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Jaipur Atrauli gharana

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Jaipur-Atrauli gharana

The Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana (also known as the Jaipur Gharana, Atrauli-Jaipur Gharana, and Alladiyakhani Gharana) is a Khayal-based stylized singing family-hood (gharana), founded by Utd. Alladiya Khan (1855–1946) in the late 19th century. His family belonged to Atrauli near Aligarh, and subsequently migrated to Jaipur, giving the gharana its name.


Evolved from Dhrupad singing, the Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana acquired its name and status as a Gharana in the early half of the 20th century as a result of the growing popularity of stalwarts of this Gharana, like Ustad Azmat Hussain Khan, Smt. Kesarbai Kerkar, Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar and Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur. The founder of this gharana, Utd. Alladiya Khan initially developed the unique Gayaki of this Gharana following the loss of his voice which prompted him to develop singing style which despite being innovative had its firm root in traditional 'Bani' of his Gharana .

The gharana is known for its unique laykari and rich repertoire of ragas, especially Jod-Raags and Sankeerna Raags. Signature and specialty Raags of this Gharana (some revived or created by Utd. Alladiya Khan) include Sampoorna Malkauns, Basanti Kedar, Basant Bahar, Bihagda, Kaushi Kanada, Khat, Gandhari and Nat Kamod among many others.


Four major Gharanas are recognised in Hindustani Classical Khayal music: Gwalior, Agra, Kirana, and Jaipur-Atrauli. Others are less pervasive, but no less enchanting, such as Indore, Rampur, Mewati, Patiala, and Bhendi-Bazar.

The Jaipur-Atrauli gharana acquired its name and status as a Gharana from the time of Alladiya Khan in the early half of the 20th century. This Gharana mainly evolved from Dagar-bani of Dhrupad, however it also absorbed finer essence of Gauhar-bani and Khandar-bani.

Gharana ancestry

The ancestral origin of the Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana was said to be from Nath Vishwambhar, noted for setting to Raags the tunes of the shlokas in his puja. The great musician composer Swami Haridas was also born in this family and the great Tansen and Baiju were his pupils.

Religious ancestry

Natthu Khan and Mantol Khan were two stalwarts of this Gharana, four to five generations down the line. They imbibed the practices of both Hindu and Muslim traditions. Alladiya Khan, for instance, wore the Janva (sacred Hindu thread) all his life, dressed like a Maharashtrian, complete with the Kolhapuri turban, yet did not skip a day of his Namaaz (Muslim prayer). His compositions praise Mahadev (Shiva) and Allah with equal fervor.

Many of the Raags and compositions sung in the Jaipur gharana come from the tradition of Haveli Sangeet, like the compositions "Deva Deva Satsang" in Raag Savani Kalyan, "Aadidata Ant" in Raag Malkauns, "Anahat Aadi Naad" in Raag Savani Nat, "Devta Aadi Sab" in Raag Kukubh Bilawal, "Devi Durge" in Raag Sukhiya Bilawal, and a host of others in which Hindu devotional themes were used by Utd. Alladiya Khan.


Scholars say the hyphenated moniker of this Gharana recognises that Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana musicians originally came from Atrauli Village in Aligarh district and migrated to the court of the Maharaja of Jaipur, their principal patron.

Others say they came to the Jaipur Maharaja's court and then dispersed to various other courts in the area, like Jodhpur, Uniyara, Bundi, Atrauli etc. After establishing himself in the north, Utd. Alladiya Khan migrated to the court of Shahu Maharaj in Kolhapur and became his court musician.


Utd. Ghulam Ahmad "Alladiya" Khan was initiated into music by his father, Khwaja Ahmad Khan and his uncle, Jehangir Khan in both the Dhrupad and Khayal styles. He also had the privilege of being guided by two famous composers of the time, Ramzan Khan "Rangeele" and Mehboob Khan "Darasapiya". The young Alladiya Khan was closely associated with Behram Khan Dagar at Udaipur and Jaipur Wazir Khan "binkar" at Indore and Bombay. Today, mainly the Khayal tradition remains. He was known to have been greatly influenced by Utd. Mubarak Khan's style of Taans to some extent.

Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana Gayaki (style and trends)

Most gharanas apply notes in simple succession in aalap and taan, whereas in the Jaipur gayaki, notes are applied in an oblique manner with filigree involving immediately neighbouring notes. Instead of the flat taan, gamak (taan sung with double notes with a delicate force behind each of the component double-notes of the taan) makes the taan spiral into seemingly never-ending cycles. Meend in aalap and gamak in taan are the hallmark of this gayaki. To his immense credit, the great exponent of Kirana gharana, Bhimsen Joshi is one of the very few singers outside the Jaipur gharana, who tried to adopt the gamak taan to some extent, but he has not quite achieved the intricacy and grace of gamak that is the signature of Jaipur. Sharp edged harkats and murkis (crisp, quick phrases to ornament the alaap) are relatively uncommon. Not only are the notes sung in rhythm with the taal but progress between the matras (beats) is in fractions of quarters and one-eighths. While being mindful of so many factors, musicians of this gharana still have a graceful way of arriving at the Sam without having matras to spare! This is particularly evident in the way bol-alaap or bol-taan is sung, where meticulous attention is given to the short and long vowels in the words of the bandish that are being pronounced, and the strict discipline of avoiding unnatural breaks in the words and in the meaning of the lyrics. No other gharana has paid so much attention to the aesthetics and laykaari in singing bol-alaaps and bol-taans.

Specialty and Jod Raags

A highlight of Jaipur gayaki is the mastery over Jod Raags (mixed or hybrid Raags; a blend of multiple Raags that form one Raag). Singers from other Gharanas tend to sing one Raag in Aaroh (ascent) and the other in Avaroh (descent). Some others sing one Raag in the lower half of the octave and then switch to the other Raag in the upper half. Alternatively, they may sing alternate phrases of the two component Raags. In Jaipur Gayaki, there is such perfect fusion of the two raags that it sounds like a homogeneous Raag in its own right, giving the feel of both component raags, not as a heterogeneous mixture cobbled together. The listener hears an amalgam of both raags without losing their distinctive identity. Alladiya Khan introduced many lesser-known or obscure raags in his repertoire like Raag Basanti Kedar, Raag Jait Kalyan, Raag Kafi Kanada, Raisa Kanada, Raag Basanti Kanada, Raag Savani Nat, Raag Savani Kalyan, Raag Bhoop Nat, Raag Nat Kamod, Raag Bihari, Raag Khat, Raag Khokar, Raag Sampoorna Malkauns, and many others. Trying to imbibe all these characteristics without losing the aesthetics is a tall order for any musician. Hence this Gayaki is called a thinking listener's or connoisseur's Gayaki. However, it gives equal pleasure to the uninitiated listener who may not understand the technical intricacies, but responds to the layakari and the melodic content of the presentation.

Gharana purity

Scholars feel the purity of the Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana can be traced from Utd. Alladiya Khan to his brother Utd. Haider Ali Khan, to his sons Utd. Manji Khan and Utd. Bhurji Khan and his grandson Ut Azizuddin Khan, Gaan Yogini Dhondutai Kulkarni the only purist outside of the Utd. Alladiya Khan family.

