As if an offbeat reply to Kerala’s elitist ensembles emerges Shinkari Melam that has a history of mere four decades. The free-spirted drums-with-cymbals con­cert gained contours in Ernakulam district’s Paravur coast in the 1970s, when a drummer from the forward Marar caste taught local fishermen a few chenda lessons. The flame that Kavil Vijayan passed to the subaltern is gaining fresh life with the passage of every festival season across Kerala.