Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Gokulaashtamiya Shubhaashayagalu! Janmaashtami Ki Shubhkaamnaayein! Krishna Nee Begane Baaro...


I used to hear Smt.M.S. Subbulakshmi singing my favourite song, 'Krishna nee begane baaro', a Kannada Krithi on Lord Krishna, by Purandara Dasa,  since I was small.  We used to go to concerts and hear her singing in person.

Then I heard an American, John Higgins, singing the same song in radio!  It used to come everyday in a Bangalore station and Madras station! We got used to his voice too!

Then I got hold of a cassette, 'Radha Maadhavam', in which Bombay Jayashree sang this song.  I loved all the songs in this album.  She has got a beautiful voice.  I used to play this everyday after my doze of 'Sangeeth Saritha' in Vividh Bharati!  Hear this now and enjoy!

Then came the 'Colonial cousins'! I noticed even small children humming this version.  It is good!

Today is Lord Krishna's birthday...Our Wikipedia gives all the details of Lord Krishna's birthday! Have a look!

He, who has let go of hatred, 
Who treats all beings with kindness and compassion,
Who is always serene,
Unmoved by pain or pleasure,
Free of the 'I' and 'Mine',
Self-controlled, firm and patient,
His whole mind focussed on me...
That is the man I love best.




Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Are You Happy With Your Name?!

Well...a TV episode triggered my brain to write this post!  In the serial, the heroine is a bold, modern girl.  She tries to change the superstitious rituals of olden days.  One is, naming the child/newborn baby,  by other relatives instead of the mother or father, esp. mother!

I have two names...Mohini was the name kept by my paternal grand mother, Sandhya was from my maternal grand mother! Even now, when I go to the houses of my father's relatives in our native place, they address me as 'Mohini'! But Sandhya stayed everywhere! I like to forget the other names of mine like 'Chamundeeshwari' which was according to the nakshatra or something!

In my mother's days, the bride's name was changed after marriage! My mother's name was Ambujavalli at her mother's place and Indira at her in-law's place.  Like it happens to me, both sides of relatives address her as Ambuja or Indira when they meet her!

My Maharashtrian friend who is my age, has got two names, Ahilya and Meenal!

Thank god, I was not given a third name after marriage!

Now, I am coming to the point! In the serial, in a naming ceremony/naamkaran poojan of a baby, the purohit/priest  says, 'now, the child's buva can recite the baby's name in her ears, holding a leaf'.  The old lady says that since the baby hasn't got a buva (aunt/father's sister), the heroine who is the adopted daughter of the house, can name the baby.  The heroine says that the mother who had carried the baby for nine months and had dreamed about bringing up the baby, should be the right person to name her daughter.  Then the mother says that she always wanted to name her daughter, when she had one,  as 'Bhairavi', a beautiful, pleasant, classical raag.  She was so happy!

When I was pregnant with my first baby, I used to make a list of male/female names in a notebook.  As you know I hear music via radio a lot and I used to collect names from the 'aap ki farmaayish' and other programmes.  Whenever I had time in my office, I used to add new names in the list.  I didn't know that in my husband's family, the buvas/aththes had the right to name their nephews/nieces!  I wanted to name my son as 'Narendra' after Vivekananda (it was the saint's childhood name and I admire him a school had a beautiful statue of him and I used to hear many stories about him in school).  But it never happened.  My sis in law selected the name.  The next sis in law selected the second son's name (My second son thanks his aththe because he escaped the name 'Dharmendra' ... which rhymed with Narendra and Dharmendra was my childhood hero (LINK)!)

Can you believe? The purohit in our family, asks for a name which starts with a particular alphabet which is agreeable to our  Then we keep the name of the grand parent.  Another, of the favourite god or godmen/women! After keeping all these names the letters are changed according to numerology! Most of the names sound weird after changing, adding/deducting the letters/vowels!  My relative's child's name is Madhunitaa (two 'A's)!

What is your experience? Do you like your name?!!


Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Vande Maataram! Happy Independence Day To All Of Us!


