• Raag Mohankauns •


As recounted in The Hindu, Mohankauns “was spontaneously created by Ravi Shankar in 1949. On hearing of [Mohandas K.] Gandhi’s death, Pandit-ji was asked by All India Radio to play a piece dedicated to the Mahatma. On the spot, he created a variation of…Malkauns”. As well as the occasional use of shuddha Re, his new raga adds a shuddha Ga in aroha, bringing special prominence to a ‘Ga-Ni-Dhacatchphrase: chosen by Shankar to spell out the Mahatma’s surname [here‘s the sloppily-distilled motif on own sitar, also audible in Shankar’s take below at 1:56, 12:57, 18:58, etc: and see my Alphamelodics: the hidden sounds of words article for more!]. Also recorded by Zia Mohiuddin Dagar on the rudra veena, as well as Nazakat & Salamat Ali Khan‘s spellbinding vocal duet.

Raga Megalist (365+) •
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Hindustani Raga Index •


—Ravi Shankar (1981)—

[refrain, e.g. 18:44] G GGm, n (n)d d, (dm)G Gm, G(R)Gm, m m(d) G m S, (n)d dd, (dS)n nnS S, (m)GGm, (m)G n d(nd), (dm)G, GGm, G(R)Gm, m…


• Classifiers •

Explore hidden inter-raga connections: swara geometries, melodic features, murchana sets, ragangas, & more (also see the Full Tag List):

Swaras: -4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10+

Sapta: Audav | Shadav | Sampurna

Poorvang: SRGM | SRG | SRM | SGM

Uttarang: PDNS | PDS | PNS | DNS

Varjit: Re | Ga | Ma | Pa | Dha | Ni

Double: rR | gG | mM | dD | nN

Thaat: 10 | 32Enclosed | Inexact

Chal: All-shuddha | All-komal | Ma-tivra

Gaps: Anh. | Hemi. | 3-row | 4-row | 5-row

Symmetries: Mirror | Rotation | Palindr.

Aroha: Audav | Shadav | Sampurna

Avroh: Audav | Shadav | Sampurna

Jati: Equal | Balanced | Av.+1 | Av.+2

Samay: Morning | Aftern. | Eve. | Night

Murchana: Bhup. | Bihag | Bilaw. | Charu.

Raganga: Bhairav | Malhar | Kan. | Todi

Construction: Jod | Mishra | Oddball

Origin: Ancient | Carnatic | Modern

Dominance: Poorvang | Uttarang

Prevalence: A-list | Prachalit | Aprach.


–Swara Geometries–

Core form: S-gG-m-d-n-S
Reverse: SRGPdDS (=none)
Inverse: Ni; SRgPdnS (=none)
Imperfect: 2 (Sa, Ga)
Detached: 1 (Ga)
Symmetries: mirror (G—n)
Murchanas: Hemshri set


–Global Translations–

Carnatic: ~Ragavardhini
Jazz: Epogimic
Pitch classes (‘fret-jumps’):

o • • o o o • • o • o • o


• Tanpura: Sa–ma (+dha)
• Names: Mohankauns, Mohan Kauns


—Nazakat & Salamat Ali Khan (1978)—




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Hindustani Raga Index

An open-ended project seeking to bring North Indian raga closer to all who approach with open ears. Combines direct input from dozens of leading Hindustani artists with in-depth insights from music history, global theory, performance practice, cognitive science, and much more! [out 2023]

Megalist (365+ ragas)
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Tags: Classifying the ragascape •
Glossary: Raga jargon demystified
Ragatable: Analytical connections •
Thaat: Bhatkhande’s base scales •
Murchanas: Swara-set rotations •
Quotes: Musings from raga artists •
Tanpuras: Divine overtonal drones •
Talas: Hindustani rhythm cycles •
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George Howlett is a London-based musician, writer, and teacher (guitars, sitar, tabla, & santoor). Above all I seek to enthuse fellow sonic searchers, interconnecting fresh vibrations with the voices, cultures, and passions behind them. See Homepage for more, and hit me up for Lessons!

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