Thumri : A classical Indian song

Context : The Padam :Vibhusan award of 2020 is given to Pt Chhannu Lal Mishra who is well known personality of Thumari , Kayal and other semi classical hindustani music 

Thumri : 

  • The term Thumari originated from the term Thumakna which means walking with dance . it is similar to the Dhrupad , Khayal and Tappa This type of song is originated from eastern UP and generally song on the occasion of various Hindu festivals 

  • As per the sources this is originated during 16th 17 century in Uttar Pradesh but became popular during the time of Awadh’s Nawab Wazid Ali Shah 

  • It is influenced with some other old indian music like Hori, Kajari , dadra, Chalika (it is described in Harivamsa Purana also)

  • The subject matter of Thumari is eroticism . This is a song related to romanticism . It is sung on the occasion of love at the time of unison or separation or devotion. 

  • The language of this song is generally the various dialects of the Hindi language like Awadhi, Brij , Bojpuri, Mirjapuri etc . But Some thumaries are composed in Marathi and other languages also . The languages or dialects used in thumri are very soft and very romantic . for example In Thumri, instead of word Pani and piya , the term pania and piyua are  used respectively 

  • Thumari are composed in lighter ragas and generally have similar Talas  . Thumari is accompanied by sarangi or by harmonium, tanpura and tabla .

  • Thumaris are sung in various ragas like Khayal , Bihag, Sahana, etc and the talas of the Thumari are deepchanda , addha and sitarkhani . Their talas are of smaller cycles derived from folk music . This is sung in very slow tempo 

Various Gharanas :

  • Since Thumari originated in purav (east) of Ganga , yamuna Doaab hence it is also named as purvi or banaras thumri which is generally sung in very slow tempo. Other gharanas related to thumri are – lucknow and Patiyala . 

  • The singer of Lucknow Gharana sing little bit faster in comparison to banaras Gharana . It is also called Pacchayee Thumari .

  •  Patiala gharana is also named as Punjabi Thumari . This is also popular and attractive because of its phrases . 

Various Thumri Singers and their popular songs :

  • There are many musicians and the protector of Thumari tradition . For example , Nawab Wajid Ali Shah and Rang Priya were the two well known Thumri singers of the Lucknow gharana . “Babul mora naihar chuto hi jaye… became a very popular Thumari and later on this thumri was sung by K. L Saigal’s for the movie Devdas (1936).

  • Rassolan Bai, Siddeshwari Devi and Girja Devi were the most popular singers of the tumri related to banaras Gharana . The famous Thumari song of Girja Devi is nayan ki Mat Maro Talwariyan .

  • Another prominent singer of thumri related to Patiala gharana is Ustad bade ghulam ali khan and Sobha Gurtu. The famous Thumri sung by Ustad are AAye na Balam, Yaad piya ki aaye . 

In this way we see the Thumari, a classical form of Indian music still popular among the Youth of India . many Thumari were made popular through our Indian Cinema also 

Dr Anshul Bajpai