Saturday, January 5, 2013

Classical music concerts in Chennai in December...!

I have already written about Ajoy Chakraborthy's concert in Chennai here.  As I said there, nowadays we are attending both Hindustani and Carnatic music concerts, here in December season. I make it a point to attend Bombay Jayashree's at least once in the season.  She is a great singer, trained in both Hindustani and Caranatic classical music.  Her wikipedia link is here, which is very interesting to read.

I enjoy her bhajans in Kannada, Tamil and Sanskrit.  Her voice is very expressive and soft. This time we went to Krishna Gaana Sabha for her concert.  It was housefull. She never speaks in between two songs.  Never explains the raagas...some singers do explain. She sang continuously for 2 1/2 hours without break. Normally people go out, have coffee and snacks in between songs. Every sabha arranges for food from famous caterers and some people attend concerts in different venues and finish their breakfast, lunch, evening snacks and dinner and go home! We can see many foreigners who attend these concerts seriously.  I didn't see much poeple getting up and going out in this concert!

Now, hear her beautiful, melodious voice here in different type of songs:

This is a thillaana (type of song) in raaga Desh:

Yaadava nee baa yadukula nandana... a soft song:

Jagaddhoddhaarana...Purandara dasa krithi in Kannada....fusion...It's different!

She has sung some film songs in Hindi and Tamil.  This is a Bharatiyar song from the film 'Bharathi' Ilayaraja...a beautiful song!

I like the way she closes her eyes and enjoy singing.  She enjoyed thoroughly in the concert we went this year.  She moves her hand like Pt. Jasraj and enjoys singing. And we enjoyed with her.

Here she is singing at the Sai aradhana festival.  Amjad Ali Khan's son, Ayaan ali  plays sarod later in this video.

The next concert we went was Pt.Jasraj's.  I have got some very good cd's of his songs.  He has got a booming voice! This concert also was 'housefull'.  The standing ovation after the concert was nearly for 5 minutes! Now, nobody will say that Chennai music festival is just for Carnatic music lovers! We love Hindustani music too! And the concert was at the famous Music Academy.

Mata Kaalika...Pt.Jasraj is singing this bhajan on Mata Kaali...normally I don't like to listen to male singers.  But hear Pandit's voice...beautiful!

Pt. Jasraj with Ustaad Zakir Hussain

Pt.Jasraj is singing here...a clear live concert video:

The concert we attended was a bit like this.  He was singing with his disciples.  They call it 'vocal support'.  Still, we enjoyed this concert because  of his voice.

In this rare video, you can watch our Carnatic singer Smt.M.S. Subbulakshmi and Pt. Jasraj singing during Gandhi Jayanthi (1988). A young Durga Jasraj (Pt.Jasraj's daughter) can also be seen.  The then President Venkatraman, Rajiv Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and other political leaders can also be seen.  Smt. Subbulakshmi is so comfortable here. She had the opportunity to sing in front of Gandhiji, just a few months earlier to his assassination, a commentor says.

The last concert we attended this year was Swamy Haridas Mohotsav... Hindustani music concert.  My niece Ashwini was compering and I went there to watch her...she is learning Hindustani music now and is quite a good singer.  But we had a feast of the year! Smt. Lalitha Sharma, about whom, we had never heard of, sang for more than two hours! Her voice was too good to believe.  She is a desciple of Pt. Jasraj.  She finished graduation in the Madras Music college (carnatic music) and then went to Calcutta and Bombay and learnt Hindustani music.  You can know more about her here.  I noticed her was just like Pt. Jasraj's! The mini hall of Narada gaana sabha was full! Actually, Chennai audience are famous for leaving the concerts as soon as it was 9 pm.  But on that day, we wanted to hear more of her songs! Will wait for next year! I looked for more good videos of her songs, but couldn't get. Again, I will do a post on her concert next year!

A video of Smt.Lalitha Sharma is here.  It is not very clear, though.  I couldn't get more of her videos.

Sorry, the post is too, too longer than usual!

EDITED TO ADD ON 9.1.13: I came across this photo today and thought I will add it here in this post, so that you can know how we felt while watching Smt. Lalitha Sharma's concert.  The hall was very cozy with minimum audience.  We were sitting closer to the stage and could watch the expressions and mannerisms of the artist clearly.  And this was a free concert.  We paid Rs.100 or Rs.200 for other concerts! Have a look at the atmosphere:

Smt.Lalitha Sharma's concert! Click on the photo to get a bigger picture!


Swaram said...

We missed PanditJi's concert here this year. His rendering of Mata Kalika always gives me goosebumps.
I love Jayshri and those two Kannada songs are my fav :)

Sandhya said...

SWARAM: I read that Pt.Jasraj conducts Maniram sangeeth festival in Hyderabad every year! You are lucky. You can visit it every year!

You must have heard Lalitha Sharma's singing also. She is one of the desciples of Pt.Jasraj! Her voice and siging style is very good.

Ramakrishnan said...

Yes this is the wonderful music festival season in Chennai.Bombay Jaisri is a wonderful singer. Looks like you are an avid fan of hers.

Bikram said...

:) I have never heard them


Sandhya said...

R.RAMAKRISHNAN: Yes, I love her voice and the way she sings! Thank you!

