(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 2010, Sweden)
I was just talking to a mrdanga player about how mrdanga playing is the most difficult thing! But why is mrdanga playing so difficult? It is extremely difficult because it is not about different beats or different bauls or even different mantras; it is not about intricate rhythms and so on. Those are the secondary parts.The primary part is about hearing! It is all about hearing. A good mrdanga player is one who listens, who is totally attentive.
He is attentive to the kirtan and he is following very carefully to what he hears. That is extremely difficult and is only possible if one chants attentively. If one is an inattentive chanter, one will be an inattentive mrdanga player for sure. One will do everything inattentive! One goes through life as if in a cloud, and just walking like that in that cloud, one will inadvertently do so many things that one later wonders, “Why did I do that..?”