Gharana Aur Parampara: Jewel of Kirana Pt. Bhimsen Joshi (Vol- II) (With Booklet Inside) (DVD)

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Item Code: IZZ303
Pt. Bhimsen JoshiDoordarshan Archives(2005)54 min.91 sec.
About the Artist

The Doyen Among Khayal Singers
The classical Indian music is a wholesome experience which is perceived through body, mind and spirit together. It is meditative for the spirit, nectar for the mind and rejuvenating for the body reverberating with the rhythmic patterns of life around. Indian musicians have always felt that the ecstasy they try to create out of their music is a divine gift. Music is, therefore, regarded to be devotion to Cod. It is like a Spiritual Trans to plunge inwards intensively by contemplation rather than strive to create designs and variety through The outward exposition of The music.

The Raga in Indian Classical Music is a melodic structure Literally it means “Mood”. The Khayal of Hindustani classical style offers maximum scope for an exhaustive probe into the depth of a Raga, so as to enable the listener to feel it intrinsically. The connoisseurs of music, who have been listening to Pandit Bhimsen Joshi’s vocal recitals shall bear testimony to the spiritual experience of his music as mentioned above.

Pandit Bhimsen Joshi is the living legend among vocalist of his era, when the classical Hindustani music was undergoing its transformation from a traditional elite art form to cater to the tastes of the common audience, who now listens so many musical forms through various technological media, Panditji is one of the foremost exponents of Kirana School of Khayal. Through his innovative renderings he has enthralled music lovers all over India and also abroad for over a long span of 50 years or so.

Bhimsen joshi was born on 4th May 1922 in a family of Sanskrit Scholars in a small town called Gadag (Karnataka), which was then part of Bombay presidency. His father Pandit Guru Raj joshi, a teacher wanted his son to be a Sanskrit Pandit, But the destiny had different plans for him. Child Bhimsen got attracted to music as his mother used to sing in melodious voice, Kannada Bhajans every evening at home. According to his father, the temple bells were ringing when Bhimsen was born and Swami Satyadhyan Tirth had told him that his son would be a musician. At the tender age Bhimsen heard a gramophone record of tistad Abdul Karim Khan, which was being played by the gramophone shop in his town, He was so touched by it that lie instantly decided to leave formal school education and go in search for learning that music. Bhimsen fled from home and came to Pune, and then Is Calcutta via Bombay. In Calcutta he served as domestic help at the house of Pahadi Sanyo1 for sometime. He further proceeded to Jalandhar and started taking Dhrupad lessons from Bhagat Mangatram. At Jalandhar, he bad the occasion to listen to many top musicians of the country in Harballabh Music festival. Many musicians came there also from south-western India. There he met Pandit Vinayak Rao Patwardhan, famous vocalist and disciple of Pandit Vishnu Digamber Paluskar. He advised Bhimsen to be a disciple of Sawai Gandharva (Ram Bhao Kundgolkar), who resided at a place near Gadag. Bhimsenji returned to Gadag and his father took him to his ultimate Guru. Bhimsen got his regular musical training from Sawai Gandharva, who was a senior disciple of sangeet Ratna Ustad Abdul Karim Khan of Miraj. Bhimsen lived in Guruji’s house for couple of years serving the master like that in a Gurukul.

Pandit Bhimsen’s first public concert of significance was his performance at the feet of his Guruji when in Pune music lovers were celebrating his 60th Birthday. Bhimsen was applauded by all and blessed profusely by his Guru, Since then Bhimsen joshi’s fame spread over the entire country progressively. He married Smt. Vatsalatai, herself musician and the couple settled down in Pune. Sawai Gandharva passed away in 1952, Next year Bhimsenji started a Music Festival in the memory of his Guru. The festival is now an yearly feature and is regarded as one of the foremost music festivals in the country.

Pandit Bhimsen Joshi is gifted with a sonorous voice, which has been tempered by his long and dedicated Sadhana, His style is robust but it also has tremendous capacity for modulation so as to depict the softer and sublime moods. His Gayaki has a mystic charm, which manifests in different moods while he explores a raga in its depth. At one moment his rendering sounds serene flowing like a smooth stream then in the next moment it instantly shoots into a flight with intricate taan patterns over the higher octaves and finally it embraces the climax with humility when he comes to the point of “Sam”. His command over his voice is exemplary. It enables him to produce dazzling taan patterns through perfect technique. His presentation is superbly animated through his mystic facial expressions and hand gestures.

Panditji has never compromised with high standards of the classical tradition, although he has been quite innovative in presentation of that music to the modern audiences. He has performed all over the country and also abroad, for which ha has received accolades and rave reviews from musicians and connoisseurs all over. Panditji has bean honoured with many prestigious awards by various music societies in the country, Sangeet Natak Academy and the Government of India honouring him with Padma Awards. Very recently the government of Karnataka awarded him its highest civic honour ‘Karnataka Ratna’. Although Pandit Bhimsen Joshi is a true representative of Kirana Gharana as the foremost exponent of its third generation, he has enriched the style by inculcating exquisite finer points taken from other schools like jaipur, Gwalior and Agra. He is basically a “Khayaliya” and yet his rendering of light classical and devotional music has a special flavour of its own. Panditji bears strong influences of Rasoolanbai, Sidheshwari Devi and Begum Akhtar when he presents thumri. His rendering of ‘Abhang’ in Marathi and Hindi Bhajans have a deep devotional effect, which he says he got it from Balgandharva, the doyen among the Marathi stage singers.

