Raaga Based Song of the Day #5

Raaga Based Song of the Day: Ajahun na aaye balma…
Raag Madhuvanti Taal Kaherava

Fifth day of a still new series on this blog. The first post in the series was titled ‘Raaga Based Song Of The Day #1’ and the song was a Mohammad Rafi and Lata Mangeshkar song from the 1970 Shakti Samanta movie Pagla Kahin Ka: Tum mujhe youn bhula na paoge. It is in Raag Jhinjhoti, Tal Kaherava.

The second post was titled ‘Raaga Based Song Of The Day #2’ and the song was a Mohammad Rafi song from the 1971 Sushil Majumdar movie Laal Patthar: Unake khayal aaye to aate chale gaye. It is in Raag Gara, Tal Kaherava.

Similarly, the third post was titled ‘Raaga Based Song Of The Day #3’ and the song was, once again, a Mohammad Rafi song from the 1956 GP Sippy movie Chandrakanta: Maine chand aur sitaaron ki tamanna ki thi. It is in Raag Bhimpalasi, Tal Dadra.

The last post, that is the fourth post, was titled ‘Raaga Based Song Of The Day #4’ and the song was a Lata Mangeshkar song pictured on Asha Parekh from the 1960 Ramanand Sagar movie Ghunghat: Laage na mora jiya. It is in Raag Shivaranjani, Tal Dadra.

This blog has a number of posts on Raaga based songs in Hindi movies titled similarly; for example: ‘The Best Raaga Based Songs in Hindi Movies – Raag Pilu – Part -I’.

The song is from 1964 Hrishikesh Mukherjee movie Saanjh Aur Savera that had Guru Dutt and Meena Kumari in lead roles. The song is however pictured on Mehmood and Shubha Khote with Mohammad Rafi and Suman Kalyanpur singing for them.

Music Directors loved to compose for Mehmood and Shubha Khote and some really fine classical Raaga based songs are pictured on them. In the same year, for the 1964 movie Ziddi that is, SD Burman composed a song for them which is considered the purest example of Darbari Kanada in Hindi movies; the song was sung by Manna Dey and is: Pyaar ki aag mein tan badan jal gaya.

Madhuvanti belongs to Todi Thaat. As you must have guessed it Madhu means honey and the raag is as sweet as honey in sringar ras depicting love and romance. It is an evening raag like Yaman aur Kalyan.

About Taal Kaherava I have already told you. But since we are in early stages of our learning here it is again:

Kaherava is most popular 8 beat Tal in Hindustani music, with two vibhags of four matra each, first vibhag being clap, second being wave (khali), which makes it:

Clap, 2, 3, 4, wave, 2, 3, 4. Theka is 

Dhaa Ge Naa Tee Naa Ka Dhin Naa.

Before we take up the song, as always, let’s take up our value added learning. Let’s briefly take up North Indian or Hindustani music notation or swar lipi that dates back to – hold your breath – Vedic times. This is all the more surprising since Indian music is largely based on oral tradition.

Cut from Vedic period to modern times. The great musician Vishnu Digambar Paluskar (a contemporary of Bhatkhande), in early 20th century started the modern musical notation. It was a precise notational system but difficult. It was replaced by a much simpler system by Bhatkhande.

When it came to internationalization of North Indian Music, two approaches were used: one, the Western staff notation with its main disadvantage being that in this, music is tied to a specific key and so much is lost in translation.
The other is simply to use Bhatkhande’s notations in Roman script. Even though it too has aberrations but it is now widely accepted.

Coming back to Ajahun na aaye, it was composed by my favourite music duo Shankar Jaikishan who did wonders in Raaga based songs.

What about other popular songs in Raag Madhuvanti? Madan Mohan composed Rasm e ulfat ko nibhayen to nibhayen kaise in the same Raag and Taal.

Please enjoy in Raag Madhuvanti, Tal Kaherava, Mohammad Rafi and Suman Kalyanpur sing a composition of Shankar Jaikishan, penned by the great Hasrat Jaipuri and picturized on Mehmood and Shubha Khote: Ajahun na aaye balma sawan beeta jaaye..

Ajahu.N naa aae baalamaa, saavan biitaa jaae
haay re saavan biitaa jaae

nii.nd bhii a.nkhiyan dvaar na aae
tose milan kii aas bhii jaae
aaI bahaar khile phulavaa
more sapane kaun sajaae
aa … ajahu.n …

chaa.nd ko badaraa garavaa lagaae
aur bhii more man lalachaae
yaar hasiin gale lag jaa
morii umr guzaratii jaae
aa … ajahu.n …

We have intended to learn about Raaga based music whilst we entertain ourselves with Raaga based songs. So, lets, once again, take stock of our collective learning so far:

  1. On the first day we learnt about the Raaga system devised by Pandit Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande, which is the prevalent system in Hindustani Classical Music and based on ten Thaats.
  2. On the second day we learnt about Tal or Taal.
  3. On the third day we learnt about characteristics of Raagas that included Swar, Jati, Thaat, Arohana and Avarohana, Vadi, Samvadi and Pakad.
  4. On the fourth day, we learnt about Sargam.
  5. On the fifth day, that is, today, we learnt about notations used in Indian classical music or simply Swar Lipi.

There is much more still to be learnt and enjoyed.

Please stay tuned!

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