Indian Music A long history, over 2000 years Closely linked to Hinduism and religious beliefs Hindu Gods are worshiped through Raga, both The Hindu God Shiva instrumental and vocal The God, Shiva, is associated with music and dance in Hindu philosophy and there are many pieces in honour of Shiva Indian music can be divided into 2 traditions Music of Northern India (Hindustani tradition) Music of Southern India (Carnatic tradition) This particular piece is taken from the Hindustani tradition. The Oral Tradition Indian music is not written down in traditional western notation Taught through listening and playing by ear = oral tradition System of master-pupil teaching, known as Gharana i.e. a father teaching his son, and in turn him teaching the music to the next generation. Playing styles subsequently change as new techniques are added by each generation It is a duel and a consolidation of playing skills Elements of Raga Three important elements in Raga 1: Melody – improvised from the notes of a particular rag. Can be sung or played by a melody instrument, such as a sitar or sarod 2: Drone – usually made up of 1 or 2 notes played by the tambura 3: Rhythm – repetitive, cyclic pattern played on the tabla Rag – The melody A set melody which is improvised upon A cross between a collection of pitches and a scale Ascends and descends, but pitches often differ in each direction (like a harmonic minor scale) Number of notes in a rag will differ considerably (unlike the number of notes in a western scale) Some have 5 notes, like a pentatonic scale Others have seven or eight Vibhas Rag – Early morning rag Kalyan Rag – Night time rag Drone accompaniment No sense of harmony in Indian raga music, emphasis is on melody, linear in concept Drone on the tambura is supportive Usually play the tonic and dominant of the chosen raga Function is to keep a sense of tuning and intonation for the melody line player Also adds to the texture of the piece. Tala – The rhythm Provided by the small tabla drums Plays a repeated rhythmic cycle known as tala Most common tala is the Teental (or Tintal) which is a 16-beat pattern, organised into 4 groups of 4. Each beat is called a matras There are many other talas with different numbers of beats per cycle. Tala continued Complex rhythms sound exciting against the steady rhythm of the tabla and instrumentalist or singer. Rhythm patterns, or bols, are independent of the beat and can be inventive Accents off the beat create syncopation. Rhythms must start and end precisely together on the first and last beat of each tal. First beat is called sam. This need to keep within each tal can lead to competitiveness between the drummer and instrumentalist as they attempt to out do eachother. Tintal, or Teental Tintal is without any doubt the most common tal in the north Indian classical system of music. These names all reflect the three claps of its vibhags structure. It is composed of four vibhags of four matras each. These vibhags are represented by a clap, clap, wave, and a clap. The structure of tintal is shown below: Clapping/ Waving Arrangement clap, 2, 3, 4, clap, 2, 3, 4, wave, 2, 3, 4, clap, 2, 3, 4 Structure of a raga performance Section Tempo Metre/Rhythm Musical Features Alap Slow, meditative Free, no sense of metre •Soloist explores the note of the Rag •Accompanied by tambura •Improvised Jhor Steady, moderato Regular pulse established •Improvised, but more rhythmic •Melody is more elaborate and tempo increases Jhalla Lively, presto Fast pulse with exciting, complex rhythms •High point of the piece •Virtuosic display of advanced playing techniques Gat/Bandish Moderato - Allegro Tabla introduced the cyclic tala •The ‘fixed’ composition section. If a Gat, then a fixed solo. If a Bandish, then a song •Dialogue between instrumentalist and drummer •Sections may be omitted i.e. Only have an Alap and Gat. •Can vary greatly in length. Some performances last all evening! Indian instruments - Sitar 7 principal strings, 2 of which are drone notes Below are up to 12 sympathetic strings, which vibrate when the top ones are played Played with a wire plectrum Playing techniques include the meend/mind which is sliding between notes in intervals of a quarter-tone or less. Plays rapid scalic flourished called tan, typically played in the jhalla or gat Other instruments Sarangi: Smaller than the sitar, fretless and uses a bow. Ideally used to accompany singers Sarod: Like the sitar it has 2 sets of string. It is fretless and has a