BIKRAMJIT: Hear them when you are free...the fusion song for a starter?! Play them while you are working in the kitchen, like I do! If you hear again and again, you might develop a taste!

Destination Infinity said...

If I am in Chennai, I try to go to the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan concerts. But this year, I didn't go anywhere! More due to laziness than anything else! I was first introduced to Bombay Jayashree by the 'Vaseegara' song (Minnale). What a song! I like some of her other movie songs as well. 'Yaaro manadhile' is one of my all time favorites! Need to listen to more songs... I'll have to make time for it!!

Destination Infinity

sm said...

Happy Year
later will be back to listen them
all are good singers

SG said...

We love Bombay Jayashree's concerts and film songs. Glad to inform you that when we were living in Salt Lake City, she stayed with us for 3 days.

Sandhya said...

DESTINATION INFINITY: Yes, Bombay Jayashree is good in classical songs and film songs. Don't you think that most of her songs are in similar tunes?!

SM: Thank you, sm!

SG: Bombay Jayashree stayed with you? Nice! She is a down to earth person. No lip service to anybody. Very practical. Most of the female singers sing theoratically or with just loud voice. She sings with emotions...softness. I have got many CDs of hers!

radha said...

Every year my husband plans to come to Chennai in December and we somehow never have been able to. But we do go to all the classical concerts in our city. Have you hear Aruna Sairam singing the Abhangs? Very nice ! And of course Pandit Jasraj has his own magic. We also managed a Chaurasia and Shiv Kumar concert. Concerts by TVS, OS, Bombay Sisters, Nitashree.

Happy New Year.

Sandhya said...

RADHA: Nice to see you here after a long time Radha!

Yes, I have heard everybody in your list! We can watch the different artists perform in Jaya TV also in the evenings everyday. Concerts, concerts, concerts everywhere in December in Chennai!

KParthasarathi said...

Thanks a bunch.You have provided us with a virtual aural feast to get a glimpse of what all you have enjoyed this season
Will listen leisurely and write to you

Renu said...

I find this concept of margarhi month very fascinating, and decided to attend atleast one concert next year..

My friends went to A.R.Rehmans and were going gaga over him, his simplicity.everything..

Zephyr said...

This was such a wonderfully thoughtful and well informed post, Sandhya. Thanks for all the lovely links and the videos. I have not had the opportunity to listen to the academy concerts but have heard some of them in Nagpur -- N.Ramani, Lalgudi Jayaraman and his sister, M.S.Gopalakrishnan and others. My MIL used to be a regular at the Music Academy concerts.

Sandhya said...

K PARTHASARATHY: Thank you, Partha Sir!

Please write to me if you like any other artiste's music after you hear them! I know you like Abhishek and he is becoming famous now. Will attend his concert in the future!

ZEPHYR: Thank you, Zephyr! I had been hearing these concerts from my days...though I don't attend many concerts, I select and attend. Car should be free...our relatives who come with me should be free...then we go and enjoy!

Rahul Bhatia said...

A nice summary of musical concerts Sandhya! Wish I could get time to attend some:)

R. Ramesh said...

my computer is slow and not loading..but everyone says here super post wishes

Bhagyashree said...

Such a treat... I love Jayashree's voice and Pt. Jasraj too. Mata Kalika is a favorite at home

Subhorup Dasgupta said...

Enjoyed your report of Hindustani in the bastion of Carnatic. I am a supernovice as far as Indian classical music is concerned, but I could relate with your observations. I find Ajoy Chakravarthy a little too academic/theoretical and enjoy the spontaneity and spirituality of Pt. Jasraj. I am at Hyderabad so I have the good fortune of hearing him most years at his annual festival. Reading your post made me wish I could take more time out for attending live performances.

New to your blog in a manner of speaking; I think I saw your Anna Centenary post when I was looking up Indian libraries, but did not go past it then. Glad to have rediscovered it through this post.

Sandhya said...

RAHUL BHATIA: If you like classical music, Chennai is the place to visit in December, Rahulji! It is music, music everywhere!

R.RAMESH: Thank you, Ramesh! Hear the music when you can!

BHAGYASHREE: Yes, both are good in their own way!

SUBHORUP DASGUPTA: Welcome here once again, Subhorup Dasgupta! I was happy to read your detailed comment. Even though I too have CDs of the great artists, I love to hear them live. I know that they are not in their prime now, still, I am grateful to watch such great people.

Thank you, Skubhorup!

Unknown said...

Hi Sandhya, Thanks
fr taking pains to find out about ,e. Here are a few more info and music of mine. Hope you will enjoy more.My email is

Sandhya said...

LALITHA SHARMA: I am really honoured today, Mrs. Sharma!

I am hearing the music video now! I and my family love your voice. My grand niece is learning Hindustani music now. She had learnt Carnatic music for many years and now she is more interested in Hindustani music. Her teacher is Mrs. Lakshmi Sriram whom you must be knowing about.

Somehow we missed the YGP auditorium concert. No more missing your concerts hereafter. Your interview in Jaya TV is very informative. It should help Ashwini, the girl I mentioned above, a lot. Thanks for sending the link.

Will email you shortly. Thanks once again!

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