Monday, September 18, 2006

How To Name HIM - As I felt Raaja's HTNI

During the period of my WCM learnings at Delhi only, IR's album "How to name it ?" also got released.

When I visited Salem for my holidays and asked for the new releases of IR I was given two cassettes one is "Punnagai Mannan" and another is "How To Name It".

But when I reached home and listened to it for the first time, I was totally stunned. You can't explain the feelings that was generated at that moment!

To be frank, initially, I could not fully recognise, the very purpose, objective and the content of this album. I am so happpy because, like in WCM, I also got an album full of orchestration and just orchestration.

I beleived that some revolutionary things has started in our part of music world also! But with years of listening and gathering of further knowledge during my WCM studies, I could realise the overall vision and purpose of IR.

And he has rightly asked us the question "How to Name it?"

I have shared some of feelings on two of the pieces in my other blog CSR-WCMLESSONS-2.BLOGSPOT.COM (Lesson-48 :IR the Wiser)

I am reproducing the same here in this blog also, to draw the attention of the IR fans.


Please Listen from IR Album "How To Name It?" two numbers of pieces titled,“I Met Bach….” &“…. And We Had Talk…”.

Here IR has given a new look to the Bach’s Prelude in A-Major as well as Bourre in E-Minor.

(This prelude of Bach is available in the Ilaiyaragam file section also ! Please Click here and download the midi file part3emj.mid and the tab file Bourree In Em-00.tef In case you want tab software, download the exe file tabled32.exe ) .

In the prelude, what Bach has done 300 years ago is writing a composition for Violin piece in A-Major scale and is continuously modulating into various major and minor scales in a sequence….!
During such transition from one scale to another, if you look at Carnatic angle…., you can perceive a different rainbow of Carnatic Raagams !

So the brilliant IR has identified those transition zones and in order to highlight them he added one more Carnatic line to the existing Bach’s composition and Plays the both Western Bach (300 years ago) with Carnatic IR in synchronized fashion…!

IR's imagination is "Had Bach met Thiagaraja and both understood each others music and joined hand to create a New World of Music ...?!!"That's the theme of HTNI !

If you hear the Bach’s composition and then IR’s HTNI’s piece you will be so mesmerized….who is playing for whom…?

Is Bach is doing the background music for IR or IR is doing the background for Bach…?

Its with so much Perfect Balance between WCM and Carnatic…!And this is what to be called as fusion…!Which made this possible for IR…?

Imagine if he remained himself constrained to any one field, the net result is he would have remained a good disciplined fellow for that particualr field but we all would have been starved of certain GEMs !

His imagination and enthusiasm of bringing the best out of two by adding the advantages & flexibilities of both the field only made this possible!

He has been doing that right from Annakili…..!With "Potruvar Potralum...Thootruvar Thootralum...Pogattum Kannanukke...!" type of resolutary mind !

Imagine, one person is offering you the plate consist of gold ornaments….! Another person is offering the plate consists of full of diamonds…!Imagine both says you take only theirs and not others !

And I feel the wiser approach is to get both the gold and diamond and make a Diamond studded Gold ornament!The value and look and elegance….. everything is multiplied, rather than when they are seen as an individual !

But imagine if both the persons who offered the individual gold or diamond, now started criticizing that he spoilt the gold with diamond and vice versa….! Then its only loss of the person who losses both.

So to conclude the WCM Vs Carnatic perceptions, let me summarise like this….!·

-Carnatic gives the flexibility of Patterns but pose the constraints of their usage and shifting from one to another….!
- WCM has the constraint of Patterns but has flexibilities of usage or shifting from one to another…!

And the wiser sense tell that ……AVAIL ALL THE FLEXIBILITIES OF BOTH……rather than worrying about their constraints !


To recognize those things, one will need a century !

And to learn and follow that ……centuries and centuries are needed…!

Like the genius mathematician Ramanujam, he has written thousands of such Musical Theorems in short steps in each of his musical compositions…!

To solve and realize and prove and adopt them is for the next generation job….!

To perceive that we have to educate ourselves…. So that even if it is not possible for us to do, we can guide our next generation towards that !

And can see them attaining that with enjoyment and self-satisfaction !


Monday, September 11, 2006

WCM Learnings - As I felt Raaja !

WCM- What I learned ? What did I achieve after all those efforts ?

Million dollar questions!

Anyway certain associated trivia and my feelings, I wanted to share with you.

While learning harmony, without practical knowledge and familiarity of sounds of chords, its progression etc., still I used to try the exercises on Harmonisation of (SATB) parts.

In a way, I was like a deaf person composing music. (I used to hear that Beethoven in his last years was in that kind of situation; sorry for the wrong comparison, creation is a distant word, but even reading and writing I was not able to do; but with all humility I am only trying to say that I could feel what it would be for a deaf person to write a music!)

Somebody may say that my approach was wrong or impractical etc.

In fact one fellow in DSM told me that I am like the insect which sit on that musical page. Though felt sad, but still I pursued my wish.

And that was not a joke or so simple a job!

Still, there were some earnest attempts made by me to solve those exercises mathematically just like an idiotic computer in which some logics are fed.

I remember sometimes even days together I could not write harmonization of two lines or some 8 bars of notes satisfying those rules and regulations. Please beleive me, atleast I had the brain of an engineer, who passed out his degree. Still this was the situation! (Imagine, IR writes such hundreds of notes/bars in a matter of minutes with utmost perfection)

Similarly, even wherever I completed such exercise, I did not have the capability to play those multiple notes, so that I can realize what I have “created”.

I was just like a blind lady who wanted to see her just delivered baby!

But a few times, my teacher Ms Mitra while correcting the exercises, effortlessly played those phrases in the piano. That was the time I was in cloud nine!

It showered like a heavenly pieces of music and I could not believe myself, whether I have created them!

At the same time, there were moments, it was so jarring the notes, again it would lead you to utter dejections that whether I have learned something at all!

What I am trying to explain is that music shall come by way of “feeling”. That “feeling” shall come by way of experiences!

However, the fantastic experiences I gave to myself with WCM learnings, cleared me one basic thing.

That IR is not just a sudden one day wonder. It has not just come from heaven one day to him.

He had just toiled himself, hours and hours, days and days and years after years!

But the heavenly things or God-send things that could have happened to him are:

The Wish & Will he had for the Music in spite of his background,

Tough Mental fitness to achieve many things on music,

The willingness to learn anything on music at any time from anybody,

To transcend across civilizations and geography and time and to visualize & perceive the various musical systems and forms all over the world and bringing them together under one umbrella!

To implement such new fusion music form, without any fear or expectations, even in such remote world like our film music world!

Once I could realize that, I was virtually seized by the thoughts how many such treasures of songs he has created and showered on us every day, which we are not even having the wisdom to realize that!

Whether we appreciate or criticize, we were always on the wrong side, because, the real thing which IR might have wanted us to realize, enjoy, criticize etc that can never happens here !

From that day, I decided within myself, that, I shall reach out and do my small part, to make the people realize what HE is!

After so many years its happening through these forums and blogs!

I hope I am doing that! However small or effective that may be!