Anyone who knows me, or has visited The Hum and read my Introductions to Indian Classical Music Part 1 and Part 2, knows of my devotion to Hindustani and Carnatic music. The musical traditions of India are among the oldest on the planet. Their influence on the diverse cultures they have touched, over millennia, are incalculable. Chances are, where ever you are, no matter what sounds you prefer, Indian music has helped sculpt the music you love.
The mandolin has existed in folk traditions in India for many generations, but its introduction into, and acceptance within, Carnatic music did not occur until the early 1980’s. This came with the debut of a young child prodigy, Master U. Srinivas, whose approach to, and mastery of, the instrument elevated its esteem. I discuss him briefly here and here. Very few recordings of the instrument exist outside of India. I’m always on the lookout for more.
Yesterday I had a day off from writing. During my aimless wanderings around the internet, this video popped into my Facebook feed. It was doing the rounds after having been posted on the sisters’ page. I was knocked out of my chair, promptly re-posted, and set out hunting for more.
Indian Classical music is a music of deep spiritual purpose. In both traditions, there are distinct lineages and schools of thought. These are passed from guru to student. The sisters, Sreeusha and Sireesha, were taught by Vidwan Sri Rudraraju Subbaraju, who was a disciple of the singer and violinist Sangeetha Kalanidhi Chembhai Vidhyanatha Bhagavathar. Bhagavathar was the teacher of U.Srinivas. This places them within the same musical lineage.
Beyond what I’ve described, there isn’t much information in the public domain. You can scratch up a little more information on the sisters’ website. As far as I can tell, they haven’t released any recordings on physical formats. Let’s hope they get into the studio before too long. For now I thought I’d pass along some more videos I was able to track down. They are filled with splendor and joy. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.
RAGHUVARA PANTHUVARALI -PART 1
RAGHUVARA PANTHUVARALI -PART 2
RAGHUVARA PANTHUVARALI -PART 3
VINAYAKA HAMSADWANI – PART 1
VINAYAKA HAMSADWANI – PART 2
Vathapi – Hamsadwani
Manavi – Nalinakaanthi
Alaipayude – Kaanada
Brahmamokkate – Bowli
Govindanaamam – Revathi
4 thoughts on “the amazing mandolin sisters”
Thanks for the discovery! Completely in awe.
Really happy you liked the post. There’s another slightly earlier write up on U.Srinivas that you can link to, and you might enjoy. There’s more to come. You can follow on twitter @the_hum_vinyl to keep track of things as the roll out or on FB @ https://www.facebook.com/thehum1
I’m on it. Been following closely since I found you recently. Also, loving that Arthur Russell.
Thanks! Really happy you’re enjoying everything. That AR footage rips my heart in two.