Hindustani, Kalyan

Jog 2

Abhēri is an upāṅga janya1 of the 22nd mēḷakarta2 Kharaharapriya. It is an auḍava-sampūrṇa3 rāga. The svaras4 present in this rāga are ṣaḍja, sādhāraṇa gāndhāra, śuddha madhyama, pañchama, kaiśiki niṣāda.

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S G2 M1 P N2 Ṡ - Ṡ N2 D2 P M1 G2 R2 S.

In Western music notation, if C is taken as the base or tonic note, then the scale is

C D# F G A# C – C A# A G F D# D C

Abhēri is a rakti rāga or a rāga which pleases instantaneously.

Gāndhāra and madhyama are rāgachāyā svaras8. Madhyama and niṣāda are nyāsa svaras9. G-N are vādi-samvādi svaras (consonant notes).

It can portray rasas10 like karuṇa (compassion) very effectively, just as it can convey the feeling of devotion or bhakti bhāva.

Some of the signature phrases of this rāga are

G M P N Ṡ N D P, - M P N D P M G, - S G M P G, R S, - Ṇ S M, - M P G, - G M P N, D, P, - M P N, Ṡ, - P N Ṡ Ġ Ṙ N, Ṡ, - N Ṡ Ṁ, Ġ, - Ṡ Ġ Ṁ Ṗ Ġ, Ṙ N, Ṡ, - N, D M, P, - G M P Ṡ,, N D P G, - G M N D P G, R Ṇ, - S M G R S,

A few compositions in this rāga are-

Nagumōmu Tyāgarāja
Vīṇābhēri Muttuswāmi Dīkṣitar
Bhajarē mānasa Mysore Vāsudēvāchārya
Palukutēnelatalli Tāḷḷapākam Annamāchārya (tuned by Vidwan Nedunuri Krishnamurthy)

1 A derived rāga which has other notes in addition to the notes of its own parent rāga.

2 Parent rāga

3 Auḍava- A scale with 5 notes ( Pentatonic). Sampūrṇa- A scale that has all 7 notes. Auḍava-sampurna is a scale with 5 notes in ascending order and 7 notes in descending order.

4 Notes

5 There are 16 varieties of svaras in Carnatic music. They are:

Sa (ṣaḍja) ṣaḍja C
Ri (riṣabha)
śuddha riṣabha (Ri 1)
chatuśruti riṣabha (Ri 2, Ga 1)
ṣaṭśruti riṣabha (Ri 3, Ga 2)
Ga (gāndhāra)
śuddha gāndhāra (Ga 1, Ri 2)
sādhāraṇa gāndhāra (Ga 2, Ri 3)
antara gāndhāra (Ga 3)
Ma (madhyama)
śuddha madhyama (Ma 1)
prati madhyama (Ma 2)
Pa (pañchama) pañchama G
Da (dhaivata)
śuddha dhaivata (Da 1)
chatuśruti dhaivata (Da 2, Ni 1)
ṣaṭśruti dhaivata (Da 3, Ni 2)
Ni (niṣāda)
śuddha niṣāda (Ni 1, Da 2)
kaiśiki niṣāda (Ni 2, Da 3)
kākali niṣāda (Ni 3)

Note: The above table gives you information on the notes as they are referred to between Sa on the middle octave to the Sa on the upper octave. It needs to be interpreted based on the Raga and its scale formation as given above. In the table given above, there are notes that use the same frequencies but, they are spelt differently. For example, Ri 2 is equal to Ga 1, Da 2 is equal to Ni 1. It needs to be seen in the context of the Raga that is being portrayed. Also, because of the ornamentation (Gamakas) most often the notes are not portrayed as it is played out on the Piano. There is a certain distortion in the frequencies making it difficult to identify the actual notes involved in the scale formation.

6 Scale in ascending order
7 Scale in descending order
8 System of rāga classification in ancient Tamizh music.
9 Notes which most effectively bring out the mood of the rāga
10 The landing notes for elaboration in various stages during improvisation.
11 Emotions or moods.


Hariharan, M. and Kuppuswamy, Gowri. 2011. Comparative Music- Fundamentals of Western Music. Nagercoil: CBH Publications

Keshavamurthy, R.R. 1964. Rāgalakṣaṇa mattu Rāgakōśa. Bengaluru: Gāna Viśārada Biḍāram Kṛṣṇappa Smāraka Saṅgīta Vidyālaya

Rajarao, Mysore L. 2003. Saṅgīta Śāstra Chandrike. Bengaluru: Karnataka Sangeetha Nritya Academy

Rao, B. Subba. 1980. Raganidhi. Madras: The Music Academy

Sambamoorthy, P. 2018 (reprint of eighth edition published in 1998). South Indian Music (Volumes 1 to 6). Chennai: The Indian Music Publishing House

Vasantalakshmi, R. 2007. Karnāṭaka Saṅgītaśāstra vāhini. Mysore: Bharathi Prakashana

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