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Books > Performing Arts > Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music (Raags, Taals, Moods, Rasas, Genres and Gharanas) (With C.D)
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Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music (Raags, Taals, Moods, Rasas, Genres and Gharanas) (With C.D)
Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music (Raags, Taals, Moods, Rasas, Genres and Gharanas) (With C.D)
Description
Back of the book

This book is not just for the uninitiated music lovers but can be a great reference book even for the knowledgeable.

Of immense benefit to those who want to take the first step in making Hindustani classical music an inalienable part of their lives

About the book

Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music, is a book for people interested in Hindustani Classical music, people who like to listen to such music and would be glad for some information about it, people who are looking for an easy-read book explaining this music, people who feel that a little more knowledge about this music is required to enjoy it fully and for people who do not really want to know the theoretical or technical details but would be glad for a friendly book to understand the nuances of Hindustani Classical Music.

The book shall be of immense benefit to those who want to take the first step in making Hindustani classical music an inalienable part of their lives. Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music is organized for extremely easy understanding of the terms, the music, the genres, the gharanas, and the concerts. The details are interesting, the anecdotes adding the human touch. A CD illustrating the finer points of the music accompanies the book.

About the author

Hema has worked within media and communications for well over two decades in a multitude of roles. Her literary experience includes a book co-authored with Dr. Prachee Sathe, Head ICU, Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune (India) on intensive care and critical medical cases. This book was translated into Marathi and won the prestigious ‘Maharashtra Sahitya Sanskrit Mandal’ award in the Vidnyan Lekhan Category, in 2008. She has also translated a Marathi book on Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj into English, which is now in its fifth years of publication.

Hindustani Classical Music has been Hema’s lifelong passion. She is an avid listener of classical music and has gained her knowledge on the subject by extensive research, reading music literature, interacting with top music scholars, and talking to other classical music enthusiasts. Her interest in writing this book is to share her knowledge and passion and in turn help others interested in music to enjoy it fully, with a good understanding of its roots and background.

Hema has a Bachelors in Science, a Masters in Chemistry, a Masters in Fine Arts and a Doctorate in Communication. She lives and works from Pune, India and can be contacted on:

Foreword

The existence of music is as old as that of the Universe. The Earth emerged from the Sun, and the sound produced then was the first sound ever produced on Earth.

Indian philosophy has the conviction that Omkaar is the first sound produced in the Universe. The Earth came into being from this Omkaar, or ‘a’+ ‘uh’ + ‘m’. Hence we find that the Aadi-Naad (the original sound) Omkaar is often sung in Indian music.

Nature is filled with a variety of beautiful sounds, like the chirping of the birds, the sound of the bubbling brooks, the passage of air through the forests. This creates different types of sound which are musically rich. Certain birds produce sounds which render a feeling of the complete rhythmic cycle, and an illusion of the ‘Padhant’ of Teentaal is created. However, we cannot address it as Teentaal, in the true sense of the term. Although these sounds which we hear in nature do have a musical appeal, and comprise the raw material for music, they do not comprise music.

Music is the art of sound, but it is not the art of this type of natural sound. Music is the art of cultured sound. Sounds that exist naturally are cultured by humans and thus converted into music.

Musical sounds do not have exact meaning. ‘sa re gaa maa…’ are the sounds with different pitches, but have no musical meaning. It is only when they are put in some combination / permutation, that they are rendered a musical meaning. Thus man collected different sounds from nature, arranged them in a way he liked, thus rendering it a meaning, which subsequently came to be called as music. This meaning is passed on from ancestor to posterity. This is how music became a part of our culture.

In ancient times, man imitated the sounds of certain birds and animals for his enjoyment, and gradually attached words to them, and thus converted the sounds to music. The extempore expressions of joys and sorrows that man mixed with notes and words may have been the origin of the folk- music and tribal music. The folk-music is the origin of the present-day art/ sophisticated music.

Aryans used music for the prayers of ‘Panch Mahabhootas’, which is the origin of the Vedic music ‘Saam-Gaayan’. While this began with three notes, and then four notes, it was ultimately converted into the octave of seven notes. Rhythm has evolved with the notes of Indian music, and is an inseparable part of it.

