Bodyline & Composing Vinda

Vinda Karandikar has won the Dnyanpeeth Award this year. It’s big news for Marathi. Vinda was a professor of English and he won the Dnyanpeeth for his contribution to Marathi. Some of his students will swear that Vinda was one of the best teachers of the English language. It just goes on to confirm that the actual Art is being friendly with language and not just a language. If one has an aptitude for Marathi, he/she has an aptitude for English as well. It’s just a matter of showing the interest to learn the languages. That is why I do not, and will never, subscribe to terrorism in language and literature. Three years ago, there was a ridiculous proposition to ban all those litterateurs from the Sahitya Sammellans and other public platforms, whose children went to English medium schools. It reminded me of the story Andher Nagari, Chaupat Raja where the King sentences a thin man, who’s innocent, to the gallows instead of the fat convict, whose guilt has been proven, just because the noose won’t fit him!
However, that is not the topic of my blog today. For me, Vinda’s winning the Dnyanpeeth gives me an opportunity to relive my moments with his poetry… especially those poems which I have had the pleasure of composing.
The first Vinda Karandikar poem that I set to tune was ten years ago when we first staged the programme अमृताचा वसा in Chhabildas auditorium. The poem was:
पर्वतांनो दूर व्हा रे, सागरांनो दूर व्हा रे
उघडिले मी दार माझे, मानवांनो आत या रे
I remember the first time I had taken the book स्वेदगंगा in my hand. This was the poem that had me hooked. I just had to set it to tune. So I sat with the harmonium and the book. An hour passed, but I could not think of any tune. I read the poem again and again. I tried playing various permutations of notes that I could think that went well with the poem and its meaning. The whole exercise was irritating. Finally, I decided to the easiest thing in life. Go the living room and watch television. My brother was watching a cricket match. For sometime I got engrossed in the match and forgot the pains of composing the song.
On the TV screen, the fast bowler marched up to the run-up mark and came back at the batsman. He bowled a terrific bouncer that struck on the batsman’s helmet. My brother remarked casually that the bowlers were resorting to Bodyline tactics. Suddenly, a memory struck me like a flash of lightening. I remembered a scene from the TV series Bodyline, where the young Douglas Jardine is told by a mentor, “You don’t bowl at a batsman’s stumps; you bowl at his mind.
This line from Bodyline told me what I was doing wrong with the song. Sometimes it is not enough to set the words to a tune. You have to compose the man… the philosophy. I went to the room and read the poem all over again. This time I could see it differently. I was seeing the mind behind the words. I rediscovered the meaning of the phrase between the lines.

© Kaushal S. Inamdar 2005: Photo Credit – Sanjay Pethe


  1. Mandar Gogate says:

    i read your vindan baddal kay bolnar.he is a legend.Your article took me me in to our old days, when we were into the rehersals of AMRUTACHA WASA’
    Kay maja yaychi yta kalat.
    sagla athvun khup maja ali.

  2. Neerav Vaidya says:


    nice to read about u…felt nice and mind stimulating a quality so much “evaporated” from music directors of the day!

    keep it up freind!


  3. Gauri Joshi Ponkshe says:

    Just read your blog on ‘…the better son’..nice one..maybe that is the essence of parenthood…keep pouring your thoughts on paper…keeps our sensitivity alive.
    Gauri Joshi Ponkshe

  4. mrud75 says:

    Respected Sir,

    I heard about you many years back when you were not much popular through my brother Amrut (kamlesh bhadkamkar) many times.

    In our every meeting he used to say something good about your musical ability and your new ventures. I think it was between 1985-1995 A.D.

    Today when I was reading your articles it reminded me about those days.

    Glad to know a musician like you.

    Off course I’ll write the review about your articles but in a leisure.



    apratim! i am really fortunate to have AMRUTACHA VASA as my first project of music arrangement. 22chya programme mulye ani tujhya ya article mulye aplya rehersalschi athvan zali. performance ani recording peksha ampli composing process kiti BAHAARDAAR aste hyacha ajun ek anubhav milala. GREAT!!!!!


  6. Srijan says:

    That made interesting reading…
    I suppose composing a poem’s the best way to really get inside the verse… of course you also end up accepting Vinda’s invitation of ‘manavaanno aat ya re’ in the process… 😉

    Check My Blog out sometime:

  7. P R D says:

    Hi Kaushal – Good job! Took me back to “amrutacha vasa” days!!

    It would be great to have a “vasa” reunion sometime!


  8. geyata says:


    I regularly read all your articles.All the best for your new projects..and eager to see your new movie..


  9. Rangyaa says:

    hi kaushal dada….

    good to read ur blog…well vindaa is a true legend..ur moments of amrutaachaa vasaa must have been so good n cherishable……three cheers for all this…….goos wishes..

    Shreerang Bhave

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