Raga Lalit

   About Raga Lalit

Raga Lalit Or Lalat

Raga Lalit also called Lalat  is amongst the older and more popular ragas of the Hindustani system. It bears a close resemblance to raga Lalitha of the Carnatic system. The two ragas are considered manifestations of the same traditional melodic idea. Lalit is a sweet and mellifluous raga in Hindustani classical music. It is commonly described as serene and devotional and is performed at dawn - between 4am and 6am. 

The raga Lalit belongs to Poorvi Thaat. Other well known ragas from the Poorvi Thaat are Paraj, Poorvi, Puriya Dhanashree, Shree etc. So clearly there could be ragas from the same thhaat but meant for different times of the day. While Paraj and Lalit are morning ragas, we find ragas like Poorvi and Shree which are sung at dusk, but from the same Poorvi Thaat.

Lalit evokes the mood of prayer and a certain sense of calm.

The swara (notes of the Indian musical scale) of Lalit put emphasis on the minor second (Re) and minor sixth (Dha), and include natural and sharp fourth (Ma), but omit the commonly used perfect fifth (Pa). Author Peter Lavezzoli stated the raga was difficult to play for Western classical musicians because of its scale. Jairazbhoy argued the use of both forms of Ma was an apparent chromaticism, but that one of the Ma notes was a diminished Pa. Lalit with a different scale was identified in the 16th century, and a raga Lalita existed before.

In the Gwalior tradition of singing, and among many dhrupad singers - Lalit is sung with a shuddh dhaivat (natural sixth) and has a slightly different chalan.

This raga is a sweet mellifluous combination of both Madhyams (Shuddha and Teevra), requiring critical attention to the Komal Dhaivat employed. This note is a shruti in between Shuddha Dhaivat and commonly played Komal Dhaivat of raga Todi. It is for this reason that its correct position should be rigorously practiced after learning it from the Guru (Gurumukh). Shuddha Madhyam (m) is very prominent in this raga along with Gandhar. The use of Teevra Madhyam and Shuddha Madhyam, one after the other (M m) gives this raga a unique character.

Some people perform Lalit with Shuddh Dha instead of Komal. When performed with Komal Dha, it is called Lalit in Poorvi ang, and when with Shuddh Dha, it is called Lalit in Marwa ang. Pancham Varjya, Rishabh and Dhaivat Komal, Both Madhyams. Rest all Shuddha Swaras.

The concept of a komal Pa (diminished 5th) is very controversial.  Present musical theory clearly rejects this position.  However, komal Pa was a characteristic of the old Dhaivati jati as described in the Natya Shastra.  Although there is a historical precedent to komal Pa, the conservative approach it to ignore this concept.

The rejection of komal Pa does not automatically simplify the theoretical position of Lalith.  The equal weight and usage of both madhyams raises some questions.  If we give importance to the tivra madhyam, lalit falls into Marwa that.  However, if we give importance to the shuddha madhyam, it falls into Suriyakantha mela (note- this mode is not one of the 10 thats that by convention is taught in the music colleges in India). 


   Structure of Raga Lalit

Thaat : Poorvi

Jati : Shadav-Shadav Vakra

Vaadi : M

Samvaadi : S

Aaroha : N-r-G-m-M-m, G-M-d-N-S

Avaroha : S-N-r’-N-d-M-d-M-m, G-M-G-r-S

Vishranti Sthan : S; G; m; - S'; m; G;

Mukhya Ang : ,N r G m M m G r S ; G M d N d M m; r' N d M m; G m M m; G; M G r S;

Swaras : Pancham Varjya, Rishabh and Dhaivat Komal, Both Madhyams. Rest All Shuddha Swaras.

Time : 4th Prahar of the night (3AM to 6 AM)

   External Videos of Raag Lalit

   Songs based on Raga Lalit

Songs in Raga Lalit 

1. Ek Shahanshaah Ne Banavake Haseen Taaj Mahal – Leader
2. Tu Hai Mera Prem Devata – Kalpana 
3. Badi Dheere Jali - Ishqiya
4. Pritam Daras Dikhaob – Chacha Zindabad
5. Duniya Na Bhaye - Nartaki
6. Jago Bansi Vare - Meera
7.Ghat Ghat Mein Ram - Bhumika
8.Bhor Bhaye Panghat – Satyam Shivam Sundaram
9. Bhor Bhaye Panchi - Aanchal
10. Aey Ishq Teri Talaash-Cha cha cha
11. Teri Jaat Pak Hai – Main Hoon Alladin
12. Ye Pyar Tha Ya – Prem Rog
13. Main To Kab Se Teri Sharan – Ram Nagri
14. Jogiya More Ghar Aaye - Ragini
15. Mast Mayura Nache – Dil Ki Rahein
16. Woh Jo Milte The Kabhi – Akeli Mat Jaiyo
17. Raina beet jaye -  Amar Prem

Marathi Songs in Raga Lalit

1) Achala vichala davil tav

2) Amuchi vasane de Shrihari

3) Te maze ghar te maze ghar

4) Vinayaka ho Siddhaganesha

5) Sakhe Shashivadane 

Tamil Songs in Raga Lalit

1) Vazhkkai Odam

2) Engeyo Etho (Charanam in Lalit)

3) Dheiveega Raagam



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