I am Arun(k) from India, and I live with my wife and kid in a suburb near Chicago. I came to the US ages ago. You can say I am old enough to be close to a mid-life crisis and maybe that starting this blog is one of the symptoms.

Note: The (k) is there as some people on the web know me as arunk.

My current interests include carnatic music, programming as a hobby, (talking about) sports, and dreaming about vacations in exotic places! Sometimes those dreams do come true.

My past interests include classic rock (Pink Floyd, and a bunch of other bands), fantasy novels, tamil film music, and playing the guitar. They have sort of faded ever since I discovered the beauty of carnatic music (perhaps coincidental with a receding hairline, and graying sideburns), and also realizing the futility of using any of my past “talent” to play carnatic music on the guitar. I still relive these interests once in a while, but I note with some sadness that it is not with the same passion as before.


32 Responses to “About”

  1. Latha Says:

    Sorry, I am not sure what happened the previous time, I guess I posted a blank post!

    Arun, this is such a cool blog spot, really enjoyed reading all the posts.

    – Latha

  2. Arunk Says:

    thanks latha. No blank post (even so i would have been able to delete it)

  3. Giri Vasu Says:

    I followed this blog from ramsabode and from rasikas. I feel like i am writing this blog. Looks like a parallel life going on. Came to US many moons ago. Right from trichy to pink floyd/Def leppard to computers. Instead of guitar I got violin. Kind of lost interest in rock only after discovering CM/HM.

    One on midlife crisis to not remembering the dorm, just the nail…I can tell my wife now I not the only one.

    Thanks man. Your are awesome.

  4. Arunk Says:

    Hey thanks Giri. You are right – our evolution (well, euphemistically speaking for me 🙂 ) seems to have followed the same path. Cool.

    BTW, You a RECTian (or NITian)? Or from another Trichy college?

    Please keep visiting.

  5. Giri Vasu Says:

    Product of St.Joseph’s…1989 Good old days man reminds of Bryan Adams’ Summer of 69…just the essence of it. I know the song has a different meaning from wikipedia.

    I will…Keep on posting.

  6. neelanjana Says:

    Hi Arunk,

    Just landed in your page from some other link..
    You know me, in my other avatAra – neelanjana is my avatAra here on wordpress! I guess I have left enough clues to tell you my identity..

    Read your post on sAranga. Quite nice 🙂


  7. Arunk Says:

    Thanks for visiting neelanjana.

    Your clue is quite vague but a bit of investigation + googling has given me a better idea (I think).

  8. neelanjana Says:

    I hope you know me now 🙂 If not, you will!

    Take a look at the following link on Youtube. I am sorry it took me so long.

    It is a delightful composition. I can help with the sAhitya, but the dancer does such a good job with her expressions – you may not even need it!


  9. Arunk Says:

    thanks. my guess was right even before this one 🙂 I will pass it on.

  10. neelanjana Says:

    >> Arunk you said on July 18, 2007 at 5:17 pm

    –Your clue is quite vague but a bit of
    –investigation + googling has given me a better
    –idea (I think).

    Arunk, Can you tell me your thought process that lead to me? Just curious to see how googling helped 🙂

    You can e-mail me your steps!


  11. asarma Says:

    Hi Arun, if you have made the guitar on carnatic music or tried some experiments, you can upload some pieces so all of us here in taara can hear. Cheers.

  12. sangeethas Says:

    Hi Arun, I arrived at your blog from the wordpress tag on carnatic Music. So glad I did! Enjoyed every moment I spent here. made me add your blog to my blogroll too!

  13. Arunk Says:

    Thanks asarma – actually my experiments with guitar and CM have been failures, simply because I am not that good 🙂

    Thanks sangeethas and welcome to my blog!

    1. Padmanabhan Says:

      Dear Arun,

      I am writing this years after you wrote this entry. Let me tell you, you’re good! Your experiments with Carnatic and Gamakam are very useful, so I respectfully disagree with you.

      You Indeed are Very Good !!

      Arun: Thanks and thanks for visiting my blog. But, what is it that you disagree with me 🙂 ?

      1. Padmanabhan Says:

        I disagree with this statement of yours, “my experiments with guitar and CM have been failures, simply because I am not that good”

        I hope I am clear now.
        I would love to connect with you to demonstrate (!!!) some of the good impacts you have made…you can connect with me through the email address that I have provided.

        Arun: 🙂 – Thanks. I will contact you via email.

  14. Meera Says:

    Happened to read about “The magic of ritigowlai” and your quote “I have heard interpretations that this plea is something offered to someone who has decided to leave, and thus has some anguish in it.” So very true..lost my son in a car crash..”Nannu vidachi kathalagura,,” affects me profoundly.
    Still when I listen Maharajapuram S sings this song I get transformed to a magical world where we had some joyful years with our son. Carnatic music heals wounds..Keep up the good work

    Arun: So sorry to hear about your loss. I can relate to your pain as such a loss did hit my (extended but very close) family too. But still I can only imagine what parents must go through. I hope that music continues to heal the wound

  15. Dinesh Babu Says:

    Nice to know about you Arun, Will keep checking your blog once a while!

    Arun: Thanks and welcome to my blog!

