Jagannatha Svami Nayanapathagami Bhavatu Me

Jagannatha, Lord of the universe, in His Form in the great 10th century temple at Puri, Orissa, India

Cassette cover. Prof. Basavi Mukerji has performed a full concert in this cassette. The first item is a Khayal in the morning Raga Jaunpuri and the second is a Thumri in the Raga Bhairavi. The jacket notes about the performance in this cassette, written by a veteran reviewer, read as follows:

"Jaunpuri is an instantaneously captivating mid-morning Raga with immense possiblities. It is at once evocative and romantic and can be elaborated in all three "Saptaks" giving the artiste considerable liberty. Basavi has, in this recital, presented two unusual compositions in the finest eclectic traditions of Gwalior and Kirana styles also giving out glimpses of the niceties of the Alladiya (jaipur Atrauli) Gharana. Evidently, while paramount importance has been given to aesthetic phrasing, tonal accuracy and the surprise element of rhythmic interplay in Khayal tradition, the artiste has intelligently maintained the purity of the Raga all through.

She also displays an impressive tonal range, clear and correct articulation of the song text and expressiveness. A poignant example of this is the Thimri presentation upon which she displays unusual command and insight. The underlying pathos and depth of this formidable Thumri by Nawab Wajid Ali Shah composed at the time of his ouster by the British from his own kingdom of Oudh (Awadh) has been brought out with great finesse and good understanding of the "Purab Anga". Bhairavi is perhaps the most versatile of Ragas and employs all seven Shuddha (natural) and five Vikruta(flat and sharp) Swaras in its light-classical forms, e.g. Thumri, Dadra, Ghazal, Bhajan, etc. This very aspect of this major morning Ragini has been most tellingly exploited by Basavi in the latter half of her Thumri presentation. In all, the maturity with which this masterpiece old composition has bean dealt, belies her relatively young age showing impeccable grooming, disciplined approach and fecund imagination. And the hairline accuracy of her notes as her honey-soaked sensuous voice soars high in heart melting "pukars" will continue to haunt the listeners for a long, long time."

This outstanding cassette may be purchased from the GVR Indian Music and Culture Centre.