Indian Music has a long tradition of more than five thousand years. The remains from Mohenjo Daro and Harappa revel that music was an inseparable part of our culture. The journey from Saam-Gaayan to Prabandha-Gaayan, through Dhrupad-Gaayan, to the present-day Khayal-Gaayan is a long journey of more than five thousand years of music. In the ancient times music was treated as the art of entertainment, but it was the art of salvation.

The above couplet states that there are four goals being dharma (way of life), artha (economic needs), kama (fulfillment of desire), and the ultimate goal of moksha (salvation). The belief that music is said to be the means to fulfill these goals was in vogue for centuries in the Indian subcontinent. However, as society changes, its values also change. Accordingly, now music is not treated as a path to salvation, but has become the art of entertainment. The sadhana (medium) has become the ‘sadhya’ (goal). Entertainment is a temporary phase, and while we get entertained by the ‘swar’ and ‘taal’, ultimately it leads us to ‘mosksha’. Sages thought of music very profoundly, since they could hear the microtones (shrutis) within the notes. Our music is distinct from that of the rest of the world, since this energy of the sages has been incorporated in our music.

Melody-music has the microtones, which have the potential to explore the innermost recesses of the heart, which is why this music directly reaches the heart, and takes us to the celestial state. Thus learning music is not simply taking lesions within the classroom, but the transformation of the Indian philosophy of the attainment of moksha. In the ancient Gurukul, music was taught to the pupil who had the potential to attain to salvation by means of music.

The above quotation has been misinterpreted in the sense of the entertainment value of the Raga. In actuality, it should mean ‘to enter into a trance, for the devotion of God.’’

If practicing Naad-music-is like worshipping Gods Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara, means that they are music! This was the purpose of undergoing the ‘discipline’ of music.

In today’s commercial age, this entire meaning is lost, and we hear music just for passing time and showing our sophisticated taste, and not to understand its real meaning. At such a time, Hema Hirlekar has written a book on music to understand music at least in its true sense of entertainment.

Generally speaking, the music all over the world is similar. However, in actuality, it differs. In some parts of the world, we have the pentatonic scale, while in others we have the septatonic scale or even an octave. To enjoy the music of any part of the world, we would do well to understand it first. This desire of Dr. Hirlekar is seen through her book. Dr. Hirlekar liked music from her childhood. She attended many music concerts in her early days, and failed to be entertained. Gradually, she started reading books, and began discussing the nature of Indian music, and thus overcame her problem. This inspired her to prevent others from facing the same problem, and inspired her present writings. She wrote many articles in the English newspapers to understand the performance of Indian music better. The readers were enlightened, and appreciated her. This further inspired her to write her present book.

In reality, music is not understandable in the complete sense of the term. Smt. Hirlekar wishes to be a guide to the eternal journey towards the understanding and enjoyment of music. She follows a similar approach as the tourist guide who directs the tourists to and shows the spots of his liking. She talks about gharanas, baanis, music instrumrnts, definitions, etc. This book is not a textbook which can be read by the students of music, but it is certainly a book for the raw listener to appreciate music more fully. The salient feature of this book is that it is written with crystal-clear thinking, in a very simple and lucid language. She never claims to be a musicologist, but she is entitled to claim herself a ready-reckoner to understand a few complicated phenomena of music. At some places, she tries to make her own definitions of musical terms, which are very good, and may be adapted as definitions in music textbooks.

However, at some places, the reader may feel an unwanted account of music is given. This book will also prove to be a pocket-guide for alien listeners, and may help the inquisitive listener to arouse curiosity in music. In spite of her expertise in corporate communication, she has written such a beautiful account of music, and this definitely deserves applause.