Exponents of the Gharana

  • Utd. Ghulam Ahmad "Alladiya" Khan (1855–1946), Gharana founder; learned from uncle Utd. Jehangir Khan.
  • Utd. Haider Ali Khan (Brother of Alladiya Khan)
  • Utd. Natthan Khan (Nephew of Alladiya Khan)
  • Utd. Azizuddin Khan (Grandson of Alladiya Khan) Learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan for almost 25 years. He also learned from Utd. Haider Khan, Utd. Bhurji Khan, Utd. Natthan Khan ( of Jaipur Gharana) and Badeji (Utd. Nasiruddin Khan)
  • Pt. Bhaskarbuwa Bakhale (1869–1922), learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan and Utd. Natthan Khan.
  • Utd. Badruddin "Manji" Khan (1888–1937), second son of Utd. Alladiya Khan. Learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan.
  • Utd. Shamsuddin "Bhurji" Khan (1890–1956), third son of Utd. Alladiya Khan. Learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan.
  • Utd. Nasiruddin "Badeji" Khan (1886–1950), first son of Utd. Alladiya Khan. Initially learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan but a respiratory injury, from playing Cricket, damaged his vocal approach, with his father refusing to teach him, later continuing his tutelage from his uncle Utd. Haider Khan and cousin Utd. Natthan Khan.
  • Utd. Gulubhai Jasdanwalla, learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan, whose statue he helped erect in Kolhapur.
  • Pt. Govindrao Tembe (1881–1955), Was privileged to be in company of Utd. Alladiya Khan. He revolutionised Harmonium playing.
  • Gajananrao Joshi learned from Ut Bhurji Khan.
  • Pt. Shankarrao Sarnaik learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan.
  • Smt. "Surashree" Kesarbai Kerkar (1892–1977), learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan
  • Smt. "Gaana-Tapasvini" Mogubai Kurdikar (1904–2001), learned from Utd. Alladiya Khan and Utd. Haider Ali Khan.
  • Smt. Laxmibai Jadhav (1901-c1979) learned from Utd. Haider Ali Khan.
  • Smt. "Gana-Yogini" Dhondutai Kulkarni (1927–2014), learned from Utd. Natthan Khan, Utd. Manji Khan, Utd. Bhurji Khan, Smt. Laxmibai Jadhav, Ut. Azizuddin Khan saheb and is the sole disciple of Smt. Kesarbai Kerkar.
  • Pt. Wamanrao Sadolikar (1907–1986) learned from Utd. Bhurji Khan and had privilege to attend many of Talims given by Utd. Alladiya Khan to his disciples.
  • Wamanrao Deshpande (1907–1990), learned from Utd. Natthan Khan and Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar.
  • Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur (1910–1992), learned from Utd. Manji Khan and Utd. Bhurji Khan and later from Utd, Azizuddin Khan.
  • Pt. Madhusudan Kanetkar (1916 - 2007), learned from Utd. Bhurji Khan saheb. Pt. Kanetkar also came under the spell of Gulubhai Jasdanwala and other stalwarts like Master Krishnarao, Pt Gajananbuwa Joshi, Bal Gandharva, Begum Akhtar and many others.
  • Smt. "Gaana-Saraswati" Kishori Amonkar (born 1931), daughter and disciple of "Gaana-Tapasvini" Mogubai Kurdikar, Utd Anwar Hussien Khan of Agra Gharana, Anjanibai Malpekar of Bhindi-Bazar Gharana.
  • Pt. Mohanrao Palekar learned from Utd. Bhurji Khan.
  • Pt. Nivruttibuwa Sarnaik (1912–1994), learned from his uncle Pt. Shankarrao Sarnaik, and Utd. Rajab Ali Khan. He was in the company of Utd. Alladiya Khan for almost an year.
  • Pt. Ganesh T. Tilak (1917–1969), founded the Tilak Sangeet Vidyalaya in Dadar, Mumbai, was popularly known as "Tilak Master," was a disciple of Pt. Mohanrao Palekar.
  • Smt. Padmavati Shaligram-Gokhale (1918–2014), learned from her uncle Pt. Govindbuwa Shaligram.
