I was raised in a traditional Maharashtrian household, so I grew up listening to Bhav Geet, Bhakti Geet and Abhang before I immersed myself thoroughly in the trending pop-culture. In the last month, I revisited that memory and browsed through those songs on YouTube.
Mainly, Kumar Gandharva and Pt. Bhimsen Joshi amongst many others, because of an article I read that mentioned their musical eminence. The song that got stuck in my head for the longest time was ‘Majhe Maher Pandhari‘, an Abhang, written by Sant Eknath- an Indian saint from Paithan (1533-1599), a popular rendition of which has been performed by Pt. Bhimsen Joshi.
Although, very recently, a friend of mine introduced Kishori Amonkar’s music to me. I may not have religiously heard her music, but her songs evoked the nostalgic memories. However, one of her songs in the collection was yet another rendition of Sant Eknath‘s ‘Majhe Maher Pandhari‘. As the Bhimsen Joshi version had already been stuck in my head, I initially chose not to listen to Kishori Amonkar’s version.
However, her version of that Abhang disclosed another sentimental dimension. I would not have realised it until another friend of mine brought it to my notice. Both the singers were class-apart in their talent and so were their songs. The elucidation below is not a comparison, but personal opinion on those renditions-