The epic of Pābūjī: audio extracts

This collection of extracts from my collection of audio recordings of the epic of Pābūjī contains the same material that was included on the cassette tape mentioned at the end of the preface to the first edition of The epic of Pābūjī. It consists of three items:


Extract from Chogo Bhopo’s performance

This recording of Chogo and his wife was made in Jodhpur in 1973. Chogo is a relatively flamboyant performer, and the recording gives a good impression of what a performance sounds like at its best. The particular extract has been selected to contain as much musical diversity as possible. The narrative is that of the wedding of Gogo to Kelam; the extract starts with the last six of the invitations that are given to the gods, and continues to the point where the wedding-procession sets out and travels to Koḷū. As usual songs alternate with passages of declamatory spoken arthāv, during which a member of the audience can be heard echoing the last word of each line.

In turn, the songs consist of

  1. the invitation to Kṛṣṇa (i.e. a song in his honour)
  2. the invitation to Śiva and Pārvatī
  3. the invitation to the Goddess
  4. the invitation to the bhomiyo (the deified protector of cows)
  5. the invitation to Sarvaṇ Kāvaṛiyo
  6. the invitation to Bhairū̃
  7. two songs in honour of the bridegroom and his wedding-procession (no arthāv follows these)
  8. a narrative song covering the equivalent of ll. 804-11 in the version of the story appearing in The epic of Pābūjī
  9. three more sung passages covering the equivalent of ll. 818-21 in The epic of Pābūjī
  10. two non-narrative songs honouring the bridegroom’s arrival


Music examples

These short extracts are the passages cited in notation in The epic of Pābūjī (pp. 29-36 in the second edition).

Music example 1 is a single stanza of my 1973 recording of the epic as performed with earthen kettledrums (māṭā). It is sung twice, first by the senior singer, then by the junior.


Music example 2a is a single stanza sung to the tune rūpnāth rī ḍhāḷ by Parbū Bhopo, the performer whose version of the epic is transcribed and translated in The epic of Pābūjī. The recording was made in 1976.


Music example 2b, as it appears in The epic of Pābūjī, is the same stanza as example 2a, recorded in Amsterdam in 1978; in it Parbū uses the tune parbātī ḍhāḷ (a formal variant of rūpnāth). Unfortunately the recording in question is on a videotape made using a format that has since become obsolete; it was anyway of very poor quality. Instead, here is a stanza in parbātī ḍhāḷ from the 1976 recording of Parbū: it comes from the same section of song as example 2a.


Music example 3a is a stanza sung to the tune pherā̃ rī ḍhāḷ by the brothers Javārjī and Rāṇā, in a recording made in 1972. As it appears in The epic of Pābūjī, it in fact consists of the first half of one stanza and the second half of the following stanza: this is in order to allow comparison with example 4a, which is the equivalent passage from Chogo Bhopo’s performance (using the tune āḍī ḍhāḷ). Here is the example as notated:


Here is the complete two-stanza version of example 3a:


Music example 3b is Chogo Bhopo’s version of pherā̃ rī ḍhāḷ.


Music example 4a is a single stanza sung by Chogo Bhopo to the tune āḍī ḍhāḷ; as noted above, the words are the same as those of example 3a.


Music example 4b is a stanza sung to āḍī ḍhāḷ by the brothers Javārjī and Rāṇā.


Parbū Bhopo’s narrative song-tunes

These extracts, recorded in Amsterdam in 1978, illustrate all ten of the narrative song-tunes used by Parbū Bhopo. For a discussion of these tunes, see The epic of Pābūjī, second edition, pp. 20-25.
1   Herai rī ḍhāḷ
2   Khaṛāū ḍhāḷ
3   Pherā̃ rī ḍhāḷ
4   Āḍī ḍhāḷ
5   Thaḷī rī ḍhāḷ
6   Nācvā rī ḍhāḷ
7   Nācvā rī ḍhāḷ
8   Nācvā rī ḍhāḷ
9   Rūpnāth rī ḍhāḷ
10 Parbātī ḍhāḷ

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