Like all great souls, Panditji is a very simple and unobtrusive person. One gets a glimpse of that when he organizes the yearly music festival in Pune in the memory of his Guru Sawai Gandharva. Panditji looks after all the visiting musicians as a kind and perfect host, who helps them on the stage by tuning their tanpura or even playing it graciously sitting behind other artists Bhimsen Joshi has typical hobbies, one of them is to goon long car drives. Years back he bought a car big enough to accommodate his tanpuras and accompanists. He is very particular that the engine of his car must be perfectly tuned as are his tanpuras. With this car be undertook long drives to various places in the country and performed with equal ease despite the strain of driving.

Although Bhimsen Joshi did try his hand at innovations like fusion among different ragas like “Kalaashri” (Kalavati & Shri) and “Lalit Bhatiyar” by mixing the two ragas, in his concerts he preferred to sing the traditional ragas only. He says that ragas like Darbari, Puria, Marwah, Yaman, Todi, Lalit etc. are such comprehensive ragas that you con explore them through out your life and every time you find something new in them. He asserts with conviction that Indian classical music would reign forever. Generations of listeners may change but the ragas would remain evergreen.

Panditji has guided many students in music, the latest of them being his son Srinivas joshi and Anand Gandharva,

About the DVD

The enduring element of Indian Classical Music is the miracle of cue transmission along the pathway of Guru Shishya Parampara, by which our music has lived and survived through millennia. The Gharana Parampara nurtured by Guru-Shishya Parampara is the assurance of continuity. The various Gharanas have also given a rich variety to this performance art. Pt Bhimsen joshi, one of the leading lights of Kirana Gharana is being celebrated through these two volumes of Doordarshan’s Gharaana- Parampara series compiled from the treasure of its archival recordings.

The true enjoyment and meaning of the fantastic heritage of Raga music emerges from artiste’s own essence, the indubitable presence of the ‘self’ that shines forth through his art, making it timeless. And that is what is showcased in these precious recordings. Pt Bhimsen Joshi is an example of lived life of ‘Saadhana that penetrates through the interior regions of his life and realized values. While listening to his Pooria Dhanashri, Meera bhajan and Basant in Vol-I, and Pooria Kalyaan, Thumari Pilu orBhairavi and his eternal Bhairavi Bhajan jo bhaje Han ko sada in Vol It, you not only enjoy the Raga and the bandishes (compositions) but reach the inner core of the artiste himself.

Raga: Pooriya Kalyan
Accompanying Artistes
Table: Shashikant Shridhar Mulye
Harmonium: Purushottam Walawalkar
Tanpura: Shubhda Bhimsen Joshi

Starts with raga Pooniya Kalyan, which belongs to Maarava Thaat. Being one of the popular Sandhi Prakash ragas Pooriya Kalyan is sung at dusk time. With a flat Rishabh and sharp Madhyam, this raga’s Poorvang (the first half) is Pooria and the later half the Uttarang is Kalyaan. Pooriya Kalyan requires it’s twin components to be separately understood and then blended into an integral whole. Pandit ji displays the independent entity of both the ragas yet making them go hand in hand where the common bridge arrives.

The Bara Khayal.’aaj so bana..’set to vilambit Ektaal displays his vision in the architectural development of the raga. The chhota khayaal is a popular bandish in Teentaal. The recital presents enough contrast of tone when be mixes swaras in the upper and lower octaves producing a symphonic effect. One realizes that the use of tone colour is the very index of an artiste’s sensitivity and soul.

Raga: Peeloo
Accompanying Artistes
Table: Shashikant shridhar Mulye
Harmonium: Purushottam Walawalkar

Raga: Bhairavi
Accompanying Artistes
Table: Bharat Kamath
Harmonium: Purushottam Walawalkar
Tanpura: Narayan Deshpande

Pt. Bhimsen Joshi can use the burst of tone at one time and it’s whispering loveliness at another with a telling effect. This is evident during the emotive treatment of the Thumari in Pilu Nadiya Kinaare mora gaon and the Bhairavi Thumari Baajuband Khul Jaaye.

Raga: Bhairavi
Accompanying Artistes
Table: Bharat Kamath
Harmonium: Purushottam Walawalkar

Bhairavi mood is continued in ‘Jo bhaje Hari ko sada’ the famous Bhajan (devotional song) by Brahmananda, immortalized by Pt. Bhimsen joshi, and a must for his admirers as an indispensable item of his concerts Even in his bhajans the access to a precise and pinpointed Tear Shedja goes straight tolistener’s heart. A pair of finely tuned taanpuras seem to stimulate his sensibility throughout the two volumes of the extraordinary archival recordings.

Abhang (Marathi)
Accompanying Artistes
Table: Deepak Nerurkar
Harmonium: Tulsidas Borkar
Violin: Ramakant Paranjpey
Tanpura: Yadavraj Fud & Shubhda Bhimsen Joshi
Majeera: Gyaneshwar Takalkar

The second volume concludes with a Marathi devotional composition Abhang. The word Abbang actually means a continuum. Compositions under this category are out pours of Saints of Maharashtra to keep the stream of devotion Uninterrupted.

Project Director: Navin Kumar
Devised & Designed by: Kamalini Dutt
Associates: Ved M Rao & Kali Prasad
Photographs: Avinash Pasricha
Programme Notes by: M.P. Lele
Translated by: Dr. Lakshminarayan Garg


Vol: II
1KhayalRaga: Pooriya Kalyan19:27
Vilambit: Aaj Sobhan
Drut: Bahut Din Beete
2ThumriRaga: Peeloo10:02
Nadiya Kinare Mora Gaon
3ThumriRaga: Bhairavi10:13
Bajuband Khul Khul Jaye
4BhajanRaga: Bhairavi08:39
Jo Bhaje Hari Ko Sada
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