Here is an attempt to present a series of Analysis of Ubhaya Vakra Ragas – Neelambari, Sahana and Ritigowla with respect to the krithis composed by Muthuswamy Dikshitar,Tyagarajar and Subbaraya Sastri respectively.
Ubhaya Vakra means that the notes in both ascent and descent follow a zig zag pattern. The vakra phrases lends a unique beauty to these ragas.
The first raga chosen is Neelambari and the Krithi is the immortal Amba Neelayathakshi set to 2 kalai Adi Talam. This Krithi is about the goddess Neelayadakshi. Neelayadakshi means the one with the blue eyes. She is in the form of a pubescent girl, and is believed to be one of the Shakti Peetams. She is also considered to be one among the five most important goddesses, all in different stages of life. These are – Visalakshi (Kashi – Child), Kamakshi (Kanchi – young girl), Neelayadakshi (Nagai – pubescent), Kamalambigai (Thiruvarur – young woman) and Meenakshi (Madurai – married woman).
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An analysis of the Grand Composition of Muthuswami Dikshithar “Sree Subramanyaya Namasthe “in the Grand Raga Kamboji is attempted in this article. Dikshithar has composed this krithi in 2 Kalai Rupaka Talam. Perhaps, Dikshithar is the only composer who has composed krithis in 2 kalai Rupakam. Kamboji is an ancient raga mentioned in musical treatises like Sangeetha Ratnakaram,Sangeetha Makaranda, Sangeetha Samayasara. The raga has its name “Takkesi” in Tamil Pann and “Kamodari” in Kathakali Sangeetham.
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Dikshitar compositions may be described as the products of a mood of contemplation and meditation (dhyana) and reflect the solemnity of the vast inner silence. Behind the marvel of architectural design in sound, there is, in the depth of the songs of Dikshitar, a sense of sublimation, an experience of self-realisation. Every krithi of his may be likened to a Temple, in which the raga installed in the sanctum sanctorum (garbha griha) is situated in the innermost part and is to be reached through the various prakaras.
The Specialities in the Krithis of Muthuswamy Dikshithar
This is a collection of Various Artists rendering Muthuswami Dikshithar’s Devi Krithies..The list is too long to mention..Special thanks to my friend who shared this collection/compilation to me as a Navarathri Gift..
Track details, Name of the Kriti, Tala, Artist ..etc are available on the individual tracks
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02_Maha Ganapathim-Nattai-Ekam-Carnatica Brothers
03_Intro for Shri Mahaganapathim-Dr.V.V.Srivastava