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#2687234 - 11/05/17 03:05 AM How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano  
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#2687551 - 11/06/17 08:15 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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I had not heard of but I did not know such a book existed, so I added it to my ever-growing Amazon sheet music wish list.

#2687560 - 11/06/17 09:03 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Because it is already in my house for a few days.For me, as a professional fusion artist, it aroused my interest; finally you can get to know from inside what and how to play on the piano keyboard. However, I faced a number of difficulties, and I would like to hear other opinions.

Last edited by Nahum; 11/06/17 09:04 AM.
#2687599 - 11/06/17 11:53 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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I have a few book on Indian music but not that one. I guess Indian music can be played on any instrument even if it is rare on the piano. I like this though ...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adov4WQqmpM

#2687680 - 11/06/17 05:57 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Yes, I have already seen clips of this pianist still some, even one Russian. In the sense of pianism, none of them satisfy me - if I put them near Keith Jarrett.

https://yadi.sk/d/8D9ZNgfO3PTpnW

What a fantastic exact dynamics and articulation. Apparently, is influence of his gypsy origins.

#2687687 - 11/06/17 06:51 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Keith is the master, but he doesn't really play Indian music, or Hungarian either. He has created his own language that is unique.

#2687745 - 11/07/17 01:08 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Originally Posted by beeboss
Keith is the master, but he doesn't really play Indian music, or Hungarian either. He has created his own language that is unique.
Of course not; but he uses elements of Indian music as fuel for musical development - like In other records, he uses elements of Japanese music; and I like this approach.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mcdc9ctmfo&index=5&list=PLPaztBWnatciUwpn6gnoAbG76dkBe9Clw
Compared with this, I never met the Hungarian elements in his music. smile

#2687768 - 11/07/17 04:55 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Originally Posted by Nahum

Compared with this, I never met the Hungarian elements in his music. smile



Yes, there is no discernible Hungarian influence which is why I am sceptical about the importance of his 'gypsy origins' (his mother was apparently of Hungarian descent). He has never experimented much with unusual time signatures for example. He is about the most diverse musician in the world so he does have a wide range of influences and connection with different styles though.
I love the book of ways, unique.

#2687774 - 11/07/17 05:20 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: beeboss]  
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Originally Posted by beeboss


Yes, there is no discernible Hungarian influence which is why I am sceptical about the importance of his 'gypsy origins' (his mother was apparently of Hungarian descent). .
I
There is a gypsy approach to music (and to life in general): without brakes. I recognized this in KJ music .
Sometimes it's worth using this principle in performence - it can give an excellent result.
By the way, in J Zawinul's family also were gypsies .

Last edited by Nahum; 11/07/17 05:23 AM.
#2688331 - 11/09/17 02:10 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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I'm not interested exactly in the execution of ICM, but in enrichment of my own jazz language with its melodic shapes that impart a peculiar flavor; what I have already tried with Arab and Azerbaijani motives.

#2688363 - 11/09/17 04:28 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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I have spent a bit of time working on Indian rhythms which is always time well spent. I work on Tihai sometimes and play along with iTabla Pandit (which is a great app for iOS). I have been meaning to transcribe some Indian compositions and solos but haven't really got round to it, so many other things to work on!

#2688476 - 11/10/17 02:24 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: beeboss]  
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Originally Posted by beeboss
I have spent a bit of time working on Indian rhythms which is always time well spent. I work on Tihai sometimes and play along with iTabla Pandit (which is a great app for iOS).
If so, to what extent do you own the konnakol .

Quote

I have been meaning to transcribe some Indian compositions and solos but haven't really got round to it, so many other things to work on!

In the tradition of learning ICM the student repeats by singing the phrases he heard . Only after two years he takes the instrument in his hands.

Last edited by Nahum; 11/10/17 08:43 AM.
#2688496 - 11/10/17 05:30 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Originally Posted by Nahum
to what extent do you own the konnakol .

