The celestial singer, Padmabhushan K J Yesudas’s concert at Sivagami Petachi Auditorium,Chennai organised by Brahma Gana Sabha was an stupendous one.
The legend kick-started the concert with a Varnam, “Eranapai” in Thodi, the ragam offering excellent scope for individualisation,(singing the notes in their own positions without gamakam would convey a mood nearer to Sindhubhairavi or the Hindustani Bhairavi than Carnatic Thodi) A crisp rendition that it was, did not fail to set the aesthetic pace and mood for the concert.
Following it, “Varasidhi Vinayakam ashraye” in the first Melakartha Ragam,Kanakaangi (belonging to the Rasikapriya Janyam) was a striking one. His expertise paraded as he played around with the “Madhyamam”.
“Pavana Guru” in Hamsanandhi which followed, his personal favourite, needless to say traversed the audience altogether to a different world. No wonder, simple Shadava ragas like Hamsanandhi made its genesis during the early period of man’s irresistible pursuit for melody.
Patnam Subramania Iyer ‘s compositon “Paridaana” in Bilahari exposed the legends’ versatility and his variation in scale with the notes reaching upto Panchamam in the higher octave was brilliant. Also the complicated sequence of swarams added in, keeping up the rhythm of the work of art.
Evergreen Thyagaraja compositon, “Bhuvinidasudane” in Sriranjani began brightly sauteed with some quick swaras.
The neraval continued the good work, the mellifluous swirl of notes resulted in charming the audience so much so that it received the maximum applause. His commendable mastery over technique was yet again conceivable as he rendered “Sobillu Saptaswara” in Jaganmohini which belongs to the Mayamalava Gowla Janya. His comparison of “Nabi-Hrith-Kandara-Sana” to “Base-Mid-High Mid-High” of the Western music with apt demonstration proved his prophecy about the age old pure art form.
Rhythmic discrepancies were out of question with Trichy Harikumar on the Mridangam and Thrupoonithura Radhakrishnan on the Ghatam.The skewed audio balance,subtle but complicated variations even during the “thaniavarthanams” brought out wide rhythmic variations within broad limits.
S.R.Mahadeva Sarma on the Violin complimented the artist throughout as he spun the magical tenor of the vocalist with ease.
“Kalyani” stood out as the evening’s round off ragam with his beautiful portrayal of “Ethuvanara”.“Thukdaas” started off with a Ragamalika piece in praise of all the Hindu Gods,which grabbed the attention of the audience as they joined in as well.”Krishna Nee Begane”,any music buff’s all time favourite was another highlight of the evening.Undoubtedly,K.J.Yesudas did sweep us off the floor that evening.