Goan art song types are principally two, the hymns and the Mando. To judge by the language, many of the hymns appear to have been composed in the 17th and 18th centuries. The other Goan art song type is the Mando, a verse or verse-and-refrain dance song in six- four times, dealing with love, tragedy and contemporary events. Ovi are songs with nuptial themes and were sung by Christian missionaries as devotional and liturgical hymns. Mando appears to have evolved from the Ovi, a type which like the Mando’s own early form, is a quatrain. A refrain or chorus was added to the Mando later, doubtless under the influence of Portugal’s national song, the Fado, in that country around 1840 and thus contemporaneous with the Mando. Salcete is the province of Goa where the Mando grew and flourished.
While the background of the Mando is Christian, that of the Dekhni is Hindu. A typical dance song of Goan Christians, like the mando, but with Hindu themes, the Dekhni was also sung in two voices, to the accompaniment of shehnai playing the melody with or without a violin to supplement the former instrument and with the tabla giving the rhythm with cymbals to add zest to the beat, danced after the mando, in all great social gatherings, even some fifty years ago. But, if the mando is, so to say, the poetic expression of the acceptance of Christianity by Goans, the Dekhni would appear to be an expression of the Goan Christians nostalgia for their lost Hindu past.