Category Archives: Uncategorized

Transformation we have to bring

Ccutting edge is always awaited which can change irrelevant ideologies and customs which represent conventions good for nothing, to something which is not followed just because it is written somewhere or is believed to be said by someone, but is in existence for better life form. The secret of existence is not just to live but to play your part in the transformation for the greater good. This doesn’t points to change in any particular religion, nation, class or genders way of action at certain point of time but presents a fact that transformation is a continuous rule of time and we are responsible for whether the change is for superior or inferior values and form of life.

Motia Khan and Jhande Wallah

I have just visited Jhande Wallan and Motia Khan ,and felt that I had some long relationship with the place.Just though to write something on the same–

Akele main hum to ghabra gaye ,
Yeh achha kiya ki tum aa gaye ||

Din ka kohra ,Raat main ghane saaye,
Kuch aisa laga ki, Hum hai paraye ||

Resham ki chubhan,Aasuon main angare,
Mere jaisa koi kisi, Sooli per chadh jaaye ||

Koi jadoo itna sar chadh kar bole,
Hum baat phir wohi hi doharaye ||

Rehane lage the ,Hum kuch khoye khoye ,
Mohabbat ki ibadat ,Hum hai nibhaye ||

Life as music

I don’t know ,what my dear friend now is undergoing,but definitely worth making it a point to decorate my blog.Here is a hit from Goa.—

Life is like Music,
Melodious and charming,
As music has seven swaras,
Life does posses different patterns weaved,
The komal swaras reflect,
Bad times of an individual’s life while,
Shudha swaras the beautiful and explored moments,
Both the swaras are required,
To make this life successful and faithful,
That is how we live our life,
And lift ourself travelling,
across the ocean of Music ,
To enjoy the sensation of Musical life.

Ameya’s Music:A voyage with God

Ameya is my gurubhai.We both are the deciples of Pt.Kamlakar Naik for the Vocal Indian Classical Music.A devoted ,spiritual and enlightened soul who has consecrated his life to the MUSIC ,MUSIC and MUSIC.Let us read what he feels and thinks about the Music.

‘Music is the fourth great material want of our nature – first food, then raiment, then shelter, then MUSIC – Bovee

Music is the language of universe. Gustav Mahlier calls it as ‘a mysterious language from the beyond’. At every outfit, music find its own place; may be at cultural festivals, sports venue or any social gathering. It is true that music is vani i.e. voice. It is believed that man must have found the music in nature’s attributes of rhythm and harmony. The music of nature – the roar of the ocean, the peltering sound of the breeze, the whistling sound of the rain, the rhythmic beat of the waves, the call of the birds might have awakened musical sensitivity in man. Nature has given a start to the melody of music or rather to music itself. In other words I mean to say that God has descended a vast and evergreen field of music through its natural elements.

A human being was clever enough to channelise its roots into an understanding system. Traditionally speaking within our Indian culture we can split our horizon of music broadly into Hindustani classical (north Indian) and Karnataki classical (south Indian).

Delius says music as ‘the outburst of soul’. It is true. One cannot separate human soul and music. To render music in its vocal or instrumental form, first soul who initiates and then our physical body works out to successfully inspire and delivers a self expression in-front of the public. Whenever I think about a definite effect to happen from the musical environment, it is the initiation or cause of the soul to fulfill its thirst. Music easily lends itself to the expressions of all human feelings whether they may be love, joy, sorrow, fear, anger or devotion.

Whenever we hear music, our soul brightens up and we remain satisfied, such is the glow and beauty in itself music possesses. It is an imaginative way of human feeling or expression. Hence in my view everyone should feel the presence of music in their own way; either by listening to its melody or venturing out in the beauty of nature to find one. It vanish away all the sorrows of life and kinder happiness.

Hunt says, ‘Music is the medicine of the breaking heart’. ‘Music washes away from the soul the dust of every-day life’, Berthold Auerbach found out. So to say shortly Music is the solution to all problems.

