Monday, April 19, 2021

Dhrupad Today


For the 1999 annual issue of the Journal of the Indian Musicological Society, I had co-edited a survey of the Dhrupad genre of Hindustani music The survey, published under the title “Perspectives on Dhrupad”, attempted to document the status of the medieval genre at the stage when there was considerable difference of opinion on the level of vitality the art-form exhibited. The volume is, unfortunately, out of print; but copies do exist with members of the society, and in important libraries.


Around the time of independence, Dhrupad was described as “dead”, “extinct”, a “museum piece”, and later, "experiencing a revival".  These descriptions were appropriate for the vocal as well as the associated Rudra Veena arts of Dhrupad, though the validity may have differed slightly between the two. Dhrupad, in its totality, seemed trapped in a downward spiral of uninspiring musicianship, shrinking audiences, failure to attract fresh talent, and a shortage of great teachers. The genre took several decades thereafter to escape from its entrapment 

Perceptions and even the reality had begun to change in the 1960s, after the Senior Dagar Brothers – Nasir Aminuddin and Nasir Moinuddin – introduced the genre to European audiences under the aegis of UNESCO. This development was accompanied by the arousal of serious interest amongst Western scholars and musicians in the medieval genre. By the 1980s, growing international interest in Dhrupad began to attract fresh talent to the genre from within India and abroad.


Some of this talent sought Dhrupad training through the traditional system of personalized apprenticeship.  Aspirants also acquired the option of institutionalized training in the Dagar vocal tradition at the Dhrupad Kendra at Bhopal, or study the Darbhanga vocal tradition at the Vrija Kala Gurukula at Vrindavan. The teaching of instrumental music in the Dhrupad idiom, albeit relatively minor in scale, has remained under personalized apprenticeship.


By the 1990s, when the Indian Musicological Society commissioned the survey, a young generation of credible Dhrupad vocalists of Indian as well as foreign origin was emerging on the concert platform. The semblance of a revival of the vocal art of Dhrupad was evident.  The art of the Rudra Veena was, however, still thinly populated by maestros of the pre-independence generation, who had won acclaim abroad, enjoyed a presence on the domestic scene, but had yet to groom credible heirs. Considering the totality, conditions were appropriate at that time for examining the resilience required of the Dhrupad genre to ensure a durable revival for itself.


Every musical genre incorporates a set of aesthetic assumptions – assumptions about what appeals to audiences. These assumptions determine the unique relationship the genre exhibits between melody, rhythm, and poetry. A genre can be considered resilient if it can find newer audiences constantly/repeatedly/ periodically without jeopardizing its characteristic melody-rhythm-poetry configuration. In essence, as long as the DNA of the genre are intact, a regeneration/ resurrection becomes possible. 


In the Epilogue to the above mentioned volume, the Editors observed that, by then, (end of the 20th century), young Indian vocalists of respectable musicianship had emerged on the Hindustani concert platform, and also begun to accumulate a following amongst audiences cultivated in the Carnatic tradition. Their music appeared to cater to the nostalgia of senior music lovers who had not heard quality Dhrupad for a long time, while also seeming to be more accessible to relatively younger and uninitiated audiences. Despite this, their overall presence on the domestic concert platform was still marginal due to the ample availability of quality musicianship in the rival modern genres.


The situation in Europe, and partially also in the US, was different. Owing to their longer exposure to Dhrupad compared to the modern genres, and to its simpler architecture, trans-culturally sensitive Western audiences had adopted the genre enthusiastically by then. Several Western nationals had, by then, also acquired respectable performing competence in Dhrupad under the guidance of respected Indian Gurus.


These trends created an interesting situation. Indian Dhrupad exponents could, at that stage, shape reputations on the Indian stage, without commensurate financial rewards for their accomplishments. Their livelihoods, however, had begun to be sustained largely by European and American audiences and students. Dhrupad exponents of foreign origin gained a marginal acceptance in the Indian market, but without satisfactory rewards.


Hindustani music has gone through several major transformations over the last two millennia as a result of cross-cultural influences. But, Dhrupad seemed like a unique case of an Indian  genre which was pronounced dead in India, experienced a shaky revival at home, and become popular enough with foreign audiences to become financially dependent on them. Dhrupad, as it appeared to the Editors of the 1999 survey, presented itself as one of the enigmas of cultural anthropology.


