The folk songs of Rajasthan
have been composed all kinds of occasions and moods. They are suitable for the celebration of love, separation, union, familial ties, marriage and even death. Folk songs of Rajasthan
are also part of rituals. For instance, rudaali are the professional mourners who are hired as part of rituals. These songs also reflect the culture of Rajasthani folk groups. Some of these songs also narrate the heroism, honour, valor and chivalry of local heroes. Once upon a time the professional entertainers, musicians and minstrels were patronized by the royal families and feudal lords. They were and still are an integral part of the Rajasthani society.
were patronized by the Rathores of Jodhpur. These two groups of folk singers consider themselves the descendants of Rajputs
. Based in Thar Desert they create the best possible music. The songs that they song have been passed onto them from their ancestors. This is the tradition in which the Langas learn their songs. Hence in a way their art is closely associated with the history of the land of the Rajas. The songs of the Manganiyars are dedicated to the heads of the families. They were essentially songs of praise for their patrons or for the head of the families where the group performed. Manganiyars were patronized by the Bhati rulers of Jaisalmer
, another folk song in Rajasthan is the most popular and sophisticated. In ancient India it was sung in the royal courts as songs of praise for the Rajput rajas or the local heroes. Both the nomadic singers and court singers sang them. today, however, they are more than just courtly songs. It is one of the most widely performed arts in Rajasthan. All possible measures have been taken to keep it alive in the absence of nomadic singers. On the occasion of several festivals Maand is performed by professional artists. These songs are accompanied various musical instruments, such as, Kamayacha, Poongi, Sarangi, Khartal, Morchang, Rawanhattha, Naad and Bankia.
As the songs of separation Peepl
i and Nihalde
are quite popular. These songs reflect the pangs of women as their beloveds or husbands leave them. These are implorations through which they request their loved ones not to go or to return back quickly. Other songs like Dhamal
are sung on occasions like Holi to express the joy and life that spring brings with it. Relationships too are involved in these songs. The romantic fervor of these groups of songs can woo anyone`s heart.
are children songs. There are folk songs that narrate the heroism of kings or local heroes. Such singers were called Charans
. The Bards or heroic poets recounted the feats of immortal ancestors. Traditionally Charans and Bhats would compose songs to inspire the Rajput warriors up patriotic fervor The Bhopas are the wandering balladeers who sing about the Marwar folk hero Pabuji
using a Ravanhatta and their Phad Paintings in telling of the tales. Devotional songs are also of the Rajputana tradition. Songs of Meera Bai, Kabir and Malook etc are part of the folk repertoire.
Another group of nomadic minstrels are the Jogis
. These folk songs in Rajasthan
narrate ballads of romance, valor, sacrifice and devotion. An amalgamation of so many folk songs in Rajasthan make this state an interesting place for the artists. From times immemorial people have heavily borrowed from the folk songs in Rajasthan and created fusion scores.