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Online radio plays concerts of Carnatic music stalwarts
Carnatic music archivist Yessel Narasimhan is famous among rasikas for organising mottamadi kucheris that included guided listening sessions.
Since all social gatherings are cancelled, he decided to launch an online radio that plays exclusive concerts of past masters. Anyone from India, US and UK can listen to concerts 24/7 at the newly launched radio platform called Arangam Online. “I have been mulling the idea of online radio for a few years. I have a huge collection of music recordings from the 80s, 90s and was thinking about how it can be made useful for the next generation.
We are not sure when our next get-together will happen. So, I thought the best way to connect with rasikas and keep them engaged would be via a digital platform. This thought inspired me to start an online radio called Arangam Online,” says Yessel.
He tells us that the concert collection comes from several years of passion and hard work. “Since I have experience of recording concerts, I can assure the quality of the recorded music. A listener will not feel like he/she is listening to some normal music. I have cataloged all the tracks — details of each piece along with the name of the singer, raga, etc, will be on display. Even those who are not a regular listener of Carnatic music can learn ragas through this. Another aspect of this online radio is that we will be only playing concerts of musical stalwarts like BV Raman & Lakshmanan, Srirangam Gopalaratnam, Dwaram Venkataswamy Naidu, Karaikudi Shri Sambasiva Iyer and so on. We don’t reveal the name of the musicians who will be playing the next day, so there will be an element of surprise,” he says.
Within a few days after the launch, Yessel received a good response for the community-driven radio. “The reach of Carnatic music is huge and it is evident from the number of e-mails I receive daily. We even have listeners from smaller neighbourhoods in the US and UK,” he smiles.