Music can change the life of an individual. It can transform devil soul into a divine soul. Such is the mystery and mastery of music. Music brings discipline into ones life, to show the road to ultimate peace and reality.
Luther says, ‘Music is a discipline, and a mistress of order and good manners, she makes the people milder and gentler, more moral and more reasonable’.

Within twenty- four hour day cycle time, music has its own phase of expression, however the instinct of music can be conveyed at any interval of time. To say in our classical style (Raga style), we have instances of a particular Raga to be rendered. For example: Raga Bhairav at the dawn phase, Raga Bhimpalasi to be performed at its afternoon phase and say Raga Yaman at the evening phase. This gives rise to systematic understanding or rather fitting of the glamour of music to its environment conditions. In this way one can analyse the different self expressions (bhava) of the human being. But one should not restrict rendering a particular Raga only at that phase of time, one can do it randomly any how, for music is love and to forecast love one must not wait for time , it is boundless, a infinite journey.

Music consists primarily of Swara which is the basin or backbone of its system. When it stands firmly, and to make it real; Tala, Laya comes along with it and meet i.e. when these three zones meet on one platform they generate light (Jyot) or rather an infinite torch. I understand music as sunrays because of which our earth exists and human beings live happily.

Our great Guru and legendary maestro Miya Tansen has given a golden rule to his all disciples: ‘First set up your Swara (Shadja or Sa) [as there are seven notes (Swaras) in our music octave: Sa, Re, Ga, Ma, Pa Dha, Ni] to its proper pitch intensity (tone) and then starts rendering music (may be vocal or instrumental) in its own ecstasy’ (pratham sur sadhe, feer baith gunin mei ras ki kare fuhar).

Aldous Huxley says, ‘After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music’. Music is music in itself. It has its own way of communication; however the final goal is to emotionally please everyone.
At silence as one remains plainful, serene; in similar line music empowers the link of silence to the human soul. When human soul listens to music, there remains a quiet peace, a silent association internally with music, a kind of duplex communication. A perfect touch of heart to heart. A heart of music to the heart of human soul.

There is lot more to learn from music. Music has no boundaries. I believe that one should live with music, speak to it, feel it and enjoy it. Along with the benefits that music sprinkles on us, our role in music must be a significant contribution to our society towards emotional and social growth. This will lead to integrity and unity of mankind throughout the globe.

One cannot learn music simply, a Guru is a must. With hand to hand (Guru with his disciple), always musical system travels. Pope has rightly pointed out: ‘Music resembles poetry; in each are numerous graces which no methods teach, and which a master hand alone can reach’. Disciple learns under the guidance of Guru. With His (a master, a perfectionist) teaching, love, truthfulness one can get blessed and climb the ladder of success. As success comes to only those who analyse things in music and listen to minute details preached by his Guru. Without a Guru there is no start and stop for music; for Guru is like God (Lord Saraswati) and to be with Him is divine purity.

As Plato says, ‘Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything. The effect of music is so much more powerful and penetrating than that of other art’. So set up yourself and starts pursuing life in touch of music. With your Guru float in vast ocean of music. Accumulate music in all walks of your life. Along when you will travel, your heart will be soothed and life will be tension free. You shall be a lucky individual to understand yourself with music, as music itself is a present God has bestowed on you to track down all worries and brighten up your life.


M(Music)-Bureaucracy:It hurts more

One of the saddest stories that I have read in a long time was the furore over singer Parvati Khan being prevented from singing at the sacred Jyotirlingas.
The temple loves her music but not the fact that her husband is a Muslim. The Express reports:

“She created such a beautiful atmosphere here,” gushes priest Upendra Shikhre, unaware of Khan’s real identity. “Her voice drew hundreds of devotees here every day, many more than the temple normally sees on an average day. The last five days were so serene.” But now, priest Ulhas Aaradi is a bitter man. “If only we had known earlier…If people of Trimbakeshwar had known, they would have told her to get out.” Only Hindus, are allowed in the temple.

