Ragamala Vol. 4: Jhinjhoti

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Jhinjhoti is a delicate name, appropriate for a goddess or fairy princess. Perhaps a dancing girl of sophisticated learning and skill.   It is also the name of a raga that is best performed as evening moved toward midnight. When Jhinjhoti is performed well it gives rise to feelings of joy and spontaneous happiness.  (To learn more about this raga click here and here and here).

 

Once again we have gathered together some stellar interpretations of this light, yet ornate raga from some of South Asia’s outstanding musicians.

 

Roshan Ara Begum, born in Calcutta, was one of Hindustani classical music’s premier female performers and her rendition of Jhinjhoti opens Volume 4 of the current series.  Begum sahiba spent 15 years at the feet of the giant of Indian classical music (who is also included in this collection) Khansahib Abdul Karim Khan in Bombay,

 

One of the most beautiful interpretations of the raga comes from Pt. Hariprasad Chaurasia, the internationally renowned bansuri player. Panditji’s Jhinjhoti is simply elegant and characterised by a gentle understatement that perfectly matches the delicate nature of the raga.

 

In recent years the western world has rediscovered the lost brilliance of Khansahib Ustad Abdul Karim Khan remembered for his fierce independence, stubbornness and heavenly voice. His thumri (semi classical love song) Piya Bina Nahin Avat Chaina, based on Jhinjhoti is universally acclaimed as one of the highpoints in Indian classical music.  The singing here is plaintive and dexterous in equal measure.

 

Gulon Mein Rang Bharay is a ghazal by the foremost Urdu language poet of the modern era, Faiz Ahmed Faiz.  The recent passing of Pakistan’s glorious Mehdi Hassan, for whom this ghazal based on Jhinjhoti, was an early ‘hit’, is still deeply felt.

 

V.G. Jog, one of the musicians credited with bringing the violin into the mainstream of Indian classical music, performs a sparkling version of the raga.  This is followed by a wonderfully emotional interpretation by the singer many have seen as the ‘saviour’ of Hindustani gayaki, Ustad Rashid Khan, of the Rampur gharana.

 

We finish up with a couple of film songs based upon this great raga.  Mohammad Rafi sings Tun Mujhe Yun Bhula Na Paoge from the Shammi Kapoor weeper Pagla Kahin Ka. And finally, Kishore Kumar, a man known for his energy and cheeky-ness, wraps this collection up with one of his all time stellar ballads, Koi Humdum Na Raha.

 

jhinjhoti

Track Listing:

01 Jhinjhoti [Roshan Ara Begum]

02 Raga Jhinjhoti [Hariprasad Chaurasia]

03 Jhinjhoti Thumri_ Piya Bina Nahin Avat Chaina [Abdul Karim Khan]

04 Gulon Main Rang Bharay [Mehdi Hassan]

05 Raga Jhinjhoti [V.G. Jog]

06 Raga Jhinjhoti (Tarana) [Ustad Rashid Khan]

07 Tun Mujhe Yun Bhula Na Paoge [Mohammad Rafi]

08 Koi Humdum Na Raha [Kishore Kumar]

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