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K.J. Yesudas - a rasikas' musician
He respects his rasikas. He cares for them. The two qualities have seen his constituency of fans grow. Just as he is committed to his fans, the rasikas, too, are to him. This healthy interface explains the full-house at his concerts. K.J. Yesudas has been a rasikas' musician. There were many happy faces and approving heads, as people came out after listening to his over three-hour concert for Sri Parthasarathy Swami Sabha on December 16. Why not? After all, he earmarked over half-an-hour for "listeners' choice''. Popular Madhyamavati number "Harivarasanam'', Swagatham Krishna (Mohanam), a Malayalam song, the first pasuram of Andal Thiruppavai in Nattai and a few others - all these filled the committed Yesudas fans with happiness.

By obliging the requests of a few kids in the audience, the senior singer not only won the hearts of the audience but also space in the minds of these youngsters.

While betraying a sense of humility, he underscored his faith in traditional values. The lively "Nagumomu ganaleni .'', the Abheri composition of Saint Tyagaraja, and the longish "Chakkani Raja.'' in Kharaharpriya really warmed the hearts of traditional concert-goers. The Kharaharpriya was the main piece of the day. And, it saw some interesting duel between the singer and violinist. The thani phase was scintillating as the two percussion artistes engaged in power-packed conversation through their instruments. In the initial stage of the concert, Yesudas kept the audience guessing as he sang 'Karunai ganapatye. '' in Priyadarshini ragam, a Janya ragam of Sarasangi. "Evarito ne deludi'', a Tyagaraja composition in Manavati, too, turned out to be a raga identification competition for the audience! A feature of this concert was the way in which the vocalist kept his dialogue on with the accompanying violinist. The inclusive approach of the main artiste gives a clue or two to Yesudas's outlook to the art, in general, and concert etiquette, in particular. The alapanas were crisp, adequate and effective. He ensured that most of the pieces - even the minor ones - were peppered with swaras for an avarthanam or two. In this three-hour-long concert, he sort of served a full-course wedding meal - replete with everything. Enough food for thought to digest!
Comments
R. Gopalkrishnan - girija@aol.com
Dear Sir. Namaskarams. We have met several times at TVM and Chennai airports. Pleaseant memories linger our meetings at Chennai airport international lounge and also TVM-Chennai and Chennai Frankfurt Lufthansa flights.
Happy birthday to you. May Lord Guruvayurappan and Lord Ayyappan shower their blessings on you and family.
With every good wish. Regards to you and family.
Sincerely,
R.Gopalkrishnan, Consultant, World Bank