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 - Navarasa Kannada

Navarasa Kannada is a raga that truly demonstrates how much restrictions fuel creativity! It is often commented that Carnatic music is extremely rule-bound and restricts freedom for artists. Read this interview in The Hindu by Shri Sanjay Subramanian to understand his views about how this is a complete myth - http://www.thehindu.com/thread/arts-culture-society/article8000284.ece 

Navarasa Kannada with only 4 swaras in its arohana is a prime example of how rules can inspire creative freedom. A janya raga of the 28th Melakarta Raga Harikambhoji, the raga has Shadja, Antara Gandhara, Shuddha Madhyama, Panchama in the arohana and additional kakali nishadha, chatushruthi dhaivata and chatushruthi rishabha in the avarohana. The flow of the phrase "SGMPS, NDM" is extremely catchy and oft heard of. Other common phrases are "PS SG", "SG PS"etc. 

S G3 M1 P S

S N2 D2 M1 G3 R2 S

Starting with Shri Thyagaraja's immortal composition rendered in the golden voice of Shri Maharajapuram Santhanam:

Following it with a composition of Shri Papanasam sivan's Naan Oru Vilayattu Bommaya, sung here by Shri Sikkil Gurucharan

Presenting another dasa krithi composed by my guru Shri Tirumale Srinivas, composition of Shri Prasanna Venkata Dasaru, rendered by me some years ago in Bangalore