

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#122 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 09:58 #111
Howewver , Thyagaraja Swami's Telugu is said to be of 'not literary' quality.

The Trinity are valued for their 'tuning' prowess. and not so much for the quality and uniquness of their literary output.
RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 12:15 1) My mother-tongue is Tamil and cannot say much about the Bard's music's literary quality.
RSR wrote: 30 Jan 2020, 12:15 His aim was definitely not to be a poet.
arasi wrote: 31 Jan 2020, 21:35 Shankarank,
May be Carnatic music is a camouflage for Karnak--Johnny Carson lives on--this is as off topic and 'what in the heck' as it can be. Ah, but it isn't offensive
Thanks for sipping in the humor. Just clarifying, I was try to say back what @RSR was trying to say - when I said what is below:
shankarank wrote: 31 Jan 2020, 11:04 May be Telugu language ( as in tyagaraja kritis) is a camouflage for Carnatic music .

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#123 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

shankarank, no clarification needed:)
It was more on the lines in the song from Missiamma (missamma in telugu). There1 I got the word telugu which is in the title of the topic!

It is: pazhagath theriya vENum, peNNE (ANE too/)--ulagil pArthu naDakkavENum. A single line captures our imagination:
pazhangAlathin nilai maRandu, varungAlathai nI uNarndu...That is, though we are rooted in the past, pondering over things in the present, and focusing on the future helps...
Last edited by arasi on 02 Feb 2020, 12:07, edited 2 times in total.

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#124 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

@arasi
Please check the message conveyed at -
viewtopic.php?f=28&t=14972&p=359616#p359616

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#125 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

@arasi #123 I thought Carnatic music is good enough to pazhagufy with seniors. Now you are asking for more, old movies which I have no familiarity with. It is like people who get updated with Sport tidbits just to sound "current" (kar-nATak) at the water cooler, with those who may do it out of interest. Now watching movies becomes a camouflage for pazhagufication! Too much social pressure - hooh! :D

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#126 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

shankarank,
No sweat. It is pertinent to us old folks who can retrieve these from our memory and look for a grain of wisdom in them.

PB,
No comprende. What's offensive about those lines??

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#127 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RasikasModerator2 »

@arasi That poem was written by PB long back to describe the state of our temples and priests, long before PB and VG were even on the forum - so it has nothing against VG.

As to what's offensive, you have to ask RSR that. He was doing fine compiling some rare music collections and plate recordings (His NCV collection for e.g. is priceless). I don't know why he just started a spate of battles with everyone. This was a discussion from many years back, why rake it up now?


(Redacted after discussion...)

Although on a forum we have to enable for diversity of views and tastes, and respect cultural and generational gaps, and even though we have seen many old timers with all those 19th-20th century opinions, his comments of late were getting more shocking, even inflammatory, so after the incident with PB, we had to warn him to stop it.

Let him do what he does best, collecting and sharing old music collections.

Lest news spreads that "rasikas.org encourages only male progeny" or something similar!

Let's get back on topic.

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#128 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

Going back #21 by VGV, Prof. TRS - I have only one window , a lec dem organized in Columbus, Ohio where he touched upon this. Noone asked or no question raised. He started on his own talking about these compositions. It was a thin audience , parents of students of his student, mostly and students were present too. He talked about how a lady awarded a man the title jArasikhAmaNi and how that bhAva is present in some compositions. He went on to say : "they talk like this in their daily lives. That is how they talk."

Now the last one is an anthropological observation on "otherly" beings, like how a Western researcher makes observations on natives - completely colonial.

So it is fair for me to do the same.

1. He finally showed he was just another professor in an University - which is not universal in knowledge.

2. He could have said, many compositions reflect the lifestyles of people and sung in a chamber setting - where it truly expresses the bhAva that appeals to them. Like the thin Audience he got for his Lec Dem! - in fact he was too defensive about that when he asked the supposedly clueless parents not to judge a quality of a programme or concert by the amount of crowd in there!

3. He could have also impressed on the parents , how their children now learn under a true Gurukula - it was more of a Gurukulam than any University course he ever taught!

4. He could have explained how Srngara still lives in other compositions addressed to the deities Srinivasa and RajagOpala. His own grand student did sing marulu konnAdira (khamas) of Poochi Srinivasa Iyengar in the annual celebrations. In fact a spiritual person shared once this to me : That it became a tradition in the sense, when it is to describe feminine beauty , it was done towards the dEvi, the divine feminine and not humans.

6. He could have asked them to fund and foster small time musicians in smaller venues to explore music more seriously keeping with current endeavors of families and children. After all, their intent was to give the best of our culture to their children.

