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LAND OF FOLK AND CLASSIC MUSIC-GUJARAT

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vinnie-thepooh

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Posted: 27 November 2006 at 7:19am | IP Logged

Gujarat is a part of India, known for lively traditions of both folk and classical music. Classical musicians and composers include Ustad Faiyaz Khan, Maulabux, Rahimkhan and Pandit Omkamath.

Gujarati folk dance includes the Raas and Garba dances, which are said to have been passed on by Krishna, who spent his childhood at Gokul, learning the flute. He also taught the folk drama Bhavai. Other dances include Dangi Nritya, Tippani Nritya, Padhar Nrritya and Siddi.

The Garba is a simple dance which involves clockwise and counter-clockwise movements. It is a very beautiful method of prayer. The Ras is an extremely complicated dance performed by a group in a circle, to a rhythm marked by sticks (dandias), accompanied by voices, shehnai, flute, zanz, dhol or cymbals. The Garba (Garba Nritya) is a circle dance performed by women at festivals like Holi, Vasant Panchmi, Navaratri and Sharad Purnima.

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vinnie-thepooh

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Posted: 27 November 2006 at 7:21am | IP Logged

Gujarat : Music & Dance


Music & Dance, Gujarat TourismGujarat is well known for its tradition of Bhavai theatre, various forms of Garba and Rasa dances, and other folk dances. The tribes of the Arravallis, Vindhyas, Satpuras and Dangs have their own dance forms and musical instruments. Kathiawrad is well known for its folk songs, Kutch for its Sindhi and Kutchi bhajans.

Fairs and festivals like Navratri, Kawant fair near Chotta Udepur, Chitra Vichitra fair near Poshina, Dangs Durbar in south Gujarat, Bhavnath near unagadh, Tarnetar in Surendranagar district, and the Kutch utsav, offer good opportunities to experience the music, dances and drama of Gujarat. Indian classical dances can be witnessed during the Modhera dance estival with a backdrop of the beautifully illumined Sun temple. It is possible to spend long periods studying music, dance and drama at a number of institutes and coaching classes of Gujarat.Itineraries depend on individual interest.


Edited by vinnie-thepooh - 27 November 2006 at 7:21am

vinnie-thepooh

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Posted: 27 November 2006 at 7:23am | IP Logged

Gujarati and Indian Music

Origin:
An observer of the cultural scenario of Gujarat may wonder why better appreciation of music is now very much visible among Ahmedavadis. Well, you will be surprised that the sweet inspirations were nothing new in Gujarat. The state has already been vibrating to the stimulus of sound waves produced by the great musicians of Gujarat centuries ago.

Haveli Sangeet:
The fascination of music for the people of Gujarat was curiously illustrated by the fact that several Gujaratis have enriched the tradition of Hindustani classical music. Musicologists and historians trace the genesis of classical music to the Haveli Sangeet of Vallabhacharya, the pioneer of the movement, which was akin to Prabhanda, a literary from peculiar to Gujarat.

Narsinh Mehta:
The impact of this devotional singing is perceptible in the compositions of Narsingh Mehta, the great Vaishnavaite poet of Junagadh during the period 1414 to 1481. Narsingh Mehta is said to have worked a variety of miracles, particularly when he sang his favourite raga "Kedar" In the history of music, Narsingh Mehta was the most accomplished composer from Gujarat. His lyrical work, "Vaishnava Janato" which was so dear to Gandhiji, remains as a musical marvel without any cause wonder to the people of Gujarat even today.

Folk: Raas-Garba
The most popular amongst the Folk music is, Raas-Garba. The annual Navratri Utsav, or Festival of Nine Nights, provokes the cities of Gujarat into light, colour, dancing and music, during Saptember-October. Navratri is held throughout Gujarat, at small villages as well as great cities. Amba Mata, the earth goddess bestowing strength and power against the forces of evil, enjoys special attention during Navratri by Puja in temples and dances of the Ras Garba tradition. These dances normally begin at eleven at night and continue till dawn, at various sites, in different areas in each city.

Moghul era:
Swami Vallabhdas who hailed from Gujarat had given himself up to the Swaminarayan sect from his childhood to serve God through music. Aditya Ram, State Musician of Jamnagar who lived in the 18th century was credited to have popularised the singing style of Dhrupad Sangeet. Baiju Bavara, who sang with the legendary Mian Tansen of Akbar's court hailed from Champaneer in Gujarat. The 16th century Nawab of Ahmedabad, Bahadur Shah was a keen music lover and it was he who patronised Baiju Bawara's music. As a Tribute to his mentor, Baiju Bawara created the Morning raga, Bahadur Todi in honour of the Nawab.

Connoisseurs of music are all too familiar with the miracle associated with Tansen's rendition of raga Deepak. According to the story prevailing in Gujarat, Tansen after singing the melody, began to suffer from unbearable heat within his body and in sheer exasperation, he absconded from Delhi and came down to Vadanagar in North Gujarat in search of a cure for his ailment.

