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NAD (Understanding Raga Music)
NAD (Understanding Raga Music)
Description

Back of the Book

This book is perhaps the first comprehensive guide to understanding all the aspects and finer nuances of Hindustani classical music. It is aimed at the serious listener, that is, someone who may not have had any formal lessons himself in this performing art, but who, nevertheless, has picked up an initial interest in listening to classical music, and is, therefore, seeking to know more about its underlying structure, system and traditions. By explaining in a straightforward and extremely readable style, the basic features of Indian music, how time and melody are structured, the main principles of raga delineation and development and the various genres and styles of vocal as well as instrumental performances, the book aims to enhance the serious listener's understanding of Hindustani music, and heighten his appreciation of this art form.

This book includes a glossary of musical terms, a select discography and a select bibliography.

About the Author

Sandeep Bagchee studied in Delhi & Dehra Dun and Delhi, and Joined the Indian Administrative Service on 1973. He has contributed articles to the Economic and political weekly, and has also published a few short stories and middles. Besides music, his other loves include horses, books and the mountains.

Preface

This book has evolved out of my own needs. As a lover of Hindustani classical music, with no formal musical training, I wanted to not only enjoy this art form, but also gain some insight into its nuances and technical aspects in order to appreciate it better. In an attempt to improve my understanding, I went through a number of books but did not, in all these explorations, come across a cogent and easily comprehensible guide that would explain the technical aspects of Hindustani music required for a basic understanding that I had gained in this endeavor, could be put down and transformed into a book.

There is, therefore, nothing original in what is contained in the pages that follow - this book is a mere synthesis of what I have read. It is not possible to acknowledge the debt I owe to several authors on the subject, from each of whom I have culled something. The important books consulted have been listed in the 'Select Bibliography'. For a basic understanding, I relied largely on Pandit Bhatkhande's various works- Bhatkhande Sangit Shashtra - Hindustani Sangit Paddhati (BSS) and Hindustani Sangit Paddhati - Kramik Pustak Mallika (HSP). For raga grammar, I have relied to some extent on Pandit Vinayakrao Patwardhan's Raga Vignyan (RV) and Pandit Manikbua Thakurdas Raga Darshan (RD). As these books are either in Hindi or Marathi, they are not accessible to all music lovers, and further, the pedagogical method adopted in them is not wholly suitable for a beginner. In view of this, I have taken the liberty of paraphrasing the material and reorganizing it within a more systematic structure, beginning with the most basic concepts and building on them so that each topic flows into the next.

Further, although Pandit Bhatkhande's works provide the most extensive material on Hindustani classical music, there were areas where the concepts were not clear or relied on the theoretical position laid down in the old texts or those prevailing at the turn of this century.

These portions have been modified keeping in mind the present position. To resolve such difficulties, I have taken recourse to musicologists who have written more recently, and in English.

There are both advantage and disadvantages in this reliance on Western musicologists who have studied various aspects of Hindustani classical music out of their interest in ethno-musicology. The advantage is that their grounding in Western musical systems allows them to relate Indian concepts and terms to Western terminology, and to provide conceptual clarity and placement within a wider context. On the other hand, most of these studies are academic in their presentation and do not deal with the subject at a level required by the interested listener.

However, in the absence of comparable works by Indian authors, there was no alternative but to refer to these studies in order to clarify doubts. In this context, Slawek's observations in his book, Sitar Techniques in the Nibaddha Form are pertinent:

'One may ask why Indian musicians and musicologists have neglected to develop an analytical approach to music structure. Part of the answer is that music theorists and musicologists in India have persistently avoided to examine the contemporary music of their own times in its own right. Instead, they usually summarized the concepts embodied in previous literature, and then proceeded to mold existent music practices into these concepts, instead of molding the concepts to contemporary music. As a result, one finds an abundance of literature dealing with concepts but no analyses of actual examples of music. On the other hand, musicians talk a lot about music (after all, it is an oral tradition), but rarely write anything about it and never attempt to transcribe a performance for the purpose of analysis (to my knowledge).

