Ragamala Vol. 7: Yaman/Kalyani


This volume of variations on raga Yaman opens with a modern jazz-influenced rendition by the Neel Murgai Ensemble.  A New York based ‘chamber’ quartet led by sitarist Murgai, NME creates intricate, finely spiced musical atmospheres that draw on Indian classical, jazz, and gypsy music.

Also included is bansuri master Pannalal Ghosh‘s beloved Yaman, a couple of film songs from Umrao Jan Ada (1981) and Junglee (1961), Farida Khanum’s spectacular romantic ghazal Woh Mujh Se Hoay Humkalam Allah Allah as well as interpretations in a Western classical and contemporary jazz setting.

Yaman, also known as Kalyani, is by Indian classical music standards a relatively un-ancient raga. It first emerged in the 16th century with some claiming it was a composition of Mian Tansen and that he based it upon a Persian structure known as ‘Ei Man’. In Pakistan and Afghanistan the raga is often referred to as Eeman (in many varied spellings) and I have concluded this collection with a wonderful Afghan take on the raga  by Ustad Mohammad Omar, the famous rubab player.

Yaman emerged from the parent musical style of Kalyan, itself a style of classical Carnatic musical tradition called thaat. Considered to be one of the most fundamental ragas in the Hindustani Classical tradition, it is thus often one of the first ragas taught to students. In the context of traditional standards of performance, Yaman ragas are considered suitable to play at any time of the day, but they are traditionally performed in the evening. (Wikipedia).

Given its close relationship to Carnatic music the centerpiece of this collection is a stunning live recital by South Indian/Sri Lankan violinist L. Subramaniam and shenai nawaz Ustad Bismillah Khan. Listen carefully to this piece and to the playfulness, mastery and virtuosity of both musicians as they play off each other. It delights and enshivers!

Rudresh Mahantappa‘s group Dakshina Ensemble which features South Indian saxophone innovator Kadri Gopalnath and Pakistani American guitar whiz Rez Abbasi also explores the Carnatic original in their massive track Kalyani.

I hope you enjoy this collection as much I do!


Track Listing:

01 Evening In A_ Raga Yaman [Neel Murgai Ensemble]

02 Raga Yaman [Pannalal Ghosh]

03 Zindagi Jab Bhi [Talat Aziz]

04 Raga Yaman [L Subramaniam and Bismillah Khan]

05 Yaman Kalyan (Largo moderato)[ Zubin Mehta and Ravi Shankar]

06 Ehsan Tera Hoga Mujhpar [Mohmmad Rafi]

07 Raga Emen Kalyan [Pt. Pratap Narayan and Kankana Banerjee]

08 Kalyani [Rudresh Mahantappa and Dakshina Ensemble]

09 Woh Mujh Se Hoay Humkalam Allah Allah [Farida Khanum]

10 Shakal and naghma in the melodic mode of Emen (Yaman) [Ustad Mohammad Omar]


Anniversary Utsav Vol. 6: Hindustani Classical


Volume 5 (is still under development!), but Volume 6 of the Washerman’s Dog and Harmonium Music Blog Anniversary splash out special tamasha features subtle and masterful, sublime and elevating ragas interpreted by Pakistani artists (Ustad Salamat Ali Khan and Ustad Nazakhat Ali Khan; Saeen Ditta Qadri) and Indians too: Ustad Sultan Khan, Zakir Hussain, Kishori Amonkar, Himanshu Biswas, Dulal Roy, Ustad Bismillah Khan, Malikarjun Mansur and Pandit Ram Chatur Malik.


Large files mean we are dispensing these goodies in two volumes.  Get both!


Till next time!


Vol. 1. Track Listing:

01 Des [Saeen Ditta Qadri]

02 Raga Shuddh Kalyan  (Drut Teental) [Ustad Bismillah Khan]

03 Alhaiya Bilawal – Nahin Bin Dekhe Chain [Malikarjun Mansur]

04 Raag Basant {Ustad Sultan Khan and Zakhir Hussain]

05 Raag Durbari [Ustad Salamat Ali Khan and Ustad Nazakhat Ali Khan]



Vol. 2. Track Listing

01 Raga Bhoop (Prathama Sur Saadhe) [Kishori Amonkar]

02 Vinod_ Alap [Pandit Ram Chatur Malik]

03 Vinod_ Dhrupad [Pandit Ram Chatur Malik]

04 Dhun [Himanshu Biswas and Dulal Roy]



Old and New: Enoch Daniels

Enoch Daniels

Enoch Daniels

Enoch Daniels the man who ‘introduced’ India to the Accordion has had a long and vital life as one of those ‘behind the scene’ men, without whom the classic sounds of Indian Hindi cinema would never have developed.


I have written of him before and one can visit his website for more details.


Here is a class, slick collection of Hindi film songs that captures what the man was all about.


The word ‘vintage wine’ is a particularly apt description of the music contained in this LP as the dozen tunes presented on this record are selection from those lingering movie melodies of the forties which like vintage wine have become richer in quality with the passage of time.

In fact, Indian film music has been so rich in quality that it is very difficult task to select more than a dozen items for inclusion in a collection such as this.  These selections have been made after spanning more than a decade of motion picture melodies from the early 40s. The scintillating tunes are the creations of great music composers of the Indian screen: Shyam Sundar, Naushad, Shankar-Jaikishen, S. D. Burnan and C. Ramachandra.

Ace accordion player Enoch Daniels, who has original ideas regarding arrangements of music has given an absolutely new treatment to these immortal melodies through his orchestra.

(Liner Notes)

Enoch Daniels enoch Daniels back

Track Listing:

01 Ai Mere Dil Kahin Aur Chal

02 Dua Kar Gham-e-Dil

03 Sajan ki Galiyan

04 Suhani Raat Dhal Chuki

05 Aaja Sanam

06 Dheere se Aaja

07 Mera Salam Leja

08 Tu Kake Agar

09 Hai Apna Dil to Awara

10 Leja Meri Duayen

11 Pyar Hua Iqrar Hua Hai

12 Awaz De Kahan Hai


Himalayan Tunes: Nepali Folk Music



A couple nights ago I posted an article on Nepali music to Harmonium Music’s website.

If you’ve not yet read it you may want to as you listen to this disc of instrumental and ceremonial folk music from the Himalayan Hindu kingdom.

Track Listing:



Track Listing:

01 Resham Firiri

02 Paan Ko Paat

03 Simsime Pani Ma

04 Kholo Rasayo

05 Holiya Mela-Bharat Nepali

06 Sangini-Bharat Nepali

07 Tamang Selo

08 Sorathi

09 Dura Danda Ko Bhaka

10 Sebru