1. Pandit Bhimsen Joshi
2. Shobha Gurtu
3. Girija Devi
4. Ajoy Chakravarty
Pandit Bhimsen Joshi
Despite being known as the doyen of the Kirana gharana, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi’s music is resplendent with characteristics of other gharana and today he has what can be termed as unique Bhimsen Joshi style of music. A full bodied style that brings out the nuances and the mood with a beauty that is unparalleled. Blessed with an amazing understanding of the soul of the Swara and Raga, he developed mastery not only over the khayal idiom but also over Thumri, which he perfected during his stay in Lucknow where he was attached to the Lucknow radio station as a singer for some time. His rendering of Jaadu Bharela or Piya Ke Milne Ke Aas has been described as equivalent to some of the best renditions of Benaras Gharana. Like a conjuror, he comes up with magical renditions one after the other, leaving the audience completely awestruck. His unrelenting pursuit for perfection was for the world to acknowledge.
Unarguably the queen of Thumri, Shobha Gurtu learnt the nuances of singing quite young. Having formally trained under maestros of the Atrauli-Jaipur gharana and later from Bhurji Khan, son of the legendary Alladiya Khan, she represents an entire musical culture in herself- a culture that is rich in melodic nuances, individuality of expression, poetic fancy and a voice with a subtle poetic appeal. Her early lessons in thumri began when she picked them up from Gamman Khansaab who used to come to teach her mother. Today she excels in what is commonly known as the Purab Ang Gayaki of thumri. She feels that the thumri has everything to it… literature, dance, drama… everything that is endearing in the arts is in the thumri.
An acknowledged legend, Girija Devi is a singer who has enthralled listeners the world over. Her tutelage of 10 years under Pandit Sarju Prasad Mishra imbibed in her the timeless traditions of the Benares Gharana. Today Girija Devi is Unquestionable a master at the Purvi Ang Thumri recitation. She has been decorating music with words, emphasizing the lyrical beauty and immersing herself completely in the flow. It is the resonance and timbre of her voice that unfailingly express a gamut of emotions. Her flawless Thumri renditions leave the audience in raptures and her music, they say makes conversation with them. A Thumri singer par excellence, she is known to have beautiful both the Shringar Rasa and the Bhakti Ras to her is an experience that can only be described as heavenly.
Born in 1953, Ajoy Chakraborty is today an eminent exponent of the Patiala Gharana. He trained under Munawar Ali Khan, the son of Bade Ghulam Ali Khan Saheb, a doyen of the Patiala Gharana. Thumri was one form of semi-classical music that was etched in him by the great traditions of this Gharana. Considered to be one of the most accomplished Thumri singers today his style is revered by almost all students of this art form. Marked with preponderance for decorating and adding variations of his own, his renditions of some very popular Thumris are truly priceless. Living his entire life within the realm of Indian Classical music, his contribution to this sphere is immense. An artist with an inborn flair for music, sumptuous knowledge of the swara and an unfaltering sense of rhythm, he has truly proven his excellence in various genres of Indian music
One of the most poetic and popular genres of Semi classical Indian music, the Thumri is second today only to the weighty Khayal idiom. The poetic Content is mainly Shringar Rasa- the romantic mood from the legends of Krishna and Radha. Mainly composed in Brij Bhasha, it is the lyrical beauty which combined with the hues of the raga that makes the Thumri truly divine. Besides Shringar Rasa, the portrayal of the Bhakti Rasa- the devotional mood, is another fecet of Thumri gaayan Therefore, thumri is the poetry for those who see love as Bhakti… as devotion. Sung at the end of a Dhrupad or a Khayal, Thumri is all about the individuality of expression, the voice, the dramatic and subtle elaborations and variations and the understanding of the nuances by the artist. This poetic genre has been divided into two distinct Angs or branches. Energing from Varanasi and encapsulating the areas of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Bengal is the Purvi of eastern Ang. Flourishing in the royal courts, the Paschimi or the western Ang emerged from the areas of Lucknow, Rampur and Aoud, covering an area that stretches from eastern Uttar Pradesh to Delhi. Today Thumri is one of the most dazzling expressions in Indian music. To celebrate this unforgettable art from, Times music brings you Thumri Gold, a collection of four outstanding thumris in the voices of the foremost exponents of this musical form, Pt Bhimsen Joshi, Smt. Shobha Gurtu, Smt. Girija Devi and Ajoy Chakraborty. Compiled from the Golden Raaga collection, these Thumris are a treasure to be cherished forever.
|1.||Radha Nand Kunwar Samjhaye||16:37|
|2||Kate Na Birha Ki Raat||12:22|
|3||Inni Araj Mori Maan||15:24|
|4||Jamuna Ke Teer||15:18|