7. In the age of associations , sabhas, ticket sales, celebrity culture, art-i-fication (artificial is it?), museum culture, he could have pointed out how it is important to preserve the core ideas of our tradition.

8. In spite of being a laya vidvAn, he did not have a single qualitative statement on layam, forget that he did not go into any technicalities - he already concluded that his Lec Dem itself was too much for the thin audience. Even in the melodic sphere, he did not take it beyond just mere technicalities. He already did not properly contextualize the most bhava laden singing tradition of SrngAram.

As the Tanjore Marathi Grundig tape collector summed it up after hearing the entire tape ( he had to as he was the one mastering it from a video tape that can run continuously for more than 45 minutes) , except for few short moments the Lec Dem was Amma pETTai kathai! May be that is a bhAva!

That's the University professor for you!

arasi
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#129 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

VK,
I know quite a few avatars of yours--all very agreeable, but your playing David Copperfield's great aunt? Incredible!

RasikasModerator2
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#130 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RasikasModerator2 »

@arasi. I last read that in school. IIRC That aunt who hates boys huh? I didn't come across as a misandrist did I? Well at least social media can't accuse me of misogyny. :) Btw, about me -- I am anyone who knows the password, and who has an internet connection. ;)

About that last statement we wrote, you just imagine putting that out in today's times with social media everywhere, and a global audience reading, what a controversy it could cause. It raised some complaints. Other things may be allowed to pass as personal opinions. But already CM has enough mud thrown at it. Now manu smriti is the last thing we need. Only yesterday it helped raise the latest controversy, and related to that CM FB groups have had some colorful discussions.

arasi
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#131 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

Got the internet connection (atleast until I finish this post, I hope :( spring cuckoo).

Ah, I should have explained about David's dear great aunt Betsy. She was a splendid character, scary if you only consider her prejudice against the other sex (well, it included little innocent boys too). There was a reason-- the way she was treated by certain male of the species. Add to it her strong personality--but how she nourished her orphaned great nephew! Oh, I was reminded only of her 'Off the turf!' admonitions to trespassers, and that was how David was 'welcomed' when he arrived at her door. Underneath all that stern exterior there was a spring of humane feelings and love to be triggered :)

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#132 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by RasikasModerator2 »

@arasi We were discussing this amongst ourselves. One thing we have learnt from 2 decades of forum experience and countless discussions and arguments here and anywhere else where there is a "comments section", or in relationships (learnt the hard way :lol:)-- is that it is virtually impossible to change someone's opinions or emotions on a particular topic. A discussion is pointless when the conclusions have been already made. So religion, politics, anything harimau, then TM Krishna and now this. :)

Only the following kinds of people ever change their minds. (And only in real life, not online!)

Children and students. (Not so easily as believed!! Most of the time it's letting them know they've crossed an unacceptable line more than actual convincing... )

Those who find something they never knew existed.

Those who research deeply and find new revelations with evidence to support it.

Those who are impacted by experience strong enough to change their perception.

But even among them few accept gracefully. Genuine humility is too rare. Most people are so invested in their opinions that it activates their flight or fight response in even normal discussions.

Therefore we'd discourage rasikas from trying to convince each other over opinions, especially when it's clear the discussion is over before it began, and also avoid trashing what's valued by others Sishupala style (apparently he got so nasty that his own supporters had to shut their ears!). It has never worked in human history AFAIK and all that nastiness is just asking for a fight and a lock up.

This message is for all of you. Handle with care.

arasi
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#133 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

Yes, VK. Your experience and sound judgement speak here. When 'vAyaik kudappudal' to shoot the breeze gets to be a verbal shoot out, it needs to be stopped--for the well-being of the forum, and for keeping the music we appreciate in its proper place. In showing scant respect to cm lovers, especially the young rasikas who come here to learn, is the worst thing. Just as walls along the streets, just because they are there get covered with notices, using Rasikas.org as a base for verbal combats is unsavory.
Rasikas.org's birthday is around the corner. Let us wish it a hundred years of glory, and the need for hardly any locking of threads, and locking of horns for that matter :)

Pratyaksham Bala
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#134 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

.
Padams and Javalis - Lecture Demonstration, The ARTery, 10 Sep 2014.
https://youtu.be/lHqc3cOM0Qg?t=1
https://youtu.be/zulW2Kf5Ulg?t=1

Very interesting and informative lectures by leading personalities in the field of music & dance.

In his presentation, Shri V.S.K. Ranga Rao, inter alia mentions : “Some songs of Tyagaraja are Javalis !”
Check from 14.50 at
https://youtu.be/lHqc3cOM0Qg?t=932

--

Here is an article ‘Tracing the origins of Javali’ by Shri V.A.K. Ranga Rao,
in The Hindu, 21 Feb 2019.
https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/ ... 329670.ece

--

There is no end to views, opinions and discussions !

