RARE RAGA SERIES: NAYAKI – JANYA OF MELA (22) RAGAM KHARAHARAPRIYA

Ragam Nayaki is another rare janya of mela (22) Kharaharapriya. It is a raga which shows too much similarity to Darbar raga while listening; mostly because of the close similarity of the purvanga notes in arohanam and uttaranga notes in avarohanam. Hence it requires a very careful listening by the rasika to identify both. The ragaswaroopa is given as:

S R2 M1 P D2 N2 D2 P S // S N2 D2 P M1 R2 G2 R2 S

Sangita Sampradaya pradarshini (SSP) by Subbarama Dikshithar describes this raga by the lakshana sloka:

"sampurno nayaki ragassadjagrahasamanvitah |

laksyamarganusarena giyate sarvakalikah ||"

(As per SSP, it is a sarvakalika, sampoorna raga; also a minor raga. The Nishada should be held with a little shake. To make the raga glitter well, there should be frequent usage of different prayogas with a mix of nishada and gandhara. This raga has sancharas in middle and higher octaves only. According to Dikshitar School, Nayaki is a sampoorna raga in which gandhara used is deergha gandhara.

Lakshana of Nayaki raga in Sangeethachoodamani: This is an ubhaya vakra shadava sampoorna janya raga in which Gandhara is varjya in the avarohana. A sarvakalika raga and a minor raga. The usage of deergha nishada and gandhara are the specialities of this raga.

“Ragapravaham” by D.Pattammal gives various scales under mela (22) Kharaharapriya:

S R M P D N D P S // S N D P M G R

S R M P D N P S // S N D P M G R S

S R M P D N D P S // S N D P M G R S

S R M P D N D P S // S N S D P M R G R S

S R M P D N D P S // S N D P M G R S

S R G M P D N S // S N D P M G R S

She also places it under mela (28) Harikambhoji, with scales:

S R M P D N S // S N D P M G R S

S G M P D S // S D P D N D P M G R S

Raga Nayaki is a gamakavarika raga. Singing of this raga feels like a lullaby some times. Eventhough Darbar and Nayaki are allied, the bhava and rasas evoked by the two ragas are entirely different. Also, there is difference in listening to the Thyagraja and Dikshithar styles, as both followed different scales.

Compositions :

Dayaleni bratukemi - Thyagraja

Kanugonu sowkhyamu - Thyagaraja

Nee bhajana - Thyagaraja

Neramellanu – Tiruvottiyur Thyagaiah

Palaya mam shrI – Swathi Thirunal

Palayamam brihadeeswara - Dikshithar

Ranganayakam bhavayeham - Dikshithar

Characara jagadrupe – Dr. Muthaiah Bhagavathar

Sahasraksham - Dr. Muthaiah Bhagavathar

ShrI Raghuvara - Dr. Muthaiah Bhagavathar

Vamanamanisham – Mysore Vasudevacharya

Sarasijakshi ninne kori (V) - Rudrapatnam Venkatarama Ayyar.

We shall take up the most popular composition in this raga, the Dikshithar krithi, ‘Ranganayakam bhavayeham’. The composer has inserted the Raga-mudra in the second line of the Pallavi itself as ‘ranga nAyakI samEtaM’. The usage, ‘phaNi pati SayanaM’ indicates the reclining posture of the Lord on the snake, Adisesha (this is almost a similar style found at the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, Trivandrum). The composition is in the Second vibhakthi (accusative – destination of action).

Let us listen to a beautiful rendition, including alapana (which is not found in most uploads); also in a considerably vilamba (chowka) kalam by vid. T.M.Krishna.


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