Wednesday, January 03, 2007

j o n p u r i

Can any one forget the image of a child rebelling, then finding no way
pleading to his mother? Anger giving way to beseeching, irritation
transformed into an inundation of self pity, haughtiness substituted
with helpless condescending. Jhonpuri vibrates in that spectrum.
Belonging to HCM basically, (called variously as Jaunpuri or Johnpuri),
the raag is janya of Kalyaan thaat and is suited for evening riyaaz.

Arokan : S R m P d n S
Avro : S n d P m g R S

Slightly akin to Brindavana Saaranga of CCM, the vakar route of the
avrokan, true to the HCM style, provides the scope for the
intermittent emotionally imbalanced outbursts.

Though quite rarely used by MDs, the quintessence of the raag could be
found in the songs, "jaayen to jaayen kahan", the all pervasive
pleading side of the song being much evident. The "dard bhari dil ki
zuban" pertains not only to the singer, but to the listener as well.
When the girl sings, "Meri yaadmen tum na ansu bahaana", how can one
but not shed tears and repel the suggestion, "mujhe bhool jaana"!

In Tamil quite a few MDs have adopted this raag in their own inimitable
style. The earliest dated could be Yezhisai Mannan's "Satva guna
bogan". Like the child pleading with the mother, when Bagavathar sings
of the Supreme Power who provided the soul in the womb with food
(Kallinul thaeraikkum karuppai uyrikkum pul unarve thandhu potrum nam
naadan"), few souls could refrain from shedding a few tears. A magic he
repeated with his other song "Gyanakann ondru " in the same raag. The
Carnatic Genius G.Ramanathan had the lullaby "Naan petra selvam" (again
look to the raag pattern in the line: "anbe illa manidaraal, annayai
izhandhai ilam vayadhil"). MSV had the lady mystified by her husband's
request in "Sonnadhu needhana", where sitar accompanied the vocal
delight. KV Mahadevan churned out the ever green hit "Kallile kalai
vannam kandan".
While the pleader in the raag was to be found in Ilayaraja's melody
"Metti oli", the definat and robust part was visible in his "kavithai
kelungal". It was the perfect craftsmanship of the maestro to have
chosen the raag for a dance sequence ( a marathon one!), the pace and
the theme of the lyric complementing the rhythm and the raag.

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