Kinnar, Madhusudan

Kinnar, Madhusudan (c 1813-1868) better known as Madhukan, was a lyricist, singer and composer of dhapkirtan songs. Madhusudan was born in the village of Ulusia in jessore district. He was very fond of music, especially of devotional songs. After a brief schooling, he joined a cultural troupe as a singer. His poetical talent flourished in this environment.

Madhusudan was also attracted to classical music and moved to dhaka to take lessons in kheyal, tappa and thungri from Ustad Chhota Khan and Bara Khan. He then joined Radhamohan Baul’s itinerant party of kirtan singers. Radhamohan guided him in learning kirtan.

Madhusudan blended the moods and tunes of the songs of Mohandas, Rupodas, Aghordas, Dwarikdas, with shyamasangit and baul songs as well as traditional kirtan songs and kheyal to create a new genre of kirtan which, in course of time, came to be known as dhapkirtan. Apart from dhap, he wrote other variety of songs as well. After his death, collections of his songs were published under the titles of Akrur Sangbad, Kalabkabhavjan, Mathur and Prabhas. He died at Krishnanagar while on his way to sing at Kasimbazar Palace. [Mohsin Hossain]