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nicneufeld

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Reply with quote  #16 
I'm in Kansas City, which is a modestly sized metropolitan area with a decent South Asian community, I just haven't found anything akin to an Indian music "scene" locally.

Regarding practice without the direct influence of a teacher, my discipline isn't the greatest I'll admit, but moreso than any other instrument I've played, I look forward to time with the sitar, so I've been motivated enough to practice just by enjoyment alone, which probably means I'm not putting in enough hours by some standards, but still, I'm not striving for mastery because that ship has sailed long ago...a 30 year old family man with a fulltime job starting out on sitar simply doesn't have sufficient remaining years and free time to become competitive with all the fantastic players out there...

Regarding technique vs. style, I guess it depends as to whether you think the "goodness" of technique is subjective or not. Sure, one can say "bad" technique limits and "good" technique liberates, which is true enough until you get to the point where various techniques are categorized as good and bad, and there I think you'll find different people may have different views. Posture and technique for violin varies greatly from east to west, just as technique for slide guitar varies considerably between the different slide masters of blues, Hawaiian, Hindustani, country western, etc. Even in minutiae, such as how to strike the string of an electric bass...so many variations have sprung up. The prevailing one that many would say is optimal is alternating first and second fingers. Plenty of players (Jack Bruce IIRC, and the inimitable James Jamerson) play more with one finger...I tend to do that myself. Also there are a number of greatly talented players who use a plectrum, and this is before we even open the door to thumbstyle, and all its permutations! Western pop music is a little less rigid, admittedly, than either Western or Eastern classical, but the principles are there. There assuredly are poor techniques that constrain most players, but getting the world to agree on what they are exactly with any uniformity is unlikely to ever take place. Likewise, getting the entire body of sitar musicians to agree on a specific body of technique as the highest and most optimal technique is about as likely as the idea of us all standardizing on kharaj pancham!

Good luck on your gig! What sort of venues book sitar acts I wonder? Other than yoga studios! :roll: (I was offered a gig after only 3 months of playing at a yoga studio...I found it laughably ridiculous to offer a performance gig to such a newbie, but I think it was more about the idea of meditative sounds than the music...needless to say I politely declined!)
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ragamala

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "fossesitar"
For what it is worth, I realize I have gone a bit "around the bend"
"Oh no not you" (to quote a song from Gigi - I Remember It Well")

"How strong you were, how young and gay.
A prince of love in every way."

Don't go soft on us now.....

Best for the upcoming perfs...
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yussef ali k

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Reply with quote  #18 
Hi.(to fossesitar): If/when you're in the mood, I'll be curious to read about your experiences, especially regarding (see your above post) what you termed 'basic techs not taught outside the family' (to foreigners as well as others) & the mindset that goes w/ that. Thank you in advance.

(to n.neufeld): I think you may agree that - no matter what we may (/not) refer to under the 'jazz' label - there is, as in all types of music, a part of that which 1 might define as CORE repertoire/aesthetic: if it is so, then regarding jazz, bebop is definitely in there in the company of dixieland, swing, cool... a lot of music is outside it, although the same consensus would quickly trace its relationship to that core.
Anyway every one knows the word 'jazz' label was coined from the expression 'to jass', etc, etc ...

...Thank you & have fun.
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #19 
GIGI ! ! ! What a fab movie, LOVE Maurice Chevelier, and Nick, isnt St. Louis pretty close to you? Ustad Imrat Khan lives and teaches there, if you want his email and phone # just let me know. Certainly he is one of the greatest sitar teachers on the planet.
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nicneufeld

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Reply with quote  #20 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "fossesitar"
GIGI ! ! ! What a fab movie, LOVE Maurice Chevelier, and Nick, isnt St. Louis pretty close to you? Ustad Imrat Khan lives and teaches there, if you want his email and phone # just let me know. Certainly he is one of the greatest sitar teachers on the planet.
St Louis is about 4 hours away and just a couple days ago I was made aware of the Ustads surprising presence there...I thought, Missouri?! Bit of an honor!

I already sent him an email from his site, basically just very heartfelt fanmail, and saying if he was ever to give another concert in St Louis I'd be there! One of the legends no doubt, I've been listening to his surbahar playing, particularly, ever since I recently dove back into Indian music. It was just a pleasant surprise to find him in Missouri of all places. But for a man of his years, history, and mastery I'd rather not bug him too much! Also, as a Westerner, I am perpetually paranoid about accidentally giving offence in some way (admittedly on casual internet forums I'm sure I distribute offence a little more freely, but with the friendliest intentions! ).
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #21 
Ustad Imrat Khan is a delightful man with a lovely sense of humor. I am sure even one lesson from him would prove invaluable.
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povster

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Reply with quote  #22 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "trippy
We don't all play the same any more than we all speak with the same accent.
How would it be possible?

Nick
If you look at the mechanics of speech, breath control, placement of the tongue, shaping of the mouth etc. you will find that in the same language, say English as there as so many variations, that there will be commonality of the techniques within the same accent group, but they will differ from the techniques of other accent groups.

If you try to imiate an accent that is not yours and focus on what your body is doing, you will see various shifts in mouth, lips, breath, tongue etc. as the new sound is trying to be reproduced.

I suppose the accents could be considered gharanas. And the techniques used to create the one accent could not be used, or would be used with difficulty, to reproduce a different accent in the same language.

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...Michael
Dasani - the official bottled water of ICM
Panini - the official bread of ICM
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trippy monkey

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Reply with quote  #23 
POV
Actually I can speak English in many differing accents ranging from Indian/Asian, Scottish, Irish (north), French, American (certain parts), Italian, Welsh.
I could go on, as I'm often accused of.

As you rightly say, many speak English as a first language around the world & ALL are different.

Nick
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