Musical Morsels

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Pasupathy
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#1 Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 29 Jan 2013, 22:03

Dear Rasikas,

I am continuing the discussion from :
http://www.rasikas.org/forums/viewtopic. ... 4&p=235802

In this thread, I will be posting links to my Tamil posts in my Blog, which deal with many musical tidbits...articles, jokes, reviews, caricatures, etc..mostly taken from very old Tamil magazines. The posts I am listing below are good examples of the mixture I will present.

Here's a list of my recent posts which, I'm sure, would be of interest to many members. I apologize to those who can't read Tamil. I'm sure the pictures in many of these posts would be of interest.
1.
I remember excerpts from M K Tyagaraja Bhagavathar's concert being broadcast by AIR. Dr John Marr ( 2009 Padmasri Awardee) presents a talk at Vidhvat
Sabha.Ariyakkudi Ramanuja Iyengar , looking at Minister C.Subramanyam sitting opposite him , starts " Sri SubramaNyAya namasthE" ...

When did all these happen? 1953/54 season. When Sri ThiruppAmpuram Swaminatha Pillai got "sangeetha kalanidhi".
A Tamil article with pictures about the Season that appeared in Ananda Vikatan is given below:
Musical Tidbits -1
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/1_15.html
2.
Caricatures of Vidwans (as they were in 1930-s) by the famous artist, Mali, of Ananda Vikatan.
Musical Tidbits - 2
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/2_19.html

3.
Another Tamil article (with pictures) about the 53 Music Season.
Musical Tidbits - 3
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/3_22.html

4.
A 'Vikatan' article (by the famous lawyer V.C. Gopalarathnam) about 'Sangitha Kalanidhi' T L Venkatarama Iyer, whose 'Shashtiabda pUrthi' was celebrated in 1953.
Musical Tidbits -4
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/4_24.html

5.
'Light' refreshment for the Season .Some 'musical' jokes ...mainly from artists Raju and Gopulu of Vikatan , starting from the 40's
Musical Tidbits -5
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/5_27.html

6.
A rare Tamil article written by Ariyakkudi Ramanuja Iyengar in 1939. ( with his characteristic humour bubbling in parts).
Musical Tidbits -6
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/12/6.html

7.
Many photos of 4 Vidwans taken by artist Mali of Vikatan in 1938, who spent most of his Rs.300 monthly salary on Camera (according to veteran artist Gopulu).
Since the names of artists were not given, I have guessed them to be Ariyakkudi, Kumbakonam Rajamanikkam Pillai, Chithoor Subramanya Pillai and GNB.
Musical Tidbits - 7
" Musical Expressions" ; Photos by Mali
4 pages from 39 Deepavali Special Issue of Vikatan.
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/7.html

8.
AIR Madras was started in 1938. Victor Paranjothi ( trained at BBC) was the first station-director. His (rare) Tamil article in Vikatan
(39 Deepavali Special Issue) , adorned by 'Mali's' sketches, is presented in
Musical Tidbits -8
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/8.html

9.
A Tamil article on ' Narayana Theerthar' by Semmangudi Srinivasa Iyer , from 1938 Vikatan Deepavali Malar.
Musical Tidbits -9
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/9.html

10.
The last 'Dance and Song' article in Vikatan about the Madras 53 Music Season
Musical Tidbits -10
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/10.html

11.
After AIR Madras started in 38, 'Kalki' magazine started reviewing Radio Concerts regularly . Here are two samples of those (40-s) articles. Artists like
VVSadagopan, Karaikkudi Sambasiva Iyer, ThuRaiyUr Rajagopala Sarma, M A Kalyanakrishna Bhagavathar .... are some names .....
Musical Tidbits -11
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/11.html

12.
After AIR Madras started in 38, "Ananda Vikatan" also started reviewing Radio Music programs in a regular series of articles , called ' How is Radio?" ( Radio
eppadi?) Here are a few such articles, which appeared in the 40-s, commenting on subjects like Koteeswara Iyer Day, Music Lessons thru Radio, increase of
"Record" music in Radio etc.
Musical Tidbits -12
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/12.html

13.
The special relationship between M.S. Subbulakshmi and 'Kalki' magazine is illustrated by these 3 articles (from 'Kalki'-Issues from the 40-s),
which talk about a 78 rpm record of M.S. and two charity concerts of M.S. ( one article written by Kaviyogi Suddhanandha Bharathi)
Musical Tidbits -13
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/13.html

I plan to post some more such 'Blasts from the Past' , though my Blog is not just about Music. Will post those links here.
Thanks,
Pasupathy
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Pasupathy
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#2 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 29 Jan 2013, 22:16

