Javali is a light classical love song which is presented in music and dance concerts. They are simple love songs depicting love of laymen. The term Javali is derived from the Kannada term “Jhavali” meaning a song or poetry. In Marathi, the term means the gesture of eyes in a language of love. The lyrics of Jhavali are usually very simple evoking Pacchhai Shringara, ie, prema bhakti unlike pada wherein it will be divine love or Madhura Bhakti. In its structure a Javali may have a pallavi and a charanam but may not have an anupallavi. It is quicker in tempo with attractive music which is light and the language is colloquial, often suggestive.
Javalis are believed to have come into prominence during the 19th century. It originated in Travancore, was celebrated in Mysore and later became popular in Tamil Nadu and other places.
According to Dr. C.R.Ray, javalis have slight resemblance with the tappas of Hindustani Music. The Ragas chosen for Tappas are being influenced by the early javali composers. There are nearly 300 Javalis, composed in 37 Ragas.
Among the Javali composers, the names of Dharmapuri Subbarayar, Kuppuswamy Ayya, Swathi Tirunal, Patnam Subramania Iyer, Tanjore Quartet, Tirupati Narayana Swami Naidu, Pt Abhiramayya, Dasu Sreeeramulu Sivaramayya stand foremost.
“Cheline nekku” in Paras, “Marubari” in Kamas, “Parulanamatta” in Kapi and “Vaagalaadi Bodhana” in Behaag are some of the prominent javalis heard in concerts and dance performances.