Introduction

The world of Hindustani music is boundless, infinite, unsurpassed, and awe-inspiring science. According to me, to introduce this science, the biggest challenge-almost like lifting Lord Shiva’s bow- is from where to begin? This is because the word ‘sangeet’ means, ‘’Geetam, vadyan tatha nrutyam cha trayam sangeetmuchyateh’’. As per this saying, ‘singing, playing instruments and dancing’ are the three qualities together that form sangeet that is Godlike. While explaining such a God, innumerable ruchas in Vedas go on to describe Him, but beyond a point even the Vedas surrender saying ‘Neti, Neti’. That is exactly what can happen while describing Music and its three elements.

Hema Hirlekar has taken up such a challenge for the sake of music lovers. And she has successfully tried to capture vocal and instrumental music with pertinent and appropriate words and that too in English. She has aptly named the book, nuances of Hindustani Classical Music. The purpose of her book is to enlighten an interested reader about the nuances of this music, about how to appreciate and understand the science behind this divine music. She has provided all this information in her flowing and eloquent language for Indian readers as well as interested foreigners. In fact I will even say that this book is not just for the uninitiated music lovers but can be a great reference book even for the knowledgeable. The reason for this is that the author has distilled the essence of Hindustani music and has offered it to music lovers on a platter.

The material that she has tackled in this book is presented in a concise yet comprehensive manner. And that is absolutely right, as her aim is to introduce the subject within the boundaries of the book in a way that can enable an uninitiated person to appreciate and enjoy Hindustani music. The main subjects in the book-dhrupad-dhamar, khyal, raag development and expansion, and its nuances such as bandish, gat, upaj, rasa-aavishkar, taal, tihai- are such that may at first glance seem a little difficult, but with the help of the book a learner could soon become a connoisseur.

To be frank, is it possible to bind the sweetness of sugar, the deliciousness of honey, the ambrosia of amla in words? One has to experience the taste firsthand. Only then can one empathise with the words! That was my condition while reading this book. That is because any subject need not be understood immediately. Otherwise in this world did knowledge come first or a scholar? Did a hen come first or an egg? That is the case with this science of music. Appreciation of music and its science go hand in hand.

That’s why uninitiated readers when reading the book will gradually acquaint themselves with the subject and then slowly learn to appreciate the beauty. That is the endeavour of the author at the end of her well-researched treatise. She has explained difficult concepts in such easy and flowing language that ‘Hats off!’ For example this is how she explains ‘Merukhand’ –a complex idea-so effortlessly.

Ustad Amir Khan’s gayaki was a synergetic music language, a fusion of the Jaipur, Kirana and Bhendi Bazazr gharana styles along with the central theme of the Merukhand gayaki. This gayaki is very interesting and extremely difficult to master. ‘Meru’ means fixed or steady; and ‘Khand’ means section. In the present context, ‘Meru’ means fixed swars (notes) in a given raag. These notes can be arranged in many different ways using the theory of permutation and combinations. If there are only two swars, e.g., sa and re in a given raag, only two combinations sa-re and re-sa are possible. If there are three, then six different combinations are obtained. Proceeding thus, for seven notes in a raag such as Bhairavi, 5040 combination (seven factorial) could be written down mathematically. Of course not all are sung at one time. Musicians aspiring to learn this ‘Merukhand’ – gayaki are trained to remember such combinations by heat and study these structures constantly. He or she is also trained to select a few of these combinations during performance and make a beautiful design of the composition within the framework of the chosen raga.

Similarly she has kept up a light and friendly atmosphere while describing various gharanas, their histories, recalling interesting anecdotes and stories. For example while talking about the Delhi Gharana she says:

The Delhi Gharana of Hindustani music traces its origins to the time of the Delhi Sultanate. According to its current practitioners, there were two brothers during the time of Sultan Shamsuddin Iltutmish (1210-36)-Mir Hasan Sawant and Mir Bula Kalawant –one of whom was deaf and the other was dumb as well as deaf. The legend goes that they were called to court by the Sultan to sing in front of him! Hazrat Moinuddin Chishti Ajmeri found out about the plight of the two brothers and prayed for them and they were cured and got the gift of music from the Almighty and began singing beautifully. Hasan Sawant had a Sufi inclination and thus began singing qawwali and his tradition came to be known as the qawwal Bachhe Gharana. Bula kalawant became a court singer and his tradition came to be known as the Delhi Gharana. It is thus to be kept in mind that there exist inextricable links between the qawwal Bachhe Gharana and what later came to be called the Delhi Gharana both in terms of familial/ disciple relations and stylistic affiliations and repertoire to this day,

Due to these well told stories this book does not become a studious guide but becomes a friend in the quest to understand music. Even when talking of light music the author says, ‘’Ghazal has two angles.The poetry and the music.’’ And goes on to explain ghazal unlike anyone else.

