Raga Marwa – An evening mood

For some time now, I’ve been “besotted” by Raga Marwa. Raga Marwa is a unique raga in many respects and its characteristics can take a while to understand. The Raga goes like this

Notes of Raga Marwa:

Family (Thaat): Marwa

Ascending (Aarohan): N r G m D N S

Descending (Avrohan): S N D m G r S

Characteristic phrase (Pakad) : N(lower) D (lower) N (lower ) r,  G  m D m G r, N(lower) r S

What makes Marwa a unique raag is that Sa plays a secondary role in this raga. N D N r bypasses Sa  and builds up a tension, which is released when the Sa is finally reached. In doing so, Marwa establishes a signature distinct from its derivative ragas : Puriya and Sohini (Sohni)

On the sarod, there are hardly any Marwas recorded at all. The deep sound of the instrument suits the raga and I present here a simple composition in Vilambit Teentaal

The notations of the vilambit compositions are as follows, starting from the 12th beat:

D N R G m D – m – G R S – SS N

r- N D x x , N N S x, NN r X, G m G r, N D S

I’m going to record a few more compositions in Marwa and upload them as soon as I can…