Jete Nahi Dibo poetic review by Sadaf Munshi

Jete Nahi Dibo ‘I won’t let you go’ is one of the upcoming compositions in The Voices and Bridges project. It starts with a melody inspired by Vanɨvun — a highly endangered genre of Kashmiri oral traditions. Not specified as a type of bə:t ‘song’, Vanɨvun is a form of ceremonial chant which uses a fixed template, close to Vedic chanting – a depiction of rituals associated with different cultural events and celebrations. The composition weaves together the unique melody of Vanɨvun with a specific style of Kashmiri poetry called Vaakh which took shape in the medieval Kashmir.
The performance merges into the Indian Svara and the Solkattu techniques. Svara is an ancient Indian musical concept with seven svaras or notes collectively known as sargam. It is the Indian equivalent to solfège, a technique for the teaching of sight-singing. The Solkattu is a technique that employs drum syllables, facilitating rapid oral recitations of rhythmic compositions. As a bridge to connect lyrics in three significantly different languages, viz., Kashmiri, Bengali and Persian, which depict different musical, linguistic and cultural traditions, the composition of Jete Nahi Debo employs the use of Bansuri — a side blown flute originating from the Indian subcontinent, leading to a melodious track.
Vocals for this composition are provided by Bombay Jayashri — one of the most sought after Carnatic musicians from India and Alireza Ghorbani, one of the Iranian lead vocalists. The poets selected for this melody are: Rumi — the 13th century mystic Persian poet who begs no introduction and whose influence transcends many borders, Lal Ded — a much celebrated medieval sufi poet of Kashmir who used a specific genre of poetry referred to as Vaakh in her compositions (Lal Ded’s poetry is uniquely referred to as “Lal Vaakh”), Tagore — a 19th century celebrated poet of the Indian subcontinent who wrote in Bangla and English languages and author of Gitanjali (Tagore was the first non-European as well as the first lyricist to win the Nobel Prize in Literature), and Nima Youshij — a contemporary Iranian poet famous for his style of poetry, called she’r-e nov).

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