Here is the seventh one in the series (click here for the sixth one). It is a bit different from the earlier ones since it is not a very rare occurrence to hear elaborations say compared to the earlier one. But you are not going to run into elaboration in this raga every time it is presented. However, the raga is a haunting, complex one, and thus to me it is always a special occurrence when elaboration is done in it.

Here is an alapana which seems rarer to me than kalpanaswaras in this raga – and this one is a detailed one. You should be easily be able to guess the raga and the artist, but that is not the point.  This alapana is simply exquisite – bringing in all the myriad hues (hackneyed carnatic review term alert!) of the raga!

(Note: All Audio Courtesy – Sangeethapriya)

Here is kalpanaswaras that is part of the same rendition. Since the raga is fairly well known, I am not taking out the refrain:

The mood and tempo there is sort of trance like – isn’t it? Now, here is how the King of Swaras does kalpanaswaras for the same song:

Now doesn’t that make you tap your feet in excitement? I also love the part where he “eggs” the violinist (who actually is more than equal to the task in this) with his trademark “Tatta ta ta ta” 🙂

Oh, btw if you found this particular entry in Rare Treats as “a let down” compared to others, because the raga is all too well known and thus “not much of a challenge to guess”, you have simply corroborated my earlier post What’s the Raga 😉

(Answer below)

Select the text below to reveal the answer and some comments:
Artist(s): Nedunuri Krishnamurthy on the Alapana and first swara sample. Madurai Mani Iyer on the second one with T.N. Krishnan on the violin. I do not know who the violin player is for the first sample.
Raga: asAveri/asAvari, a fairly complex raga (haunting, bewitching to me), with an unusual use of ga (supposedly G2 but has a definite, distinctive G1 tinge i.e. vivadi tinge). It also uses of both R1 and R2 (the R2 use being considered a later, perhaps 20th century morph). To me, the prominent use of R2 itself i.e. even when used as ri and thus not adjacent to R1 sometimes give an unusual vivadi-like. This is perhaps because I a, also subconsciously attuned to the presence of R1 in the raga. Note that R2 is used in ascent as in S R2 M; and R1 is used e.g. in descent as MG~~RS (also SRS I think).

This dual use of ri in carnatic asAveri, has the same parallel in Hindustani Music, where there are 3 versions of asAvari – one with just R1, one with just R2 and one with both. This almost certainly points to common ancestry for both ragas as used today.

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