No much really, but like you I am more interested in applying some indian concepts to my own music than really trying to play Indian music. It is far too hard to just to mess around with.



Interesting, it is great to be able to see exactly how he inflects the melody with microtones and embellishments. It makes me want to get a roli.

#2688525 - 11/10/17 09:43 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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You can always join with singing to the series Ragas for children.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlBfNuqqcNI&list=PLcRlkZKA8Dh-QAgM4SbvUHxE9nsPJ2__q

Last edited by Nahum; 11/10/17 09:45 AM.
#2688666 - 11/10/17 06:45 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Hallo Nahum,
I am the author of the book "How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano". You've mentioned that you've faced some difficulties? May I ask what - maybe I can help?
Warm wishes,
John

#2688711 - 11/11/17 12:25 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Ustaad Pitts, have been inspired to study your work in bringing north Indian musik to the pianoforte. have you tried playing the raags on pianos not tuned to equal temperament ? one of our house pianos is tuned to a mild well temperament which might be more compatible to Hindustani tunings. thank you for building a bridge to Indian musik for pianists.

#2688732 - 11/11/17 04:24 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Piano Raags]  
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Originally Posted by Piano Raags
Hallo Nahum,
I am the author of the book "How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano". You've mentioned that you've faced some difficulties? May I ask what - maybe I can help?
Warm wishes,
John

Thank you, John, that you agreed to come here, and I really appreciate this . If I understood correctly, your book is the first on this topic for acoustic pianos in general, and it is natural that it will carry some pioneer's flaws .
To avoid any doubt : I sit with your work with great pleasure; theme of piano comping was for me a completely new , also many other things. I can not even guess what a huge amount of work is invested in this book; and here lies my first difficulty: a huge work to collect a large amount of completely unfamiliar material; and all this is compressed in one book. For my feeling the note text is too tight - also because of the abundance of melismatics and ornaments; and I think that the volume of the submitted material is for more than one book.
My second problem (or maybe the first?) - the lack of audio records at least part of notes examples. It was possible to reduce part of the verbal explanation if there were audio. I think that specific types of melismatics require a separate demonstration .

Originally Posted by huaidongxi
have you tried playing the raags on pianos not tuned to equal temperament ? one of our house pianos is tuned to a mild well temperament which might be more compatible to Hindustani tunings.

This is an interesting point: before many years I recorded on the organ Farfisa with the East music orchestra of Jerusalem radio In organ were built, two maqams containing a quarter tones . A few years later, our central musical instruments store turned to Yamaha with a request to make versions of el. organs containing Arabian scales - because of the great demand ; and, as is known, Yamaha began to produce them. I guess there are such also for Hindustani music.

But the most interesting thing is to create a quarter-tone effect on a normally tuned grand piano. IMO Keith Jarrett is the greatest master of this effect, because he knows the acoustic properties of the piano very deeply . This requires the search for appropriate melismatics (I also listened to Maurice El Medioni , and sometimes I got something ). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9I6kPjjz8EM

#2688736 - 11/11/17 04:54 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Maybe it's not important for all pianists, but I would like to see the glisses and notation for not tempered sounds.


[Linked Image]

Last edited by Nahum; 11/11/17 05:08 AM.
#2688770 - 11/11/17 09:08 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Dear Nahum and Huaidongxi,

thank you for your kind words. I am very happy to try to answer your questions and respond to your comments.

