Life without Music is like a flower without fragrance, a bird without wings or a body without soul.
Music is the essence of life, like a smile it has no language & no religion but only one identity, i.e.,
it gives pleasure, peace & power."
Carnatic music is considered one of the oldest systems of music in the world. Carnatic music is a
very complex system of music that requires much thought, both artistically and technically. The
basis of Carnatic music is the system of ragas (melodic scales) and talas (rhythmic cycles). There
are seven rhythmic cycles and 72 fundamental ragas. All other ragas are considered to have stemmed
from these. An elaborate scheme exists for identifying these scales, known as the 72 Melakarta Ragas.
Three saint composers of the nineteenth century, Tyagaraja, Muthuswami Dikshitar and Shyama
Shastri, have composed thousands of songs that remain favourites among musicians and audiences.
The most important specialty of Karnatic music is its devotional content. The lyrics of the compositions
are set entirely against a devotional backdrop. The notes of Carnatic music is "sa-ri-ga-ma-pa-da-ni".
These are abbreviations of the real names which are Shadjam, Rishabham, Gandharam, Madhyamam,
Panchamam, Dhaivatam and Nishadam.
Every member of the solfege (the swara) may have up to three variants. The exceptions for this are the
two notes shadjam and panchamam, which have only one form, and madhyamam, the middle note, which
has only two notes. Spiritualism has always been the prominent content of Carnatic music. The beautiful
interweaving of the devotional element and aesthetics has made it ethereal and eternal. The basic idea
behind compositions has been to see and seek the ultimate reality or God. In fact, it has been said that
the easiest way to attain salvation is to sing the greatness of the Almighty.In Hindu mythology, music
and God have always been portrayed together. Many deities are assigned their own musical instruments
and are all hailed as music lovers. Lord Siva is believed to be the embodiment of Nada (cosmic music)
which is believed to be first form of music.
Lord Krishna, the foremost of flautists, indicates his musical inclinations byassessing that he is Sama
Veda among the Vedas. While Lord Siva is the embodiment of Nada (cosmic music )and Tandava
(cosmic dance), Goddess Parvati is hailed as the embodiment of Lasya.
Goddess Saraswati, the Goddess of Learning is always associated with the Vina (known as Vipanchi,
a stringed musical instrument). Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth is believed to revel in music
while Lord Vishnu, her consort, plays on the percussion. Among the saints, Narada and Tumburu are
hailed as Vainika-Gayaka (experts in music and Vina). Nandi, the bull, is the master of Laya. The
separate set of demi-Gods like Yaksha, Kinnara and Gandharva are all believed to be proficient in music
and musical instruments. In fact, music is known as Gandharva Vidya. Hanuman was proficient in
what is called the Hanumad Vina and this is the predecessor of the present day Chitravina.
The growth and development of Carnatic music through the centuries is a testimony to the greatness
of the Indian mind. It needs to be taken to the international arena parallel with any other classical form.
This can be achieved if we understand it in the right perspective and don't lose it to religion, for this
mission we have this music website. Carnatic music, the sonic representation of a rich cultural heritage
that prevailed in south India, the essence of spirituality evolved out of the heart and brain of the pious ones.
Thus carnatic music of South India is the ultimate synonym to salvation and eternity. The Nada Brahma -
God incarnated in a sonic form. This music website aims at educating and entertaining rasikas, providing
them information regarding Carnatic music. Let us contribute to this rich tradition of Carnatic music and
make this chain continue. Lets take a pledge to keep the flame bright for the future.