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Centenary tribute

Gana Bhaskara-Vol-1

Compositions of G.N. Balasubramaniam

Trichur V.Ramachandran and Shubhashree Ramachandran

With the centenary of the legendary musician G.N. Balasubramanian being celebrated globally, it is a befitting audio compact disc release by Kosmik Global Media P ltd, comprising of the compositions of the vaggeyakara.

Trichur V. Ramachandran one of the foremost disciples of GNB has rendered four compositions in addition to six compositions sung by his daughter Subhashree. Ramachandran has faithfully stuck to his Guru's bhani throughout his successful performing career. His enviable voice which bears a close resemblance to that of his mentor is in fine fettle in this recording.

A not very familiar varnam in Adi talam ‘Sakalakala' (Hindolam) is the crisply sung opening number. ‘ Bhuvanathraya' on Lord Ayyappa in Mohanam is vocalised with clear diction and a few meaningful cycles of solfa passages for the pallavi opening lyric. Ramachandran's brief essay of Bahudari is an excellent display and the total essence of the raga is captured within a few minutes. The Thamizh krithi ‘Unnadiye' is a bhava laden rendition and the halting at the madhyama note at ‘Munname' in the charanam is satisfying. Purvikalyani is the other raga chosen for alapana which has the charcteristic pidis associated with the GNB school. A misra chapu kriti ‘ Madurapuri Kalyani' that follows the alapana is pleasing. The opening of this kriti is similar to the structure of the charanam in Muthuswami

Dikshitar's ‘Meenakshi Memudam.'

Shubhasree begins with a breezy rendering of ‘Paada Bhajaname' in Khamas. Her singing has acquired weight and maturity in the recent years and her voice control is good. Short telling sketches of Bhairavi and Andolika precede the kritis ‘Intha Paraku' and ‘Kaaranamemi.' The icing on the cake is however the Kanada raga alapana which is sung with a great deal of confidence. The brigas are clear and fall accurately on the swarasthanas. Another Thamizh song ‘Unnaiyallal' is a good choice. The concluding kritis are ‘Ninnupogada' in Kunthalavarali and ‘ Mangalavaradayaki' in Kathanakuthuhalam.'

The accompanying artists are V.V. Ravi (violin), Umayalpuram Mali and Kallidaikurichi Sivakumar (mridangam) and H. Sivaramakrishnan (ghatam).This disc has been released at an appropriate time and is a good tribute to the genius of G.N. Balasubramanian.




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