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Rajasthan Tours Must Do - Understanding the Folk Sounds of Rajasthani Music

Ever wondered why folk dance and music performances are such an integral part of most Rajasthan tours? Owing to the vast diversity of cultures it has played a host to, Rajasthan and its music are vivid, rustic and pleasing. The state is home to many Indian musical centers or gharanas and shares influences and inspirations from those on the other side of the India-Pakistan border.

Rajasthani music is the broth made up of flavors from Udaipur, Jodhpur, Jaipur and Sindh in  Pakistan. You may find it equally interesting that Rajasthan’s thriving musician population is classified on the basis of their musical styles – the langas, bhopas, jogis, Manganiars and saperas. Of these, Manganiars and Langas are the two most prominent musical castes – the former are known for their liberal musical approach while the latter typically ascribe to a Muslim audience and styles.

Rajasthan Tours
Rajasthan Tours - Understanding the Folk Sounds of Rajasthani Music
Rajasthani folk music draws inspiration from everyday chores and events and are often written in a humorous vein. There are love ballads, songs hailing war heroes, songs in the praise of monsoons, lullabies, devotional hymns – all created soulfully.

Most songs start with the customary Alap, followed by a musical couplet that is, more or less, the introduction of a song. Celebrating the advent of monsoons or the spring is a matter of great happiness and the same is reflected in Rajasthani folk songs. Songs also revolve around the daily activities of the local people - For instance, a song about not sowing Jeera (Cummin) since it is difficult to tend.

Or for instance, another song about Pudina (Mint) and how it is liked by members of the family (a backhanded reference is to some kind of local liquor extracted from mint). The next time you hear a song during a Rajasthan Tour, get somebody to  explain the lyrics and you would end up being tickled.