July 31, 2017

MS Subbulakshmi: Surdas Bhajans [PSLP 1391] an LP recorded and released in India in 1986 - fresh remaster

Surdas was a 15th century poet, reportedly blind, who is renowned for his many poems about the life of Lord Krishna. The Murty Classical Library of India has published a lovely collection of some of the earliest known manuscripts of Surdas' poetry and the book is well worth searching out.

MS Subbulakshmi was one of the most prolific and popular singers of bhajans, or Hindi devotional songs. This delightful LP, rescued from my local record shop which just recently placed on their shelves a small but choice selection of Indian vinyl, was recorded in 1986 by EMI and features vocal support from Radha Viswanathan. (Thank you Ken for your wonderful record store!)

The poems were set to music by P.S. Srinivasa Rao.

At times the close harmonies are reminiscent of heavily applied reverb, but I think the heartfelt singing of MSS shines through.

This is a remaster of an old post from the halcyon days of early 2015.
I boosted some midrange frequencies and was able to remove most of the remaining groove noise without affecting the music in any way.

The songs are as follows:

Side 1:
Prabhuji Tum Bin Kaun Sahai
Nis Din Barsat Nain Hamare
Raakho Laaj Hari Tum Meri
Kunjani Kunjani Bajati Murli

Side 2:
Akhiyan Hari Darsan Ki Piyasi
Madhuban Tum Kyon Rahat Hare
Hey Deen Dayal Gopal Hari
Suneri MAin Ne Nirbal Ke Balram

Click here to watch a YouTube clip of a live performance of a bhajan by MSS.

And here is another video of a performance of a bhajan by MSS.

Equipment used in transfer: 
Preparation: 20 minutes in an ultrasonic cleaner with clean pure water
Turntable:  Audio-technica AT-LP-1240
Cartridge: Shure M97x
Pre-amplification: vintage restored Pioneer SX-780
Recorder: Edirol R-09HR
Software: Audacity to normalize and carefully remove one or two clicks per side. Only very minimal change in EQ was made - a few dB increase in the 2000-3000 range (using parametric EQ). Conversion to 16/44.1 took place in Audacity. xAct was used to convert to FLAC and mp3. 

(after conversion to WAV, suitable for burning to CD

(the highest quality mp3 file, using data compression to decrease file size, and able to played on computer or portable device including smart phones)


  1. Could I please request you to upload a recording of MS Subbulakshmi's Meera Bhajans. The CD brought out by HMV doesn't have a very good sound quality, especially the last two tracks (Chakar Rakho ji and Hari Tum Haro).

  2. Hi Richard,

    Great addition! She was a great singer!

    Would you pl. rip it in 24 bit format? I will appreciate it!

    Thank you,



  3. Hello Prasad ji:

    Unfortunately, this was back when I only recorded in RedBook CD standard 16bit 44,100Hz. The modern age is much better, don't you think?

    There is some more MSS coming. Two LPs and about 8 cassettes of live material (much of it from various tours of the US).

    Keep watching and thanks for being a reader of my blog!

  4. Hello Richard,

    Thanks for the respectable two letter expression "JI." You seemed to be a great lover of Indian music and the 5000 years old civilization. Appreciate it!

    I agree with you about the bit quality. No issues! No problem! Whatever best you have is welcomed with smile. Frankly speaking, we get audio CDs in India. However, the vinyl touch is lost while editing. So that charm is not there. That's why I prefer recordings from pristine vinyl as source.

    I am excited to listening to two LPs and cassettes. Hats off!

    Thank you again!



  5. Wow wow wow! Thank you so much!