Bilaskhani todi is supposedly a creation of Bilas Khan, son of the legendary vocalist Miya Tansen (Bhatkhande [KPM VI] 1978: 431) whose name is also associated with the rag Miya ki todi (vide). Although it has the same scale as modern Bhairavi, it has the melodic characteristics of Todi, that is, a strong flat Dha (on which the ascent often begins) and a strong (very) flat Ga, and the typical meandering around Re and Ga.
Tone material: S r g m P d n
The ascent omits Ma and Ni. Although Pa and Sa are often avoided in the descent, most phrases end on these tones. Ga and Dha are the important tones, and are intoned with a light oscillation. Most movements are in the in the lower middle octave (Thakurdas [Rag darshan II] 1988: 77).
Some characteristic phrases:
r \n S gr g ~
g P d \m gr
The ascent of Bilaskhani todi is similar to that of rag Bhupal todi (vide), but its descent is different. Although Bilaskhani todi has the same tone material as rag Bhairavi (vide) and Asavari (vide), its melodic characteristics are completely different.
Time: morning (Bhatkhande [KPM VI] 1978: 431)
Performance by Ajoy Chakrabarty
Composition: bada khayal
पंछी तू उड जा
पिंजरे से दूर अाकाश की अोर
जहॉं तू रहेगा चैन से
तोहे गगन में
ढूँडे फिरु मैं
जब तक रहे रोशनी
याद करु तुझे भीगी भीगी नैनोसे
Tal: Ektal (slow tempo)
4-16: The flat Re and movements around the flat Ga, typical to the rag-s of Todi family. These movements recur several times throughout the performance
19-25: Oscillating flat Dha merging in to Sa
27-31: Once again oscillations on the flat Dha
32-42: S r \n S gr g ~ a characteristic phrase of this rag.
59:Composition begins with refrain (mukhda) which is highly indicative of this rag. Note the accentuated beat (sam) coinciding with the high Sa, which is rather unconventional
141-158: The first part of the composition is repeated with some variations
195-364: Improvisations include notes from low Dha to high Ga, using the song-text (bol alap)
370-417: Improvisations using solfaggio (sargam)
418: Second half of the composition (antara) is presented, also has the accentuated beat coinciding with the high Sa