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Listening to music in a live programme was the only choice available to music lovers in the nineteenth century. Invention of recording music on disc initially, and later on cassette, CD and DVD, as also, transmission of music programmes on Radio and Television in the twentieth century provided different ways to listeners for enjoying music. In the same period, some enterprising and talented musicians spread Indian music in many countries. Towards the end of the twentieth century, with conversion of music in digital form and widespread use of computers and internet, Indian music could be enjoyed by a person physically located anywhere in the world.

When one analyses the content of vocal music available in commercial market or freely available on internet, one finds artists of Gwalior, Agra, Kirana, Patiala, Indore, Mewati, Jaipur-Atrauli, Rampur-Sahaswan and Sham-Churasi Gharanas. Though the Bhendibazaar Gharana belongs to the nineteenth century and was very powerful and popular, one finds very little information about the Gharana. Ustad Aman Ali Khan shunned publicity and Pandita Anjanibai Malpekar gave her last public performance in 1923 when she was only 40 years old and she chose to lead a spiritual path of life thereafter. Spread of Bhendibazaar style of singing (Gayaki) was therefore rather limited up to year 1940. Disciples of the next generation, namely, Rasraj Pandit Shivkumar Shukla, Pandit Pandurang Amberkar, Master Navrang, Pandit Ramesh Nadkarni and Pandit T.D. Janorikar presented the Bhendibazaar Gayaki on Radio, as well as, music concerts in national conventions and popularised it. However, voice of Pt. Shivkumar Shukla and Master Navrang was adversely affected when they were barely forty years old. They, therefore, concentrated on teaching of music. Similarly, Pt. Nadkarni, due to restrictions of employment contract with A I R (All India Radio) and Pt. Amberkar, due to advice of Ustad Aman Ali Khan, did not take part in public concerts. Bhendibazaar style of singing, therefore, suffered a second phase of dormancy in 2 decades after 1960. Dr. Koratkar took special efforts in popularising Bhendibazaar Gayaki, under the guidance of her Guru, Pt. Janorikar, after 1980s through public concerts and by organising seminars at many places in the country. Many disciples of the fifth generation of Bhendibazaar Gharana are popular artists on All India Radio and commercial records of Pt. Janorikar, Dr. Koratkar, Shubha Joshi, Meenaxi Mukherji, Shreekant Pargaonkar & Anuradha Kuber are available.

Ustad Aman Ali Khan was a composer par excellence. He was a gifted poet, a scholar, who had command over Brajbhasha, Sanskrit and Urdu, and a talented musician of very high calibre. Bandishes composed by him reflect the Bhendibazaar Gayaki with its nuances in a miniature and sustainable form. It is said that he had composed 400 odd Bandishes. Bandishes composed by his disciples also are rich in content. Out of these 500 odd Bandishes, nearly 60 Bandishes have been recorded and preserved in the form of cassettes, CDs and radio programmes titled "Sangeet Sarita". Other Bandishes, though many of them must have been learnt by disciples of the fifth generation and might be available in private recordings, are out of public domain and are likely to get lost forever, if not preserved now. Dr. Suhasini Koratkar was instrumental in publishing an issue of Sangeet Magazine (Published from Hathras, UP) in 2006 which gives notation of 45 Bandishes and a lot of information on the Gayaki and the stalwarts of Bhendibazaar Gharana. However, presence of Bhendibazaar Gharana on the Internet is negligible. One finds, only names of the stalwarts of the Gharana referred in the webpage of the disciples or news reports of disciples' concerts. No structured information about the Bhendibazaar Gharana is available on the Internet.
The website, "swaramandakini.com" is designed to present on Internet, the information about Bhendibazaar Gharana, its Guru-shishya parampara, some live recordings of stalwarts of the Gharana and preserve Bandishes in word, as well as, vocal form. This treasure, if not preserved now, may be lost for ever and will not be available to music lovers and students.
The website "swaramandakini.com" is intended to be a virtual monument of my parents, Late Mandakini Gadre and Late Visubhau Gadre in the cyber world. My mother learnt music under the guidance of Master Navrang for about 20 years. Although she was a talented musician and continued to sing from All India Radio, Mumbai for 30 years, she gave first priority to home and well-being of members of the family and refrained from making any commercial ventures. Pursuing study of music and achieving a high level of performing on national platform of All India Radio, would not have been possible without able and whole-hearted support of my father. With a view to cherish their memories and to express our gratitude towards them, we, the members of Gadre family, dedicate the website "swaramandakini.com" to Mandakini and Visubhau Gadre.

Compiled by : Sudhir (On behalf of Mrs. Pratibha, Nikhil, Mrs. Smita;  Shashikant, Mrs. Shobha, Ketan, Mrs. Sandhya; Mrs. Shama and Ajay Wadke)

 
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