Two decades later


I am now revisiting Dhrupad, as a genre, in 2021 -- more than 20 years after the aforesaid survey was published. As expected, the state of the art-form today is different. After all, no matter how we look at it, 20 years is almost an entire generation.


The resilience of the genre is no longer questioned. Its fortunes  no longer seem to dependent predominantly on vocal music. The Rudra Veena, though a late starter, now shares the Dhrupad space respectably. While continuing its penetration of Western audiences, the genre has also acquired a significant presence on the Indian concert platform. Dhrupad is now an international genre featuring Indian as well as foreign-born musicians, addressing Indian as well as foreign-born audiences.


While all this is true of Dhrupad, it is also largely true of Hindustani music in general – including Khayal and Thumree vocalism, and instrumental music not explicitly associated with the Dhrupad genre.


It is perhaps time to examine where Dhrupad stands today in terms of its share-of-mind in relation to the totality of Hindustani music. “Share-of-mind” is a marketing concept, because it is connected to a brand’s share of visibility and, ultimately, to its share of the market for the product. Obviously then, “Share-of-mind” is also a quantitative concept. Unless we have a measure of the universe of the product category in which a brand competes, and can also quantify each brand by the same measure, a relative position cannot be determined for a brand. Is such a quantification possible for Dhrupad as a “brand” and also for the totality of Hindustani music as a “product category”?


I have attempted such a quantification using simple computations, using publicly accessible viewership information on YouTube.


YouTube data as research material


YouTube data is being increasingly used globally for musicological research; but its value is still controversial. I have conducted and published fairly substantive studies using YouTube data, while also detailing and acknowledging the major limitations to their value. In defense of its utility I have argued that YouTube is increasingly becoming the dominant repository of recorded Hindustani music and is progressively becoming “representative” of the universe whose characteristics we are trying to capture. I have also argued that, a scientifically rigorous study would be near-impossible to undertake and finance for a global cultural phenomenon. Considering such impossibility, YouTube data is better than nothing.


I relate this perspective to my experience as a media analyst in the advertising agency business. I started my career in 1969 before even the rudiments of audience research surfaced on the Indian media scene. Marketers still had to sell their goods, and advertising money had to be spent. Waiting for “reliable” data was not an option; some rationally defensible  quantifications had to be made in order to apportion advertising funds tactically between different markets and media. It was necessary to take the view that it is not the quality of the data that would determine the efficiency of your decisions, but how judiciously you analyze and interpret that data for decision-making.


Relying on this reasoning, I have devised a simple “audience measurement” ratio for recordings on YouTube. It is not “perfect” or “scientific” in a rigorously defensible sense. I have therefore decided to call it an “Audience Engagement Factor”. It is not intended to be interpreted literally as a measure, but contextually as an “Order of Magnitude”.


The arithmetic is simple. The videos covered for this study were uploaded at different time 

distances from the date on which we are logging their total viewership. Each video has thus had a different time-span over which to accumulate viewers – or be forgotten or ignored. So, the aggregate viewership of all considered videos has to be adjusted for these differences in order to obtain a standardized measure of audience engagement. The resultant number is computed as “Views per month”. However, it is safest to regard it as an unrefined “Audience Engagement Factor”.


With this framework, it is possible to compute the AEF for the genre in its entirety, for each musician, and/or for each segment of the sample we wish to evaluate. The application of this approach to the subject of the present study provides insights to the subject.


The sample for the study (Refer Table 1 at the end of the study)


For this study, I selected 19 Dhrupad vocalists, and 12 Rudra Veena exponents, whose recordings exist on YouTube. By seniority, the sample of vocalists ranges from Ustad Allahbande Rahimuddin Dagar born in 1900 to Ms. Pelva Naik born in 1986. The sample of Rudra Veena exponents ranges from Ustad Sadiq Ali Khan born in 1893 to Ms. Madhuwanti Mohan, born (approximately) in 1990. The vocal music and Rudra Veena samples need to be analyzed collectively, and also separately because, based on  earlier studies and our knowledge of their respective trajectories, we can expect them to exhibit different patterns.


I have excluded Pakhawaj solo recordings from this study because that segment of music straddles the concert platform as well as religious practice. Several percussionists straddle both segments, while some are active only in one of the two segments. In addition, Pakhawaj solo renditions occasionally feature Tala-s outside the orbit of the Dhrupad genre. The inclusion of Pakhawaj solo recordings in this study would have, therefore, created some dissonance.


