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AbdulLatif

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Reply with quote  #31 
Heres a half a rupes worth. The Dagar/Murariji instruments were a departure from tradition themselves. Take a look at all the historic and museum piece veens. Except during the later days of the royal courts when veens were enameled very beautifully they were rather sparse in ornamentation and carving and being influenced by Islamic aesthetics had no reference to saraswati, vishnu or any other hindu idol. Murari and Ustad Dagar went with the beautiful carvings probably more because Murari was such a master of his art. Even today except for the clones of the KL masterpieces veens remain fairly simple as do sarods. The peacock headstock is a reference to the goddess Saraswati as well as a representation of vanity and desire that Saraswati defeats with a mudra of renunciation given as a veena stroke. Since many of the Muslim families practice a syncrenistic religion combining both Hindu and Muslim beliefs the reference feels appropriate to me.

Now as too Green Onion, I've been intrigued by the use of modern materials but in my opinion the things are very ugly, unbalanced in appearence and lacking an appeal to my own tastes. Actually I think the same about the RR travel sitars a little better proportioned peghead and decent tuners, either guitar or the banjo type, would look much better to me.
The inclusion of violent or lascivious icongraphy in the design of any instrument is offensive to me, not from some Calvinist sense but because I feel there is enough very real violence in the world and to now include those elements in instrument design doesn't not sit well with me. I agree 100% with Sitarman. I will say that a few instruments have been built with a decidedly dark character, I had a Dammu(?) a human skull drum from Tibet and found it repellent, never played it and gave it away (bad financial move as it was a real McCoy and very well excecuted (no pun please). I imagine it won't be long before we get a pretty scary "Goth" sitar. If it relects the inner life of the owner while I may not agree with the "vibe" I'll at least applaud the designer for truth in advertising :wink: I'll vote with my pocketbook, let the market decide and free expression reign.

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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #32 
Regarding the original title of this post - sitars made of carbon fibre or composites, I've got a real good feeling about the stuff. Green onion, stupid Mistress Kali, daughter of domination, humiliation, bondage, visa, mastercard aside, is on a good direction. The advantages of this superior material are numerous. A bit pricey but once in place, the strength, rigidity and even acoustic properties are in the "Wow" category. I expect that some eye and ear opening instruments are in the works. Green Onion is already moving on it.
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justjim

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Reply with quote  #33 
sitars made of carbon fibre or composites, I've got a real good feeling about the stuff.

FWIW - CF composites are making serious inroads in certain Western music areas...probably most dramatically in bows (codabow, Jean Tabary, etc...which very very good), but other instrument technology is coming along as well

A big reason there is the premier bow-wood, pernambuco, is endangered (a lot of it is illegally harvested). There has even been the danger of accidentally making existing bows not legally transportable due to endangered species laws

Perhaps the use of composites in Indian Music making will allow for good consistency and enhanced durability -- not to mention radar invisibility?
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beenkar

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Reply with quote  #34 
Let me again clear the two issues again:-

1. Experimentation with design and materials is certainly a must

2. Playing with religious iconograhy is absolutely NO!!!

So full marks to green onion guy for 1. but he gets a thumbs down for 2.

I am trying to avoid a debate on the historiography of the Veena on this forum and attempt to paint some century as some sort of important period on Veena design..............or say sparseness of some aesthetic which infact means destruction of anthropomorphic images, forms and representations whether on a Veena or elsewhere..............the 'tradition' we refer to was always a victim of political upheavals and religious 'correctness'............

