Music from India
Kaliya Mardhanam, Pulluvan Pattu
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RK DAT 27
Manapadi, Trichur district, Kerala.
Sudheer M.A. (singer, pulluvan vina), Ambujam (singer, female, pulluvan kudam)
‘Kaliya Mardhanam’, the destruction of the snake’s pride, is a piece belonging to the pulluvan pattu vocal genre. Members of the Pulluvan community perform the snake rituals and are therefore respected as experts in singing and playing the serpent songs. For the people of Kerala the divine snakes are the guardian angels of the land and its people. The pullavan vina is a small fiddle., Three bronze plates attached to the grip of the bow indicate the beat of the piece. The pulluvan kudam is a stringed instrument, which is plucked with a plectrum. It has a single string attached to a section of calfskin that is stretched through the centre of an earthenware pot. By pulling the string the player varies its tension, to give different pitches Sudheer M.A. plays the pulluvan vina and sings, Ambujam, the mother of Sudheer, plays the pulluvan kudam and sings. They sing in the south Indian language Malayalam.