Musiri Subramanya Iyer acted only in one Tamil movie --' Thukaram".
Here's a review of that film by "Kalki" Krishnamurthy, which appeared in Ananda Vikatan around 1938.

http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2012/08/3_25.html
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sureshvv
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#3 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by sureshvv » 29 Jan 2013, 22:28

Good stuff! Thank you.
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cmlover
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#4 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 29 Jan 2013, 22:45

Thanks. Amazing collections.
Though many of them I have read in my younger days reading them after such a long time brings back those
golden memories.
These are "pasupathy's pashumai pathivugaL" !
Too bad everybody cannot enjoy these recollections due to the language barrier!
Again many of the musical jokes are untranslatable...
Some of the cartoons and pictures have been posted previously by our members
Pratyaksham Bala and Venkatakailasam and you too belong to their august group..
...and not to forget our arasi (Rajee krishnan) who was also a journalist of that era....

By the by I was under the impression 'isai thENI" was "Devan". Thanks for the info..

Pl keep going...
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Pasupathy
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#5 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 29 Jan 2013, 23:35

cmlover wrote:
>>By the by I was under the impression 'isai thENI" was "Devan". Thanks for the info..>>

Note: 'vAna sanchAram" penned by "isaith thEnee" appeared in Kalki, not in Vikatan. ( I think that the only article Devan ever wrote in Kalki magazine was
the tribute when Kalki passed away. It is also there in my Blog) ( "thamizth thEnee" was a pen name which Kalki had used in earlier days..)

I have wondered if Devan continued to write 'Adal pAdal" after Kalki quit Vikatan. Could not find out. Similarly who wrote the Radio reviews in Vikatan? don't know...

Thanks for the comments and intro of other members with similar intersts.
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cmlover
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#6 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 30 Jan 2013, 00:00

I was a Devan addict from the very beginning. Yes, he wrote mostly in Vikatan as the asst editor. My unforgettable was his "Gomathiyin kaathalan" though the movie was unimpressive with TKR comedying the august Rangarajan!
Did any of MKT's classical concerts survive and are available?
By the by GNB sported a moustache for Sakuntalai as did VV Satagopan for Madanakamarajan? Am I right?
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Pasupathy
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#7 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 30 Jan 2013, 00:45

>>Did any of MKT's classical concerts survive and are available?

As far as I know, no:-(( AIR , due to scarcity of funds, tapes etc...apparantly wiped most tapes to record new concerts etc...that's how many concerts of persons like MKT, NCV were lost...

>>By the by GNB sported a moustache for Sakuntalai as did VV Satagopan for Madanakamarajan? Am I right?

I think you are right. Here's VVS in Madanakamarajan!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQQIeMH9g6o
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cmlover
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#8 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 30 Jan 2013, 07:33

With the exception of moustache the other important charateristic of the artistes then was shikai (kuDumi)
I remember for those with a slim kuDumi (Eg', ARI) which used to untie when they reach the stratosphere and dance around - indeed a sight to see! Anga vastram was a must for a bhagavatar those days which appears to have disappeaared mostly. But apparently vEShTi stays but not the pancakaccam. Betel and snuff also have disappeared entirely! Do you remember the kAlakshebam by PUC in Krishna bhakti which though a mockery was typical :D
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Pasupathy
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#9 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 30 Jan 2013, 21:28

>>Do you remember the kAlakshebam by PUC in Krishna bhakti which though a mockery was typical
>>cmlover

I did not see the movie. Here's the PUC kAlakshebam , for the benefit of Rasikas:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XrTn99AEAjY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdmhdnfVcNI

Like our purAnA telling leading to upa-purAnA-s , each nugget leads to other musical nuggets. And each personality deserves much praise .....

e.g. those who watch the above video will surely enjoy the mridangam thani. It was actually played by SVSNarayanan, son of Sri SVSubbiah Bhagavathar ,
famous in Dramas.

The music was due to the great, unfortunately forgotten, Sri SVVenkataraman ( of "Meera" fame).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S._V._Venkatraman

The great lyrics were written by Udumalai Narayana Kavi.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udumalai_Narayana_Kavi

In addition, MLV appeared in one scene in KB and sang one song in that movie... Saraswathi Manohari of Tyagaraja!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zMtoof72Zw
Enjoy!
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cmlover
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#10 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 31 Jan 2013, 00:06

Real nuggets indeed!
I was under the impression that many of the old movies were tuned by P Sivan!
I had associated SVV only with MS.
By the by what is the raga of "katrinile varum geetham"?
It is after a bengali tune by Juthika roy and Lakshman pins it at sindhu bhairavi....
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Pasupathy
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#11 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 31 Jan 2013, 03:52

>>By the by what is the raga of "katrinile varum geetham"?
>>It is after a bengali tune by Juthika roy and Lakshman pins it at sindhu bhairavi....
>.cmlover

I am not qualified or knowledgable enough to answer that .... but still here are my views:-))
1) I think that one who knows Hindusthani music should be approached to find the raga of the original ( Who is the music composer of that ?)
if at all it is really a "raga".
2) It may very well be a "tune" like many film-compositions are.
3) I asked Mala Chandrasekhar who played this on the flute at a Toronto concert. She said "all I can say is that when I play it, I feel all the notes of
Sindhu Bhairavi". So I feel she played it as a "tune" and not according to a "raga" notion. After all, an expert can notate the song .And why should it fit "our" strict defn of a raga?

