/* START Google Analytics Code*/ /* END of Google Analytics Code */ A home called "Parvathi": 2023

Friday, March 10, 2023

His music is eternal

 Mandolin Shrinivas ((28 February 1969 – 19 September 2014)

The one and only Mandolin phenomenon, U.Shrinivas, was given the honour to perform at the Parvathi Silver Jubilee in 1994. Famous music personalities as well as cinestars  Vishnuvardhan and Ambareesh graced the occasion. The details are seen below.

When Shrinivas left us suddenly in 2014, the home of Parvathi was plunged into grief. A tribute was posted at that time, which is reproduced below.

A Tribute by Mysore Prabha

“U. Srinivas passed away” was the breaking news on TV. It was heart-breaking news for us.

Though Lalgudi Krishnan had already given us the shocking news, my mind just refused to accept the fact. How could this happen? Though we knew that he was ailing, we never doubted his recovery. But fate snatched U. Srinivas away from amidst us. To put it in renowned novelist and writer R. K. Narayan’s words, “He jumped the queue”. U. Srinivas has moved on to another world, leaving behind his prodigious, melodious, soul-stirring music for us to enjoy.

There is probably no other musician from India who attained national and international acclaim at such young age as U. Srinivas did. He was recognized as a child-prodigy when he started performing at a very young age of 8-10 years. He continued to be a prodigy even in his 40s, because, no other musician produced such wonderful music on the mandolin (the supposedly ill-suited instrument for carnatic classical music) like Srinivas did. It is to Srinivas’ credit that he has greatly popularized Indian music in western countries. He was always a crowd puller whenever and wherever he performed-in India or abroad. His music always pleased the connoisseur and the layman alike.

My family’s association with U. Srinivas dates back to 1984. It was on 10.4.84 that Srinivas first visited our home,”Parvathi”, in Mysore, to perform during the annual Ramanavami music festival conducted by my father, K. Srikantiah. He was a small-built lad and I remember the shy boy sitting on the carpet with his mandolin next to him, gazing and touching his mandolin continuously, as if afraid someone would snatch it away from him. He had no eyes for anything or anyone else and spoke only in monosyllables. The pandal next to our house and the roads surrounding it were jam-packed with music lovers waiting to listen to the highly acclaimed child prodigy. The little boy timidly got onto the stage – and then! The audience was transported to a heavenly world of music emanating from his magical fingers! Starting then, he gave about 8 to 10 concerts for us spread over two and a half decades. Surprisingly, despite all his name, fame and glory, he was still the same, child-like, humble Srinivas when he performed for our K. Puttu Rao music festival (Inaugural concert) in 2011. Little did we know that it would be his last concert for us, and also in Mysore. It was our privilege to honour Srinivas during our Silver Jubilee year Ramanavami festival in 1994. It warmed our hearts when Srinivas said in his speech that he considered himself one in our family.

U. Srinivas has left us after leading a highly worthy life in his short life span. He has achieved in about three decades what probably would take three births for others to achieve. The country and the Carnatic music world have lost one of its rarest gems. The Indian music world will forever be proud of its prodigious son- Mandolin Srinivas. There cannot be another Mandolin Srinivas.

My family and I pray that Lord Rama blesses Srinivas’ soul with eternal peace.


We are glad to share that Silver Jubilee concert recording here with rasikas.

Concert Details

U. Shrinivas - Mandolin
Mysore Nagaraj - Violin
T.K. Murthy - Mridangam
M.A. Krishnamurthy - Ghatam
Date: 20 April 1994

Song List
  1. Varnam - Todi -
  2. Vatapiganapathim - Hamsadhwani - Dikshitar
  3. Endaro mahanubhavulu - SriRaga Pancharatna - Thyagaraja
  4. Natajana Paripalana - Simhendramadhyamam - Thyagaraja
  5. Sadamadini - Gambhiravani - Thyagaraja
  6. Mohana Rama - Mohanam - Thyagaraja
  7. Tani - T.K. Murthy, M.A. krishnamurthy
  8. Tunga Teera - Yamuna Kalyani - Kamalesha Vitthala
  9. Venkatachalanilayam - Sindhu Bhairavi - Purandaradasa
  10. Karpagame - Madhyamavati - Papanasam Sivan
  11. Brindavani Thillana - Lalgudi Jayaraman
  12. Mangalam

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Amara - Madhura - Sundara : Timeless Gems from Somu

Vid. Madurai Somasundaram - Gems from many Parvathi Concerts

Spring is in the air. The Parvathi Ramanavami Pandal is all set up. The deities are shining in their full glory surrounded by garlands and a shower of Parijata flowers. The hall is full of eager rasikas. And who is going to sing today? Of course, Vid. Madurai Somu!