Panditji, who is a Hindu? or to be more accurate who isn’t a Hindu. or for that matter fact who is a Muslim or who isn’t a Muslim. If you truly believe in God surely then all paths lead to the same end.
And what religion is Shankar Mahadev. For he is the parama yogi and for him there can be no religion, and all are same. By violating the basic principal of Shavism – the priests have desecrated the temple. I hope that all of us who are devout and believe can take a stand and say that you don’t speak for us. For in the home of God all are welcome, for in the eyes of God all are the same.

A few centuries ago they wouldn’t have allowed a Vaishnavite into the temple. Now Parvati Khan is being denied entry. Indra Gandhi – while she was PM – was not allowed entry into some temples because she was a widow. And Dalits till date are not allowed into many temples.

The last few months i have been virtually insomniac. And in that insomnia my constant companion has been Hindustani Classical Music, some Carnatic – but mostly Hindustani.
Listen to the Dagar Brothers of Udaipur – exponents of the Dhrupad style – sing the glory of Hari (incidentally their first names are Khan Sahib Ustad Nasir Moinuddin & Khan Sahib Ustad Nasir Aminuddin); or Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Sahib singing the love of Krishna or Radha in the amazing Jamuna ke Teer; or Pandit Malikarjun Mansur singing Pratham Allah in raag Shivmat Bhairav – and you will know that the Brahmin Priests know jackshit.
Urban legend has it that when partition happened, Bade Ghulam Ali Khan Sahib migrated to Pakistan. In the inaugural concert of Pakistan Radio he began his concert – as always – with Saraswati Vandana. When administrators objected to his singing the glory of Hindu gods – he migrated back. His rationale – where he can’t sing the glory of God – any God – he cannot stay.

Mostly these kinds of issues are raised by the people who know least about the sacred art ,like someone who objects to name the academy of classical music on khan sahib Ustab Ali Akbar Khan( because he was a Muslim) in Bhopal,M.P. and asks to name it on Miyan Tansen-not knowing that the legend was also a Muslim.

This is not what we are about. And it is time that we spoke out against the hijacking of our eclectic traditions by medivialists. Let us not wait to become Saudi Arabia. Lets speak out now – if not for us, then for generations to come.

e-Bureucracy:It hurts

My friend needs some help for firefox extension/plugin for seeing Indian fonts.
Can anyone help him? (By developing, or giving him reference of similar projects, or if the plugin is already available, then directly tell us the project
site url.)

Can anybody here make a firefox extension/plugin for seeing Indian fonts
for the electoral rolls website of maharashtra at

The election commission relies on cdac for a plugin which works only on windows’ internet explorer and thus CDAC promotes use of the proprietary system instead of the superior open source products which are evolving faster with having all those cliche’ advantages , than the proprietary products.

By showing expertise in such projects, government mandarins will know where to get help/advice for egovernance projects in open source instead of mothballed organisations like CDAC which have become lethargic and bureaucratic in their functioning and decades behind in technology.

Even after the wave of optimism and determination shown in the speeches and elsewhere by the concerned top government officials in front of the public of united ,liberated and independent India -if still organisations of research and developement interests like CDAC do the same old mistakes (whatever be the reason),then it’ll definitely make the path to salvation more so difficult.

A Teacher’s mail to a to-be student

Dear Swapan,

I think I remember having communicated with you earlier. I am glad to hear that you have been pursuing your music along with other academic and professional commitments. I gather from your mail that you seem fairly clear with the course that you wish to undertake with your musical pursuit. I would of course hesitate to say with the same degree of confidence, that I would be in a position to ‘spread’ the wealth of Indian music. Indeed, I believe that is something that I cannot for a moment venture to say, only because the tradition has lived through several ages, whether or not people like me choose to be a part of it, let alone contribute to its future prospects! I believe the tradition is far too large for me to consider myself an indispensable part of it, or at any rate make any valuable contribution to its future. I am therefore happy that you have made such an early decision to ‘spread’ this music!