We are auditing recordings of musicians born over a period of more than a 100 years, and measuring their ability to engage present-day audiences, as measured in April 2021. So, the known phenomena of aesthetic and technological obsolescence have to be taken into account. We are also looking at a sample which straddles Dhrupad across the stages of decline, revival, and assumed buoyancy.


Considering both these realities, I consider it useful to segment the sample of musicians into three distinct generations, using 30 years as the defining separator. The 30-year separator for generational analysis is supported by the megacycles econometric model of Nikolai Kondratiev and the socio-cultural commentaries of Jose Ortega Y Gassett (Man and Crisis). I have discussed both these theoretical constructs in my earlier writings. The sample of musicians is, therefore, segmented into (i) The survivor generation: born: 1900-1930 (ii) The revivalist generation: born: 1930-1960 (iii) The beneficiary generation: born: 1960-1990.


The unsegmented/ composite AEF for the total sample of 31 Dhrupad musicians (vocalists as well as Rudra Veena exponents) constitutes the primary, though tentative, result of this study. It attempts to address the question: Where does Dhrupad stand today in relation to the totality of Hindustani music in terms of its “Share-of-mind”? But, for a numerically neat answer, I need a comparable yardstick for the Hindustani music universe.


This reference point  is available from a similar AEF study I did to assess the audience-rating of 97 major/ popular/ frequently performed Raga-s across all genres of vocal music (Dhrupad, Khayal, Thumri) and all instruments including Rudra Veena. The study covered every recording of a significant musician available on YouTube in April 2020. The results of the study are published under the “Ragascape Studies” title on my blog: The study covered over 18000 recordings. The results of the study provide the benchmark against which Dhrupad’s “Share-of-mind” can be assessed.


Dhrupad’s “Share-of-mind” (Refer Table 2)


The overall Audience Engagement Factor for Dhrupad as a genre amongst contemporary YouTube audiences for Hindustani music suggests a share of about 35%. This is creditable considering that, just two generations ago, the genre could have interested archeologists more than musicians or musicologists. Unfortunately, the country-wise dispersion of audiences is not available publicly on YouTube. Considering the history of the genre, and the fact that foreign Dhrupad enthusiasts have fewer opportunities to hear live concerts, the international viewership of available online recordings could be a substantial component of this number. 

These numbers have, however, to be interpreted as indicative rather than authoritative -- as crude estimates -- because they are derived from the results of two different studies and could therefore suffer from inestimable infirmities. We may accept that, even if the reality they attempt to measure is close to 25% (and not 35%), the magnitude would be considered creditable. I am not considering the possibility of 35% being an underestimate. 


The segment results indicate that the Rudra Veena may claim a higher share (44%) of the instrumental music space in Hindustani music than Dhrupad vocalism appears to claim (37%) in the vocal music space. Here too, the reality may differ substantially from the indication available from the numbers. However, instrumental Dhrupad music claiming a higher share than vocal music is perhaps realistic because that happens to be the general pattern in the totality of audience engagement  in Hindustani music. 

 The Obsolescence Factor (Refer Graph 3)


In my earlier studies of Hindustani music using YouTube viewership data, I have found that recordings of recent music systematically and consistently exhibit higher AEF ratings compared to recordings of older music. The obsolescence factor is easily understood, both, in its aesthetic and technological, dimensions.


Music is a dynamic and evolving art-form responding constantly to audience tastes. Living and recent musicians produce music that relates more effortlessly to contemporary audiences than those of the past and those who have departed. Living musicians have the additional advantage of visibility through various media. Secondly, developments in recording technology have enabled each generation of musicians to produce recordings increasingly pleasant to the ear, and acoustically more acceptable to contemporary audiences. The existence of the obsolescence phenomenon has been demonstrated in several of my earlier studies.


Since this essay concerns itself with Dhrupad as a genre, the antiquity/ recency of the music is considered in its entirety – encompassing both, the vocal as well as the Rudra Veena manifestations, of the art. The calibration of the recordings is done in relation to the year of the musician’s birth.

I do not propose to reveal the individual Audience Engagement Factors computed for each musician by name because (i) such information can be misinterpreted or misused and (ii) rating individual musicians is not the purpose of this study.