A Kindly brahmin musician offered shelter to Tansen at Vadanagar. He was quick to surmise the cause of Tansen's suffering and asked his gifted daughters, Tanna and Riri, who were accomplished singers to render the raga "Malhar", associated with the rainy season. Their rendition had a miraculous effect on Tansen and he was cured of his affliction.

Overjoyed, Tansen returned to Akbar's court and told the emperor of the cure he had. Pleased with the result, the Mogul Emperor sent a special messenger to bring the singing sisters to his court. The girls declined the emperor's invitation. Incensed by the girls' impudence, Akbar ordered his army to invade Vadanagar to bring the two musicians. Upon Seeing the approaching army, the girls immolated themselves Tana-Riri music festival in Vadanagar is now a yearly ritual to perpetuate the memory of the girls who sacrificed their lives to uphold the musical tradition of Gujarat.

Gaekwads:
Bhavanagar, Porbandar, Sanand and Baroda were the princely states which accorded patronage to music in Gujarat. But the pride of place among these princely patrons must go to Maharaja Sayaji Rao Gakewad of Baroda who brought a transformation of his State in the field of education, art and culture. Baroda, which is acclaimed as the cultural capital of Gujarat, boasts of a University with faculty of music, dance and drama besideds a Kala Bhavan which are monuments to Sayajirao's contribution to fine arts. The first all India Music Conference was held in 1914 in Baroda.

Kambavati, a very popular melody of our times must have had its origin in the city of Cambay, the Hindu name for which was Khambavati, present day Khambhat. Sohini, Bhilaval, Saurashtra Tanka are some of the other ragas in Hindustani music which one their origin to Gujarat. Krishandas Adhikari, who was born in a village called Chilotra in Ahmedabad District was considered to be the best exponent of the modern Khyal singing. The best know exponents of Thumri, the late Khan Sahib Abdul Karim Khan and Sahib Faiyaz Khan adorned the durbar of the Baroda Maharaja.

Pandit Thakur:
The most outstanding educationist of Indian music by evolving a graduate course of instruction which is a great improvement was Pandit Omkarnath Thakur (1897-1968) who had published a series of text books of practical instruction named Sangeetanjali. This great son of Gujarat had devoted his lifetime to the propogation of Hindustani classical music, not only in Gujarat but throughout India.

Gujarati Gazals:
On an equivalent freshness and originality is Gujarati Gazals, the most popular variety commonly known as light classical music or just 'Sugam Sangeet' in Gujarat. However with the passing away of Avinash Vyas, the Gujarati Sugam Sangeet World lost a friend. But a handful of his wellwishers preserve his tradition of singing, the Gujarati Geet. Film music directors, Kalyanji-Anandji continue to enrich the music of Gujarat.

Ahmedabad Today:
Ahmedabad based financial institution named Anagram Finance Limited, a Kasturbhai Lalbhai group company organises regularly a three day classical music festival, it turns out to be another manifestation of the corporate public relation culture in promoting music among the masses of Ahmedabad in Gujarat. During the three day festival, a record number between eight to ten thousand people listen in rapt attention the strains of classical Hindustani ragas in the cool comfort of a sprawling open air theatre sitting cross legged in the traditional, 'baithak' style or in the more comfortable plastic moulded chairs watching stalwarts like Bhimsen Joshi, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma or the charismatic Zakir Hussein for three consecutive days till late midnight.

"Sur Sandhaya Samaroh" started perhaps the first of its kind in such a massive scale where the discerning public was provided with closed circuit television view on giant screens for closer looks at the artists in action. The event took many by surprise, because the general feeling was that the people of Ahmedabad in particular and Gujaratis in general are more concerned with creation of wealth than for developing an ear for music.

The run away success of the three-day festival marks a new vista in the cultural scene of Ahmedabad today. Gujarat, has a lot to offer to Indian classical music.



Edited by vinnie-thepooh - 27 November 2006 at 7:32am

vinnie-thepooh

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The Black Sufis of Gujarat   

ArticlesThe Black Sidis of Gujarat are a tribal Sufi community of East African origin which arrived to India eight centuries ago and made Gujarat their home. They carried with them their exceptionally rich musical tradition and kept it alive and flourishing through the generations, unknown to the rest of the world. Their history is rooted in the slave trade of the 13th century and beyond, when Arab and later European slave traders systematically captured thousands of African men, women and children and took them across the seas for sale to the highest bidders. Many Sidi arrived in India as slaves to the Maharajas and Nawabs of the day, whilst others came as merchants, navigators, sailors and slave kings, settling in Gujarat. Their Nubian features attracted the Arab slave traders because of their huge demand in many Indian households as trusted servants and status symbols. That remains true in the Parsi community and several Sidi royal family lineages also continue to thrive to this day in India.