From your email, it is clear that you have had the opportunity to learn from several teachers. I know Suresh Samantji well and am also happy to hear that you are currently being guided by him. I must hasten to add however, that I am not in favour of changing teachers ever so often, as this only leads to a confusion of musical ideas, technique and at times even, repertoire. I will be happy to carry on this discussion on return from the US after a couple of weeks or so. You can contact me on my mobile number xxxxxxxxxx after Sept. 10, and we can decide the best time for you to visit me in Mumbai. We will then discuss the issue threadbare, but for now I can’t assure you that I will be in a position to teach you. There are several reasons for this, and an email will not be sufficient to explain everything to you. It would therefore be best if you made the trip to Mumbai in September.



My stint in Goa

I was in Goa for almost an year and understood ,what a beautiful destination it was to be -not for the beaches ,nor for the culture it encapsulates but for the people it contains.They are so devoted and simple.

One really cannot enjoy Goa in a tour of say 6/7 days by experiencing paragliding,scooba diving ,parachuting and all.Adventure is one thing and divine pleasure is altogether another .

I was staying in Verna- a small town very near to the business capital -Margao.
An ideal town for the freaking out.Going to my workspace by a cycle ,I bought for 1850 bucks.
Nice highway that conncts 3 major cities of the Goa-margao,Panjim and Vasco..

Every alternate evening used to go to Majorda beach ,which happen to be the nearest well known beach from my residence.

Waiting for the weekends ,which are spent mostly out of Verna-sometimes in the Ponda (the religious city for the Hindus)roaming around and having darshan of the Gods/godesses(Shantadurga-Kavalem,Mahalaxmi,Mangeshi,Ramnathi) and sometimes thinking about for the nationl future travelling in a Kadamba bus to longer roads ,alone towards southmost Goa (canacona-my favourite spot) where many days I have spent with myself in the Palolem beach .

tanha rhena apne mein ek kala haidost-
dosti,rishte -nato mein se pare samjhne ka who pal haijo kam hi ata hai
or phirhamien kuch jatla kar chal jata hai
tanhayi ka maatlab samjho ,tanhayi mein rhena sikho
tanhayi se tum milkar dekho
tanhayi koi bhoot nahin hai
tanhayi achoot nahin hai
aksar tumne socha hoga -aksar tumne jana hoga
ki tanha rhene se tumne
apne ap ko phechana hoga

It was this beach where I have captured one of the most beautiful scenary in my Camera..

Then I meet Ameya Wadekar-with whom on ETERNO ,I explored the remotest parts of the Goa ,the towns, the festivals and the ultimate.

We spent our weekend evenings -listening and singing the songs in praise of the lord in various temples around Ponda.At home in Wadi and Talvalim ,we accompanied each other for lifting ourselves in the great depth of knowledge in Indian Classical Music.

Initially we picked the raag Yaman-king of all ragas and then Bhim Palaasi .It went for 7 months under the able guidance of Pt.Kamlakar Naik .We used to learn from him on Sundays -where I was just accompanieng with sundry studen artists coming for the vocal traing under him under the AGRA and Dhrupad style of singing..

The delicious fish curry(and especiaaly Machral-Bagda),was the icing on the cake..

So many simple ,enthusiastic and energetic people with their bindaas philosophy to live -will always be with me to the limitless..

Dance as though no one is watching; Sing as though no one is listening; Love as though you’ve never been hurt; and live as though heaven is here on earth!
– By Satchel Paige or Rumi
[Wrote like no one will read it.]

What a great philosophy to travel through life’s journey with! Tough one to follow – but nonetheless a nice source of inspiration! Learn from the past. Release yourself from the past. Live the present moment. Enjoy..

Me and fusion music

I have a great passion for the music that works for the massess.

