Archive for category entertainment rajasthan

Holi Celebration in Rajasthan – Festival History and Folk Traditions

Holi, also called the Festival of Colours, is a popular Hindu festival celebrated in India.  ‘Holi’ falls on the full moon, in the month of Phalgun, which spans the end of February and the beginning of March on the calendar. This year(2010) Holi falls on 1st March.

History About Holi

The legend of King Hiranyakashipu is associated with the festival of Holi. This legend signifies the victory of good over evil, of devotion surpassing ambition.

The proud King was enraged by Prahlad’s (his son) disobedience and decided to punish him severely. He asked his sister Holika for help. It was believed that Holika was immune to fire and would never be burnt, so the King asked Holika to sit in the centre of a bonfire with Prahlad on her lap, so that the fire could devour him. The bonfire was lit, and young Prahlad sat in Holika’s lap, in its centre, praying to Lord Vishnu.

His devotion saved him, leaving him untouched by the flames, but Holika was burnt to ashes. To mark this legend, huge bonfires are lit on the eve of Holi.

Holi Celebration in Rajasthan

The colourful state of Rajasthan plays Holi much the same way as Mathura. A night before the full moon, crowds of people gather together and light huge bonfires to burn the residual dried leaves and twigs of the winter. People throw coloured water and powders (gulal and kumkum) at each other and make merry. Singing, dancing and the traditional beats of dhol add to the gaiety of the occasion.

Folk Traditions on Holy  in Rajasthan

Mali Holi :

The colourful festival of Holi is played in many different ways. The ‘mali’ or gardener community of Rajasthan has a unique style where the men colour the women with water and women retaliate by hitting them with sticks or long pieces of cloth

Gair at Godaji:

Men from 12 villages collects at Godaji village near Ajmer in Rajasthan to play gair a few days after holi. Each village brings his own drummer and gair troupes. The picturesque location for it is a valley surrounded by hills on all sides. Thousands of onlookers and close to hundred players make a wonderful sight and a fond memory.

Dolchi Holi at Bikaner:

In Bikaner district, members of  ‘Vyas’ communities have been celebrating Holi by throwing water at one another with force for the past more than 300 years. A specially designed vessel called ‘dolchi’ made from camel skin is used for the purpose. But the water is thrown only at the back of an individual.

We have SPECIAL OFFERS running for HOLI Celebration, Mail your tour inquiry to or use our Rajasthan Tour Inquiry Form

Image Source – Wikipedia

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Explore Rajasthan with Luxury Trains – “Royal Rajasthan on Wheels” and “Palace on Wheels”

Indian Railways is one of the largest and busiest rail networks in the world, transporting over 18 million passengers and more than 2 million tonnes of freight daily.

Palace on Wheels

Basically it  is divided into zones, which are further sub-divided into divisions. The number of zones in Indian Railways increased to16 in 2003. Each zonal railway is made up of a certain number of divisions, each having a divisional headquarters and Rajasthan comes under North Western Railway.

North Western Railway

The North Western Railway is one of the sixteen railway zones in India. It is headquartered at Jaipur. It comprises four divisions: Jodhpur and reorganized Bikaner division of the erstwhile Northern Railway  and reorganized Jaipur and Ajmer divisions of the erstwhile Western Railway.

This zone came into existence on October 1, 2002. This railway comprises a total of 578 stations covering a total of 5449.29 (which is 10 % of the total route in the country) route km out of which 2575.03 are broad gauge and 2874.23 are metre gauge.

Explore Rajasthan with Luxury Trains

To explore rajasthan state luxury trains are the best option as a convenient and suitable mode of transport. These trains provide world class comforts on the wheels while covering a number of excellent travel destinations in the shortest possible time span.

Some Famous luxury trains of Rajasthan:

Royal Rajasthan on Wheels

Royal Rajasthan on Wheels begins every Sunday from New Delhi and traverse through the capital of modern India, Jaipur , Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Sawai Madhopur, Chittaurgarh, Udaipur, Bharatpur, Agra in 7 Nights / 8 Days tour.

Palace on Wheels

Experience Rajasthan and Agra in this luxurious train of Maharajas in 7 Nights / 8 Days.  The train departs from New Delhi and during its  journey, travels around Rajasthan with stops in Jaipur, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Sawai Madhopur, Chittaurgarh, Udaipur, Bharatpur, and Agra.