Time to lock this thread ?

vgovindan
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#135 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by vgovindan »

Pb,
I thought I will not enter this thread again. But your post that "Some songs of Tyagaraja are Javalis", made me sit up. Are we discussing Javalis per se as a vehicle for musical rendering or the use of Javali for camouflaged SRngAra bhava which are to be sung in kothis? If you think that the kRtis of tyAgarAja, mentioned by the lecturer, have questionable wordings, I would be very sorry for having poked my nose again.

Some may ask me 'மூக்குலே வேர்க்குதோ' when name tyAgarAja comes up. But again the Universe came into being through SrngAra rasa of kAmESvara - kAmESvari - a la SrI vidyA. But then there are apples and apples - name doesn't exude substance.

Btw, the mere mention of Deva Dasis should not make us to conjure up vision of kothis. Puranically and historically there were many accomplished Deva Dasis who enriched arts and also became true bhaktas of Lord. Who else can understand emotions of pangs of Love - with capital L - than Deva Dasis in whose DNA was it embedded. We threw the baby with bath water - that's a sad reflection of societal mores of the day. Nagaratmma is a shining example. It speaks volumes of our misconception of the true yearnings of individuals and judging by just looking at their dress or profession. The story of kRshNa visiting a hunch-backed flower vendor speaks volumes of our understanding and that of Lord. And again, are we not sparks of that divine eternal fire?

Good Luck for closing the thread and also Best Wishes on the 20th anniversary of Rasikas. God Bless srkris.

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#136 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

vgovindan wrote: 13 Feb 2020, 09:04 Pb, ... If you think that the kRtis of tyAgarAja, mentioned by the lecturer, have questionable wordings, I would be very sorry for having poked my nose again.
I have no opinion on this. I keep hearing so many arguments.

I quoted Shri V.S.K. Ranga Rao, who inter alia mentions : “Some songs of Tyagaraja are Javalis !”, -- merely to indicate that "there is no end to views, opinions and discussions !" on this subject.

Your contributions are great. And I respect and admire your points of view.

arasi
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#137 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

Govindan,
Happy to hear from you!
Old friends we all are, and among the thousands who come looking for sAhityA-s with meaning, your dedicated work with Tyagaraja, MD and SS--a life's work with translations in several key languages AND English is indeed a treasure house. For the young who are drawn to CM, your work is immensely valuable. The missionary zeal of Lakshman in his thirst for collecting CM kritis and the flair and dedication with which the band of our translators offer their English version (with elaborations and appreciation) is something we all pride in. There is no room for any ego there--it's just their service-minded work . It brings out the beauty and the finesse found in the countless compositions in CM.
Well, if some think my sentiments are a bit too sweet, may it be so. We get moved by a single performance or an artiste and write paragraphs about them. Our 'doers' here spend quite a bit of their precious time on their hard work. MAS is not a bad thing. AND, old ladies are entitled to express their appreciation once in a while, I hope...:).

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#138 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

@arasi , what’s MAS?

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#139 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

Pratyaksham Bala wrote: 13 Feb 2020, 07:56 .


In his presentation, Shri V.S.K. Ranga Rao, inter alia mentions : “Some songs of Tyagaraja are Javalis !”
Check from 14.50 at
https://youtu.be/lHqc3cOM0Qg?t=932
This selection as presented almost seems inflammatory. In fact, you have to rewind a little as PB suggests in his writing. The speech does not seem to focus on Javalis at all. That part lasts only a couple of minutes.

At 14:50 he begins to speak about the compositional form: the Javali. This is how he goes (I add my criticism as I go):

1. Many many scholars, he says, have given many many “reasons” for the Javali. This appears to mean many many definitions. He gives a translation of one particular definition in Kannada. But he gives no other definitions in spite of referring to the many that exist and claims that they cannot all be true. Apparently the word exists in many other languages including Arabic and he seems to imply that all their definitions contradict each other. Did he settle on the Kannada definition as “a lewd song?” Unclear. I was not impressed with his approach.

2. He says that “for him” the Javali form came into being before a name was appended to it. If you think about it, most things are named after they come into existence. Again he does not define the nature of the form, nor does he substantiate his statement with any dates.

3. Then he makes his potentially offensive statement prefacing it with a request to the pious in the audience not to be offended. Without having defined the Javali as a form, and without giving any dates, he declares that three kritis of Thyagaraja’s are Javalis. My impression of his speech is that he is not scholarly, he does not seek to convince, it is just a gratuitous statement without elucidation or any effort by him to convince them. But no one even asks a question about this part of his speech.

