Snippets of informationPersonalities - Music
* 27 Mar 2023
A key aspect of the The All India music conference held in 1927 in Madras, was the participation of the 17-year-old Thirukokarnam Ranganayaki Ammal.
She was the only woman among the 23 mridangam artistes who performed at
the event. When analysing music history from the beginning of the 20th
century one can refer to Ranganayaki Ammal as the first woman to have
made it big in the male-dominated field of Carnatic percussion. Born on
May 28, 1910, she was the
second of seven siblings. Her father Thirukokarnam Sivaraman was a
renowned natuvanar, who was also known for his avadhana pallavis - an
art of playing different talas by using both hands, legs and the head.
Ranganayaki took to the mridangam and went under the tutelage of the
legendary Pudukottai Dakshinamurthi Pillai even as she continued her
training in Bharatanatyam.
Several reviews of her performances along with the then well-known
vocalist D.K. Pattammal have appeared in the Sangita Abhimani
(1936). In the 1940s, she performed with several leading artistes such
as Brinda and Muktha and Flute Mali. The Music Academy concert listings
reveal that she had performed in the prime slot in 1948, accompanying
vocalist Chandra Ramamoorthy.
Source: Ranganayaki Ammal: One of the first women to enter
the male-dominated world of percussion Premium by Lalitharam, The Hindu,
June 09, 2022
* 30 Jul 2022
M Balamuralikrishna was a musician extraordinaire. He was a
Carnatic vocalist, composer, playback singer and instrumentalist. He
passed away in 2016 at the age of 86.
(His guru - Parupalli Ramakrishnayya Pantulu)
Balamuralikrishna popularised thillanas. For the uninitiated, thillanas
are a mix of lyrics and rhythmic phrases, usually sung at the end of
classical concerts. Brindavani thillana, Jayaragamalika thillana,
Kuntalavarali thillana and Kalyani thillana are some thillanas made
famous by him.
Balamuralikrishna also stood apart from his contemporaries because he
could traverse the range of three octaves with ease and bring unique
rhythmic patterns to his compositions. He has created 20-plus unique
ragas such as Ganapati, Lavangi, Sumukham, Mahati, and Trisakthi without
altering the tradition of Carnatic music.
Raga Lavangi has only four musical notes (Sa Re Ma Da) and raga
Ganapathy has three ( Sa Ga Pa). Usually, ragas have at least five
He also made new classifications like Trimukhi, Panchamukhi, Saptamukhi
and Navamukhi in the tala system and sang several compositions set to
Balamuralikrishna’s music legacy is celebrated every year on the occasion of Guru Purnima.
Source: Throwback to Balamuralikrishna's thillanas by Ram Rakshith V, deccanherald.com, Jul 15, 2022
* 17 Jul 2022
The most prevalent design of Carnatic flutes is the one which is said to have been invented by by Sharaba Shastri (1872-1904) of the Palladam school, in the beginning of the 20th century.
It was through untiring efforts of Palladam Sanjeeva Rao disciple
of Sarabha Shastri that flute started to be recognized as a concert
instrument. This design was subsequently adopted, improved and vastly
popularized by T.R. Mahalingam a.k.a Mali.