metal fingerboard Tambura: Made of 4 strings and a resonator Tabla: 2 drums of different sizes. Smaller one is made of woos, larger one is made of metal. The drum heads are skin and the centre black circle is made of a paste of iron filings and flour. Bansuri: Indian flute without keys Shehnai: Similar to the western oboe Rag Desh sa re ma pa ni sa ni dha pa ma ga re sa Version 1: Anoushka Shankar (Sitar) Instruments = Sitar and tabla Structure = 3 movements: Alap, Gat 1 and Gat 2 0’00’’-0’55’’ = Alap: Slow and unmetered. Unaccompanied sitar explores the notes of the rag. Rhythms are fluid and free Improvisatory due to lack of a regular pulse Some decoration of the notes of the melody line Version 1: Anoushka Shankar (Sitar) 1 Clap 0’55-9’27 = Gat 1 Sitar plays fixed composition Decoration is added Tempo is moderato (madhyalaya) Tabla enters at 0’58, playing the 10-beat Jhaptal. (2+3+2+3) 2 3 Clap 4 5 6 Wave 7 8 Clap 9 Tabla player adds decoration to these basic patterns Sitar and tabla have dialogue between complex scalic passages and complex rhythmic improvisations A tihai is heard at the end of each of these sections – a short phase repeated 3 times across the beat before finishing on sam 10 Version 1: Anoushka Shankar (Sitar) 3’55 = Sitar improvises in triplets (called chand) 5’02’’ = Improvisation with 4 notes per beat). Tabla and sitar alternate. Tihai used to mark out the ends of solo sections. 9’27 = Gat 2: Faster than Gat 1 and uses the common Tintal (4+4+4+4) 10’10 = Drone strings are used on the sitar in a strumming fashion, providing a rhythmic effect called Jhalla. The piece concludes with a Tihai. Version 2:‘Mhara janam maran’ Performed by Chiranji Lal Tanwar (voice) Instrumentation = voice, sarangi, sarod, pakhawaj, cymbals, tabla Pakhawaj = A Large double-headed drum This song is a Hindu devotional song from Rajasthan and is known as a bhajan. Song tells of tender waiting in longing and anticipation for the arrival of Lord Krishna in the morning Version 2:‘Mhara janam maran’ Translation – “You are my companion through life and death and I cannot forget you night and day. My heart pines for you and I feel totally restless when I am not able to see you” Structure = 2 Movements – Alap and Bhajan (song) Tal = Keherwa tal (2+2+2+2) 1 Clap 2 3 Clap 4 5 6 Wave 7 Clap 8 Version 2: ‘Mhara janam maran’ 0’00-0’50’’ = Alap: Short introduction. Sarod player then singer improvise a melody in free time on the rag. This is a version of the chorus of the song. 0’50-end = Bhajan: The fixed composition, a song in verse form. Tabla joins in at 0’50’’. Short Sarod at 1’10’’ and then the Sarangai at 1’22’’ Dynamics and tempo increase Pattern established is the verse (1’32’’, 3’04 and 4’50’’) followed by the first line used as a refrain (chorus) followed by more solos for and sarangai Version 3: Wertheimer and Gorn Instrumentation = Bansuri, Esraj, tambura and tabla Esraj = bowed fretted string instrument, played sat on the floor, like a sarangi. Has sympathetic and drone strings Structure: 3 movement: Alap, Gat 1 (slow), Gat 2 (fast) Version 3: Wertheimer and Gorn 0’00’’-8’35’’ – Alap: Slow and unmeasured. Drone is established by tambura, which plays Sa (C) and Pa (G) – The tonic and dominant. Bansuri enters, plying the notes of the rag. Develops from trying out the pitches to a more developed melodic part. Version 3: Wertheimer and Gorn 0’00’’-4’41’’ – Gat 1: Slow tempo Lyrical unaccompanied melody for bansuri and tabla playing the 7-beat rupak tala (3+2+2) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Wave Clap Clap Fixed composition starts at 0’43’’. After this, music becomes more agitated as improvisation begins around the gat Version 3: Wertheimer and Gorn Bansuri plays the Gat repeatedly while the tabla improvised around the Tala At 3’32 the 2 instruments swap. Tihais are heard at the end of each section with the last one leading into Gat 2 4’41’’-End = Gat 2: A fast tempo (Drut) in ektal tala (2+2+2+2+2+2) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 CLAP CLAP WAVE CLAP WAVE CLAP Bansuri plays an elaborate Gat with scalic runs, wide range of pitch and slides Fast scales = Tans Several tihais heard as the music finishes Section A and B Questions Complete the Questions on Page 142 of the textbook. Section B a) Which indian musical tradition is Rag Desh from? (1) b) Name the 4 sections of a Rag (1) c) Compare and contrast the 3 performances of Rag Desh, with particular reference to instrumentation, structure and rhythm.