The last episode of the five-part series on Gauri, a raag prescribed for dusk, carries two recordings of rare varieties of this raag. As mentioned in the previous episodes, various interpretations of Gauri and combinations with other raags have come into existence over a long period, thanks to deviations made by artistes that were incorporated into the Hindustani stream as definite structures.
Khadim Hussein Khan (1904/’05-1993), revered ustad of the Agra gharana, sings a vilambit bandish or slow composition in Chaita Gauri. The characteristic feature of this composition, set to Ektaal, a cycle of 12 matras or time units, is the dive to the teevra Madhyam or sharp fourth and the shuddha Gandhara or natural third of the lower octave. Later into the recital, the maestro, known for his uncanny sense of rhythm, delves into various kinds of bol-baant that involves introducing different rhythmic phrasing by changing the scansion and tempo of the words from the song-text.
Scholars believe jod or compound raags combining two raags and Sankirna raags incorporating elements from different raags should in the final analysis appear as complete and unified melodic structures, rather than patchwork that involves flitting between disparate phrases. The latter can especially happen in the case of sankirna raags that make melodic pathways more restrictive and narrow, and therefore demand skill to negotiate these and create a holistic structure.
Aslam Hussain Khan, an exponent of the Hapur, Khurja, Jaipur-Atrauli, Agra gharanas with family ties with the musicians of the Sikandra gharana and the Delhi gharana of Tanras Khan, sings Tiruvan or Triveni Gauri, a combination of Marwa, Lalit and Kapar Gauri. After an initial aalaap or introduction to the raag, he presents a vilambit bandish set to the 14-matra Jhumra.
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