Shri is a very old rag, regarded as one of the six principal rag-s used for rag classification (Tagore [Six Principal Rag-s] 1982).
Tone material: S r G M P d N
The direct ascent avoids Ga & Dha. However, Ga can occur in phrases like r G r S. The descent is zigzag and typically consists of movements like: r N d P- M d M G- r /P- \r G- r S.
Re and Pa are important notes. Re is also an initial note for many phrases, and Pa is a resting note.
Some characteristic phrases:
r /P- P \r– G r- S
M P N S r -N d P
r- G r– S
Shri is one of the most difficult rag to perform on account of its complex melodic movements which involve large intervals, long glides and embellishments such as gamak, that are often used to bring out its serious and awesome nature. Although complex, this appealing rag has scope for elaborate expression in the hands of a maestro.
Rag Puriya dhanashri (vide) has the same tonal material as Shri. However, the former has much simpler and direct movements.
Time: at the sunset (Bhatkhande [KPM III] 1999: 361)
Performance by Veena Sahasrabuddhe
Composition: chhota khayal
हरि के चरन कमल
निस दिन सुमीर
भाव धर सुध बिसर
भव जलधी तरे
जोजी (जोइ) जोजी धरत ध्यान
हर रंग कहे ग्यान
अब हँू चित धरे
This composition has been immortalized by the Gwalior gharana maestro D. V. Paluskar.It is attributed to the great visionary V. N. Bhatkhande alias ‘Har rang’ whose name is included in the last line of the composition. It is in praise of Hari (epithet for Krishna or Vishnu).
Meditate upon the lotus feet of Lord Hari. This will take you across the ocean of life. The one who meditates, achieves peace.
Tal: Jhaptal (medium tempo)
3-12.5: Performance begins with Re, an important note in this rag, which is sustained. Note the initial touch of Ga for the Re and also an ornament involving Ga (7-8)
34-39: r \N d P, a typical descending phrase used for approaching Pa
53-56: Re is once again sustained
57.5-64: Movement between Re & Ga with a touch of Sa in between. Note a brisk movement G rGr (57.5-58.5) followed by slow glides between Ga and Re (60-64)
65-73: The most characteristic phrase r /P- P \r
74-82: Variation of the above phrase
111-119: Once again Pa is approached
122-130: Now the movement includes flat Dha and gradually returns once again to Re – M d M G r
137-147: Gradual return to Re with several phrases- r /P- \r /M G r, r G- r
164: The composition begins on the first beat of the rhythmic cycle. Melodically it starts with Re, one of the most important notes in this rag.
198: Second line of the composition
220: The next line
241.5: Final line of the first part of the composition
350: After having presented several phrases emphasising Re and Pa, high Re is sustained and elaborated
372: On the above base the second part of the composition (antara) is laid out. The first line is repeated several times. Like the first line in the earlier section, this line too commences on the first beat of the cycle
416: The second line
427: The third line
438: The concluding line
Performance by Uday Bhawalkar
अाज रंग भिजन लागे
मथुरा नगर के लोग
काहू दीनी सूरख चुनरियाँ
काहू केसर पाग
Composition depicts the colourful festival of Holi. Poet says that the people of Mathura (place where Lord Krishna is supposed to have spent his childhood) are all wet with orange coloured water.
5-18: Performance opens with a sustained Re, an important note in this rag
20-27: Re is approached again from the lower Pa
29-44: Re is sustained again, this time starting with a touch of Ga. Note how it merges smoothly with Sa
46-56: Re approached and held. Note the approach from lower Pa
59-66: In the reverse way, now the lower Pa is approached from the middle Re and sustained
92-107: A characteristic movement – P \r- G r- S
109-159: Re continues to be emphasised. Note a movement for approaching the note from Ma (132-141 & 143-146)
160-172: Characteristic glide from Re to Pa. Note the sustained Pa
202-216: After a few phrases descending to Re, Pa is approached again. Note the glide to Re and back
217-223: Again the characteristic movement r /P\r- G r
226-237: Pa again with r /P
246-271: After a few phrases descending to Re, Pa is approached again. Note the glide to Re and back
280-296: High Sa is reached. Note a typical movement – M P N S r-(287-291), followed by Sa again
294-304: Again, M P N S r with Re at the end sustained
305-337: Gradually the movements first descend to Pa and then to Re
345: Refrain (mohra) indicating the end of the alap section
371: Composition begins. Note the refrain commencing on Re and the accentuated beat (sam) of the 14-beat rhythmic cycle coinciding on Pa, thus emphasising both the important notes
416: Second line of the composition. Note a gliding movement from the high Re to low Re via Pa (437-447)
484: Second part of the composition (antara)
521: Concluding line of the composition