T.M.Krishna rules

Sri T.M.Krishna (TMK), one of my favorite singers, gave a brilliant concert yesterday at the Odukkathur Swamigal Mutt, Bangalore. He was accompanied by Sri H.K.Venkatram on the violin, Sri K. Arun Prakash on the mridangam and Sri M.A. Krishnamurthy on the ghatam. I must say it was one of the best concerts I have heard in recent times.

Before I write more about the concert, here is the list of songs which TMK sang:

1) vAtApi ganapathim – hamsadhwani – Adi – muthuswAmi dIkshitar
2) intakantE – kannada – rUpakam – pattanam subramanya iyer
3) hiranmayIm – lalitA – rUpakam – muthuswAmi dikshitar
4) nAda tanumanisham – chittaranjani – Adi – thyAgarAja
5) srI subramanyAya – kAmbOji – rUpakam – muthuswAmi dIkshitar
6) AnandAmruta – amrutavarshini – Adi – muthuswAmi dIkshitar
7) rAgam tAnam pallavi – sahAnA – sankIrna chApu
pallavi wordings: “enakkavar sondamadi, govindanadi mukundanadi”

enakkavar starts 1.25 aksharas after samam and govindanadi starts 2.25 aksharas after samam in the next Avartanam

kalpanA swaram sung in rAgAs sahAnA, bhairavi, varAli, atAnA, danyAsi, suruttI, behAg and sindhu bhairavi.

8) eppo varuvAro – jOnpuri – Adi – gOpAlakrishna bhArati
9) sarvam brahmamayam – madhivanti – Adi – sadAsiva brahmendra
10) mauLau ganga (viruttam) in rAgAs mAyAmAlavagOwla, kEdAragOwla, kalyAni and sAmA – appayya dIkshitar
varuvArO varam taruvArO – sAmA – Adi – gOpAlakrishna bhArathi
11) thillAnA – hamIr kalyAni – Adi – harikEsanallUr muthiAh bhAgavathar

12) pavamAna (mangalam) – sOwrAshtram – Adi – thyAgarAja

The main piece in kAmbOji, srI subramanyAya, was sung beautifully. The raga alapana of kAmbOji done before that was very extensive and executed very well. TMK’s powerful voice, as always, made the concert a lot more enjoyable.

I am a fan of Sri Arun Prakash because he plays non-intrusive accompaniment for songs and shows his intelligence in the taniavartanam. The taniavartanam yesterday also was played very well in chatusra and misra nadais. The misra nadai piece was short and crisp.

The ragam tanam pallavi (RTP) was sung in the raga sahAnA and the pallavi was in sankIrna chApu talam which has 4.5 beats in one cycle (Avartanam). This is a talam that is not usually heard in the concert circuit. I have heard the same pallavi sung in rUpaka talam/tisra ekam before and pallavi verse takes 3 AvartanAs of tisra Eka (3×3 = 9 aksharAs) to complete. TMK adapted it to sankIrna chApu (4.5×2 = 9 aksharAs). The pallavi starts 1.25 aksharAs after samam with the words enakkavar sondamadi and gOvindanadi starts 2.25 aksharAs after samam in the next Avartanam.

I am not sure when TMK would have first mentioned to Sri K. Arun Prakash that he would have to play a brief, second taniavartanam for the RTP in sankIrna chApu tAlam, but I did hear him saying something before the RTP started and did see Arun Prakash busy putting the talam when the sahAnA raga alapana was going on. I am also not sure whether the korvai that Sri Arun Prakash played in the end was instantly composed (as it looked to be) or whether he has played it before but the fact is that the korvai was, mathematically, a well composed one. It went like this:

(A = aksharAs, M = mAtharais where 1A=4M)

First time:

thin ka thAm , ka thAm, – 3 times (=9 A)

tha,, tha,, thAm,, (9M) ki, ta, ki num thom (7M) (total = 16M)

Second time:

thin ka thAm , ka thAm, – 3 times (=9 A)

tha,, tha,, thAm,, (9M) {ki ta, ki ta ki num thom -2 times} (2x8M = 16M) (total = 9+16 M = 25M)
Third time:

thin ka thAm , ka thAm, – 3 times (=9 A)

tha,, tha,, thAm,, (9M) {ki, ta, ki ta ki num thom -3 times} (3x9M = 27M) (total = 9+27 M = 36M)

Now, if we leave the 9A in the first line every time as that would fit into 2 AvartanAs of the talam perfectly each time, the rest of the lines add up to 77M (=16M + 25M + 36M).4 AvartanAs of the tAlam = 4×4.5A = 18A = 18x4M = 72M. 77M -72M =5M = 1.25A and 1.25A is the count after which the songs starts after samam. Well composed and well executed I should say. Kudos to Sri Arun Prakash.

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6 thoughts on “T.M.Krishna rules

  1. Vishwa says:

    o boy – how did you make out that calculation from what he played? I couldnt have guessed that even if I had listened to it 10 times. Very educative post indeed.
    T.M Krishna’s concert wasthe first concert I attended there and I was very satisfied.

  2. Ram says:

    Vishwa: I wrote down the korvai when he played it on the mridangam and hence could recall it later. I also felt very satisfied after attending the concert.

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