Finding Carnatic Music

Thanks to the solitude in the car, at home for nearly a month now and also to the digital age and the technology it has provided, I have been listening to carnatic classical music more often now. I don’t think I have listened to as much classical music in my life before. I don’t understand a thing. I would love to be able to understand and identify what is being played. May be one day in future, for now I’m quite happy taking dips in this river of music. It has been very soothing and refreshing. Be it BMK singing ‘endaro mahanubaavulu’, or Yesudas singing ‘jaanaki ramana’ or Ms Revathi (from carnaticindia.com) singing the anandaamrutakarshini amrutavarshini or .. well the list goes on. Thought I’ll put down the ones I have been playing again and again over the last month. Here they are with link to wherever I could find them online,

  • endaro mahanubaavulu’ by Balamurali Krishna –  This is the last song from the tyagaraja pancharatna kritis CD I accidentally came across and bought during my last India trip. It was languishing with other CDs at home for a long time. Once I found it again and kept it in the car, I started listening to it often. I love the lyrics and the meaning as much (or even a bit more?) as BMK singing it.
  • ‘jagadaanandakaaraka’ by Balamurali Krishna –  This is song number 1 in the CD I mentioned above. The duration of the song seemed quite daunting in the beginning. All that raagalaapa meant I switched ahead midway to the last song, ‘endaro’ (yes, nothing in between seemed to appeal.) However over time this too has become my favorate. Now whenever the CD is playing in the car, I mostly listen to 1 and 6. Slowly I have started listening to the ones from 2 to 5 also :).
  • Anandamrutakarshini – amrutavarshini – by Ms. Revathi. This has been my every day morning song these days. Listening to this makes the mind still and still be active, pure joy. Amazing!
  • Sarasijanaabha sOdari – by Sankaran Namboodiri – This one by Sri Deekshatar is fast becoming another favorite. Especially the part where it has ‘sri guruguha janani mada shamani’.
  • Brochevarevare by Yesudas – I had heard many melodious hindi movie songs sung by Yesudas. I knew he is also a great carnatic classical singer. While searching on the net found this song and I am amazed by the way he sings. The ease with which he moves between low and high sound (what is it called in musical terms?) and the breath control he has around the end of this song seem out of this world. The only issue I had with this one was that the ‘aardra bhaava’ of the lyrics seems to have given way to the pace. May be it is just me, but that is the feeling I still get whenever I listen to this one.
  • jaanaki ramana by Yesudas – This one is perfect, blissful. I love the part where he goes ‘gaana lOla ghana tamaala neela…”. That’s stuck in my head and heart for a while now.

There are others like the ‘Chandracooda shivashankara paarvati ramana..”, “Gajavadana bEDuve”, etc. Some other time about those.

PS: While on Yesudas, I remember the song (not a classical one, probably from a movie) ‘mai bhi hu bachapanse man chala’ he sang (along with another female singer, I forgot the name) on TV long long ago. Though I heard it only once, it has remained with me. Was it my teen age that latched on to that seemingly naughty song? I guess. If any of you know where I can find that song, please let me know. I’m not sure whether my opinion of that song changes if I listen to it now :). Hope not!

update: After a good Googaleshwara search I found this song here, it starts as Tishta nadi si tu chanchala… and I still like it 🙂