The fully furnished coaches have wall-to-wall carpeting, a bar and two restaurants that serve the best of continental, Indian and Rajasthani cuisine. Each compartment also has attached bath and showers, built-in wardrobes and custom-built furniture.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Dussehra in Rajasthan – Victory of Good Over Evil

It is a unique festival celebrated all over India. It is very important for Hindus. It is also known as Vijaydashmi (Vijay means victory and Dashmi means tenth day) as it  is believed that it was on that day that lord Rama killed the demon king Ravana and rescued to his abducted wife Sita. It is victory over evil.


Ramila an enactment of Lord Rama is held during the nine days preceding Dussehra. On tenth day larger  than life effigies of Ravana, his son and brother Meghnadh and Kumbhakarna are set to fire. This way people are asked to burn the evil within them and follow the path of truth and goodness bearing in mind the instance of Ravana.Dussehra in Rajasthan

Bengalis celebrates  Dussehra as part of their main festival Durga puja. Vijaydashmi is dedicated to mother Goddess Shakti who incarnated in form of goddess Durga ,a combined manifestations of combined energies of holy trinity Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. On this day statues of Goddess Durga  are submerged in river waters. The puja is performed with turmeric which makes water purified for farmers and yield better crops.


Many houses perform Aditya Homas as  Shanti Yajna and recites Sunder kandan of Shri Ramayan for 9 days.

The purpose of performing these homas is also to kill and sacrifice  ten bad qualities which are represented by ten heads of Ravana are as :

Krodh (Anger)
Mada (Overpride)
Manas (Mind)
Kama Vasana

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Two Important Aspects of Rajasthani Music And Songs – Ragas And Tals

Music and dance are two very important aspects of the folklore of any region. In Rajasthan, songs play a dominant role in the life of the people.

The striking feature of Rajasthani music and dance is that there is great variety. In fact, nothing much has changed since the time of their inception, probably a thousand years back. The music and dance are rooted in tradition.

Today we are writing about Ragas and Tals which is used in Rajasthani Songs

The Ragas

The raga’s most widely used in Rajasthani folk songs are Bilawal, Kafi, Desh, Khamaj and Peelu.  Some in their pure forms and others in combination. Many folk songs are tuned in Bilawal and Kafi. The folk songs of Rajasthan have maintained the elements of Indian classical music despite the fact that they are freely composed and sung, knowing no rigid rules.

Classicism in music have been framing and improving its form with the help of folk-songs. The famous Mand style singing in Rajasthan is a typical example. This style is very important in folk-songs and it is well recognised in classical circles also. Mand is neither accepted as a full-fledged raga nor is it reckoned among the freely rendered folk songs. Mand goes very near the thumri or the ghazal. Mand is the exclusive contribution of Rajasthani folklore to the classical music of India.

The Tal

In Indian music, Tal unites the listener with the singer in the rhythm and ecstasy of music. The various ragas and raginis are rendered in accordance with the tempo of the tal differentiated by means of matras ranging from six to sixteen. No classical music composition can be rendered without tal. In Hindustani classical music, the Tal is  provided by the tabla, pakhawaj or mridang.

Folk music also requires tal for its effective rendering and the instruments used for it are many including the dhol (drum), dholak, nagara, majira, chang and daf.

Rajasthani folk-songs make use of six, seven or eight matras of tal on the dholak, tabla and nagara. The Kaharwa tal is generally played on the daf or the chang. The musical instruments used with folk song help to keep the tal which occupies in music, the same place as grammar does in language.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Rajasthani Folk Songs – Composed Of All Kinds of Occasions And Moods

Rajasthan offers soulful, unadulterated, pure folk songs that can be heard throughout India. The folk songs of Rajasthan have been composed for all kinds of occasions and moods. They are suitable for the celebration of love, separation, union, familial ties, marriage and even death.

rajasthani folk songs

These folk songs are sung by different communities residing in the state of Rajasthan. These songs were written years back but have been carried forward by various generations through the last few years.

The culture and traditions of the Rajasthani people are very well depicted through the various Rajasthani songs.

Famous Folk Songs of Rajasthan

Songs sung by Rajasthnai People, are mostly about water and is cantered around the well, the style is called Panihari. Gorbund is a famous folk song which depicts the process of preparing a decorative string for a camel. The other folk songs are ‘Indhani’, ‘Lawarji’, ‘Jallo’, ‘Hichaki’, ‘Olyun’, ‘Sapno’, ‘Kurjan’ etc.

Songs, laden with religious flavor, are sometimes folk idioms of Saints, Surdas, Kabirdas, Meerabai and others. Bhajans and Banis are very popular among the Harijans, Chamars, Bhanghis, Balais and Rahgars and mostly heard in night-long gatherings.