A traditional occupation of African-Indian Sufis in Gujarat has been to perform sacred music and dance as wandering faqirs, singing songs to their black Sufi saint, Bava Gor. Sidi men and women perform sacred music and dance during rituals in the shrines to Bava Gor, and have lived on accepting alms for touring these devotional genres from villages to shrines for centuries. The Sidis are the most musically inclined, who recognise music as a tool for becoming closer to God. Many Sidis also perform as muezzins as they feel closely related to Hazrat Bilal, a black African man who was the first person chosen by Prophet Mohammed to recite adhan (call to prayer). Over time, the Sidis' native African music styles, melodic and rhythmic structures, lyrics and musical instruments mingled with local influences in Gujarat to form this unique and symbolic representation of African-Indian ness.

The Sidi speak word perfect Hindi and Gujarati, but have remained an oppressed class in India. Because they are black, from Africa, and Muslim, this has kept them at a lower socio-economic and educational level, but recently their situation is finally beginning to change for the better.

Courtesy of Yusuf Mahmoud, Busara Promotions

vinnie-thepooh

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Posted: 27 November 2006 at 7:26am | IP Logged

Gujarati Music

An observer of the cultural scenario of Gujarat may wonder why better appreciation of music is very much visible among Gujaratis. Well, one will be surprised that sweet inspirations are nothing new in Gujarat. The state has already been vibrating to the stimulus of sound waves produced by the great musicians of Gujarat centuries ago.

Gujarat Onlinehas captured some of the very wellknown and melodious Gujarati songs for you!

Happy humming....   (Songs in real audio)  Download Realplayer

 

 BhajanBHAJAN (songs - prayers)
 Lagna GeetLAGNA GEET(songs -wedding)
 Garba-RaasGARBA-RAAS(dance - songs)
 Assorted songsASSORTED(light music-songs)

 GazalsGAZALS(shayari - songs)

 Baal-GeetBAAL-GEET(songs - for children)



Edited by vinnie-thepooh - 27 November 2006 at 7:27am

vinnie-thepooh

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vinnie-thepooh

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Posted: 27 November 2006 at 7:28am | IP Logged

ARTS

Music And Dance


MUSIC & DANCE - Music  | Stage Art | Dance - Rasa, Hallisaka, Dangi Nrita, Garba DanceTippani Folk Dance

MUSIC 

In the field of music, Gujarat  has made its own contribution. A number of bear the territorial names of Gujarat such as Gujaqri Todi, Bilaval (from Veraval), Sorathi, (from Sorath), Khambavati (from Khambhat, Cambay), Ahiri and Lati. These are invaluable gifts of Gujarat  to the classical music of India. Jesingbhai, the creator of the Vichitra Veena, a musical string  instrument, was from Ahmedabad.

Gujarat  has preserved folk music in its pure and pristine form by Charans and Gadhavis, a community whose hereditary profession is folk music and folk arts. Lullaby, Nupital  songs, festive songs, Rannade  songs are the different types of folk songs in Gujarat. Marsias is a peculiar form of singing at the time of death. The Vaishnava cult in Gujarat has produced a special variety of music which can be classified as temple-music.

Besides its contribution to classical and folk music, Gujarat  has produced its own  folk instruments. Wind  type instruments like Turi, Bungal, Pava, String type Ravan Hattho, Ektaro, and Jantar, percussion type like Manjira, Zanz pot drun etc.

STAGE ART

A typical folk drama of Gujarat called Bhavai is performed in village and temple grounds by professional communities of north Gujarat, the Taragalas, Bhojakas, etc. The word Bhavai is derived from the Sanskrit word "Bhava" meaning expression of emotion. The Bhavai drama is a continuous performance lasting the whole night in which many "veshas" are performed in the open without any stage equipment. These Veshas depict episodes from the social life of the community in the countryside, focusing in satirical or farcical way the characteristics of certain sections- Banias, Bohras, wandering tribes, etc. Continuous playing on the Bhungal, a very long wind brass instrument, before and during the performance calls the rural patrons to the scene of the Bhavai. Women are strictly tabooed from taking part in the Bhavai. Their role is performed by the male artists which makes the entire drama more ridiculous. The repertoire of the Bhavai is limited to about three dozen veshas, the authorship of which is attributed to Asait.



Edited by vinnie-thepooh - 27 November 2006 at 7:28am

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Dances of gujarat

Gujarat has successfully preserved its rich tradition of song, dance and drama. The best known among these are the Ras and Garba. Folk drama in Gujarat is known as Bhavai. Most of the art traditions trace back their origin to the ancient period of Lord Krishna.

