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Anonymous

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Posts: 987
Reply with quote  #1 
Hi
I found a nice Gat int this site's composition database. This is the first Gat I've ever played (I have been studying for about 7 month now).
The link to the Gat is : http://chandrakantha.com/tablasite/comp/16/gat1.html

1. Which technique is used here for the 'tete' bol ? Delhi or Purbi ?
2. In line 3, how is the 'Dhin' bol performed ? Is it played on Sur (like in tintal theka) or with an open tone (1 finger) on the Daya (like in 'toon') ?
3. How is the 'Tit' bol on line 7 performed ?
4. What is the optimal tempo for this composition ?

Thanks !
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scodoha

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Posts: 302
Reply with quote  #2 
Unless someone knows this from its source any opinion is just that.
My disclaimer over my take would be:
tete played Purbi ( except in line 8 before Kran should be reversed)
Dhin shoud be as you say like in tintal
I'd play tit as a sharp hard stroke of middle finger centered on gab. Louder the better.
Optimal tempo is as slow as you can get away with or as fast as you can while still sounding clear. Try 240 per bol.
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RD

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Reply with quote  #3 
Im not certain, but this Gat appears to be Farrukhabad. SO...

The TeTe would be played middle finger than index finger.
The Dhin would be played like tun
The tit would be played with middle finger. Gats are meant to played fast. That's when the real beauty of the Gat is revealed. But obviously practice it really slow at first.
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Anonymous

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Posts: 987
Reply with quote  #4 
Thank you two...
even though I'm more confused now than before (:
Ah, and by the way, Is it considered a difficult Gat ?
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Aanaddha

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Reply with quote  #5 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "soungalo"
Thank you two...
even though I'm more confused now than before (:
Ah, and by the way, Is it considered a difficult Gat ?
Soungalo,
With all due respect, I think there may be a few more useful compositions that someone who's only been playing for seven months should try to learn - more in the standard repertoire of kaidas, relas, tihais, thekas and prakars, tukaras and chakradars. Gats are often considered as 'signature pieces', given in a performance context only after the artist has shown he's competenent with the basics of technique and laya and precedes to attempt to define his personal style.
In addition, trying to learn any composition that you have never heard may be a bit like attempting to learn Mandarin with a street map of Chinatown or a Chinese restaraunt menu as your only guide.
....Which brings me to the subjects of notation, and the importance of a teacher and the practice of recitation. Compositions aren't generally notated until after a student proves to the teacher that he can both count and recite the given composition and then play it successfully. It follows then that any notation is only a personal reminder to a student or a performer of something that he already 'knows'. Notation is shorthand; it comes after the fact, and as such it shouldn't be relied upon solely for learning purposes by anyone else. As Scodoha has correctly pointed out "Unless someone knows this from its source any opinion is just that."
Bottom line - don't build the foundation of your musical education on mixed opinions, incomplete information, and especially not on anonymous resources. If you wish to learn a particular composition then find someone who correctly will demonstrate it to you. Avoid confusion, get your information first-hand from a reliable souce who has the ability to answer your questions and patiently correct you as you learn.

Sincerely,
A.

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If he could sing, and nature to accompany him, what need would he have for an instrument?
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dubois

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Aanaddha"
Notation is shorthand; it comes after the fact, and as such it shouldn't be relied upon solely for learning purposes by anyone else.
I certainly don't disagree; many times I've gone over my old notes and realized they were more ambiguous than I intended(*), so how can I expect to have a better time with someone else's notes? But it makes me wonder what is the use of a composition database (or a book of compositions) if the notation is so sketchy that the composition can only end up corrupted?

Is it the case that with enough experience one can use context to fill in all the "missing" information?

paul

(*) for example, the first several times I came across the bols "ge re na ga" and "dhe re na ga", the "na" was played on sur, so I figured that's just how it's played, I don't need to mention it all the time.

But then I had a composition with na on kinar and had to go back and make my notes more explicit.
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Aanaddha

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Posts: 1,932
Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "dubois"
I certainly don't disagree; many times I've gone over my old notes and realized they were more ambiguous than I intended(*), so how can I expect to have a better time with someone else's notes? But it makes me wonder what is the use of a composition database (or a book of compositions) if the notation is so sketchy that the composition can only end up corrupted?

Is it the case that with enough experience one can use context to fill in all the "missing" information?

paul

(*) for example, the first several times I came across the bols "ge re na ga" and "dhe re na ga", the "na" was played on sur, so I figured that's just how it's played, I don't need to mention it all the time.

But then I had a composition with na on kinar and had to go back and make my notes more explicit.
Paul,
Precisely. And especially with compositions such as peshkars and gats where a certain intonanion and style is critical to their presentation. These particulars cannot be notated.
Yes, this is where years of experience and training make the most difference.

A.

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If he could sing, and nature to accompany him, what need would he have for an instrument?
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Shawn

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Posts: 330
Reply with quote  #8 
Hi everyone,

Exactly. This is the main reason why I stopped maintaining this database a few years ago. I firmly believe that one should only play compositions taught by your Guruji / teacher. Anything read from the internet or a book will always have ambiguities, unless much care is taken to precisely notate every bol with all sorts of footnotes. And, even so, many nuances would likely be absent. And so, a database such as this strongly goes against my beliefs on how one should learn the tabla.

I think that people are in a hurry to learn too many compositions. Better to spend more time on less compositions, and get the technique, sound, and feeling right. When you are ready to know something, your Guruji / teacher will teach it to you!

Regards,
Shawn

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dubois

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Posts: 24
Reply with quote  #9 
Hi Aanaddha and Shawn,

Thanks for the responses.

I think I was a bit ambiguous; I didn't mean to imply that I thought the problem of notation was insoluble. Poor/insufficient notation is of course worse than no notation, but consider: notations exist for western classical piano, jazz piano, movies, plays, conceptual art (see for example Sol Lewitt 7th para), dance choreography... you name it.

Each type of notation has its own guidelines for
- what is explicitly noted,
- what is left unsaid (to leave room for artistic interpretation),
- what is left implicit (to be filled in by experience),
- and what is left out entirely (to be filled in by oral or some other transmission, for reasons of history, secrecy, inadequacy of notation, or whatever)

It's interesting to think about how each of these notations (or tabla notation) is broken down in terms of those groups.

The danger comes when it is ambiguous which un-notated information belongs in which groups; an uncareful reader might attribute all of it to "artistic interpretation", corrupting the composition. But I think it is not impossible to move most or all information out of that last category. Note that this doesn't remove the need for a teacher/Guruji because of the question of experience.

Also note that whether this _should_ be done is a different question, one which I'm not commenting upon.
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