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barend

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Reply with quote  #1 
This is a spin off from a discussion in another topic. I thought it might be interesting to open a separate topic for this.

Do you think it is good to play or study both KP and GP sitars? or is it better to stick to one (like almost all Indian masters do)?

Who is playing both? and why or why not?
Not to be judgmental on either but just curious what you think of this.
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #2 
Donno what to say to this, they are both wonderful musical instruments, and if nothing else playing both should eventually bring you to an understanding of which style is best suited to your personal style of musical expression. if you are good enough to play both go for it, especially if you can obtain a good teacher for each style, and have the coin for a fine instrument in each style. Heck you could even become the first (to my knowledge) to play both onstage during the same rag!!

I am not really tongue-in-cheek, because as you play both you will answer your own question.
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yak.a.co

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hi Barend,
interesting. I myself could not choose which one is the best for me for a long time. Rather than to speak abot GP and KP I would say my own problem was tantrakari versus gayaki playing. I played both styles on separate instruments for quite a period, then switched to one sitar with NB string setup and finaly to: jiwari inbetween NB and VK, somehow closer to NB, and to benarasi/kashi stringing, i.e. seven strings including laraj, but kharaj changed for gandhar. Btw my current sitar furthermore has Vishnupur gharana fret system, ha Sitar IS really wonderful, neraly uncountable variations of setup, sound and playing styles
And yes, surely, if you feel it is the best for you to play those specific two styles on two sitars and you have the capacity go for it
Jan
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barend

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Reply with quote  #4 
Just to be sure. I am not talking about myself here. I play KP sitar and don't want to switch to a GP sitar. I was just curious if there are people here who play both style sitars. Also I think there should not be a playing style difference when you play KP or GP. It also has to do with gharanas of course. And maybe it is western thought but you can play gayaki style on a KP and play tantrakari or whatever style on a GP sitar. There shouldn't be any 'limits' or 'rules' on which style you have to play on which style sitar in my opinion. After all it is the same instrument with just another string set up. Each with it's own benefit.
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cabernethy

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Reply with quote  #5 
Hi Barend,

I have two sitars, one GP 4 chiks strung sa-sa-pa-pa-sa-ma, one KP strung in the usual PNB manner. Why am I doing this ?, because I can't decide which path to go down and love both the sounds. I Generally play the GP AM-Evening and the KP then on into the night. I Generally focus on Bhairavi or Kirwani on GP and the later Bageshree or Ahiri on the KP. A Word of warning to you tho, I do not have a teacher so take what I say with a pinch of salt please. I suspect that I am thwarting my progress by playing both and feel that there is a big difference in playing styles, especially when approaching the Chikari.

I Will probably move towards GP only at some point in the future as I do feel that is where my playing destiny lies. Either that or I will finally get my hands on a Rudra Veena and ditch both

Regards,
Carl
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #6 
Interesting. The world of sitar truly is a vast ocean - infinite varieties of setups and playing styles and this is a wonderful thing. One question - your MA string is closest to the baj?? Or am I misinterpreting your GP stringing setup? One more - do you find it difficult adjusting your technique between one and the other? You say you feel you are limiting yourself - is that limitation being caused by having to make these adjustments every day? Any way, bully for you, carry on good soldier.
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yak.a.co

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "barend"
Just to be sure. I am not talking about myself here. I play KP sitar and don't want to switch to a GP sitar. I was just curious if there are people here who play both style sitars. Also I think there should not be a playing style difference when you play KP or GP. It also has to do with gharanas of course. And maybe it is western thought but you can play gayaki style on a KP and play tantrakari or whatever style on a GP sitar. There shouldn't be any 'limits' or 'rules' on which style you have to play on which style sitar in my opinion. After all it is the same instrument with just another string set up. Each with it's own benefit.
Hi Barend,
you can take it the way to play tantrakari style on GP and gayaki on KP is ok ... for me it sounds somehow inproper and as I was taught it is not good to do it this way, cause the instruments were so designed and have the jiwari made in some manner which goes well with their respective playing styles ... maybe just a conservative opinion based on tradition, but for me it sounds logical and also sounds better meaning when hearing it But as far as I am informed and as I know from my pracice the playing technique IS different, not just the result sound achieved. Btw if you think that you can play gayaki style on a KP and play tantrakari or whatever style on a GP sitar I am little bit loosing the sense why you are asking if someone plays both GP and KP, if we are all able to play both styles on kharaj or both styles on gandhar pancham sitar? It would be waste of -if not anything else- money then
All the best
Jan
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cabernethy

