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Indian Music

An Introduction to Raagas

Ratko with sarod The word Raaga has been derived from a Sanskritword,called ranz which means eternal joy,the Raaga has therefore been defined as a combinatietoon of musical sound,adorned with musical language,and measured movement,and having the qualities of delighting the nature and the animal world.But all musical sounds having the properties of delighting are not the Raagas.In the Raag based musical sound there are certain properties which are not found in other musical sounds.The properties are Graha( act of taking),Angsha( main tune),Mondhra(barytone),Madhaya(middel) , Taara ( high pitch),Nyas (control of breathing),Aponyas ( off breathing),Alpatta( less use of any note),Bohutta ( much use of any note),Sampurna( seven notes),Shaadoba(six notes),Owdoba ( five notes) etc.

Each of the Raagas has its own Jaati (caste).there are three Jaatis,such as Sampurna,Shaadab and Owdab.

There are Upa Jaati ( sub-caste) raagas also.Upa-Jaati raagas are formed as a result of free mixing of the raagas beloning to the differnt castes ( Jaati).Each Raagas has its own character which can be dividend into three types such as Shuddha,Saalanka and Sangkeerna.Shuddha Raagas are those which are unmixed and pure.Saalanka Raagas are those which are formed by mixing two Raagas ,Sangkeerna Raagas are those which are formed by mixing three or more Raagas. The Raagas again are dividend on the basis of the performing time.Nature change whith the movement of sun and moon,the Raagas have been dividend accordingly.If the Raagas are rendered at random without taking time into consideration,they do not create desired impact . So some Raagas have been earmarked as raagas to be rendered at daytime,at noon,at afternoon, at evening , at night and a good few have been kept aside exclusively from midnight.The Ragas which are performed from midday to midnight are called as Uttar raagas. There are also season wise Raagas ,such as Maalhaar ( rainy season Raaga) Basant vasant ( spring) etc.

There are certain rules for rendering thr Raagas earmarked for each Prohar ( a measure of time equal to three hours) and these rules have been framed on the basis of the Svara ( tunes).The Raagas of which Rhishab and dhaibat are Komal,are generally performed at Prothom Prohar ( Dawn or twilight). In these Raagas the Shuddha note of Gaandhaar is generally performed at dvitia Prohar ( day or night).The Raagas in which Komal notes of Gaahdhaar and Nikhaad are applied , are generally performed at Madhyanna or Madhyantar ( noon) and Ardharaatra ( midnight) Performing time of a Raaga is also determined on the basis of the application of Madhyam note.Normally in the Raagas in which Shuddha Madhyam is applied ,are rendered at day time , in the Raagas in which teebra Madhyam is applied,are performing at night.Sandhya ( evening_ Raaga can be changed into morning Raaga by changing the Baadeesvar

Name of the Raagas

Abhogi,Adana,Ahir bhairav,Alhaiya bilaval,Asavari,Bageshri,Bahar,basant,Bhairav,Bhatiyar,Bhimpalasi,Bhupal todi,Bibhas,Bihag,Bilaskhani todi,Brindabani sarang,Chandrakauns,Chayanat,Darbari kanada,Desh,Deshi,Dhani,Durga,Gaud malhar, Gaud sarang,Gorakh kalyan,Gujari todi,Gunakri,Hamir,Hansadhvani,Hindol,Jaijaivanti,Jaunpuri,Jhinjhoti,Jog,Jogiya,Kafi,Kamod,Kedar,Khamaj, Kirvani,Lalit,Madhuvanti,Malkauns,Manj khamaj,Maru bihag,Marva,Megh,Miyan ki malhar,Miyan ki todi,Multani,Nayaki kanada,Patdip,Pilu,Puriya,Puriya dhanashri,Puriya kalyan,Purvi,Rageshri,Ramkali,Shahana,Shankara,Shri,Shuddh kalyan,Shuddh sarang , Shyam kalyan,Sindhura,Sohini,Sur malhar,Tilak kamod,Tilang,Yaman.

An Introduction to taalas

Taala is that aspect of musical composition which is concerned with periodical accent and the duration of notes.

The creation of the metre and rhythm by regulation the movement and tempo of music is called taala ( musical time of measure).Taala means the keeping of musical time taala regulates the relative durations of musical sounds. Taala consists of number of units.Each unit is called a maatraa.Taala is therefore an aggregate of the maantraas.The number of maatraas in each taala is fixed.

There are several stooping states (Jhonk) in music .Taala is created by orderly arranging these stooping states.Each stooping state has several units or parts.the units or parts are know as maatraas.Since the stooping state in the sum total of several maatraas and taala is the sum total of maatraas.A maatraas may therefore be called a unit of a taala,maatras are numbered in Arabic numerals.The signs are 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 etc.The structure of a taala depends upon how the maatraas are arranged in checkstaal consists ot two or more units or parts and they are combined into groups.

The starting point of a taal is called Sam.The sam is the first beat of the cycle,whereas the beat which serves as its counterbalance is called khali.

Aabartan means a round or circle.Playing of a taala from beginning to end is called Aabarta.There may be several Aabartas of a taala ,if the taala is rendered from beginning to end for more than one time ,the taala completes more than one Aabarta.The repet performances and the number of repeatation is only noted

There are an estimated 350 talas in North Indian music. They are not as heavily accented as the sam, but serve to divide the tala into smaller sections as do the sam and khali.

Common taalas

Teental: 16 beats, divided 4 + 4 + 4 + 4:

|: dha dhin dhin dha dha dhin dhin dha na tin tin ta ta dhin dhin dha :|

Sitarkhani: 16 beats with 3-3-2 eighth note pattern, divided 4 + 4 + 4 +4:

: dha * ga dhi * ge dha * dha * ga dhi * ge dha * dha * ka ti * ka ta * ta * ga dhi * ge dha * :|

Keharwa 8 beats with 3-3-2 accent pattern, divided 4 + 4:

|: dha ge na ti na ka dhi na :| Dadra 6 beats, divided 3 + 3:

|: dhi dhi na dha tin na :|

Rupak 7 beats, unusual in that sam and khali fall on the same beat, divided 3 + 2 + 2:

|: tin tin na dhin na dhin na :| Jhaptal 10 beats, divided 2 + 3 + 2 + 3:

|: dhi na dhi dhi na ti na dhi dhi na :|

Ektal 12 beats, dvided 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 2:

|: dhin dhin dhage terikita tun na kat ta dhage terikita dhin dhage :|

Deepchandi 14 beats, divided 3 + 4 + 3 + 4:

|: dha dhin * dha dha tin * ta tin * dha dha dhin *:|

Chowtal 12 beats, divided 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 2:

|: dha dha din ta kat dhage din ta tete kata gadi gena :|

Dhammar 14 beats, divided 5 + 2 + 3 + 4:

|: kat dhe te dhe te dha * ge te te te te ta * :|

Ardha Jaital 6 1/2 beats, divided 3 + 2 + 1 1/2

|: tin * na * teri kita dhin * na * dha ge na :|

Upa Dasi 10 1/2 beats, divided 1 1/2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2:

|: tin * ta * teri kita tin * ta teri kita dhin * dha ge na dhin * dha ge na :|

Chartal Ki Sawari 11 beats, dvided 2 + 2 + 2 + 2 + 1 1/2 + 1 1/2:

|: dhin * teri kita dhi * na * tun * na * kat * ta * dhin * na dhin * na :|