Sindhu bhairavi has all the 12 notes. B.Subba Rao in 'Raga Nidhi" calls the Bhairavi with 12 notes as the "Asuddha Bhairavi" :-)) So, from our Carnatic Music view point, we can take it as a "tune" born out of or based on the notes of Sindhubhairavi! Still it would be good to find the answer to 1).
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mahavishnu
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#12 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by mahavishnu » 31 Jan 2013, 03:58

I have heard people refer to this ragam as "Savithri", although as Dr. Pasupathy says the ragam was probably defined after the tune. However, there are many carnatic ragams that probably came into existence this way.
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Shivadasan
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#13 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Shivadasan » 31 Jan 2013, 04:20

Pasupathy sir,
You are soing a great work, both in Tamil language and tamil cultural history. My salutations to you.
Do you have any review of MSS performance in her first film debut , 'Seva Sadan' and the songs she had rendered in the film ?
Shivadasan
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Pasupathy
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#14 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 31 Jan 2013, 05:16

>>Do you have any review of MSS performance in her first film debut , 'Seva Sadan' and the songs she had rendered in the film ?
>>Shivadasan

No; if I do get it, will post it.
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Pasupathy
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#15 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 31 Jan 2013, 18:55

Tyagaraja Aradhana --in the mid 40's

Articles from 'Vikatan' with pictures
(like B'lore Nagarathnammal reciting nAmAvaLi ....)

Musical Tidbits -14
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/14.html
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cmlover
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#16 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 31 Jan 2013, 20:48

Nice pictures and nice discussions!
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RaviSri
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#17 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by RaviSri » 01 Feb 2013, 11:19

According to film historian Randor Guy, the negatives of 'Seva Sadan' were damaged beyond repair and nothing survives now.
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RaviSri
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#18 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by RaviSri » 01 Feb 2013, 11:50

Pasupathy
Re: Musical Morsels » 31 Jan 2013 18:55
Tyagaraja Aradhana --in the mid 40's
Articles from 'Vikatan' with pictures
(like B'lore Nagarathnammal reciting nAmAvaLi ....)
Musical Tidbits -14
http://s-pasupathy.blogspot.com/2013/01/14.html
The nAmAvaLi that Bangalore Nagaratnammal recites is the Thyagaraja aSTTOtram. She and Ramudu Bhagavatar prepared this aShTTOtram in praise of Thyagaraja and this was recited by her as long as she lived. This aShTTOtram is being recited even now during the daily pujas.

The years 1945, 46 etc may be correct. The five pancharatnas were begun only in the 1950s. As can be read in your blog, they sang only sAdinchEnE at the request of Ariyakkudi. Kalki does not seem to have written on the three groups, the periya kaTchi, chinna kaTchi and the Nagaratnammal group all of which merged only in 1950 and which existed during 1945/46.
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Pasupathy
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#19 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 01 Feb 2013, 17:34

>>According to film historian Randor Guy, the negatives of 'Seva Sadan' were damaged beyond repair and nothing survives now.>>

Thanks. Yes, but I'm sure Kalki wrote a review of the film in Vikatan. because Wikipedia quotes a sentence from Vikatan;
"We should always expect somethings from Subramaniam's direction - for instance depiction of social ills.. If we have to say only two words about this talkie based on Premchand's story it is - Go see (it)."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sevasadanam

It would be interesting to get the full review.
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Pasupathy
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#20 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 01 Feb 2013, 17:50

>>The years 1945, 46 etc may be correct. The five pancharatnas were begun only in the 1950s. As can be read in your blog, they sang >>only sAdinchEnE at the request of Ariyakkudi. Kalki does not seem to have written on the three groups, the periya kaTchi, chinna >>kaTchi and the Nagaratnammal group all of which merged only in 1950 and which existed during 1945/46.
RaviSri

Thanks for your comments. ( Note: these reviews were not written by Kalki though; He left Vikatan in 41 and started his own
magazine... ) How interesting it would be to get reviews of ALL the aradhanas during those early years! My thanks to Vikatan which has published a "pokkisham" book recently.... a collection of articles from their archives. Since they have tried to cater to all interests, they have not gone deep into any one area. If they publish a "pokkisham" just focussing on Music alone..I'm sure Music Rasikas would support such a venture by buying many copies of such a volume! I hope a Rasika who knows and has influence with Vikatan can persuade them to do such a thing!