Imagine this scene which was repeated year after year in the heritage home. Students came for the April concerts unmindful of their exam schedules. The Mysore Police were happy to regulate the traffic and allow the concert to go on far into the night. The best of accompanists exerted themselves to match the maestro in his energetic Manodharma, on-the-spot improvisations, audience-regaling antics, endless repertoire, niravals and swaras that took your breath away, and the constant spirit of "let's sing better, let's actualize Rama, Devi, Shanmukha or whichever deity we want right here, right now!"

This timeless experience is being presented in our Finale with selections from many concerts spread over many years. Lalgudi, Chalakudi, MC and... on the violin. Raghu, Dorai,... on the mridangam. The best of ghatam and khanjira accompaniment too. What more can you ask for?

The major ragas in this upload? A Kalyani to bring Devi dancing. A Kharaharapriya to make Sri Rama smile from his Mandapa. A series of songs that will make Shanmukha's peacock dance!

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

A Free Spirit called MLV

Dr. M.L. Vasanthakumari (1928-1990)

The music lovers of the home called Parvathi, and the large audiences that enjoyed the concerts conducted there for many decades, simply loved the music of Dr M.L.Vasanthakumari or MLV as she is famous. 

Take any aspect of Carnatic music, MLV was great. A true all-rounder, no less. Endowed with a vibrant and pliant voice and trained by the best in the classical field, she also inherited a great interest in Dasara Padas. More than anything else, she was a soaring free spirit in creativity. This sums up MLV. 

Today, we see a plethora of lady stars in Carnatic music. Many have doctorates. many specialise in singing a variety of music formats. Each has carved a niche. But we can't think of anyone in our midst that can be compared to that original free spirit among lady singers - MLV.

In those times, there was the famous trinity - MSS, DKP and MLV. Much younger than the other two, MLV made a mark in every concert for her creativity and free exploration of manodharma elements. She was equally at home rendering an RTP or singing any type of krithi in any language. When someone talks of MLV and her greatness, we need not search for explanations of who backed her or how she came up. It was sheer talent that struck you from the word go.

In this concert, there are two outstanding raga delineations - Mohanam and Bhairavi. The Bhairavi RTP is one for the archives. And the violinist, Dr Kanyakumari, shines brilliantly with her accompanying phrases, her solo pieces, and the heroic way she wields her bow.

The concert has a large number of songs on offer in many languages and many moods.

The very famous Purandara Dasa krithi Jaya Jaya Jaya Janakikantha comes as the second song. We feel we should spend a little time appreciating the words.

(Copied from the compilation by Dr. Aralumallige Parthasarathy)

Those who have read the Valmiki epic know how Sage Narada introduces the personality of Sri Rama to Sage Valmiki. The short version of Ramayana he tells Valmiki forms an important part of the Ramayana tradition. Similarly, Saint Purandara Dasa has covered every aspect of Sri Rama's story in this krithi.

"The beloved of Sita, the succour of the pure and humble souls, Sri Rama is the great hero of our Dharma. He is the dutiful son of Dasharatha, the hero who vanquished the ten-headed Ravana! A dear friend of Lord Shiva, Sri Rama was the embodiment of purity in conduct. Handsome like Manmatha, expert in diplomacy and astuteness, Sri Rama was incomparable in valour! Lover of the best of music (Sama Gana), devoted to caring for the good souls on earth, Sri Rama fulfils our every true wish and reminds us of the magnificent ocean by his serene demeanour. He, as the incarnation of Bhagavan, is the subject of all scriptures. Sri Rama grants the worthy souls liberation!"

Come, let us enjoy this wonderful vintage classic of an MLV concert!

Concert Details
Ramanavami 1979.
M.L. Vasanthakumari - Vocal
A. Kanyakumari - Violin
Tanjore Krishnamurthy Rao - Mridangam
? - Khanjira
Date 15 April 1979

Song List

01_Namami Vighnavinayaka - Hamsadhwani - Krishnaswamy Ayya
02_Jaya Jaya Janakikantha- Nata - Purandara Dasa
03_Enta Ranee - Harikambhoji - Thyagaraja
04_Entani vinnavintura - Urmika - Pallavi Sesha Aiyyar
05_Rama ninnu nammina-Mohanam- Thyagaraja
06_Sridhara pahi Dayakara Vedasugochara 
Giridhara- Jayanthashri - Mysore Vasudevacharya
07_Bhairavi Ragam Tanam Pallavi (Tanam in Pancha Ghana Ragas)
08_Uga Bhoga - Shivaranjani- Purandara Dasa
09_Yamanelli Kananendu - Shivaranjani - Purandara Dasa
(Mohanam,Gavati,Yamuna Kalyani, Sindhu Bhairavi)Ashtapadhi- Jayadeva 
11_Sharanu Ninage - Pahadi and other ragas- Purandara Dasa
14_Jagadoddharana - Kapi - Purandara Dasa
15_Mohana Kalyani Thillana - Lalgudi Jayaraman