I think the last chapter, How to enjoy Hindustani Classical Music? Should be read first. This will enable the reader/ connoisseur to understand and know the way to go about learning to appreciate such music.

The CD that is provided along with the book explains the nuances to the music lover-not just to the unversed but equally to the knowledgeable!

Contents

Slow Unveiling-Vilambit1
Elements of Hindustani Music6
The Basic-Raag Aspect6
Shrutis-Microtones6
Swar-Note6
Gram and Murchhana10
Raag11
Thaat (Scale)12
Jaati-Type12
Vaadi and Samvaadi Swars13
Anuvaadi and wivaadi13
Saptak13
Varna14
Pakad14
Chalan14
Alaap15
Musical Ornaments- Alankar15
Gaan Kriya16
Meend:16
Kan17
Andolan:18
Gamak:18
Kampan (or Kampit):19
Kampan, Gamak, Andolan Compared:19
Khatka/Gitkadi21
Zamzama21
Murki21
Taan21
The Basic-The Taal Aspect22
Taal23
Theka24
Vibhag or Khand24
Aavartan and Sum25
Laya- Tempo25
Dugun26
Tigun27
Chougun27
Chhand27
Layakari27
Sargam28
Raag Vistaar the Concept of Raag29
Rasa Aavishkar Raag Aesthetics39
The Unfolding of a Raag78
Geners of Hindustani Art Music86
Khayal103
Light Classsical Music142
Instrumental Art Music160
How to Enjoy Classical Music?197

Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music (Raags, Taals, Moods, Rasas, Genres and Gharanas) (With C.D)

Item Code:
NAF114
Cover:
Paperback
Edition:
2010
Publisher:
ISBN:
9788178062068
Language:
English
Size:
10.0 inch X 6.5 inch
Pages:
223
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 400 gms
Price:
$27.50
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$22.00   Shipping Free
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Back of the book

This book is not just for the uninitiated music lovers but can be a great reference book even for the knowledgeable.

Of immense benefit to those who want to take the first step in making Hindustani classical music an inalienable part of their lives

About the book

Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music, is a book for people interested in Hindustani Classical music, people who like to listen to such music and would be glad for some information about it, people who are looking for an easy-read book explaining this music, people who feel that a little more knowledge about this music is required to enjoy it fully and for people who do not really want to know the theoretical or technical details but would be glad for a friendly book to understand the nuances of Hindustani Classical Music.

The book shall be of immense benefit to those who want to take the first step in making Hindustani classical music an inalienable part of their lives. Nuances of Hindustani Classical Music is organized for extremely easy understanding of the terms, the music, the genres, the gharanas, and the concerts. The details are interesting, the anecdotes adding the human touch. A CD illustrating the finer points of the music accompanies the book.

About the author

Hema has worked within media and communications for well over two decades in a multitude of roles. Her literary experience includes a book co-authored with Dr. Prachee Sathe, Head ICU, Ruby Hall Clinic, Pune (India) on intensive care and critical medical cases. This book was translated into Marathi and won the prestigious ‘Maharashtra Sahitya Sanskrit Mandal’ award in the Vidnyan Lekhan Category, in 2008. She has also translated a Marathi book on Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj into English, which is now in its fifth years of publication.

Hindustani Classical Music has been Hema’s lifelong passion. She is an avid listener of classical music and has gained her knowledge on the subject by extensive research, reading music literature, interacting with top music scholars, and talking to other classical music enthusiasts. Her interest in writing this book is to share her knowledge and passion and in turn help others interested in music to enjoy it fully, with a good understanding of its roots and background.

