Friday, January 22, 2010

Specialty & Jod Raags

A highlight of Jaipur gayaki is
the mastery over Jod Raags
(mixed or hybrid Raags; a blend
of multiple Raags that form one
Raag). Singers from other
Gharanas tend to sing one Raag
in Aaroh (ascent) and the other
in Avaroh (descent). Some
others sing one Raag in the
lower half of the octave and
then switch to the other Raag
in the upper half. Alternatively,
they may sing alternate
phrases of the two component
Raags. In Jaipur Gayaki, there is
such perfect fusion of the two
raags that it sounds like a
homogeneous Raag in its own
right, giving the feel of both
component raags, not as a
heterogeneous mixture cobbled
together. The listener hears an
amalgam of both raags without
losing their distinctive identity.
Alladiya Khan introduced many
lesser-known or obscure raags
in his repertoire like Raag
Basanti Kedar, Raag Jait Kalyan,
Raag Kafi Kanada, Raisa Kanada,
Raag Basanti Kanada, Raag
Savani Nat, Raag Savani Kalyan,
Raag Bhoop Nat, Raag Nat
Kamod, Raag Bihari, Raag Khat,
Raag Khokar, Raag Sampoorna
Malkauns, and many others.
Trying to imbibe all these
characteristics without losing
the aesthetics is a tall order
for any musician. Hence this
Gayaki is called a thinking
listener's or connoisseur's
Gayaki. However, it gives equal
pleasure to the uninitiated
listener who may not
understand the technical
intricacies, but responds to the
layakari and the melodic
content of the presentation

Gharana Purity
The Gharana purity of the
Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana has been
an avid discussion among
connoisseurs and scholars alike,
as a result of Utd. Alladiya Khan
purposefully teaching students
to approach the same musical
content differently, causing
internal quarrels within the
Gharana itself, as well. For
instance, the approach to
certain Raags conflict between
branches of the Gharana, as
certain elements of a Raag are
neglected, emphasized, de-
emphasized or treated
As a result, scholars feel the
purity of the Jaipur-Atrauli
Gharana can be traced from
Utd. Alladiya Khan to his brother
Utd. Haider Ali Khan, to his sons
Utd. Manji Khan and Utd. Bhurji
Khan, as well as Utd. Gulubhai
Jasdanwalla, the only purist
outside of the Utd. Alladiya Khan
family. Today, the Gharana
remains with Utd. Alladiya Khan's
grandson and biographer,
"Baba" Azizuddin Khan.

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