1) the number of notes on the page - Nahum, yes, I understand completely the point you make here. There are certainly pages where ideally there would be fewer notes!
But, as I prepared the book, there was a balance to be struck: as raags are part-improvised, I felt (and still feel) it was also important to have as much of the material visible as possible. For example, while improvising the pianist needs to have the gat there still, to go back to at various times after each improvised interlude. And also the pianist needs to see some tihais and layakari and chand and tan, and also some suggested ways of improvising. Really one might want 4 or 5 pages visible at any one time, if you are playing an extended jhor section, with different sections of the gat, different variations etc etc. If I am playing for an hour in the evening, you want not to keep on having to turn forwards and backwards. So I always aimed in the book to have as much material as possible for each section of the raag visible without page-turning - and yes, I acknowledge this sometimes means that the notation is more cramped than I would like. The book is designed for pianists with one piano - to be enjoyed by as many pianists as possible (in their homes) - and as both hands are basically always engaged, page turns need to be as few as possible.

2) Audio examples.
Since writing the book I have recorded a few examples taken from the first five raags in the book - https://www.youtube.com/user/intenselypleasant
This is not an exhaustive list of excerpts, but I hope it should be enough to assist any pianists using the book. (Sorry, there is no mention of these in the book, because although I always intended to do some audio examples, I wasn't sure when I would find time! They are linked to from the book's website though).

3) the shruti - the 22-division of the octave: I agree, these are really interesting. [Thanks for the link to the Maurice El Medioni video, by the way, it's absolutely fascinating!].
I have touched on tuning in the book, but it is really outside the scope of the book.
Here is why:
the biggest point I would make is that the book is designed for normal pianos; and sadly shruti just aren't possible - unless you have a piano that you can retune, like huaidongxi mentions in his post above, or have a 'Fluid Piano' (google it if you haven't come across them - a brilliant invention - I wish I had one!). So as a concept it was not pertinent to my book aimed at a broad spread of pianists.
Secondly, although it is one of the first things that people think of when discussing Indian music, I think it is possible to overstate their importance. The octave is divided into 12, as western music, with scales of 7 notes very similar in concept to western modes, but with optional tunings for five of those seven notes (everything other than tonic and dominant). Those tunings add colour, so in that sense they are a characteristic ingredient to Indian music. However, of all the ingredients at the core of Indian music, I would put shruti down the list behind the free pulse, slow improvisatory exploration of a scale (whatever that particular scale might happen to be), the drone, the talas, the tihai, the layakari, the chand, the meend (also not possible on a piano) etc etc. And in the book I have tried to create colour in other ways - partly the constant use of the sustain pedal and the overtones produced, partly the choice of additional drone notes which in my book often include some of the colour of the scale used (ie the typical PSSS, but with others added). Shruti are an ingredient that is not changeable on an acoustic piano, but Indian Classical Music is incredibly rich, and there is much to explore and enjoy even without some of those particular colours.

Warm wishes!

#2688937 - 11/12/17 05:15 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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John, I had no doubt that you put a lot of thoughts into your work. I'm also sure that you know the topic of Indian ragas deeply, otherwise you can't write a serious work. However, I represent the side of the layman(in ICM), who first saw in the musical notation the genre of musical culture, which he is very interested in ; and sometimes I feel I'm lost.
When I see an unfamiliar language, I try to see the words and the whole sentence - the universal forms of language phrasing. In this case, even my knowledge of the analysis of musical forms does not help in the recognition of phrasing by eye; although the sequences are visible immediately. I have a huge very long experience in transcriptions from recordings of jazz improvisations; this fills the meaning of each written note. Today, most jazz and blues textbooks contain CD; and combination of hearing and sight is a powerful tool for learning the desired music.
John , I would like to present you my transcription of the beginning of solo of Ravi Shankar:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmOIh1lqWzc

[Linked Image]

What is your opinion about this?

#2689329 - 11/13/17 11:17 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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I feel like I am being trolled wink

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[Linked Image]

Last edited by Whizbang; 11/13/17 11:20 PM.