The plot of Audience Engagement Factors of the sample musicians against their years of birth

suggests a very low correlation. The co-efficient of correlation is a meagre 0.311, with a negligible R-square of 0.096. This inference has several implications:


Since there is no real escape from technological obsolescence, the real growth in Audience Engagement is attributable primarily to the evolution of the art through the generations. And, since this rate itself looks modest, it appears to suggest a sluggish rate of evolution for the art itself.


The linear time-series graph, however, shows a buoyancy factor in the few ratings above the near-flat trend line. It suggests that Dhrupad’s present share-of-mind is supported by outstanding musicianship identified by only five high points out of the 31 plotted on the graph. The more general indication is that the genre itself does not benefit visibly from the contribution of the Beneficiary generation.

The picture does not improve substantially if we test the obsolescence factor as an exponential function of recency/ antiquity on the time scale. The graph plots the Natural Log of AEF ratings against the year of birth. (Refer Graph 3B). 

The coefficient of correlation improves notionally to 0.35 and the R-square measure rises to 0.12. The only difference we notice between the two graphs is that the log-linear AEF ratings are more evenly distributed on the two sides of the trend line. 

It is observed that very few of the data points above the trend line belong to the Beneficiary generation. It appears that the vast majority of the influentials in the Dhrupad world, even today, are musicians of the earlier generations. The implication of the log-linear function is, therefore, not particularly complimentary to the Beneficiary generation in terms of keeping alive the Dhrupad genre and relating it meaningfully to its own generation of audiences.  

It appears reasonable to suggest that contemporary Dhrupad exponents – whether vocalists or instrumentalists – cannot expect to ride the crest of a Dhrupad revival which itself does not look particularly strong. 


The obsolescence dimension is better understood by scrutinizing the generational analysis of Audience Engagement Factors.


The Generational Factor (Refer Table 4)


In the vocal as well as instrumental music segments, the generational analysis shows that contemporary interest in the music of the Survivor generation is negligible. This is to be expected because (i) very few contemporary music lovers would be aware of the important musicians of that generation (ii) the recordings of that era are unsatisfying in comparison with  modern recordings and (iii) archives of that era are almost all in the audio format, which engages audiences less than the video format. The small visible viewership of these vintage recordings could probably be limited to serious students of Dhrupad music or to a  geriatric  generation of present-day listeners. Our attention may therefore focus on the audience ratings of the Revivalist and Beneficiary generations.  


In the vocal segment of Dhrupad, the audience ratings of the Revivalist generation and the Beneficiary generation are almost on par. This suggests that this segment has attracted quality talent, and the transmission of the art has taken place. However, one must be reminded that, in a vibrant art-form, a degree of obsolescence is desirable and expected, but is found missing in the present study. 

The stagnation of audience engagement between the Revivalist generation and the Beneficiary generation here is not an optimistic sign. The numbers suggest that there is no substantial difference between the music of the Beneficiary generation (as a group) and that of its predecessor generation. Another way of looking at the results could be that emerging Dhrupad vocalists are, by and large, performing music relevant to their parents' generation --a lot of which is still alive -- more than their own. Exceptional musicianship does, however, appear to achieve contemporary relevance, as it will tend to do in any genre. 


A confident musicianship was evident in the interview I did with the Dhrupad vocalist, Ramakant Gundecha (Interviewed on September 2, 1998):


“I do not subscribe to the theory that the shortage of competent Dhrupad performers or its novelty for a majority of the audiences can explain what we have been able to achieve. Nobody invites a poor musician to perform, no matter how rare his style of singing is. Audiences do not come specifically to hear Khayal or Dhrupad. They come to hear classical music. You either qualify as a classical musician, or you don’t. This is as true for us it was for the pioneers of the Dhrupad revival in modern times – Ustad Nasir Aminuddin and Nasir Moinuddin Dagar, better known as the Senior Dagar Brothers.” (Journal of the Indian Musicological Society, 1999).


The situation in the Rudra Veena segment appears less reassuring. There is a significant drop of 38% in audience ratings from the Revivalist generation to the Beneficiary generation. This suggests an inability to attract quality talent, an inadequate transmission of the art, and  a stagnation -- perhaps even a regression -- of the musical product.


This broad inference can be refined by looking at the audience ratings of the vocal and instrumental manifestations of Dhrupad across the major gharana-s (stylistic lineages).