In the ballad tradition, minstrels sing and narrate heroic tales of folk heroes like Tejaji, Gogaji and Ramdeoji and even of legendary lovers and their tragedies their tragedies.

Different Type of Folk Songs of Rajasthan

  • The Ragas
  • Maand Folk Songs
  • Peepli and Nihalde
  • Saajhi and Ghudla

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Bhaats, Dholis, Mirasis, Nats, Bhopas and Bhands – Folk Musician Communities in Rajasthan

The people of Rajasthan live life to the hilt. There is dancing, singing, drama, devotional music and other community festivities which transform the hardworking Rajasthani person into a fun-loving and carefree individual.

Each region has its own folk entertainment, the dance styles differ as do the songs. Interestingly enough, even the musical instruments are different.

Of considerable significance are the devotional songs and the communities who render these songs. Professional performers like the Bhaats, Dholis, Mirasis, Nats, Bhopas and Bhands are omnipresent across the state.

Musical Communities in Rajasthan

Musical Communities in Rajasthan

Bhopas Community

Group singing of classical bandishes called the Dangal or taalbandi is also unique to this region. Bhopas are singing priests of various deities or warriors saints. The Bhopas of Mataji wear red costumes and play the mashak.

Dance is often part of the musical tradition and the Thories or Nayaks who are Pabu Bhopas, have a female accompanist; together they recite the Phad (a painted ballad). The Phad itself is an elaborately painted work of art and deeply venerated.

Jogis Community

The Jogis were well-known for their recitation of the great ballad Nihalde Sultan, Shiviji-ka-byawala and songs about Gopi Chand and Bhartrihari. Most of these musical communities have a rural and function as wandering minstrels travelling from villages.

The Dholies, also known as Mirasis, Dhadhies, Manganiyars and langas are known for their distinct musical styles in Rajasthan.


State and royal patronage elevated some of these musicians into Kalawants in the royal courts. Their music had acquired a sophistication that was absent from the rustic tones of the others.

The famous Maand of Rajasthan, which is unique style of Rajasthan, which is a singing and a core melody, is their creation.

True to its desert Ramayan are popular themes for ballad and the Mirasis and Jogis of Mewat have a delightful Rajasthan Folk Music of the court while Hadoti has the Ramayan of Dhai Kadi.

Folk Opera

Folk opera is another field, which has been made immensely popular by the professionals, often in association with amateurs. The ‘maach’ of Chittaurgarh area, ‘tamasha’ of Jaipur and ‘rammat’ of Bikaner are famous.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Algoza, Satara, Murla, Nad, Poongi and Shehnai – The Wind Instruments of Rajasthan

A wind instrument is a musical instrument that contains some type of resonator in which a column of air is set into vibration by the player blowing into a mouthpiece set at the end of the resonator.  Prominent in the music of all cultures since prehistoric times, wind instruments exhibit great diversity in structure and sonority.

Shehnai - A Wind Instrument of Rajasthan

Shehnai - A Wind Instrument of Rajasthan

A variety of wind instruments complete the multitude of folk music instruments of Rajasthan which include, Algoza, Satara, Murla, Nad, Poongi and Shehnai.  There are other instruments like Morchang (Jewish Harp) that are unique additions to the great repository of folk instruments as they are unlike any instruments found anywhere in the world.

Today we will discuss about various Wind Instruments of Rajasthan.

Algoza – Type of Double Flute

This instrument is played by blowing into them. Rajasthan folk music has many variations of the flute.  The Peli of the Meos of Alwar is a short flute, to the music of which the Ratwai is sung in a high pitch. The Algoza, common in the Tonk-Ajmer areas, is two such flutes played together. The Kathodis use the Pawri, a flute of bamboo held vertically.

Satara, Nad

The Satara of the Langas has one long flute and another flute to provide the drone. The Narh or Nad produces music most evocative of the desert. It is a vertical flute with a single long hollow tube, into which the player whistles, at the same time gurgling a song in his throat or actually singing intermittently. The effect is haunting.

Poongi and Murla

Then there is the Poongi of the snake charmers and its adaptation by the Langas called the Murla. Both have two tubes, one for the notes and the other for the drone.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Discover Dhol, Matka and Nagara – The Percussion Musical Instruments of Rajasthan

A percussion instrument produces a sound by being hit with an implement, shaken, rubbed, scraped, or by any other action which sets the object into vibration. These produces tones of definite or indefinite pitch. Their primary function is often rhythmic, but many are used as melody instruments.