Initially ,I was disinterested in the music of any kind .When I was only years of age ,my parents got me admitted in to learning of the indian classical music -the percussion or the traditional indian drumming instrument called as Tabla -which was said to be developed by the Ustad Amir Khusro in the 16th century.One can say it was like a blessoing in disguise as I gradually started loving the rythems then swaras and then music as a whole.

I started learning from the University pattern ,and slowly I realised that this kind of system is of very less help for the self development of the individual in the domain.It merely gives any sort of freedom and liberty to explore ,as one is bounded with the completion of the syllabus while following the timing constraints.

After doing my Masters in Music , a 9 years course in Tabla-fortunately I started my professional career at Pune and came to meet Pandit Suresh Samant.Believe me after started learning from the legend I understand the language of Tabla,the beauty of music and limitless universe of the artform.

It has always been my inherent habbit to read ,read and explore whatever I could in the varied interests in the various domains -that inculcated my interest in the concept of the east meeting with the west and ultimately open source culture-linux etc..and music initiated this rebellion thoughts in my mind.Became the avid reader of Peyman Nashepour’s ( a great Tombak percusionist from Israel) group on yahoo..

“The more you love music ,the more music you love ..”
Then started the conversation with the Eric Struse(Finland),Yoshi Takatao (Japan) and Emanuel Delago(austria),who are also percussionists like me ,intersted in world music and developing the peace and harmony..If time permits ,I would soon paste those energising conversations between me and those angels of the great and divine art-that is called music -in this bloghouse ..
I have also met many friends from france and germany (Maxim Brune,Lorentz Genzi)-who are learning Tabla and have shown such a great enthusiasm not visible in any one of my sir’s inidan pupils.this is really strange ,and praiseworthy for those foriegners coming from such distant lands ,commited to do their work for what they’ve ome here..I am learning from them and may be one day will also work with them for the betterment of the society ,for the goodness of the humanity..

Digital Education:CounterOpinion

There must not be any gainsayer that investing or spreading in EDUCATION is crucial in reducing the inequalities that fuel desperate violence ,ignorance and discrimination ,but can somebody explain me how making digital technology more widely available should help much?
The Core:
We may be proud of fully wired,computer controlled-smart class rooms that have projectors,microphones,speakers and video cameras to accommodate every kind of audio and visual presentations and distance learning initiative .
Neverthless ,we find that the most engaging lectures are still Talk and Chalk presentations by cursy old souls who have contagious passion for their subjects (how can we produce them now),interestingly some of whom consider “MULTIMEDIA” to consist of using more than one color of chalk:)
The Dilemma:
I have yet to see a smart classroom enrich the learning experience to a degree that comes close to matching the expense of the equipment it contains..Although many of the professors are eager to embrace new technology,their best efforts at powerpoint fails to surpass the impact of traditional lectures from their low tech colleagues(May be their efforts/energy is wasted in preparing powerpoint and animations in lectures and when the time comes they are already enervated).
..Worse still:
As often as not the technology gets in the way of malfunctioning .I expect that most of the reader have more than once watched a presenter stand sweating in front of a blank projector screen while his laptop reboots -again .
The Need:
Rather than emphasising “globally and cheaply available” digital technology we should gain more —
By investing in simple equipments like chalk boards and books,
By sending teachers in training from poor educational systems to places with selected lecture rooms around the country to explore them to really lucid and passionate teaching..
To send expert educators from those select institutions of learning to poor educational systems as an exchange for some time..
As with other skilled art , it is the tradition of pedgogy that has to be passed on by personal examples and digital education is of scant help here..
The Tail:
As a support of digital education ,I have read and heared many people saying that chalk takes up the talking time .I must say that the chalk’s taking the time is all about the re-energising .The presentor has to give some time for his ideas to express on its own pace ,to think too -when he plays with the chalk and to search for the best method and media to express his thoughts so that those synchronise and harmonise with the spectators and audience.
Friend,chalking is not wasting his/her time ,it’s kind of meditation the teacher is involved into.