  • Smt. Sardarbai Karadgekar learned from Utd. Natthan Khan and Pt. Nivruttibua Sarnaik.
  • Smt. Kausalya Manjeshwar (1922–2008), learned from Pt. Gajananrao Joshi and Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar.
  • Khan Bandhu (Utd. Mohd. Rashid Khan and Utd. Mohd. Sayeed Khan), learned from their father Utd. Abdul Majid Khan, Sarangiya of Surashri Kesarbai Kerkar.
  • Pt. Anandrao "Limayebuwa" (1924–1993) Learnt from Pt. Govindbuwa Shaligram and later from Ustad Azizuddin Khan.
  • Pt. Ratnakar Pai (1926–2009), learned from Utd. Gulubhai Jasdanwalla and Pt. Mohanrao Palekar.
  • Pt. Panchakshari Swami Mattigatti (born 1930) learned from Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur and Pt. Nivruttibua Sarnaik.
  • Pt. Rajshekhar Mansur (born 1942), learned from father Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur.
  • Smt. Neela Kodli, learned from father Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur.
  • Umesh Munavalli (born 1973), learned from Pt. Panchakshari Swami Mattigatti. Dharwad.
  • Dr.Mritunjaya Agadi learned from Pt. Panchakshari Swami Mattigatti. Dharwad.
  • Smt. Kamal Tambe, learned from Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar.
  • Smt. Manik Bhide (born 1938), learned from Smt. Kishori Amonkar and Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar.
  • Pt. Shivu Taralagatti (Sitar Player), learned from Pt. Mallikarjun Mansur.
  • Dr. Arun Dravid (born 1946) learned from Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar and Smt. Kishori Amonkar.
  • Smt. Padma Talwalkar (born 1948), learned from Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar and Pt. Gajananrao Joshi.
  • Vinayak Phatak (born 1951), learned from Pt. Ratnakar Pai.
  • Pt. Bhalchandra G. Tilak (born 1950), son of Pt. Ganesh T. Tilak ("Tilak Master"), disciple of Pt. Ratnakar Pai.
  • Smt. Shruti Sadolikar-Katkar (born 1951), learned from father Pt. Wamanrao Sadolikar, Baba Azizuddin Khan and later Utd. Gulubhai Jasdanwalla.
  • Dr. Bharati Vaishampayan (born 1954), learned from Pt. Nivruttibua Sarnaik
  • Vinayak Phatak (born 1951), learned from Pt. Nivruttibua Sarnaik
  • Smt. Ashwini Bhide-Deshpande (born 1960), learned from mother Smt. Manik Bhide and later on from Pt. Ratnakar Pai.
  • Dr. Milind Malshe (born 1956), learned from Pt. Ratnakar Pai and Dr. Ashok Ranade
  • Smt. Kumudini Katdare (born 1945) learned from Kamaltai Tambe, Kausalya Manjeshwar, Pt. Madhusudan Kanetkar and occasionally from Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar
  • Smt. Vijaya Jadhav Gatlewar (born 1955) learned from Pt. Nivruttibuwa Sarnaik.
  • Shri. Raghunandan Panshikar (born 1963) learned from Smt. Kishori Amonkar and Smt. Mogubai Kurdikar.
  • Smt. Chandrika Murali Kamath(born 1964) learned from Pt. Rajshekhar Mansur
  • Smt. Manjiri Karve-Alegaonkar (born 1965), learned from Pt. Wamanrao Deshpande, Dr. Babanrao Haldankar, and Pt. Madhusudhan Kanetkar.
  • Smt. Manjiri Asnare-Kelkar (born 1971), learned from Pt. Madhusudan Kanetkar and Utd. Gulubhai Jasdanwalla.
  • Shri. Sanjay Dixit (born 1960), learned from Pt. Madhusudan Kanetkar, Pt. Bhaskarbua Shaligram, and Smt. Dhondutai Kulkarni.
  • Smt. Manjiri Vaishampayan (born 1962), learned from Pta. Dhondutai Kulkarni.
  • Kum. Rutuja Lad (born 1992), learned from Pta. Dhondutai Kulkarni and Pta. Ashwini Bhide.
  • References

    Jaipur-Atrauli gharana Wikipedia

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