Bhairav (raga)

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Ragamala painting of Bhairav
Time of dayDaybreak;[1] Beginning of concerts
  • S  G  P  N 
  • S G   N 
Avarohana N  P  G  S
PakadS G  P  P

Bhairav is an Indian classical raga of Bhairav thaat. It is a sampurna raga traditionally performed in the morning and also as the beginning piece in concerts. It is the defining raga of its own thaat.

Raga Kalingda in Hindustani and Ragam Mayamalavagowla in Carnatic music have the same scale as Raga Bhairav, although the moods they create can be quite different due to the way they are expounded.


Bhairav is grave in mood and suggests seriousness, introversion as well as devotional attitude. It shares its notes with Ahir Bhairav which has a sombre temperament.

Arohana : S  G  P  N [a] or S G   N [b][1]

Avarohana :  N  P  G  S[1]

Vadi: [2]

Samvadi: [2]

Pakad or Chalan: S G  P  P[2]

Organisation & relationships[edit]

Related ragas:


The performance for this raga is solemnly serious. The raga comes across as a musical entity with mood of meditation, philosophical depth and emotional richness.

Samay (Time)[edit]

Bhairav is an early morning(pratham prahar) raag.


Bhairav is one of few ragas that can be sung in any season.


Bhairav is typically performed with a peaceful, serious, and serene mood.

Film Songs[edit]

Bhairav is a popular raga for film songs. Here are some film songs based on Bhairav:

  • "Amma Roti De Baba Roti De" - Sansar, 1952
  • "Hanse Tim Tim" - Sansar, 1952
  • "Mohe Bhul Gaye Sanvariya" - Baiju Bawra, 1952
  • "Jaago, Mohan Pyare Jaago" - Jagte Raho, 1956
  • "Man Re Hari Ke Gun Ga" - Musafir, 1957


  1. ^ Alternate notations:
    • Carnatic: S R₁ G₃ M₂ P D₁ N₃ 
    • Western: C C# E F# G G# B C
  2. ^ Alternate notations:
    • Carnatic: S G₃ M₂ D₁ N₃ 
    • Western: C E F# G# B C



  • Bor, Joep; Rao, Suvarnalata (1999). The Raga Guide: A Survey of 74 Hindustani Ragas. Nimbus Records with Rotterdam Conservatory of Music. p. 32. ISBN 9780954397609.
  • Bhairav Rāga (Hin), The Oxford Encyclopaedia of the Music of India. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195650983. Retrieved 11 October 2018. (Subscription required (help)).