 

Contents
Preface 8
Acknowledgements 14
Elements of Music 16
Musical Notes and Consonance 17
The Basis of Melody 21
The Main Scales: Swaras and the Saptak 22
The Drone 26
Register 31
The Tetrachords or Angas 33
Notation 33
The Structure of Melody: The Raga Form 38
That 39
The Raga Form 41
Characteristic Phrase 43
The Vadi and the Samavadi 44
Melodic Movements 47
Ornamental Melodic Figures 48
Tans 49
Ornamental Devices 51
The Structuring of Time 56
Rhythm 56
The Tabla 58
Tal and Theka 63
Pakhawaj Tals and their Thapiyas 68
Some Variations in the Pattern 70
Coming Together of Melody and Tal 72
The Raga: Evolution and Some Related Concepts 76
Raga-s: A Historical Perspective 76
Raga Names: A View into their Origin 81
Raga-s and Moods 82
Rasa Theory 83
Raga-s and Time of Day 85
Principles of Raga Delineation 92
Raga Delineation 92
The Alap 96
Alpatva and Bahutva 99
Avirbhav and Tirobhav 99
Jod Raga-s 100
Forms and Styles of Vocal Performances 108
Dhrupad 109
Dhamar 120
Khayal 120
Tarana 126
Tappa 128
Thumri and Other Associated Forms 129
Dadra 137
Gharana-s in Khayal Gayaki 142
Gwalior 144
Kirana 152
Jaipur Atrauli 160
Agra 170
Patiala 178
Rampur-Sahaswan 183
Mewati 188
Bhendi Bazar 189
Amir Khan 190
Kumar Gandharva 193
The Main String Instruments: Vina, Sitar & Sarod 202
The Vina or Bin 202
The Sitar 205
The Basic Construction of the Sitar 207
Playing of the Sitar 210
Ornaments 213
The Sarod 216
The Structure of the Sarod 219
Instrumental Music: Sitar & Sarod Playing Styles 224
Development of Sitar Playing Styles 224
Sitar Playing in the Present Century 230
Sitar Recitals 233
Sarod Playing Styles 241
Sitar and Sarod Gharana-s 244
Imadkhani 244
Maihar 248
Ghulam Ali Sarod Gharana 252
Other Instruments: The Table, Sarangi, Flute & Santur 258
The Tabla 258
Uthan 259
Peshkar 260
Kayada 260
Rela 260
Gat 260
Tukda 260
Improvisation 261
Tabla Gharana-s 263
The Sarangi 268
Some Frequently Heard Raga-s 282
Yaman 285
Bhupali 291
Malkauns 300
Darbari Kanada 305
Bhairavi 308
Bhairav 310
Jaunpuri 314
Marwa 317
Glossary 324
Select Discography 338
Select Bibliography 371

 

Sample Pages


NAD (Understanding Raga Music)

Item Code:
IDK097
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
1998
Publisher:
ISBN:
8186982078
Size:
8.5" X 5.6"
Pages:
382 (B/W Illus: 11)
Price:
$30.00   Shipping Free
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Back of the Book

This book is perhaps the first comprehensive guide to understanding all the aspects and finer nuances of Hindustani classical music. It is aimed at the serious listener, that is, someone who may not have had any formal lessons himself in this performing art, but who, nevertheless, has picked up an initial interest in listening to classical music, and is, therefore, seeking to know more about its underlying structure, system and traditions. By explaining in a straightforward and extremely readable style, the basic features of Indian music, how time and melody are structured, the main principles of raga delineation and development and the various genres and styles of vocal as well as instrumental performances, the book aims to enhance the serious listener's understanding of Hindustani music, and heighten his appreciation of this art form.

This book includes a glossary of musical terms, a select discography and a select bibliography.

About the Author

Sandeep Bagchee studied in Delhi & Dehra Dun and Delhi, and Joined the Indian Administrative Service on 1973. He has contributed articles to the Economic and political weekly, and has also published a few short stories and middles. Besides music, his other loves include horses, books and the mountains.

Preface

This book has evolved out of my own needs. As a lover of Hindustani classical music, with no formal musical training, I wanted to not only enjoy this art form, but also gain some insight into its nuances and technical aspects in order to appreciate it better. In an attempt to improve my understanding, I went through a number of books but did not, in all these explorations, come across a cogent and easily comprehensible guide that would explain the technical aspects of Hindustani music required for a basic understanding that I had gained in this endeavor, could be put down and transformed into a book.

There is, therefore, nothing original in what is contained in the pages that follow - this book is a mere synthesis of what I have read. It is not possible to acknowledge the debt I owe to several authors on the subject, from each of whom I have culled something. The important books consulted have been listed in the 'Select Bibliography'. For a basic understanding, I relied largely on Pandit Bhatkhande's various works- Bhatkhande Sangit Shashtra - Hindustani Sangit Paddhati (BSS) and Hindustani Sangit Paddhati - Kramik Pustak Mallika (HSP). For raga grammar, I have relied to some extent on Pandit Vinayakrao Patwardhan's Raga Vignyan (RV) and Pandit Manikbua Thakurdas Raga Darshan (RD). As these books are either in Hindi or Marathi, they are not accessible to all music lovers, and further, the pedagogical method adopted in them is not wholly suitable for a beginner. In view of this, I have taken the liberty of paraphrasing the material and reorganizing it within a more systematic structure, beginning with the most basic concepts and building on them so that each topic flows into the next.

