Hindustani (North Indian) Classical Music
I have had a long-standing interest in Hindustani classical music. In my mid-forties, in 2008, I started taking it more seriously and studied the basics of vocal music in the Dhrupad style with Shubha Sankaran. In September 2013, I was accepted as a student by Pandit Rajshekhar Mansur of the Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana and have been studying with him ever since.
The Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana (school/style/”home”) is one of the pillars of the Khyal style of Hindustani music. The Gharana was developed by Ustad Alladiya Khan in the late 18th century by building upon the Dhrupad foundations within which he was trained. It is characterized by a combined emphasis on intricate rhythmic patterns, melody, and the purity of notes, improvised – more strictly than in the other Khyal styles – within the framework of a composition. It has a wide repertoire of rare (aprachalit) and blended (jod) ragas, along with more commonly performed ragas such as Shree and Bhairav.
To learn more about Hindustani music:
The website of the Sangeet Research Academy in Kolkata has useful explanations and demonstrations.
Rajan Parrikar has a set of articles on Hindustani ragas and musicians that are politically incorrect, highly opinionated, and extremely instructive.
The music of my guru Pandit Rajshekhar Mansur. In the first he sings Raga Khokar, and in the second Raga Ram Sakh:
The Indian postal service recently released a stamp honoring my guru’s father and guru, Pandit Mallikarjun Mansur, one of the greatest Indian musicians of the 20th century:
Two videos of Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur. The first is a short performance by him, accompanied by Pt. Rajshekhar Mansur, of Raga Nat Bihag. The second is a wonderful, if austere, documentary on his life and music (note that it starts at 1.30).
Links of Interest
My father’s website: