Modernity affects traditional Indian way of life. There is always a dilemma - whether to follow modern way of life or to continue their own tradition and customs. This debate becomes all the more important when it comes to Tagore, especially for the Bengalis.
On the occasion of 162nd birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore, Brainware University's initiative to popularise Tagore's songs among the music lovers of the world and more impartantly among the present generation, was launched. This initiative is the brainchild of our Hon'ble Chancellor Phalguni Mookhopadhayay. With each episode of this initiative, certain areas of Tagore's musical genius are highlighted.
Tagore’s early compositions were based on ‘shuddh’ or pure ragas and taal system of Dhrupad and Dhamar style, which were devotional songs. Theme was always more important to him than maintaining the authenticity of the ragas. Thus, he never hesitated to experiment. The 'Bard from Bengal' liberally borrowed from all musical forms. Many of his tunes are influenced by Scottish, Irish and British folk tunes and also by the Baul and religious music of Bengal.
During the poet’s lifetime, 104 artistes recorded Tagore’s songs. Since then, over 5,000 recordings have taken place at HMV. Today, out of every five Bengali albums sold, one is of Rabindrasangeet. Countless Rabindra sangeets have been used in Bengali cinema. Furthermore, a number of popular Hindi songs which adorned the golden age of Bollywood cinema were inspired by Rabindra sangeet.
The cultural programme designed by the university has been a welcome deviation from the conventional initiatives. The afternoon dedicated to Tagore with the launch of a new initiative to know the 'unknown' Tagore seems a fitting tribute to this versatile genius personality.