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Carnatic Music - Origin

2:16 PM Posted by Vijayasri

The origin of Carnatic music , or the South Indian classical music can be traced back to the age of vedas . Even though the art in the form of the Sapthaswaras (seven notes), has been drawn from all the four vedas, prime mention should be made of Sama Veda , one of the four volumes of the Holy Scriptures the others being: the Rig-Veda, the Yajur-Veda and the Artharva-Veda) is thought to have laid the foundations for Indian music and was the inspirationational source for its rhythm.

"Ya Samagapi Sarveshu Brahmyamana Tatha Bhuvi" meaning, by reciting the Samaganam (music derived from Sama Veda), the Lord pervades the entire universe, including the blessed earth where we reside.

The history of Carnatic music is incomplete without the contributions of the saints Sri Purandharadasaru ( 15th century A.D.) , Sri Thyagarajar , Sri Shyama Sastri ( all of 18th century A.D.) , and left an enduring legacy of compositions. Sri Purandharadasaru, often noted as "Father of Carnatic music" made great contributions to both Sacred and Art music. He is the most prolific of all the South Indian composers. He perfected a systematic approach to train students of Carnatic music which has since become a standard format. He composed the "Swaravali" (simple exercises based on the Scale), "Alankaras" (exercises based on the seven basic Talas) and "Gitams" (simple melodic compositions in praise of the various deities), songs in Kannada known as "Devarnamas". He was the creator of the musical form, "Kriti" which was later perfected by the great composer "Thyagaraja".
This tradition has a rich heritage and is perfectly attuned with Indian culture and religion.


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