Garba

The word Garba comes from the word "Garbha Deep", meaning a Light in the inner sanctum of the temple, signifying knowledge (light), as opposed to the darkness (ignorance). In the villages of Gujarat, one would find tradition of a "Light" (Deevo-Kodiyun) in an earthen pot with the holes all around, placed in the center on a stool and brightly dressed ladies move around it clapping their hands in beats and singing Mataji's songs (known as Garba).  A betel nut and a silver coin are placed within the pot, called a kumbh, on top of which a coconut is placed.  Just as Lord Krishna popularized the Ras dance, Usha the grand daughter-in-law of Lord Krishna is credited to have popularised Lasya Nritya which is known today by the name of Garba Dance.  The Garba is traditionally performed during the festival of Navratri ("Nine Nights").

Ras

The Ras dance is considered a form of Ras Leela, which Lord Krishna used to perform at Gokul and Vrindavan. The Ras is simple and is generally performed by a group of youthful people who move in measured steps around a circle, accompanied by a singing chorus and a host of musical instruments like the dhol, cymbals, zanz, shehnai (flute). The typical folk costume for this dance is a small coat called kedia, with tight sleeves and pleated frills at the waist with highly embroidered borders, tight trousers, colourfully embroidered cap or coloured turban and colourful kamarbandha (cummerbund).

Dandia - Ras

Also known as the 'stick' dance, this is another form of dance that is also a feature of Navratri. Here, men and women join the dance circle, holding small polished sticks or dandias. As they whirl to the intoxicating rhythm of the dance, men and women strike the dandiyas together, adding to the joyous atmosphere. The best Ras dancers are the Kathiawari Ras dancers, who hail from the Saurashtra region.

Music of Gujarat

Gujarat has its own heritage in music. Saurashtra has been very prosperous in its variety and colorfulness of folk-music. The people of north Gujarat, Charotar, South Gujarat, the mariners of western coast and the tribals of eastern forests too have lived with their music. They have developed and preserved their own instruments like flutes, drums, trumpets, manjira, tamboor, ravanhattha etc. The devotional songs, lyrics, verses, dance-songs, duha, chhand and the songs for different occasions are a treasure. People sing their songs while at work or while at rest. The traditions of Charans, Gadhavis, Ravals and the Bhajaniks are still very much alive. Gujarat has given outstanding artists and exponents of vedic saamgan, Haveli-sangeet and classical Indian music.

The folk Music

The charani folk-songs, duha, chhand etc are a part of folk-music. The saints and devotees of Gujarat have woven the teachings of the Vedas and the Upanishadas in their devotional songs. They have helped dissolving the differences of caste, creed and colour. The bhajans of Abhram Bhagat have reached London. The voice of Ismail Valera had lured lot many people. Folk-music includes variety of occasions and songs befitting the same. Songs specially meant for recital at morning, evening, marriage, child-birth, festival songs, war-time and death-time songs, story-telling and season songs and number of other occasions are celebrated or marked with specific type of folk-songs and folk-music. Many of such songs were compiled by Meghani and Raichura. 

The Light Music

Light music or Sugam Sangeet is in a way a derivation of all the streams into a popular format. Meaningful and lyrically worded poetry is composed in sweet tunes, where the tight standards of classical music are not must, but the images of light music do depend on classical touch. Avinash Vyas played a pivotal role in laying the strong foundations of light music and also popularising it in Gujarat. He wrote hundreds of songs for Gujarati movies and decorated them with sweet tunes. Kshemu Divetia, Rasiklal Bhojak, Bhailal Barot, Raasbihari Desai, Gaurang Vyas and some other artists have been strengthening the basis of light music in Gujarat either with compositions or with words, or with their voice. The world of light music in Gujarat is very prosperous in its singers. It is hard to find a parallel to the excellence of Kaumudi Munshi in light music. 

The Classical Music

Saam Music

Aryan culture spread throughout the country, including Gujarat after the Aryan people came to this land. prabhas and Bhrigu Kutch (Bharuch) were important centres of the Aryan age. Many Rishis established their Ashram at these centres. The Rigveda, the Yajurveda, the Saamveda and the Atharvaveda were taught at these Ashrams. The Saamveda deals with music. The verses of the Rigveda are recited in musical notes in the Saamveda. It is the origin of the Indian Music. Kauthumi, one of the three branches of the Saamveda is more popular in Gujarat.

The Religious and Devotional Music

Religion and the temple were the origins of many a fine arts during the ancient period. The Vaishnav sect of ancient Gujarat nourished the traditions of music to a great extent. After the advent of Vallabhacharya, traditions of music in devotion to Lord Krishna entered into Gujarat via Shreenathji of Rajasthan. The haveli-music of Gujarat thus blanded into the Vraj tradition of music. Narsinh Mehta in 15th century and Meerabai contributed a great deal in spreading the devotional music in Gujarat.



Edited by vinnie-thepooh - 27 November 2006 at 7:33am

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