Hameer Kalyani

The scales of Raga Hameer (or Hamir) Kalyani are as follows :

Aarohanam (Ascending) :  S P M2 P D2 N3 S’
Avarohanam (Descending) : S’ N3 D2 P M2 M1 G3 P M1 R2 S

It is a Janya raga, derived from Mecha Kalyani which is 65th on the Melakarta Scale (see below).

65 Kalyani

This is an import from Hindustani Music but has become an integral part of Carnatic Music now. An elegant raga, it has a weave and flow built into it which, I think, makes it very pleasing indeed. It can be sung to show a sense of supplication; it can also convey a sense of gentleness and peace. There are some beautiful compisition in this raga, such as the Venkata Shaila by Subbaraya Shastri, Manamu Leda by Tyagaraja, Parimala Ranganatham by Muthuswami Dikshithar and Gangeya Vasana by Swathi Thirunal.   But the first song I always remember is Thoomani Madathu, the Thiruppavai song set to Hameer Kalyani by the great Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar.

Tamil speakers may enjoy this excellent episode on Hamir Kalyani by Charulata Mani.

Note : The 12 notes in the octave are named as below. Please note that C is used as Sa for the sake of simplicity as the scale is relative in Carnatic Music. Also note that the scales paint only a superficial picture of the raga as the gamakas(ornamentations) and prayogas (signature phrases) are a very important part of a raga.


4 responses to “Hameer Kalyani

  1. Ram Kaushik

    Nice writeup as always, Suja! I feel this raga (like others) has morphed when it crossed the Vindhyas. Modern day Carnatic Hamir Kalyani seems to traverse into many other Hindustani ragas like Shuddh-Sarang. Quite likely that Hindustani maestros shudder when they listen to a Carnatic version! The TNSeshagopalan thillana is a really fascinating interpretation of this raga. You have to listen to the original, but meanwhile here’s a poor copy – hope you enjoy it.

    • Thank you, glad you liked it 🙂 You are absolutely right, this raga, like many other Hindustani imports, has morphed a lot since it came South. My knowledge of Hindustani music is very limited still sometimes I am taken aback when I listen to some so called common Ragas, they seem almost unrecognizable! Hmmm…I’m not sure I like this thillana composition so much, I do have preconceived notions on how Hameer Kalyani should be served up to me! That said, I enjoyed your rendition and also took the opportunity to listen to TNS yet again http://mio.to/yS8v

  2. Pichu Ravi

    I love this ragam and the krithi “Vengaada..” on Ezhumalaiaan..

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