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


Malkauns, also called Malkosh, is an old rag which immensely popular with musicians, both vocalists & instrumentalists. Some sources also refer to this rag as Malav kaushik (Rao [Raga nidhi III) 1965: 106). It has a serious and solemn expression.

Tone material: S g m d n

The ascent and descent can be direct.  The movements in this rag are very slow and gliding. Sa and Ma are important notes and in fact the tanpura is tuned in Ma instead of Pa. During slow movements, flat Ga is held with an oscillation (andol). Dha can be sustained as well.

Some characteristic phrases:
d n /g \S
g \n S \d
g m d \g m g \S
S mg m –
d /m /n

Elements of Malkauns can be combined with other rag-s, resulting in melodies such as Kaunsi kanada, Kaunsi bhairav, Jogkauns and several others.
Chandrakauns is yet another rag which has the same notes as Malkauns except for Ni, which is natural. The prominence of natural Ni makes this rag distinct from Malkauns. Rag-s like Harikauns, Madhukauns, Nandkauns & Sundarkauns are also modern creations and share the suffix-kauns. However their similarity with Malkauns is limited.
Sampurna malkauns is an old rag; also includes natural Re and Pa to the scale of malkauns.

Time: late night (Bhatkhande [KPM III] 1999: 701)

Further listening:
Amir Khan EASD 1357
Recording by Kesarbai Kerkar
Recording by Omkarnath Thakur
Recording by Z M Dagar
Recording by Bismillah Khan
Parrikar on Malkauns

Performance by Ashwini Bhide

Composition: chhota khayal

नन्द के छेला धीट लंगरवा
मोरी बैंया पकर अाज दाय क्यूँ

अावत जावत कर पकरत है
गारी दूँगी थुरकवा तोहे
कवन काज मन हरवा दाय क्यूँ

The song depicts the pranks played by Nanda’s son, Krishna. It describes how he catches hold of the maidens and troubles them. While they like him they resist his bold moves.

Tal: Sitarkhani (medium fast tempo)

5-11: On the background of tanpura tuned to m S S S, performance opens with a typical phrase sustaining the lower Dha. Note the ornamentation (murki) in the beginning (5-6)
25-36: Phrases leading again to lower Dha, which is oscillated (andol)
38-65: Slowly moving on, first to the flat Ga and then focusing on Ma, finally returning the same way back to Sa
65-66: Note the ornamentation (murki)
72: Composition begins. Note the accentuated beat (sam) of the 16-beat rhythmic cycle coinciding with lower Dha. The refrain starts off from the 7th beat.
87-122:The first line is presented and repeated with variations
124: Second line
162: Second part of the composition (antara)
176: Next line
190: Concluding line
212: Elaborations focusing on Sa, using notes from lower Dha to middle Ga, with vowel “aa

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