…. intimacy, yes, with higher consciousness and not between man and woman…get ‘high’, yes, through music and not by getting ‘stoned’……..
Ashada Ekadesi, the most auspicious time in Pandarpur is round the corner (July 19th) and here is a blast-from-the-past –
In the early 1980s I lived in Bombay. On my way to Chembur rail-road to catch train to work, a catchy chorus music would emerge out of an obscure street-side temple. The musicians inside would be in their typical but soiled-white Maharashtrian outfit of dhoti, shirt and Nehru cap that reflected their simplicity, soaked in poverty. This was my first exposure to this genre of music – Abhang !
Since then, an Abhang cassette tape of the Bollywood singing diva Lata Mangeshkar travelled with me to the shores I went. On my return to the roots, I went back to what is now called Mumbai and also to Chembur to rediscover Abhang but with no success. As it is not Bombay of the 1980s anymore, I reconciled to ‘Mumbai’ and returned home to the city of Chennai down south, just with a couple of Abhang CDs in the bag.
Voila ! an ‘Abhangmela’ right near my house, within a month of return, something that a Maharashtrian city could not offer when looked. Taking in the mela music for a week, the spirit stirred for the ‘real’ – the place is Pandarpur and the time is Ashada ! Off I went through a divine design, which I would rather not get into here, but following is what unfolded –
following is a piece by yours truly, published in the Hawaiian based publication –
here’re a couple of abhang audios – by the legendary Bhimsen Joshi and the diva Lata Mangeshkar –