Raksha Rao

Musician / Vocalist

Raksha Rao is a Carnatic vocalist who has been learning and performing Carnatic Classical vocal music for the past 15 years. She has given many concerts to large audiences both in India and in the US under the able guidance of her guru Shri Tirumale Srinivas (Chami sir). Raksha has released 4 albums and has lent her voice to several devotional music albums such as "Chants for Children" , "Ide Sumano Vanim", "Anarghya" and many more. Though trained in Carnatic Classical music, she is a keen proponent and ardent lover of Kannada devaranama (or devotional music), and has sung various rare devaranamas, exquisitely set to beautiful ragas by her guru Shri Tirumale Srinivas. She has performed with renowned artists, including the exemplary UK-based violinist Jyotsna Srikanth in the hit TV series "Just Sangeetha". Check out more for clips from her performances. Under the able guidance of her guru, she is now leading a music school Mahati Nada Kendra, with an aim to train and spread Kannada dasa sahitya in Southern California and beyond.

#30DayMarghazhiRagaChallenge - Jonpuri

Jonpuri - another Hindustani raga that has been well homogenized into Carnatic style. M first tryst with Jonpuri was when I heard Shri P. Unnikrishnan's rendition of Rama Mantrava Japiso

The moment I listened to it, I was absolutely enamored by this raga! Bhakti and karuna rasa are just easily identifiable in this beautiful raga. This raga is a janya of the 20th Melakarta raga Natabhairavi. Consisting of the swaras Shadja, Chatushruthi Rishabha, Shuddha Madhyama, Panchama, Shuddha Dhaivata, Kaishiki Nishadha, and an additional Sadharana Gandhara in the avarohana, the raga sounds particularly wondrous when sung in high octaves.

S R2 M1 P D1 N2 S
S N2 D1 P M1 G2 R2 S

A landing in Dhaivata or Panchama is quite common for the raga, and the phrase "D, NP" can lend a different dimension to any sanchara

One amazing composition from Shri Subramanya Bharati - Asai Mugham Marundu Poche, rendered here in a not very traditional, but yet extremely appealing style - Shankar Tucker's music by the sister duo Vidya and Vandana:

Eppo Varuvaaro, another gem in Jonpuri, composed by Shri Gopalakrishna Bharati, rendered here by Smt. Sudha Raghunathan

A popular ragamalika devaranama by Shri Kanakadasaru - Baaro Krishnayya, ending with Jonpuri in the last charana - sung by me at a recent concert in ISKCON, LA