India Today - - LEISURE -


some Chennai homes T.M. Kr­ishna’s name comes up ev­ery day, half in pride, half in ex­as­per­a­tion. The pride is for his mu­sic. When Car­natic con­certs had come to a leaden stage of rinse and re­peat, Kr­ishna shaped the sounds anew and took a raga where no one had taken it be­fore. He ex­plains es­o­teric con­cepts plainly, as only an artist with an unerring grasp can. To his stu­dents, he teaches imag­i­na­tion. “For­get the tem­plate!” he urges. “We should hear Mukhari no mat­ter what phrase you sing.” The ex­as­per­a­tion is for his singing on a beach, in a bus, in the ashen wake of the En­nore power plant. There is a “shut up and sing” school that won­ders why he writes opin­ion pieces. The earth shook when he first sat out Chennai’s De­cem­ber mu­sic sea­son. Even his highly read­able A South­ern Mu­sic

(2013) raised heat for bring­ing up caste, ap­pro­pri­a­tion and ex­clu­sion in the Car­natic con­text.

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