Michael Robinson


Cover art is handmade paper from India






1. Natabhairavi (2004) 57.59

meruvina: piri, trumpet, ud, shehnai, kemanche, harpsichord, tabla, ghatam, dholak, dhol, rotating drum, rain stick, buk, two tanpuras

autograph score

purchase score



Natabhairavi is the twentieth mela of Karnatic music.

My composition for meruvina features one medium-slow laya throughout its four sections. The first section features a piri timbre, the second a trumpet, the third uses ud, and the fourth alternates shehnai, kemanchie and harpsichord.

For percussion, the first section uses tabla bols, the second adds additional tabla bols, the third introduces ghatam bols, and the fourth brings dholak bols together with the established percussion sounds. Each of the six melodic voices are joined by a rotating drum, and the overall texture is expanded with two tanpura drones, and a dhol ostinato.

A melodic figure, accompanied by a rain stick, is played by the featured melodic timbres at the beginning of each section. The tabla in the opening section is also accompanied by the rain stick.

Natabhairavi, which begins and ends with strokes from a buk, was originally composed in 2004, and the meruvina realization and recording were completed in 2007.

- Michael Robinson, Los Angeles, September 2007

© 2007 Michael Robinson All rights reserved

Natabhairavi is a favorite composition of mine, but listening to it now, my sense is that the orchestration of the piece may be improved, so I will investigate this, likely make some changes, and then have the new version recorded and mastered. Until that time, I will leave the present recording as is. For these reasons, I have removed Natabhairavi from my recent article, Jazz Beyond Jazz, replacing it with the Fourth Gat from Kamavardhani, at least temporarily until Natabhairavi is redone.

- Michael Robinson, April 2018, Los Angeles