Composers in the twentieth century have continued to create new raags, just as their predecessors did several centuries ago.  Of these, a few have become part of a shared repertoire going beyond gharana distinctions.

Jog Kauns, composed by eminent composer and guru Jagannathbuwa Purohit, is a raag that has not only been shared across gharanas, but has also been performed by the best-known musicians who may not have necessarily learnt it from the creator or his disciples.  In fact, Jog Kauns, originally called Kaunshi, is a perfect example of how some compositions and raags by virtue of their sheer musicality, almost invite musicians to explore them.

Such instances raise the question whether the tenets of taaleem or training in the guru-shishya parampara or master-disciple tradition can be relaxed at times to accommodate this exchange of ideas without the baggage of gharana lineage.  Purists would think otherwise,  but facts prove that there have been exceptions to the rule and that such compositions and raags can come alive when presented by amazing musicians despite their not having learnt them via the traditional method.

The first two tracks included here feature raag Jog Kauns presented by two disciples of Jagannathbuwa Purohit.

Ram Marathe

Ram Marathe, a well-known performer of khayal and Marathi theatrical songs, studied with several gurus.  On this track, he presents two compositions created by his guru Jagannath Purohit.  The first is set to vilambit or slow Ektaal, a cycle of 12 matras or time-units.  The second is a drut or fast composition set to the 16 matra Teentaal.

His penchant for exploring the laya or rhythmic aspect is evident in this recording, as he proceeds to elaborate upon the composition through various devices like bol baant or changing the scansion of the words of the song-text and bol taan or using the song-text to sing swift melodic passages, interpersed with fast taans in aakaar or using the vowel "aa".  The focus on the rhythmic interplay invites the tabla player to respond by anticipating and reproducing the vocalist’s melodic-rhythmic excursions.   Ram Marathe also makes full use of his range in the upper octave.

Manik Varma

The drut composition heard in the previous track is also presented in the next clip by Manik Varma, popular vocalist of yesteryear.  Delivered in her inimitable agile and sweet voice, she includes taans or swift melodic patterns while elaborating upon this composition.

Prabha Atre

Turning to performers who have not studied under Jagannathbuwa Purohit, the next track features Dr Prabha Atre, doyenne of the Kirana gharana.  She explores Jog Kauns through a vilambit composition set to the 14 matra Jhumra and concludes with a tarana set to Teentaal.

Nikhil Banerjee

Eminent sitar player Nikhil Banerjee begins Jog Kauns with a detailed aalaap or introductory section, followed by two gats or instrumental compositions set to Teentaal.