Today we will write about different kind of  percussion instrument which includes Drums, Matka and Nagara.


Different kinds of drums form this group of musical instruments in rajasthan. They are of various kinds – the two sided drums, the shallow rimmed and single faced. The twin faced drums include the tiny Damru or Dugdugi of the Kalbeliyas and Madari.

The Bhils use the Maadal , a folk version of ‘Moisang’ which has a body of baked clay and gives a booming sound. The single faced and shallow rimmed drums are the Daf and the Chang. The Chang is the biggest, and with a parchment pasted on its rim, is a big favorite of the Holi revellers.

Matka and Algoza

Matkas and the Ghada and pair of huge earthenware pots, their mouths covered with membrane. One player plays each Matkas, and the Bhopas use it to accompany their singing. The whole effect is heightened by the graceful dance of the player.

The enchanting music for song is provided by the Algoza. An instrument belonging to the regions Tonk, Ajmer consisting of bamboo flutes played together.


The Nagara is a conical drum played with the Surnai and Nafeeri (the two sticks). It forms part of the orchestra for the folk operas by providing rhythm.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Autophonic Instruments of Rajasthan – Ghungroo, Manjeera, Khartal & Jhalar

For travelers Rajasthan offers exotic music that can completely stupefy them. Autophonic Instruments are one of the Rajasthani Musical Instruments, which are made of the material used in day to day life. Today these very instruments are used for creating fusion music as well.

Among the autophonic instruments, the Ghanti or the Ghanta, the ghungroo (ankle bells), the manjeeras (including Jhanit and the Taala), the Thali or Tasli and the Jhalar are commonly used.

We will write about some of the above mentioned autophonic instruments.

Manjeera - An Instrument of Rajasthan

Manjeera - An Instrument of Rajasthan


Manjeeras are made of brass and is in the shape of hemispherical metal cups struck against each other. They have different kinds like jhanit and the taala. They are held and played with the hands and often accompany folk or devotional music.


A ghungroo is one of many small metallic bells strung together to form ghungroos. The sounds produced by ghungroos vary greatly in pitch depending on their metallic composition and size, which are served to accentuate the rhythmic aspects of the dance. The Bhopas of bherunji wear large ghungroos(ankle bells) around their waists and sway their bodies to provide a rhythm.


There is another instrument known as khartal which is made of small cymbals incrustated into wood blocks. The khartaal is mostly used as backdrop for bhajans (devotional songs). In Rajasthan, they are commonly used during the religious ceremonies. They also have historic significance as they remind us about the Bhakti Movement and Rajasthan was famous for Meerabai and other bhakti saints.


Jhalar is another variety of musical instrument which is formed by a single metal plate, the thali. This is struck in various ways producing different kinds tones and rhythms. Tha jhalar, also known as ghanta and thali or tasli are commonly used.The jhalar is usally played with bells, blowing of conchshells and beating of drums at aarti and on other religious occasions.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Some Popular String Musical Instruments of Rajasthan – Kamaycha, Mochng and Ektaara

The music of Rajasthan has its own unique flavor which has kept the five thousand year old traditions of the state alive.  String instruments like Sarangi, Ektara, Morchang, Kamayacha, Rawanhatta are an integral part of music in Rajasthan along with dholaki.

In previous post we have already discussed Sarangi,  Rawanhathha and different types of Sarangi. Today we will post about some of the other popular string instruments in Rajasthan.

Kamayacha Musical Instrument

Kamayacha Musical Instrument


Kamayacha is an extremely elegant instrument of the professional singing community of Mangniars all over Marwar region of Rajasthan. It has a large circular belly covered with parchment, a peg system and a finger board.

It has three main strings of gut, besides nine supplementary and four sympathetic steel strings all passing through a broad bridge. The long wooden curved bow of horse-tail hair moving on all the strings is characteristic of this instrument.


The morchang resembles a jew’s-harp. The plaintive, melancholic twang of the morchang adds a desolate dimension to songs of Marwar.


The Ektaara is also a single string instrument, but it is mounted on the belly of a gourd attached to a body made of bamboo.

The Galaleng Jogis of Dungarpur and Banswara have twin gourd-ed Kendru, which appears akin to the ancient Kinnari Veena. It is often called the Keengri in Rajasthan literature.

The Chautara, also called the Tandoora or Nissan , is a popular five stringed drone and beat instrument, it is used as an accompaniment to devotional music and for the Terathali dance of Rajasthan.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,