4. This is the most important part. He declares three songs of Thyagaraja as being Javalis and the only thing he says by way of explanation is that these songs have the prosody of a Javali. Now he does not tell you what he thinks the prosody of a Javali is, and how the prosody of these songs corresponds to that of a regular Javali.

Plus, let’s note that he only says “prosody,” a word which does not refer to form or content, only to features like metre, syllable counts, rhyme..

On the other hand, it’s possible he does not know what the word means and by “prosody,” he actually means the type of lyrics or even the type of sentiment in the songs. That does seem to be true as he launches into a cynical, description of the typical javali, almost ridiculing it and likens it to the three songs of Sri T that he had mentioned earlier, especially Chinnanaade Na. So if he actually meant the lyrical content, we should take it more seriously.

Yes, Thyagaraja‘s language does sound very simple, and pedestrian, quite like a javali. But certainly in all his works it seems clear to me that his intention is to talk directly to Sri Rama without being clever, without attempting to show skill in matters irrelevant to his Bhakti such as literary merit (though I agree that he does follow rules of prosody which may have come naturally to him).

All that said, one has to examine an individual work in the context of the wider body of work. Did T regularly sing of the mundane or was it his main goal to bring Rama close to him? Did he talk of a wish for money or fame or the love of his wife or the state of his finances? So if you examine it in context it seems gratuitous to say that it speaks of lust. As evidenced by all his other work, T was single-minded in his devotion.

Regarding the details: he says that javalis say, “ You did this to me and I did that to you when we were kids,” and that Chinnanade Na says the same thing. The words are similar, may be. But what is T’s record? Surely not one of lust! His record is one of Bhakti. As a child you held my hand is what he says (according to Sri VG’s translation ).You held my hand and guided me all along, so will you abandon me now or rule my mind? I see this as total surrender to God’s Grace. If an ordinary person wrote it, It would be e open to interpretation, but we have T’s body of work that attest to his extraordinarily pure mind, a mind focused on devotion. Such a mind does not readily descend into lust amidst years of elevation and focus.

It really depends on the content and quality of one’s own mind, whether you would choose a lower or higher interpretation (of T). But to me this man’s interpretation holds no water.

It’s a pity that no one challenged this gentleman On the spot.

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#140 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

On the other hand, in the rest of the video, he appears collegial, expresses criticism And condemns errors without getting into clashes of the ego. He seems mostly reasonable.

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#141 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by rajeshnat »

PB has got the initials wrong , the critic is V A K Rangarao not V S K .

Ranganayaki,
Apart from chinna naatana what are the other two krithis of T that VAK Ranga Rao mentions as having javali typecast.


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#143 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

Enta mu
rajeshnat wrote: 14 Feb 2020, 09:46
Ranganayaki,
Apart from chinna naatana what are the other two krithis of T that VAK Ranga Rao mentions as having javali typecast.
Enta muddo in Bindumalini and Endu Kaugalentura in Suddhadesi.

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#144 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

rajeshnat wrote: 14 Feb 2020, 09:46 PB has got the initials wrong , the critic is V A K Rangarao not V S K .
It could easily be a common typo.

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#145 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Pratyaksham Bala »

Ranganayaki wrote: 15 Feb 2020, 04:19
rajeshnat wrote: 14 Feb 2020, 09:46 PB has got the initials wrong , the critic is V A K Rangarao not V S K .
It could easily be a common typo.
Thanks !
Yes, it is a typo.
In Post #134, in the next line, it is correctly mentioned as V.A.K.

arasi
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#146 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by arasi »

Ranganayaki
MAS is Mutual Admiration Society--a popular expression many years ago.Thinking of dear CML who would mention MAS in the old days...

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#147 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by Ranganayaki »

Ahh.. ok, thanks, Arasi!

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#148 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

Dr VAK Ranga Rao seems to be a no nonsense man - hard hitting speech ! Hear hear - good deal!

Without harping on whether it is Shuddha daivatam or Catusruti one, let them first try to sing manasulOni <some gap> marmamunu telusukO! - instead of manasulOnimar... mamunu telusukO! Get some control on time scale yeah?

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#149 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by sureshvv »

shankarank wrote: 16 Feb 2020, 11:10 Dr VAK Ranga Rao seems to be a no nonsense man - hard hitting speech ! Hear hear - good deal!
Seems, just like you, he has no idea which way he is swinging :D

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#150 Re: Is Telugu Language a Camouflage for Javali, Padam & Varnams

Post by shankarank »

I think he is pretty clear! If you have setup a stage , called it classical and claim scholarship and have scholars to back it, then prove it to be so!

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