RaagTime Episode 8 – One Melody, Different Styles

How does the same melody or raga sound in different styles of Indian music? The 8th episode of RaagTime explores this around the popular Carnatic raga Shankarabharanam. Raga Shankarabharanam is a Melakartha raga with all the seven notes. The same melody is known as raag Bilawal in the Hindustani school of music.  

M.S.Subbalakshmi sings a composition in the raga Shankarabhanam in the Carnatic style.

Listening to Pandit Ravi Shankar playing raag Bilawal on the sitar in the Hindustani style indicates how the same notes sound when it is presented in a different style.

The national anthem of India Jana Gana Mana written by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore is based on this melody. In this episode, the anthem is being sung by various musicians of India.

English Note was a quirky composition by 19th century Carnatic composer Muthiah Bhagavathar which created a sensation when it was initially presented on stage. The musician who breathed life into this unusual musical composition was Madurai Mani Iyer.

Speaking of the English language,  the song Doe a Deer from the movie Sound of Music comes to mind. The song by Julie Andrews is based on raga Shankarabharanam and corresponds to C major in western classical music.

Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti – S R2 G3 M1 P D2 N3

Click here to listen to Episode 8 of RaagTime.

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