Hema has a Bachelors in Science, a Masters in Chemistry, a Masters in Fine Arts and a Doctorate in Communication. She lives and works from Pune, India and can be contacted on:

Foreword

The existence of music is as old as that of the Universe. The Earth emerged from the Sun, and the sound produced then was the first sound ever produced on Earth.

Indian philosophy has the conviction that Omkaar is the first sound produced in the Universe. The Earth came into being from this Omkaar, or ‘a’+ ‘uh’ + ‘m’. Hence we find that the Aadi-Naad (the original sound) Omkaar is often sung in Indian music.

Nature is filled with a variety of beautiful sounds, like the chirping of the birds, the sound of the bubbling brooks, the passage of air through the forests. This creates different types of sound which are musically rich. Certain birds produce sounds which render a feeling of the complete rhythmic cycle, and an illusion of the ‘Padhant’ of Teentaal is created. However, we cannot address it as Teentaal, in the true sense of the term. Although these sounds which we hear in nature do have a musical appeal, and comprise the raw material for music, they do not comprise music.

Music is the art of sound, but it is not the art of this type of natural sound. Music is the art of cultured sound. Sounds that exist naturally are cultured by humans and thus converted into music.

Musical sounds do not have exact meaning. ‘sa re gaa maa…’ are the sounds with different pitches, but have no musical meaning. It is only when they are put in some combination / permutation, that they are rendered a musical meaning. Thus man collected different sounds from nature, arranged them in a way he liked, thus rendering it a meaning, which subsequently came to be called as music. This meaning is passed on from ancestor to posterity. This is how music became a part of our culture.

In ancient times, man imitated the sounds of certain birds and animals for his enjoyment, and gradually attached words to them, and thus converted the sounds to music. The extempore expressions of joys and sorrows that man mixed with notes and words may have been the origin of the folk- music and tribal music. The folk-music is the origin of the present-day art/ sophisticated music.

Aryans used music for the prayers of ‘Panch Mahabhootas’, which is the origin of the Vedic music ‘Saam-Gaayan’. While this began with three notes, and then four notes, it was ultimately converted into the octave of seven notes. Rhythm has evolved with the notes of Indian music, and is an inseparable part of it.

Indian Music has a long tradition of more than five thousand years. The remains from Mohenjo Daro and Harappa revel that music was an inseparable part of our culture. The journey from Saam-Gaayan to Prabandha-Gaayan, through Dhrupad-Gaayan, to the present-day Khayal-Gaayan is a long journey of more than five thousand years of music. In the ancient times music was treated as the art of entertainment, but it was the art of salvation.

The above couplet states that there are four goals being dharma (way of life), artha (economic needs), kama (fulfillment of desire), and the ultimate goal of moksha (salvation). The belief that music is said to be the means to fulfill these goals was in vogue for centuries in the Indian subcontinent. However, as society changes, its values also change. Accordingly, now music is not treated as a path to salvation, but has become the art of entertainment. The sadhana (medium) has become the ‘sadhya’ (goal). Entertainment is a temporary phase, and while we get entertained by the ‘swar’ and ‘taal’, ultimately it leads us to ‘mosksha’. Sages thought of music very profoundly, since they could hear the microtones (shrutis) within the notes. Our music is distinct from that of the rest of the world, since this energy of the sages has been incorporated in our music.

Melody-music has the microtones, which have the potential to explore the innermost recesses of the heart, which is why this music directly reaches the heart, and takes us to the celestial state. Thus learning music is not simply taking lesions within the classroom, but the transformation of the Indian philosophy of the attainment of moksha. In the ancient Gurukul, music was taught to the pupil who had the potential to attain to salvation by means of music.

The above quotation has been misinterpreted in the sense of the entertainment value of the Raga. In actuality, it should mean ‘to enter into a trance, for the devotion of God.’’

If practicing Naad-music-is like worshipping Gods Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara, means that they are music! This was the purpose of undergoing the ‘discipline’ of music.

In today’s commercial age, this entire meaning is lost, and we hear music just for passing time and showing our sophisticated taste, and not to understand its real meaning. At such a time, Hema Hirlekar has written a book on music to understand music at least in its true sense of entertainment.