Thanks once again for your valued comments.
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arasi
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#21 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by arasi » 01 Feb 2013, 19:52

Pasupathy,
Thanks for sharing such a precious collection of vintage writing on music. Kalki, Devan and others cast their magic in these pages. Your writing frames such gems with spirit and wit.

There is so much to read and relish.
In another thread, someone had wondered about how chEtulAra on the flute became the prelude to pancha ratnam singing. Here, it is reported as follows: Palladam Sanjeevi Rao played 'nEnendu vetukudurA' and then 'chEtulAra'. Ari then announces, 'we will sing the pancha ratnams now', and starts singing 'sAdhinchenE'.

The radio reviews are special too. The bit about one of VVS's evening concerts is indicative of Kalki's fondness for his music. In 1947 (48?), he asked VVS to give a special concert at Ettayapuram Bharathi VizhA, and that's how he had tuned many of the bard's verses. villinai otha puruvam vaLaithanai became a popular recorded number. endaiyum thAyum, thIrthak karaiyinilE, kaNNan mana nilaiyai, Asai mugam maRandu pOchE, ethanai kODi inbam, ninnai charaN aDaindEn, suttum vizhi chuDar thAn kaNNammA were all tuned by him (of course, newer and film versions of some of the songs made them recede into oblivion). The bhAvam he invested in them is something which not many got to hear...

Kalki's fondness for VVS's music didn't stop there--a writer too, VVS wrote for (worked at??) Ananda Vikatan before being drawn into the film world. Kalki had this great idea of a full length kamba rAmAyanam concert, and VVS got to work tuning many verses. The concert was a 'never-done before feat'(1950??). Held in Rajaji Hall in the presence of Rajaji, TKC, and a crowd of literati, it was something to experience. A shame, there is no recording of it that I know of. VVS as a tune smith was brilliant. Tuning of Ambujam Krishna's songs (first volume of Geetha Mala) came next...
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cmlover
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#22 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 01 Feb 2013, 21:11

pasupathy
It is an excellent idea to persuade Vikatan to publish a 'pokkisham' of CM based on its archives. How should we go about it?
There are sufficient members at this Forum who would throw their weight for such a project. A simiar venture from Kalki will be equally fruitful.

By the by be aware that arasi is the niece of VVS and of the veteran Ananthalakshmi Satagopan as well as a relative of Ambujam Krishna.
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Pasupathy
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#23 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 01 Feb 2013, 21:18

Thanks, Arasi, for your comments and sharing your memories about VVS. I remember VVS ..I think he used to live somewhere near Hindi Prachar Sabha in TNAgar, Chennai once. I have seen him many times....I have some old cine ads of VVS + some Tamil articles ( Circles and spirals )..somewhere... ..one of these days, I will find them and post them...His fondness for Tyagaraja and Bharathi is well represented in the name 'Tyagabharathi"....Do you have the complete "Circles and Spirals" series of articles? There should have been at least a review of his Kamban concert in one of the Tamil magazines..at least in Kalki? ..we have to get these out ..and record them for posterity.....
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Pasupathy
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#24 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by Pasupathy » 01 Feb 2013, 21:28

>>pasupathy
>>It is an excellent idea to persuade Vikatan to publish a 'pokkisham' of CM based on its archives. How should we go about it?
>>There are sufficient members at this Forum who would throw their weight for such a project. A simiar venture from Kalki will be equally fruitful.

I think a rep of rasikas.org should meet the Editor of Vikatan in person and request earnestly. We definitely need a "isaip pokkisham". ( Dance can be added).
Similarly with Kalki.

>>By the by be aware that arasi is the niece of VVS and of the veteran Ananthalakshmi Satagopan as well as a relative of Ambujam Krishna.
cmlover

>> Yes, I have seen her interview on Podhigai and heard one of her compositions (sung by Sumitra Nitin ? I think) ...I had the pleasure of fwding these Youtubes to
a local Yahoo music group we have in Toronto....
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cmlover
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#25 Re: Musical Morsels

Post by cmlover » 01 Feb 2013, 21:39

That can be the theme of the next Rasika Meet at Chennai. I am sure our Nageshwaran will take the initiative.
Those of us who have connections at Chennai may also try independently...

Since you are the most knowledgeable on the old issues would you draft an appeal and post it as an independent thread here
so that members can express their support!
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