The criticism that has often been levelled against Tripunithura Krishnadas for rebelling against traditional practices of playing the edakka has dimmed to a low hum.
The traits of gender, caste or religion, bear absolutely no consequence to this artiste, who welcomes anyone who wants to learn the quiet percussion instrument that the edakka is.
Speaking to The Hindu on the sidelines of the Thaalam festival, Mr. Krishnadas recalled past experiences that prompted him to recreate the beat and tone of the instrument that was performed in temples, into a ‘kutcheri’ culture. “It is in Kerala, that I have encountered so much criticism,” said Mr. Krishnadas, who is lauded as the edakka player who gave life to scenes in films including Devasuram and Urumi. From contributing to Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu films, to being the lead player in western music bands such as ‘The Banned’, he portrays the versatility of the instrument.
A talent passed down generations, Mr. Krishnadas feels that he is blessed for it was natural that a boy born to an ‘Ambalavaasi’ caste of the Marars, was taught this instrument.
“It was a guarded responsibility and it still is in some quarters but the instrument must not be shunned to silence. I welcome everyone from a girl of 12 to a middle-aged Christian, to learn the edakka,” he said.