Saturday, February 26, 2011

The mellifluous Suprabhatam

I remember the Suprabhatam from my childhood. In the apartment where I lived, one of my neighbors used to play it every morning. At that time, I was not very spiritually nor very musically inclined especially not Vedic Religion or Carnatic music! But it stayed with me somewhere at the back of my mind.

Some time back, I somehow got this urge to listen to it. I asked around and sure enough, got a copy of M. S. Subbulakshmi's excellent rendition of this masterpiece. I have been listening to it almost every day for the past few weeks. It leaves me spellbound!

Who is it that sang this with the legendary MS? Was it Radha, her foster daughter? MS and her mystery companion have sung the verses with flawless pronunciation of the rather difficult Sanskrit words. Hours of practice have probably gone in before such a divine performance. All the verses are sung by the two voices in perfect sync. The other voice matches MS note for note, letter for letter.

There is something about the Sanskrit words, the simple, rhythmic tune and the way MS has sung it that really mesmerizes you. When I was looking for more information about the Suprabhatam, I found a remix by A. R. Rahman. How was it? Pathetic! Nothing can match the MS version.

The verses themselves are invocations to the Lord to wake up. You can read the entire set of verses here along with English translations.

Here is a You Tube video that has the audio with images from Tirumala and the verses as subtitles:







1 comment:

Shravan Kumar. M said...

MS Subbalakshmi voice is very melodious and divine tunes flow like a river from her voice.

MS Subbalakshmi bio here, hope you will knowing more about her: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wyDNKW7g2Co