Raag Bhairavi

Performed by Mukul Shivputra


One morning, I heard Mukul Shivputra sing this composition in raag Bhairavi. It was in 2000 and we were in Dehradun. While stringing the notes together, he paused intermittently, laughed and smiled to himself. He said it was a festive day. We were to leave home for good that evening.

I had decided to leave home and go hunt for a job in Delhi. My father was sad about my leaving home. My elder brother and sister-in-law were worried for me and helped me pack. Shivputra had been living with us for a while. After having stayed in Dehradun for too long, he said, he was wondering where to go and live next.

We held the fragile day together by conversing only about mundane logistics. Until he mumbled to my father, “Everything new starts with a memory.” They smiled at each other. The rest of us smiled nervously at each other.

Later, he bought cups of vanilla ice-cream for everyone to celebrate the festive day.