MUSIC IN MOTION

The Automated Transcription for Indian Music (AUTRIM) Project by NCPA and UvA

Basant mukhari

Basant mukhari (sometimes written as Vasant mukhari) is regarded as a rag belonging to the family of Bhairav. S. N. Ratanjankar, a composer, vocalist and educator belonging to Agra gharana is believed to have popularised Vasant mukhari in the Hindustani tradition (Rao [Raga nidhi I] 1956: 70). The scale of this South Indian rag is a mixture of two rag-s; Bhairav (vide) and Bhairavi (vide). In the lower tetrachord we see Bhairav motif whereas in the upper tetrachord with flat Ni, Bhairavi becomes more prominent.

Tone material: S r G m P d n

Although the ascent can include all notes, some artists avoid Re in the ascending passages. The distinctive feature of Bhairav: slow oscillation on Re and Dha, which are both extra flat (ati komal) and the typical concluding phrase G m \r~ S are integral part of Basant mukhari as well. Sa and Pa are dominant notes while S /m is a characteristic glide in which Ma can be sustained.

Some characteristic phrases:
S /m – G m P d P
r S n d P – G m \r ~ ~S,
r \n S r G m
G m /n d P

Basant mukhari has a of of similarity with a North Indian rag, Hijaz, now obsolete (Shah [Bhairav ke prakar] 1991: 226).

Time: early morning (ibid)

Further listening:
Bhimsen Joshi “The Best of Bhimsen Joshi” vol II, BRI/23; Nasiruddin Dagar EASD 1420

Recording by Pandit Jasraj
Recording by Malini Rajurkar

Performance by Ajoy Chakrabarty

Composition: chhota khayal

नीर भरन निकसी
जमुना के घाट पर
डगर चलत मोसे
रोके कन्हैया

ऐसो नट पनघट पे
करत मोसे ठठोरी
जाने नाही देत परत मोरी गैल

A maiden complains, though in an affectionate tone, about Krishna’s prank; standing in her way and preventing her from going to river Jamuna to fetch water.

Tal: Jhaptal (medium fast tempo)

Performance:
4-14: Performance opens with sustained Re which has typical oscillations (andol)
30-47: Next two phrases give shades of Bhairavi
48-57: However in this phrase slide between lower Ga and flat Ni breaks the impression of Bhairavi. Note the oscillations on Dha at the end of the phrase
59-67: Another distinct movement with oscillating Re
81-90: A characteristic movement of Bhairav, G m \r ~ ~ S
103-105: S /m, a characteristic slide in this rag in which Ma at the end is sustained
112-119: Another Bhairav-like phrase with oscillations on middle Dha, followed by contrasting it with a sustained Pa (121-128)
141-152: Concluding phrase – G m P G m \r ~ S, like in Bhairav
152: Composition begins. The refrain starts off from the first beat itself of the 10-beat rhythmic cycle
175: Second line
190: Next line
205: Concluding the first section of the composition (sthayi). Note a peculiar gait in the phrase – S S r r G G m m P (209-213) with word – Kanhaiya
223-237: The first line is presented with variations
240-266: Elaborations using words of the composition (bol alap)
267-281: Second line is presented with variations
282: Next line
297: Final line of the first section
318-352: Elaborations continue with words
354: Elaborations using solfeggio (sargam). Note a big glide from Sa to high Sa and back (371-374)
385: Elaborations continue with words, focusing around high Sa. Note oscillation on high Re (406-410)
426: Second half of the composition (antara)
456: Concluding line with a phrase, also noted earlier, S S r r G G m m P (474-477) with word – gaila
480-507: Return to the first line, which is presented with variations

 
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