Stylistic Lineages (Refer Table 5)


The vocal tradition of Dhrupad features two main stylistic lineages. (i) The Dagar lineage which practices the Dagur Bani style, (ii) The Darbhanga/ Bettiyah lineages which practice the Khandar Bani style. The Rudra Veena has been represented, in recent years, by practitioners of the Dagar lineage and several other lineages, including the renowned Jaipur Beenkar lineage.


In the Rudra Veena segment, the Audience Engagement Factor of musicians of the Dagar 

tradition are ahead of the others by 30%. In the vocal music segment, Dagar musicians lead the Darbhanga/ Bettiya group by over 250%. These magnitudes, established over three generations of musicians, suggest that the Dagar lineage has been more successful than the others in attracting quality talent, and more serious about the transmission of their art.


The strength of the Dagar lineage may be supported by the evidence that, over three generations, its vocalists and Rudra Veena exponents have acquired and matured a substantially larger repertoire of Raga-s than its rival styles. (Refer Table 6)


This table suggests the need to explore farther the relationship between the Raga repertoires of musicians and their Audience Engagement Factors, as measured.


AEFs and Raga Repertoires (Refer Table 7)


In the vocal music segment, the Beneficiary generation appears to be collectively performing a

fewer numbers of Raga-s than its predecessor generation, but maintaining its Audience Engagement Factor on par despite the smaller repertoire. This phenomenon suggests the contribution of musicianship, and the delivery of an esthetically relevant musical product for contemporary audiences.


The comparable figures for Rudra Veena exponents of the two generations show a different picture. The Beneficiary generation appears to be performing a much larger number of Raga-s than the earlier generation has done, but reports a much lower Audience Engagement Factor. It appears that contemporary audiences continue to gravitate to the recorded music of an earlier generation for music that satisfies. This suggests an emerging musicianship deficit, and the relative inability of  the Beneficiary generation to engage constructively with contemporary audiences.


To be fair, serious musicians of the Beneficiary generation have given considerable thought to the modernization of the Rudra Veena idiom. In an interview with me on November 9, 2002, the Rudra Veena maestro, Bahauddin Dagar told me:


In the rendition of the Pada and the tar-parans, the Veena does have a small problem because of unidirectional strokes. I pluck with my bare fingers; but even if I wore a mizrab (wire plectrum) as other Veena players do, I will not get the clear separation between the composition and the improvisations as effectively as the sitarist achieves with bi-directional strokes. I have tried playing Masit Khani (Sitar/ Sarod) compositions; it does not work. Also, the stroke density is too high for the Veena. Our instrument is meant for delivering the maximum musical value with the minimum number of strokes.” (Commentary on a CD recorded for India Archive Music, New York)

From these indications, it appears that the vocal manifestation of the Dhrupad genre could be more amenable to modernization than its instrumental facet.

In support of this perspective, I quote here from an interview I did with the Dhrupad vocalist, Uday Bhawalkar on October 2, 1998:


After my performances, people often tell me that my music sounds different from that of my Ustads. Our training has given us the basic equipment, and allowed our individuality and creativity to express itself. In the Dhrupad tradition, this may be happening for the first time; and it is necessary.” (Journal of the Indian Musicological Society, 1999).


Musicianship, as a comprehensive grip on all facets of a genre, is a universal issue affecting all genres of music at any stage of evolution. Individuality and creativity, shaping the evolutionary path of a genre are, as Uday Bhawalkar points out, especially important for a genre like Dhrupad that has apparently resisted change for centuries. In the totality that we call musicianship, Dhrupad practitioners may need to consider issues related to the responsiveness of audiences to the Raga spectrum they collectively present. This subject has been briefly discussed above, but deserves detailed scrutiny.


Raga Repertoire and Audience Engagement (Refer Table 8)


For this study, I have audited 712 Dhrupad recordings covering 103 Raga-s performed by 31 selected musicians.  I computed the Audience Engagement Factor for each Raga across all musicians and recordings. For each Raga, I also counted the number of times each Raga appeared in the sample of recordings. This gave me two different rankings of the 103 Raga-s – one based on the AEF and one based on the frequency of occurrence in a recording.


I decided to compare the top-20 Raga-s on each of these rankings to examine the relationship between the two. The comparison is shown in Table 8.

 The indication available from this juxtaposition is that the Raga-s most frequently performed by Dhrupad musicians do not enjoy the commensurate Audience Engagement Factor. Let us now consider this finding in greater detail.