Generally speaking, the music all over the world is similar. However, in actuality, it differs. In some parts of the world, we have the pentatonic scale, while in others we have the septatonic scale or even an octave. To enjoy the music of any part of the world, we would do well to understand it first. This desire of Dr. Hirlekar is seen through her book. Dr. Hirlekar liked music from her childhood. She attended many music concerts in her early days, and failed to be entertained. Gradually, she started reading books, and began discussing the nature of Indian music, and thus overcame her problem. This inspired her to prevent others from facing the same problem, and inspired her present writings. She wrote many articles in the English newspapers to understand the performance of Indian music better. The readers were enlightened, and appreciated her. This further inspired her to write her present book.

In reality, music is not understandable in the complete sense of the term. Smt. Hirlekar wishes to be a guide to the eternal journey towards the understanding and enjoyment of music. She follows a similar approach as the tourist guide who directs the tourists to and shows the spots of his liking. She talks about gharanas, baanis, music instrumrnts, definitions, etc. This book is not a textbook which can be read by the students of music, but it is certainly a book for the raw listener to appreciate music more fully. The salient feature of this book is that it is written with crystal-clear thinking, in a very simple and lucid language. She never claims to be a musicologist, but she is entitled to claim herself a ready-reckoner to understand a few complicated phenomena of music. At some places, she tries to make her own definitions of musical terms, which are very good, and may be adapted as definitions in music textbooks.

However, at some places, the reader may feel an unwanted account of music is given. This book will also prove to be a pocket-guide for alien listeners, and may help the inquisitive listener to arouse curiosity in music. In spite of her expertise in corporate communication, she has written such a beautiful account of music, and this definitely deserves applause.

Introduction

The world of Hindustani music is boundless, infinite, unsurpassed, and awe-inspiring science. According to me, to introduce this science, the biggest challenge-almost like lifting Lord Shiva’s bow- is from where to begin? This is because the word ‘sangeet’ means, ‘’Geetam, vadyan tatha nrutyam cha trayam sangeetmuchyateh’’. As per this saying, ‘singing, playing instruments and dancing’ are the three qualities together that form sangeet that is Godlike. While explaining such a God, innumerable ruchas in Vedas go on to describe Him, but beyond a point even the Vedas surrender saying ‘Neti, Neti’. That is exactly what can happen while describing Music and its three elements.

Hema Hirlekar has taken up such a challenge for the sake of music lovers. And she has successfully tried to capture vocal and instrumental music with pertinent and appropriate words and that too in English. She has aptly named the book, nuances of Hindustani Classical Music. The purpose of her book is to enlighten an interested reader about the nuances of this music, about how to appreciate and understand the science behind this divine music. She has provided all this information in her flowing and eloquent language for Indian readers as well as interested foreigners. In fact I will even say that this book is not just for the uninitiated music lovers but can be a great reference book even for the knowledgeable. The reason for this is that the author has distilled the essence of Hindustani music and has offered it to music lovers on a platter.

The material that she has tackled in this book is presented in a concise yet comprehensive manner. And that is absolutely right, as her aim is to introduce the subject within the boundaries of the book in a way that can enable an uninitiated person to appreciate and enjoy Hindustani music. The main subjects in the book-dhrupad-dhamar, khyal, raag development and expansion, and its nuances such as bandish, gat, upaj, rasa-aavishkar, taal, tihai- are such that may at first glance seem a little difficult, but with the help of the book a learner could soon become a connoisseur.

To be frank, is it possible to bind the sweetness of sugar, the deliciousness of honey, the ambrosia of amla in words? One has to experience the taste firsthand. Only then can one empathise with the words! That was my condition while reading this book. That is because any subject need not be understood immediately. Otherwise in this world did knowledge come first or a scholar? Did a hen come first or an egg? That is the case with this science of music. Appreciation of music and its science go hand in hand.

