After Nattakurinji, for a fitting finale, I could not have chosen anything better than Mohanam. One will have the feeling of having lived life King size after listening to this raga; it is that grand and fulfilling.

Mohanam belongs to the family of Harikamboji with 5 swaras in scale – S R2 G3 P D2 S / S D2 P G3 R2 S

Mohanam is the oldest ragam known to mankind, according to Dr. S. Ramanathan’s doctoral dissertation. It can be sung in any phase of the concert, proving to be the all-time raga that it is. Also called as Bhoop / Bhoopali in hindustani, this raga is used to denote bravery; it is used in Chinese, Japanese and Swedish music it seems.

A favourite of trinity and contemporary composers alike, mohanam holds a lot of kritis to its credit:

Thyagaraja’s Bhavanuta, Dhayaranee, Mohana Rama, Nannupalimpa, Evarura Ninnuvina …

Dikshitar’s Rajagopalam, Narasimha Aagacha, Gopika Manoharam (by Ambi Dikshitar) …

Papanasam Sivan’s Kapali …

Annamayya’s Cheri Yashodhaku …

Arunachala Kavi’s Yen Palli Kondeerayya …

Oothukkadu’s Swagatham Krishna …

GNB’s Sada Palaya (Sa Da Pa are the same notes) …

Maanikka Veenai Endhum from unknown composer …

For a complete understanding and enjoyment of Mohanam, please listen to this blend of instruments by Lalgudi Jayaraman, Ramani and Venkatraman – playing violin, flute and veena respectively. (performed in 1967)

Some very interesting compositions from the myriad of movie songs I had to choose from are:

  • Aaha Inba Nilavinile from Maaya Bazaar
  • Pazhaga Theriya Venum from Missiyamma (writing this suppressing the feminist in me!)
  • Giridhara Gopala from Meera
  • Paadumbodhu Naan Thendral Kaatru from Netru Indru Naalai
  • Ninnukori Varnam from Agni Natchathiram
  • Kanmaniye Kaadhal Enbadhu from 6 ilirundhu 60 varai
  • Vaan Pole Vannam from Salangai Oli
  • Porale Ponnuthayi from Karuthamma (influence)
  • Pakkadhe Pakkadhe from Gentleman
  • The Chinese song in 7am Arivu …

In the striking voice of Ghantasala and P. Leela, Aaha Inba Nilavinile…

A special thanks to dad (for equipping me with most of the knowledge that I have said and teaching and singing along in all the recordings), karnatik.com (main reference) and to everyone else for your encouragement.

– Until next,

Vid ๐Ÿ™‚

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