Thursday, 1 March 2012

Melodic wrap..

At times while listening to his songs, I imagine as to what would have transpired during the composing sessions.

The Director gives him a situation. He takes his harmonium and hums a tune. What happens after that?

Knowing the musical sense of a majority of the directors, I wonder what their reaction would be if he hums a tune in a very rare raga. It is not that they would know it is a rare raga (for that matter even if it is something called a ‘raga’), but they would surely know it is sounding very different.

Now, as he moves to the CharaNam, what happens if he does Graha Bedam? Will the Director be all at sea?

What about tunes that follow western classical patterns? Will they scratch their heads?

If the tune does not appeal to them, how do they put it across? Just blink?

Finally when do they approve the tunes at all? And on what basis?

I request all of you to visualize such scenes and have fun!

But jokes apart, we must appreciate the Directors for their ignorance. For only that gave the Maestro a lot of freedom to do what he wanted in obscure movies.

Today’s song is from yet another obscure movie ‘Devi Sridevi’(1983) which ran for approximately 2 weeks.

‘Vaalibam Vaazhga..’ starts with the fluttering keys. The strings wallow in and what we experience is a micro symphony.

The golden voice of SPB now hums the tune and here we get ready for yet another WCM treat.

Note that no percussion is used in the entire prelude that follows the 3-beat Tisram cycle.

The Pallavi in the voices of SPB and Janaki, is haunting with the strings following each line. The second part touches the higher notes gradually is splendorous. The percussion is very interesting with the drums playing 6 beats in the faster tempo throughout while a folksy instrument peeps and beeps out from the second line.

The first interlude is full of conversations between the instruments. A very different instrument(is it keyboard?) speaks musically with Sitar. After a while, the two, smiling at each other go on different tracks. The guitar and the violins take over giving lissome touches.

The first four lines of the CharaNam reminds one of a Tumri in Hindustani music).
The following lines in the higher octave are outlandish.

The CharaNams sound so different from the Pallavi but the change is seamless and is absolutely innocuous. Most importantly not jarring!

The strings in the second interlude move with languorous charm even as the brass flute sails in its own musical world playing a totally different set of notes. The guitar scales new heights resonating in a different scale.

Exquisite phrases in WCM follow with strings and the brass flute giving many allusive images. It is a melodic wrap..

‘When music gives us so much of joy, peace and tranquility, do we have to know about ragas, talas, scale, counterpoint, trills..’ the Directors ask us.

And we are left speechless!