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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #35 
Amen, Beenkar! You said it all. On that topic, it seems to me that with the advent of microphones, pa's, the recording media made available to the masses and all that national and global unifying stuff, the 'locked door' gharanas had no choice but to open up and adapt or die. Whiz kid juniorji learns Mom and Dad's chops at home in Gharanalands living room. Once out 'there', he hears the chops from da hood and other places and has the ability to record, store and file away for future reference, much like we soak up the performance dvd's now available to us. "Isn't technology grand"? Result, - the newly budding Ustads, Pandits, Padma Shris' and other noteables have a real mixed bag to draw from and it reflects in the music produced for the benefit of all. I do get rattled when the elitist hand clapping and waving technocrats in the first three rows, desperate to be seen digging on the stage staff, poo-poo an artist if there is a break from the locked in traditional gharana guidlines. As long as it's tasteful, I love it. Counter example - Ustad Zakir Hussain destroying Ustad Sultan Khans sarangi performance by pounding out the notes of the raga on the bayan. Brilliant artist, clearly but that was an instance of gross negligance as a musician. All influenced by media pressure, ego, all the stuff that keeps a musician going with a smile, the doctrines of artistic rules just exited (laughing all the way) - stage left.
Instrument design, Rudra Veena here, has seen very little design change until the last 50 years, in my opinion. I've stared at the veena lineup at the Nat. museum in Delhi for hours. (Security guards even hit on me as to my intentions. I told them I'm in worship and all is cool). Over 300 years, almost zero design difference. Z. M. Dagar threw a log in the fire by enlarging the tumbas, jamming an 8th. string on(Salute NB), shoving all the pegs clear of the frets and getting the wax off and the threads on. Brilliant stuff! I wonder if the motivation was to create an axe that met his musical needs, the need to be heard over the unruly, rude crowds at the concerts here, hence the larger gourds, ( a cheer for microphones ) or perhaps an ego rush to have this twin gourded monster carved within an inch of its life???? Seems to be two veena camps now, The Dagarbhani camp and the "name unknown" camp of Ustad Asad Ali Khans followers. All the veenas I've seen, Kanaii Lal and the source stuff from Miraj in recent years follow these two distinct model lines. If any veena players have ideas on design elements they'd like to see, I'm all ears and chisels! I can make it real!

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sitarman

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Reply with quote  #36 
Fixerji, well said. Musical mastery first, chops close second, creativity and emotion tied with both of the above, and gharana....who cares? Unless you have to indulge the family heritage, which none of us Forum Mortals have to worry about. In fact, thre "blending" of styles, gharanas, cultures, i.e. Muslim and Hindu, Indian, Persian, etc. is what producecd this gem we call ICM. Did Zakir really do that? Been hangin with the rockers too much, I guess.
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Sitarfixer

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Reply with quote  #37 
I have the DVD (VCD, actually):
Sultan Khan - Zakir Hussain live program
Sawai Gandharva Festival, Poontown

Nat Bhairav

http://www.fountainmusiccompany.com

Rs. 150 (that's just under four bucks)!

What a shame! Such a good sarangi entro.

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beenkar

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Reply with quote  #38 
Abdullah Saheb,

Beenkar site has been updated with more information.

A lot more of updates are in offing thanks to the technical efforts by Shri Sanjeev Raina.

http://www.beenkar.com

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रंग भरयौ मुसकात लला निकस्यौ कल कुंजन ते सुखदाई
टूटि गयो घर को सब बंधन छूटि गौ आरज- लाज- बड़ाई
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beenkar

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Reply with quote  #39 
"All the veenas I've seen, Kanaii Lal and the source stuff from Miraj in recent years follow these two distinct model lines. If any veena players have ideas on design elements they'd like to see, I'm all ears and chisels! I can make it real!"

I am fortunate to be passed on the 1947 Kanai Lal Been designed by Shri KP Misra, a Civil Engineer from Jodhpur belonging to the family of musicians and ayurvedacharyas, with the movable frets and whose isometric designs were given to Kanai Lal by him around that time. I also have been passed on the original designs of the 1947 Veena.

It is a story I would be posting on the beenkar site along with the photographs.

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रंग भरयौ मुसकात लला निकस्यौ कल कुंजन ते सुखदाई
टूटि गयो घर को सब बंधन छूटि गौ आरज- लाज- बड़ाई
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Surbaharplayer

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Reply with quote  #40 
Here's a link to some pics of the Rudra Veena Glynn Snelgrove made I mentioned some posts ago. He kindly gave me permission to show them. I really like the almost Art Deco-ish take on the subject. A very tasty twist on the theme.

http://home.versatel.nl/surbahar/Glynn_RV.jpg

Remco
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sitarman

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Reply with quote  #41 
Surb- What's with the strings running down the side?! Am I seeing that right?
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Surbaharplayer

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Reply with quote  #42 
these are either the chikaris or a low dronestring. Check out the Flash-animation on this page: you can pluck the strings with your mouse:

http://www.rudravina.com/html_gb/inst_02.html#par1

Remco
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povster

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Reply with quote  #43 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Surbaharplayer"
these are either the chikaris or a low dronestring. Check out the Flash-animation on this page: you can pluck the strings with your mouse:

http://www.rudravina.com/html_gb/inst_02.html#par1

Remco
I know we have discussed mizrab, fingernail and fingerpad techniques for vin and surbahar, but a mouse?

Seriously, that's pretty cool. Very interesting site overall.

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