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Surabhi Post Myriad Hues Of Ragas Priyamaana Kharaharapriya

Its been quite some time since our last discussion in this column.  Continuing our discussion on ragas, I would like to take up the 22nd melakartha raga, Kharaharapriya in this episode of Surabhi Post.  A raga with extensive scope for elaboration, Kharaharapriya, evokes karuna rasam and lends itself for lengthy raga alapana.  

The swaras in this raga seem to have a symmetrical distribution, in the sense, the interval between Sa - Ri, Ma - Pa, Da - Ni are all equal.  This aspect certainly enhances the beauty of the raga and also facilitates the singing of the sangathis with ease. The jeeva swaras and the nyasa swaras in this raga, both happen to be Ri, Ga, Da and Ni.  The swaras in this raga can be handled with or without gamakam with out compromising the beauty of the raga.  The raga has also been extensively employed in folk and kavadi chindu songs.  (Listen to key prayogas of Kharaharapriya)

Kharaharapriya has given rise to more than 100 janya ragas.  Abhogi, Abheri, Sriranjani, Kanada, Darbar, Kaapi, Madhyamavathi, Devamanohari, Suddha Dhanyasi, Sri ragam, Nayaki, Kannada Gowlai, Jayamanohari, Varamu and …….. the list goes on.

Some famous compositions in Kharaharapriya - Saint Thyagaraja has come out with some of the best compositions in this raga -  Chakkani Raja, Chetulara Sringaramu, Kori Sevimpa, Rama Nee Samana, Rama Nee Eda, Pakkala Nilabadi.

There are no compositions of Muthuswamy Dikshitar and Syama Shastry in this raga!  Its really a big surprise for me too and didn't know about it all this time! 

Appan Avatharitha, Senthil Andavan, Janaki Pathe, Enna Seidalum, Saraswathy annaiye are some of Papanasam Sivan's compositions.  And who can forget 'okapari kokapari' of Annamacharya popularized by our MS Amma?

I will be back with a new raga next week, until then keep listening to the 'best of priya' - Kharaharapriya!

Musically yours,


A step by step initiation in to Carnatic music theory addressing raga classification, common music terminologies, various swara sthanas, raga lakshanas and more...Do take time to go through our blogs where all concepts are described with appropriate audio demonstrations. (Explanations in English)