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "fossesitar"
Interesting. The world of sitar truly is a vast ocean - infinite varieties of setups and playing styles and this is a wonderful thing. One question - your MA string is closest to the baj?? Or am I misinterpreting your GP stringing setup? One more - do you find it difficult adjusting your technique between one and the other? You say you feel you are limiting yourself - is that limitation being caused by having to make these adjustments every day? Any way, bully for you, carry on good soldier.
You will forgive my ignorance over the string names. My GP is setup is as follows

Main playing string - MA
2nd String - SA

3rd Chik - PA - Thick string
4th Chik - PA - Thick string
5th Chik - SA - +1 Octave
6th Chik - SA - +2 Octaves


Spot on, I suspect that the limitation I foresee is brought about by having to make the adjustment of technique depending on which Sitar I am playing. I do not find it difficult to make the adjustment, but it is a conscious thing and therefore I believe is impeding my overall progress if I were to stick to one.

Carl
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #9 
Thanks, BTW, this is exactly how I string my personal sitar for GP, I do not use the traditional "GA" drone string but rather 2 PAs tuned to the same note.
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yussef ali k

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Reply with quote  #10 
Hi, All.
Regarding the subject, how about this?:
A traditional sitar family where the current generation (7 bros.) age ranges from 1940 to '68.
The elders to '51 use KP. The 2 younger twins use GP. Still, another 1 (b.'59) uses both (he says he prefers KP for solo & GP w/ other soloists).

Have fun.
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JRJ

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Reply with quote  #11 
At essence this is the 'multi-instrumentalist' question and as a person seriously bitten by this bug I think I have a good answer...
First though, with sitar, is it really that big of a deal? One bass string? (And some string gage differences). I know that there are so many subtleties and when you switch between
the two the navigation can be very different :|. But just changing tuning can be enough disorientation to send you back to the woodshed for
some serious time (if you want to perform 8) )

So far I prefer VK because it is simpler and i think it sounds less muddy (unless the bass string is tuned to D# ops: ). Another 'sitar' take
would be to have one or the other, preferably VK and then get a surbahar. i think that would be the most interesting as far as performance...

If you play other instruments though, guitar or keyboard or(?), there is a law of diminishing results because there is just not enough
time to study or practice; and yet, they are all so beautiful :!: :|. My solution and it could be offensive to some here but I am western;
think in terms of 'songs' instead of "raga's" and Loop :twisted:
`J`
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fossesitar

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Reply with quote  #12 
I am in a band now, just started, 2 rehearsals so far, one tonite.
African drums, hammered dulcimer, bass, electric sitar :twisted:
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barend

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "JRJ"
At essence this is the 'multi-instrumentalist' question and as a person seriously bitten by this bug I think I have a good answer...
First though, with sitar, is it really that big of a deal? One bass string? (And some string gage differences).
That is exactly my point. It maybe is a western multi-instrumentalist thing that some want to play both GP and KP sitar. But not many Indian top players do.
Sitar is bound to tradition a lot. A GP must have a closed bridge for example. That is just a tradition and what most people do, but it shouldn't be a rule. The same tradition can hold you back sometimes in terms of experimentation. The only argument I can think of is that it is better to dedicate your study to one instrument/tuning in terms of time. It takes a lifetime to seriously study sitar and studying two tunings makes it more confusing and keeps you away from the other.
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trippy monkey

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Reply with quote  #14 
If the KP sitar has a nice 'bottom end' so to speak then I don't mind playing it but my style, as you all know I'm of the 'gayaki' style, DOES change a bit.

Nick
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