  16. Nandini Kambi Says:


    I have started a web blog to feature many artists in USA to perform this December season. We will have a different artist each day, with links to their videos online.

    It is a humble beginning and I am hoping to get your blessings and encouragement.

    Please check it out, and also inform your friends here in the States to participate.


    thank you very much

    Nandini Kambi
    Nashville, Tennessee

  17. Samanth Says:

    Hi Arun,

    My name is Samanth Subramanian, and I’m a journalist working on an article about new media in Carnatic music — innovations that have been independently developed, such as your online transliterator. I was wondering if I could get your email i.d. (or your phone number, if you happen to be in Chennai for the season now)? My own is samanth [at] gmail [dot] com, so if you could write to me, perhaps I could ask you a few questions about the transliterator?


    Arun: It was nice talking to you!

  18. MEENA RAMAN Says:


    I am from chennai, really happy to know your interest in Carnatic Music. My sons aged 14 and 12 are learning carnatic ( keyboard )for the past 3 yrs. Last month we recorded some songs and i uploaded them at Muziboo
    my link address:www.muziboo.com/ourown/music
    kindly hear them when you have time and you can send in your comments at my mail id:meena.m.raman@gmail.com

  19. Cool Says:

    Dear Arun
    Please send me a test mail.


  20. Anonymous Says:

    Hi Arun ,

    Loved your piece on nattakurinji . a wonderful expostion to say the least… there is one beautiful song composed by MG Radhakrishnan a gem of a composer in Kerala and sung by none other than the legendary Jesudas for a film called Ananthabhadram in this raga.. the song start is ” thira nurayum ..” Pls find the link here :

    this is a typical NK in letter and spirit.. enjoy.. also post more and more .. BW

    Arun: Thanks and thanks for visiting my blog!

  21. Meera Krishna Says:

    Thanks for building the typesetter Arun. I came across it by chance and have used it with great results. One question though. When I convert to PDF format, the output displays content only on one half of the page, and then leaves a lot of empty space and moves to the next page. Some other times, the first page fills completely but the second page has leading empty lines until the half page mark on that page is reached. I am not able to figure out how to make these empty lines go away. Is the PDF converter inserting the empty lines or the typesetter? Any thoughts? I am using the BullZip converter. Thanks for your input.

  22. Anonymous Says:

    Hi Arunk

    I stumbled into one of your posts, on arohana and avarohana + saveri, by accident. Being an illiterate fan of carnatic music, I am learning by things by “random walk and assemble” process (for many years at snail pace, I may add). To get to the point, Have you got a corrected piece of the write up after the comment on g3? your write up is great for random walkers like me. many thanks. Venky

    Arun: Thanks Venky. As far as I know, all corrections have been made i.e. current content of the post includes corrections. If not, please let me know.

  23. kumudha Says:

    Hi Arun,

    I am writing to congratulate and thank you for the excellent cm typesetter. I am currently notating a book for a well known artist. Is there a mail id where I may be able to ask you a few questions ?


  24. Sindhuja Says:

    Landed here on googling “rudrapriya”. Great blog, very insightful!


  25. Hi Arun:

    Thanks for your blogs on Karnatic music. I would like to write a program that can generate (random) sequences of notes that follow the arohana/avarohana rule (not worrying about the gamakams in the beginng). Do you have any advice for me as to how to get started? Or any examples of work that you or others have done in this area.

    1. Arunk Says:

      Do you have an iphone/iPad? If so my app “Swarasthana” actually has this feature now (as part of Scale Identification game) – again no gamakas (doing with gamakas is much much harder I think). With flat notes, for most ragas (including asymmetric ones) the rule is simple – if a swara is in arohana you can ascend from it, if a swara is in avarohana, you can descend from it. So that tells you the underlying axiom. For patterns: break them down into smaller chunks: 2, 3 matras e.g., and for each chunk you pre-define what kinds of combinations. For example, a pattern that takes 3 matras can be swara pause pause (i.e. a long swara that takes 3 matras), or swara pause swara, swara swara pause, or swara swara swara and so on. Then you can define (if you want) patterns of 4 and 5 based on this (4 = 2 + 2, 5 = 2 +3 or 3 + 2). You then randomly select a pattern of 2/3/4/5 and then within that you select which kind (i.e. swara pause swara or swara swara swara etc.). Then you generate first swara based on the aro/avaro rule for last generated swara. Once you know get that, you can generate next swara in pattern (if any) following same rule. The resulting one may not be “as melodic” (this is why swarasthana actually follows a somewhat canned underlying melodic pattern) but it will get you going.

  26. Anonymous Says:

    I Liked it your block,Did you Studied western music ?

  27. sam Says:


    I would like to use KrithiBook app, as I am interested in carnatic music. But my mother tongue is different and cannot understand all songs. Is there a trial period or something, before I pay 10$.

  28. Maramreddy Mahesh Reddy Says:

    Hi Arun, I cam across yours transliteration and I really like the way you have anusvara and other phonetics addressed in Tamil and other languages. I took iTrans and modified to get similar outputs based on my teacher’s corrections. Would you be able to share the mapping data or help me out how to map the Tamil from unicode? – Thanks
    Mahesh Reddy

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