RARE RAGA SERIES : VASANTHABHAIRAVI – JANYA OF MELA (14) RAGAM VAKULABHARANAM - PART (1)

(unlike the usual post on rare ragas, we will be having two separate posts on Rare Ragas. The reason is that two janyas of Vakulabharanam have same configuration; but no relation at all. So, the first one will be discussed in this article, while the second, in Part – 2)

Vakulabharanam has only few janyas, none of them prominent. The only raga which is known through the Thygaraja krithi, ‘Nee Dayarada’, is Vasanthabhairavi; got popular through a Tamil film. Even, this was translated into Tamil as ‘un dayavillayo’ !! There are several opinions about the configuration of this raga; the most prominent one shows it is a Panchama varja raga, the notes being: S R1 G3 M1 D1 N2 S // S N2 D1 M1 G3 R1 S

Even though theoretically, Vasanthabhairavi has no Panchama, in the famous composition Nee Dayarada by Thyagaraja, he uses Panchama and has changed Avarohana to S N2 D1 M1 P M1 G3 R1 S,using Panchama Swara. (The notation of the Semmangudi version also shows the same swaras). Muthuswami Dikshithar has followed the Venkatamakhi list and his equivalent of Vakulabharanam is ‘Vati Vasanthabhairavi’ which has the notes: S R1 G3 M1 P D1 N2 S // S N2 D1 M1 G3 M1 P M1 G3 R1 S The Dikshithar krithi, ‘Prasanna Venkateswaram’ is written in this raga, as can be confirmed from the lyrics “vATI vasanta bhairavI nutaM”. But many of the modern day musicians and musicologists group this along with Thyagaraja’s ‘Nee dayarada’, assigning the configuration of Vasanthabhairavi to it. So, I had a problem of whether to incorporate it in this or not; finally decided to keep it as it is, as it cannot be considered a janya.

Compositions: Nee dayarada - Thyagaraja Rama ramana bharama - Thyagaraja Neeye gathi dayapari – Chidambaram Swarna venkatesha Dikshithar

Let us listen to vid. Karthika Vaidyanathan, rendering the Thyagaraja krithi; beginning with a very nice alapana.


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