First let us all thank our Doordarshan for producing these two lovely patriotic songs/videos, which show how unique our country's people, their culture, etc.are!  I think these videos will be apt for this Independence day and for many others to come!  We used to hear them often in the 80's and 90's.  Very rarely we hear/see them  in DD nowadays.  We don't see in other channels.  I was able to get the details of the first video but couldn't get the lyrics or the details of the creator of music for the second video.  Let me write about them as much as I know.

Doordarshan had produced two patriotic songs in raag 'Desh' a beautiful Hindustani raag.  I had posted the first video earlier, here!  In that video, importance was given to regions and languages of India...Mile sur mera tumhaara was a very apt title. 

 I love the happy expression of Pt.Ravishankarji in this second video! Our heart leaps at the sound of this music, our music! The starting sound itself gives us goose bumps!

This second video also is based on raag 'Desh'.  Importance is given to our various forms of music and dance forms. That video started with Pt. Bhimsen Joshiji, who was a stalwart in Hindustani music.  I had done a post on him sometime back, here!

This video starts with Sitar vaadak, Pt.Ravishankarji,  who took our music worldwide. Then Bhimsen Joshiji starts singing 'Baje sargam' in his booming voice.  Pt. Ramnarayan comes next with his rare string instrument, saarangi. 

At 3.05 mts., Pt.Hariprasad Chaurasia plays flute.  His instrument takes us to heaven...lovely sound. He looks very young here.  His son Rakesh also plays this instrument and is becoming famous like his father.

At 3.30, a young Pt. Shivkumar Sharma plays santoor, a string instrument from the Jammu Kashmir region.  I did a post on him here! His son Rahul Sharma also plays santoor now!

 At 4.11 mts. Ustaad Zakir Hussain and his father Ustaad Alla Rakha, famous tabla vaadaks, play the beautiful tabla.  You will get goose bumps, hearing them...happy duo!

At 4.56, Ustaad Amjad Ali Khan, plays a string instrument, sarod. His sons Amaan and Ayaan Alik Khan also play this instrument.  The sound is pleasing to the ears!

At 5.48, you can see the Rajasthani dance form and an instrument of that region.

At 6.28, Kavita Krishnamurthy sings for Mallika Sarabai's Kuchipudi dance (Andhra's dance form).  She is a Bharathnatyam dancer too!

At 6.52, you can see the famous Odissi dancer, Protima Bedi.  The song is in Bengali, I think! She started a dance school in Bengaluru.  Though she is no more, her school is still there.

At 7.13, the dance form is Manipuri.  Am I right?

7.26, it is Kerala dance form Kathakali.  I don't know the name of the artiste.  Mythological story telling in dance form is mostly the theme for these dances.  I don't know the name of the artiste.

At 7.13 mts. Kanak Rele is doing Mohiniattam, a dance form from Kerala.  The movements are slow and beautiful in this dance form! She is a Gujarati but famous for Kerala dance forms, Mohiniattam and Kathakali.  She runs a dance school also in Mumbai and is very well educated.  Read the wikipedia link, which is very interesting! The singer is the famous Carnatic classical singer, Dr. Balamurali Krishna.

I am familiar with the artiste who comes next. Does anyone know?

At 8.22, it is the dance form of Tamilnadu, Bharthanatyam.  The artiste is, huh, I don't know! Kavita Krishnamurthy is the singer.

Then comes Dr.Balamurali Krishna, again.  He is a vocalist, violinist and a mridangam player! He is from Andhra Pradesh and is singing in Telugu.

At 9.15, Shri S.Balachander plays veena, a string instrument.  He is from Tamilnadu.

At 10.18, the artiste is Shri Lalgudi S.Jayaraman, a Carnatic violinist from Tamilnadu.  He is a very famous violinist and composer of many songs also.

Then comes the beautiful 'finale' piece...Enjoy!

Vande Mataram


Sunday, August 4, 2013

Indian Idol Junior...New Gems In Our Musical World!

I always love to watch musical reality shows from the saregama days (Sonu Nigam was the anchor and Shreya Goshal participated as a small girl).  In those days, the stage was simply decorated and importance was given just for the quality of the singers.  Now, the stage decoration has become too gawdy and the anchors mostly talk a lot.  But the current 'Indian Idol Junior' has got quality, though I don't like the glaring lights in the background.  But the children are dressed up normally and the judges are very genuine in their opinion/advices.  I enjoy Vishal, Shekhar and Shreya combination.  They are whole-heartedly involved with the participants.  They love the children.

My family doesn't approve of actors coming on these stages and performing.  Some are genuine but most of them act here too.  Yesterday Shah Rukh and Padukone participated.  Padukone should not have dressed like she did in a children's show. I know both Shah Rukh and Padukone are talented in their own way.  This is a children's show.  It is going to be like this hereafter, I know.  But the children are extremely talented.  Some sample:

First, Sugandha Date: 8 year old girl from Maharashtra.  Unbelievably talented singer.  All of us love her toothy smile.  Bappi Laahiri presented her a chain in appreciation of her singing. She is too good, but simple looking. Here is a small clip.

This girl Debanjana is 14 years old and classically trained.  Her voice resembles Shreya's a lot but has got her own tinge. I love her hair style!  Very innocent looking face.  Very very talented singer.  Rohit has already offered her a chance in his next film.

One more song  of hers is here!

I have got a feeling that this girl, Debanjana will win the title!

Priyam is a very very good singer from Assam.  I was not able to get a good video from You tube.  Here it is from her facebook page. Like the judges say here, she sings from her heart.

One of my favourite singer is the small girl, Sonakshi from West Bengal.  She is too good.  I couldn't get her good video.

Anjana Padmanabhan, a small girl from Bangalore (Tamil is her mother tongue) is making waves in this programme.  I couldn't get a good video of her song.

I have to mention about Anmol, Nirvesh and Aakash.  Perfect singers.  The videos of 'Indian Idol junior' do not make justice to their voices. Most of them are classically trained but Aakash comes from a small village where he doesn't even go to movies.  Heard and learnt music.  He is in the top 10 singers now!

I got this link from  You can have a glimpse of the singers.

If you are a music lover and a person to appreciate upcoming talents, do watch 'Indian Idol Junior' episodes on Sat. and Sun. at 8.30 pm - Sony TV.  I had been trying to get good videos of the singers, but could not.  I have recorded episodes of Bappi Laahiri, Mannade special etc. and keep on watching them.  All the children sing songs of all genres like pros.

Well, I am disappointed for not covering all the good singers from the episodes of the show. I will include the videos when I come across them.

Edited to add a new video of Anjana (5.8.13):  I came across this video in the morning.  I was thinking that my post is not complete if I don't feature the videos of other children but I couldn't get clear videos.  Even this video is not clear.  But you can see how the judges select children for this competition. Check  their expressions! This video is the preliminary round of Anjana:

You can notice the awe in the judges' faces.  This girl is too good.  This video was taken in the beginning of this series.  Lateron when they stay there and get trained by stalwarts, they improve a lot.  You can see that in the later videos.  The judges themselves give them tips.  These judges are too good.  They know to pick good voices and then they train them.  This girl Anjana did not know Hindi in the beginning.  Very limited knowledge was there of this language.  She has improved a lot now.  Again training was there, it seems.  She was near perfect in the pronunciation of the words even without knowing the language.  She is a versatile singer, she sings any type of songs whether it is Sunidhi Chauhaan's fast nos. or Lathaji's soft songs.

The same goes to Sonakshi.  She is a Bengali.  Language problem was a bit less for her than Anjana.  But this girl is amazingly talented.  I will look out for a good video of hers too and post it here later.

Keep coming and enjoy the music and please tell me whom you liked most! I am just curious!

And I must post a video of Anmol! He too is a strong contender!

 Another video of Debanjana.  I had posted this many times but it was not visible in the preview also.  I don't know what mistake I am making! Let me try again!

EDITED TO ADD on 4.9.13: Anjana Padmanabhan won the title.  The link is here.

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