Yaman is number 1 on the frequency list, but comes at number 5 on the AEF ranking. Bhairavi is number 2 on the frequency ranking, but does not feature anywhere in the top-20 ranking on the AEF. Malkauns is number 3 on the frequency table, but features nowhere on the AEF list of top-20. Miya-ki-Todi is fourth on the frequency listing, but, again, features nowhere on the AEF ranking. Chandrakauns is at number 5 on the frequency table, but once again, does not feature on the top-20 AEF listing.


Now let us look at the issue from the opposite angle. Purvi ranks first on AEF, but does not feature on the frequency listing. Bhairav features number 2 on the AEF ranking, but does not feature on the frequency listing. Shankara ranks number 3 on the AEF listing, but does not feature on the frequency listing. Pancham Kosh ranks 4th on the AEF ranking, but does not feature on the frequency listing.

In plain English, collectively Dhrupad exponents are performing, ad nauseum, Raga-s which their audiences have heard many times, and are now of little interest to them. In the process, they appear to be neglecting the Raga-s not heard often -- or not at all-- and in hearing which there can be considerably higher interest.


What does this suggest? This suggests that a kind of Raga-fatigue may have set in with respect to Raga-s performed very frequently – within the Dhrupad world and even outside of it --  and audiences could be receptive to a greater variety of melodic experience in Dhrupad than they appear currently to be getting.


This situation suggests two possibilities: (i) Their grooming in the art is deficient or (ii) they have adopted a restricted concert repertoire as a conscious strategy. Neither of these possibilities requires any comment. On available evidence, the repertoire does appear to be an issue. But, the larger issue appears to be musicianship. 

A vast Raga repertoire is, admittedly, not an essential component of musicianship. With specific reference to Dhrupad, however, the evidence presented here  suggests that it is positively correlated with higher levels of audience engagement. There is perhaps some logic behind this indication. When a dormant musical genre is attempting to regain its presence on the music-scape, a larger repertoire helps to accumulate and retain audiences.

An interesting reference point for this argument is the emergence of instrumental music – initially Sitar and Sarod – as a challenger to the supremacy of vocal music during the 1940s. The challenge was, of course, facilitated by the arrival of amplification which enabled instruments to reach larger audiences with more refined melody. But, even the musicianship of Pt. Ravi Shankar, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, Pt. Nikhil Bannerjee required their ample armory of Raga-s to create a large following. Over the next 50 years, as the markets and the acoustic environment evolved, the vastness of repertoire ceased to matter, and musicianship became the prime driver of popularity and stature in both, instrumental and vocal, music. 

More recently, some of the biggest names in Hindustani music, like Pt. Bhimsen Joshi and Ustad Vilayat Khan, could build formidable careers performing just about 12-15 Raga-s throughout their entire careers. This precedent is interesting, because (i) the context is entirely different, (ii) Dhrupad in its revivalist phase is affected by the collective conduct of all its exponents as much as by individual factors (iii) the luminaries I mention were not reviving a genre threatened with extinction and, finally (iv) they were musicians of a caliber born once in a hundred years. Raga-fatigue/ repertoire enhancement seems like a significant issue for the Dhrupad world, perhaps manageable  only through the cultivation of outstanding musicianship.


The most important indication from this study may be that Audience Engagement is stagnant in the vocal music segment, and shrinking in the Rudra Veena segment. At this stage of its evolution, the Dhrupad revival could be floundering in some important respects -- primarily, a musicianship deficit.

In the present context, the deficit points towards a few possibilities which may be particularly relevant. Firstly, the shortage of great Guru-s has worsened dramatically in the last few decades. Secondly, the yardstick of musicianship may have weakened because the number of practitioners is still not large enough to engender a degree of competition amongst them. And, finally, the average discernment profile of Dhrupad audiences could have been diluted by a faster growth of the Dhrupad constituency outside India than within India.


Precisely these concerns may have prompted Uday Bhawalkar to make the following observation. (Interviewed by me on October 2, 1998).


“It is true that … Dhrupad is emerging is emerging as an attractive novelty for a large number of music lovers. However, making any kind of career in classical music is not a bed of roses, and Dhrupad is not a guarantee of a comfortable life”. (Journal of the Indian Musicological Society, 1999).


 (c) Deepak S. Raja. April 2021