Further, although Pandit Bhatkhande's works provide the most extensive material on Hindustani classical music, there were areas where the concepts were not clear or relied on the theoretical position laid down in the old texts or those prevailing at the turn of this century.

These portions have been modified keeping in mind the present position. To resolve such difficulties, I have taken recourse to musicologists who have written more recently, and in English.

There are both advantage and disadvantages in this reliance on Western musicologists who have studied various aspects of Hindustani classical music out of their interest in ethno-musicology. The advantage is that their grounding in Western musical systems allows them to relate Indian concepts and terms to Western terminology, and to provide conceptual clarity and placement within a wider context. On the other hand, most of these studies are academic in their presentation and do not deal with the subject at a level required by the interested listener.

However, in the absence of comparable works by Indian authors, there was no alternative but to refer to these studies in order to clarify doubts. In this context, Slawek's observations in his book, Sitar Techniques in the Nibaddha Form are pertinent:

'One may ask why Indian musicians and musicologists have neglected to develop an analytical approach to music structure. Part of the answer is that music theorists and musicologists in India have persistently avoided to examine the contemporary music of their own times in its own right. Instead, they usually summarized the concepts embodied in previous literature, and then proceeded to mold existent music practices into these concepts, instead of molding the concepts to contemporary music. As a result, one finds an abundance of literature dealing with concepts but no analyses of actual examples of music. On the other hand, musicians talk a lot about music (after all, it is an oral tradition), but rarely write anything about it and never attempt to transcribe a performance for the purpose of analysis (to my knowledge).

 

Contents
Preface 8
Acknowledgements 14
Elements of Music 16
Musical Notes and Consonance 17
The Basis of Melody 21
The Main Scales: Swaras and the Saptak 22
The Drone 26
Register 31
The Tetrachords or Angas 33
Notation 33
The Structure of Melody: The Raga Form 38
That 39
The Raga Form 41
Characteristic Phrase 43
The Vadi and the Samavadi 44
Melodic Movements 47
Ornamental Melodic Figures 48
Tans 49
Ornamental Devices 51
The Structuring of Time 56
Rhythm 56
The Tabla 58
Tal and Theka 63
Pakhawaj Tals and their Thapiyas 68
Some Variations in the Pattern 70
Coming Together of Melody and Tal 72
The Raga: Evolution and Some Related Concepts 76
Raga-s: A Historical Perspective 76
Raga Names: A View into their Origin 81
Raga-s and Moods 82
Rasa Theory 83
Raga-s and Time of Day 85
Principles of Raga Delineation 92
Raga Delineation 92
The Alap 96
Alpatva and Bahutva 99
Avirbhav and Tirobhav 99
Jod Raga-s 100
Forms and Styles of Vocal Performances 108
Dhrupad 109
Dhamar 120
Khayal 120
Tarana 126
Tappa 128
Thumri and Other Associated Forms 129
Dadra 137
Gharana-s in Khayal Gayaki 142
Gwalior 144
Kirana 152
Jaipur Atrauli 160
Agra 170
Patiala 178
Rampur-Sahaswan 183
Mewati 188
Bhendi Bazar 189
Amir Khan 190
Kumar Gandharva 193
The Main String Instruments: Vina, Sitar & Sarod 202
The Vina or Bin 202
The Sitar 205
The Basic Construction of the Sitar 207
Playing of the Sitar 210
Ornaments 213
The Sarod 216
The Structure of the Sarod 219
Instrumental Music: Sitar & Sarod Playing Styles 224
Development of Sitar Playing Styles 224
Sitar Playing in the Present Century 230
Sitar Recitals 233
Sarod Playing Styles 241
Sitar and Sarod Gharana-s 244
Imadkhani 244
Maihar 248
Ghulam Ali Sarod Gharana 252
Other Instruments: The Table, Sarangi, Flute & Santur 258
The Tabla 258
Uthan 259
Peshkar 260
Kayada 260
Rela 260
Gat 260
Tukda 260
Improvisation 261
Tabla Gharana-s 263
The Sarangi 268
Some Frequently Heard Raga-s 282
Yaman 285
Bhupali 291
Malkauns 300
Darbari Kanada 305
Bhairavi 308
Bhairav 310
Jaunpuri 314
Marwa 317
Glossary 324
Select Discography 338
Select Bibliography 371

 

Sample Pages


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