CHENNAI: Striving to present the concert in a satisfactory way, seasoned singer KJ Yesudas enthused the audience with his planned diction of songs. At his concert for Tamil Isai Sangam at Raja Annamalai Mandram Hall recently, what was impressive was his selection of Tamil compositions. When he commenced (Gajavadana) of Sivan in Raga Sri Ranjani, he left the rasikas exhilarated with his melodious voice.
It was followed by the Sahana Raga kriti (Unai yantri), which was rendered with devotional fervor. The number touched our mind. The sequence of swaras in metrical formats revealed the classical comeliness of the Raga after the appealing poetic textual (Sadasivanai Pani Manamae) in Raga Sri Kanti, which was brought out in a sublime order. His presentation of Vaani Vaagadeeswari was absorbing in Raga Vaagadeeswari. (It is called Vivadi Raga, which is rarely sung. The pratimadyamam in Nasika Bhushari (70th melakarta) is replaced with a suddha madyamam and the resultant raga is Vaagadeeswari). The Raga evokes piety and devotion through the phases aligned meticulously on the sruthi.
Then comes Thayae Yeshodha, the most celebrated Tamil composition of Oothukkadu Venkata Kavi, which describes the mischief of young Krishna. The number certainly extended the concert value due to extensive technical decorations he incorporated. Overall, the musician’s fine vocal expression and melodic approach to songs were impressive.
The core of the artiste’s divine guru bhakti was apparent, and he made the kutcheri a great musical experience for the audience. When he virtually proclaimed that his presentation was the culmination of inner refinement of the heart’s interpretation and not the brain’s, one would think why should he have a laptop’s assistance during the recital? S R Mahadeva Sarma’s strong support on violin came as no surprise, while Harikumar on mridangam and Vaikam Gopala Krishnan on ghatam played invigorating beats.