Monday, April 28, 2008

Raag Hameer - Two tempting takes

Hameer is a particularly beautiful raag, one perfectly suited for devotional songs. Munshi Raziuddin and Party delivered a wonderful performance of the raag in 1992, using the bandish "lag lagin mori". Here it is:

Another lovely rendition comes from Mohammad Rafi. Listen to
it here.

Both versions are equally electrifying, though Munshi Razi's is more complex and Rafi's caters to the needs of the popular cinema.

Interestingly, in the crescendo at the end, Munshiji's version appears to incorporate the "Mridang baje titakitadhum ..." (the drum beats ...) lines which Rafi sings at 2:59 mins and later at 4:05. The Razi recording is unclear, but the similarities are striking.

Perhaps that evening in '92, the master classical qawwal wished to cover the master playback singer's all-time classic, as great musicians often do with one another's masterpieces. More likely, it's nothing more than a blogger's fleeting fantasy.

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