Thursday, November 7, 2013

Percussion unusual conversations

We covered some of Raja’s unusual C&R arrangements with mirudhangam. Raja’s percussion usage is huge in variety, from drum kits, synth pads to many other special percussion instruments. In this post, we will explore some of the unusual conversations around percussion instruments.

Let’s analyze this percussion based unusual conversations in two parts or clips. The first clip has several segments drawn from several songs.

  1. The first segment is a melodious 15 seconds from the song ‘Mandarapoo Mooli’ from Vinodha Yatra (Malayalam 2007). The call is from a bass drum and the initial responses are from a synthesized flute. The call is again repeated by the bass drum and now the response is from a regular flute. This is a beautiful arrangement in the age of the synthesized music. Please note that the synthesized flute continues to play along with the regular flute
  2. The second segment, shy of 30s econds,  is the first interlude of ‘Ila Nenje Vaa’ from the film Vanna Vanna Pookal (Tamil 1995). This is a complete percussion ensemble that is typical of Raja, tabla, drum kit, synthpads, mirudhangam – the works.
  3. The third segment is almost a minute and is the second interlude of ‘Ila Nenje Vaa’ from the film Vanna Vanna Pookal (Tamil 1995). There are several percussion C&R arrangements within this one minute. First, it starts off as a dialog between the synthpad and the tabla, this is followed by another dialog between the tabla and the mirudhangam, finally a dialog between two synthpads. Brilliant!
  4. The fourth segment is from the classical song, ‘Sangathamizh Kaviye’ from Manadhil Uridhi Vendum (Tamil 1987).  This is a short 10 second segment that shows the conversation between the tabla and the mirughangam. You can notice the difference in arrangement between this one and the ‘Ila Nenje’ song , though the instruments are exactly the same
  5. The fifth segment is a short 12 second clip from the prelude of the song ‘Oora Vittu’ from Karagattakaaran (Tamil 1989).  The call is by the Thavil and the response is by the drum kit
  6. The fifth segment is a 22 second clip from the prelude of the song ‘Therke Veesum’ from the film Kolangal (Tamil 1995). This is a dialog between two mirudhangam (or two synthesized tones)

Let’s hear the sample of Raja’s unusual percussion ensembles set to a C&R arrangement...


Next, let’s analyze some of Raja’s percussion and violin based conversations. These are a Raja specialty and deserve a separate clip.

  1. The first 11 second segment is from the interlude of the song, ‘Ilancholai Poothathaa’ from the film Unakkaagave Vaazhgiren (Tamil 1986) and is a melodious conversation between the violins and the mirudhangam. The call by the violins is long and the response from the mirudhangam is short
  2. The second segment is almost 32 seconds long and is from the song, ‘Mandhiram Idhu’ from Aavaarampoo (Tamil 1992). The arrangement is something that only Raja can think of. Harmonized Indian classical violins  make the call and they get a short response from the tabla. These conversations eventually merge with a violin ensemble.
  3. The third segment is from the song, ‘Nadha Vinodhangal’ from the film, ‘Salangai Oli’ (Tamil/Telugu 1983). The long call is by the thundering violins and the short response is from the mirudhangam

Let’s hear the sample of Raja’s unusual percussion/violin ensembles set to a C&R arrangement...


1 comment:

Anu said...

Love the opening sequence of "Nada Vinodhangal". It's kind of nontraditional having violins opening a Bharatnatyam song.