That’s why uninitiated readers when reading the book will gradually acquaint themselves with the subject and then slowly learn to appreciate the beauty. That is the endeavour of the author at the end of her well-researched treatise. She has explained difficult concepts in such easy and flowing language that ‘Hats off!’ For example this is how she explains ‘Merukhand’ –a complex idea-so effortlessly.

Ustad Amir Khan’s gayaki was a synergetic music language, a fusion of the Jaipur, Kirana and Bhendi Bazazr gharana styles along with the central theme of the Merukhand gayaki. This gayaki is very interesting and extremely difficult to master. ‘Meru’ means fixed or steady; and ‘Khand’ means section. In the present context, ‘Meru’ means fixed swars (notes) in a given raag. These notes can be arranged in many different ways using the theory of permutation and combinations. If there are only two swars, e.g., sa and re in a given raag, only two combinations sa-re and re-sa are possible. If there are three, then six different combinations are obtained. Proceeding thus, for seven notes in a raag such as Bhairavi, 5040 combination (seven factorial) could be written down mathematically. Of course not all are sung at one time. Musicians aspiring to learn this ‘Merukhand’ – gayaki are trained to remember such combinations by heat and study these structures constantly. He or she is also trained to select a few of these combinations during performance and make a beautiful design of the composition within the framework of the chosen raga.

Similarly she has kept up a light and friendly atmosphere while describing various gharanas, their histories, recalling interesting anecdotes and stories. For example while talking about the Delhi Gharana she says:

The Delhi Gharana of Hindustani music traces its origins to the time of the Delhi Sultanate. According to its current practitioners, there were two brothers during the time of Sultan Shamsuddin Iltutmish (1210-36)-Mir Hasan Sawant and Mir Bula Kalawant –one of whom was deaf and the other was dumb as well as deaf. The legend goes that they were called to court by the Sultan to sing in front of him! Hazrat Moinuddin Chishti Ajmeri found out about the plight of the two brothers and prayed for them and they were cured and got the gift of music from the Almighty and began singing beautifully. Hasan Sawant had a Sufi inclination and thus began singing qawwali and his tradition came to be known as the qawwal Bachhe Gharana. Bula kalawant became a court singer and his tradition came to be known as the Delhi Gharana. It is thus to be kept in mind that there exist inextricable links between the qawwal Bachhe Gharana and what later came to be called the Delhi Gharana both in terms of familial/ disciple relations and stylistic affiliations and repertoire to this day,

Due to these well told stories this book does not become a studious guide but becomes a friend in the quest to understand music. Even when talking of light music the author says, ‘’Ghazal has two angles.The poetry and the music.’’ And goes on to explain ghazal unlike anyone else.

I think the last chapter, How to enjoy Hindustani Classical Music? Should be read first. This will enable the reader/ connoisseur to understand and know the way to go about learning to appreciate such music.

The CD that is provided along with the book explains the nuances to the music lover-not just to the unversed but equally to the knowledgeable!

Contents

Slow Unveiling-Vilambit1
Elements of Hindustani Music6
The Basic-Raag Aspect6
Shrutis-Microtones6
Swar-Note6
Gram and Murchhana10
Raag11
Thaat (Scale)12
Jaati-Type12
Vaadi and Samvaadi Swars13
Anuvaadi and wivaadi13
Saptak13
Varna14
Pakad14
Chalan14
Alaap15
Musical Ornaments- Alankar15
Gaan Kriya16
Meend:16
Kan17
Andolan:18
Gamak:18
Kampan (or Kampit):19
Kampan, Gamak, Andolan Compared:19
Khatka/Gitkadi21
Zamzama21
Murki21
Taan21
The Basic-The Taal Aspect22
Taal23
Theka24
Vibhag or Khand24
Aavartan and Sum25
Laya- Tempo25
Dugun26
Tigun27
Chougun27
Chhand27
Layakari27
Sargam28
Raag Vistaar the Concept of Raag29
Rasa Aavishkar Raag Aesthetics39
The Unfolding of a Raag78
Geners of Hindustani Art Music86
Khayal103
Light Classsical Music142
Instrumental Art Music160
How to Enjoy Classical Music?197
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