T.M. Krishna enthralled the audience with his music during the Purandaradasa Aradhana that took place in Coimbatore.

The three-day Purandara Dasar Aradhana organised by P.N. Raghavendra Rao Memorial Trust, Coimbatore, featured three vocal concerts - by Bombay Sisters C. Saroja and C. Lalitha, M.S. Sheela and T.M. Krishna.

T.M. Krishna held the audience under thrall by letting his music rise higher than the musician. He began with the traditional ‘Ganesha Vandana’ in Sowrashtram, ‘Sharanu Sidhi Vinayaka’ and built it up with a shower of swaras in his typical style. The beautiful and touching Mukhari alapana and the endearing pada, ‘Paalisammaa Mudhu Shaaradhe,’ were enchanting. There were two songs on Ranganatha. ‘Dayamaado Ranga’ in Kalyani and ‘Karuniso Rangaa, Karuniso’ in Sahana. The raga as well as the sahitya were soaked in karuna rasa. Purandara Dasa lists how inadequate he is compared to the other great devotees and pleads, “In spite of all that, O Ranga, please show mercy on me.”

The mood changed to one of relaxation with R.K. Sriram Kumar’s alapana of Anandabhairavi on the violin and the comforting song, ‘Smarane Ondhe Saaladhe’ giving hope that just remembering Govinda is enough. The Khambodi alapana was one not to be missed. Like a careful sculptor, Krishna etched out the beauty of the raga and presented (quite surprisingly), ‘Gaja Vadanaa Beduve’ as the centerpiece. He elaborated the lines, ‘Sarasija Nabha Sri Purandara Vitala’ and the rasikas waited for another shower of swaras but he gave the sign for tani avartanam. The soft ‘sunadham’ of Arun Prakash’s mridangam and the pleasing ganjira of Anirudh Athreya came together to provide a caressing laya pattern. R.K. Sriram Kumar was at his melodious best.

‘Baro Krishnayya’ by Kanakadasa was delightful and little Udupi Krishna would have been pleased. With a few more popular songs such as ‘Krishna Nee Begane Baro’ Krishna concluded one of his memorable concerts.