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#2689366 - 11/14/17 05:25 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Thanks, Whizzbang, I was of course conscious of this throughout the writing of the book, and couldn't resist a nod to Scott Joplin in raag 24... smile

#2689370 - 11/14/17 05:49 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Dear Nahum,
thank you for this feedback - that is very helpful. I did consider including an example of a fully notated 'composed alaap', and from your feedback it may have been the wrong decision not to include one! Your transcription of Ravi Shankar is great, and very useful for capturing the essence of the decoration and the gradual 'unveiling of the notes'. Here is the beginning of my Raag Gezellig (a through-composed duet written before the book): [Linked Image]
https://youtu.be/XKEI9vGuxI0?t=20s
In 'real' raags (and in the book) the alaap is of course improvised, and I hope that the instructions give a lot of guidance about how to approach that. But yes, perhaps a fully notated composed example would have been useful too. (Something for a second edition!) In the meantime, I hope that the recorded examples on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgEeoXAemRDDvIM_zNjZmkA will give a flavour of it.

Warm wishes! (And please keep any other feedback coming - I welcome it!)

#2689461 - 11/14/17 01:55 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Thank you very much, John! Yes, it's much easier to understand visually boundaries of the waves of phrasing.
I watch the great Kaushiki Chakrabarty; and although I do not understand a word, but I feel the syntax - this is the most important for meaningful improvisation. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FuW2ZcgOmA

#2690156 - 11/17/17 01:38 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: beeboss]  
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Originally Posted by beeboss
Keith is the master, but he doesn't really play Indian music, or Hungarian either. He has created his own language that is unique.
I found in above-mentioned Jarrett's recording in 4:17 a phrase similar to the one given in the book about ragas (Raag Hemvati - alaap, p. 71).

#2690704 - 11/19/17 07:13 PM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Well I just ordered a copy. When I read on the back cover a reference to "jazz noodling" I thought, yeah, some of what Jarrett does is diminished scale noodling. Maybe some of it is more irregular intervals like say could be found in certain North Indian Classical music. Just one more musical tool.

So I figure if I get a couple of new ideas, without having to learn a whole new system of music, the book's worth it. I recently plunked out, by ear, "If I Were A Rich Man". The notes used in the harmonized main beginning melody must be from some eastern mode. Jarrett once said in an interview that he often doesn't know what things are called in the (let's say) music theory world. They are combinations of sounds - someone comes along later and gives them names. Like "line cliche" in the James Bond theme. I just thought of it as a chromatic ascending 5th. Someone came along and gave it a name.

#2690756 - Yesterday at 03:48 AM Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: indigo_dave]  
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It is often said about the effect of Mozart; but who speaks about the effect of raga?

http://www.jhrr.org/article.asp?issn=2394-2010;year=2015;volume=2;issue=3;spage=103;epage=107;aulast=Nagarajan

The Tel Aviv University once conducted an experiment on students exploring the types of physical influence on people of four music genres : Bach, romantic music, rock and Indian music. According to the students' answers, each kind of music caused a reaction in another part of body; but Indian music acted on the body completely - from top to bottom. I'm attracted by color of scales , special types of melodic tensions and melodic intonations, which are completely unlike blues; nevertheless have elements of pentatonic, which allows us to build bridges in polystylistic music.




Last edited by Nahum; Yesterday at 03:54 AM.
#2690940 - 14 hours ago Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: Nahum]  
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Nahum, just posted a question on the digital/synths/keyboards forum to see if any traditional Indian instruments are available on digital keyboard menus. since you work with 'world musiks' you might know what's available. dankon

#2690956 - 11 hours ago Re: How to Play Indian Sitar Raags on a Piano [Re: huaidongxi]  
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Originally Posted by huaidongxi
Nahum, just posted a question on the digital/synths/keyboards forum to see if any traditional Indian instruments are available on digital keyboard menus. since you work with 'world musiks' you might know what's available. dankon
Today in each solid keyboard there is a set of sounds of Indian instruments; the differences only in their quality. Specific keyboards for Indian music are worth searching in India itself.
Here's some instruments :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qlYLYBZXxJg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pfxpL3z4uq8

This is for Arabic music; analogy for the Indian music I didn't find :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gcgTCrflrJk


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