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obby

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Posts: 11
Reply with quote  #1 
Hi all

More questions regarding Bayan technique- Can anyone give me some ideas about split hand bayan traditions? My teacher often breaks up ka stokes between fingers 3,4 and 5 (as a unit) and the index finger- any innovative ideas here? Has anyone tried out new ideas in this area?

Here's an extremely basic question- perhaps so basic that I'm embarrassing myself to ask it, but why do so many players keep their legs covered with a piece of fabric or blanket when seated at their instruments? Is it just to keep from getting cold?

Finally, what are the benefits of sitting cross legged at our instrument? I was trying to explain this and was not sure how to answer with real conviction-

Forgive these basic questions, but I am learning so much from all of you!!
obby
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taal

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Reply with quote  #2 
Obby;
Please do not hesitate to ask any question, however basic. This is the only way to learn.
My comments to your query:
1. I have only learnt ka with all fingers joined together. At time you may leave thumb separate. This way it can produce a powerful, quick and crisp slap on bayan. I do not get exactly what you mean by split hand. I have never seen or read about this.

2. Legs are covered beacuse of two reasons; and here is where Indian culture comes into picture. First is it is considered very impolite to show your feet to anyone, either to performers on stage or to the audience. Second reason is it is considered very impolite and rude to touch anything by feet. Hence to avoid the possibility of feet directly touching tabla, legs are covered by shawl. You may see most of the Indian performers on stage without any footware. It is respect to your instruments and the art itself.

3. Although there are other positions than sitting cross legged....main reason of sitting cross legged is it gives one maximum stability as self weight is properely distributed on ground. It is also one of the best method to cover your foot. It is also very comfortable. Because of our modern life, we are giving up sitting on ground and hence we find it difficult to sitvmore than few min.
But dont forget, it is very common for many Benaras players to sit in Virasan, in which most of us cant sit even for half a minute. For picture of visrasana; see link below:
http://www.yogajournal.com/poses/490_1.cfm
Kishan maharaj sits in virasana and play for hours at the age above 83. There is interesting story (true) about this, which I will share sometime later.
Of cousre if one has medical condition, it is okay to sit in any suitable position, or to stand. But in general, to sperad your legs far apart and show your feet is big no no.
David's books have good information on sitting, may be you will find on this web site too.

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Taal
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rapture

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Posts: 471
Reply with quote  #3 
obby,

on 2 & 3, i will refer you to taal's post, he gave a good description.

for issue # 1, i can say that i have seen this type of playing myself. my belief is that this is a technique used to achieve very high speeds in playing bols where Ka is played back to back or close together. i'm pretty sure most teachers would not teach this method unless you've been learning for a good 3 or 4 years, at least. it's basically a shortcut that could stunt the strength and speed of your regular Ka if you play this way from an early time in your learning. most of this is my opinion, of course. ask your teacher about it and follow his instruction.

rapture
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tablah

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Reply with quote  #4 
I agree w/Rapture...I have seen Zakirji utilize this technique, sometimes even at moderate speeds. And although I've never seen it in print or been taught it, I recently realized I sometimes do it without realizing it.

The two sounds are slightly different and that allows you a little tonal variety.

Now that I think about it, your right hand does the exact same thing: full-hand 'tat' gives you a nice solid slap (but would never be used at high speed), while a 'split hand' purbi-style 'tete' gives you a quicker (if necessary) result.

Like Rapture said, this technique probably should not be taught until a few years in.

Oh, and regarding sitting, doesn't Anindo use a cushion?

Tablah
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Greg

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Reply with quote  #5 
Yea, I have seen this technique used by fast and slow players and I have also seen it not used by fast players that is they just play fast ke's...I have also seen a technique whereby the front part of the hand and the heel of the hand are used separately to the same effect.....

....and I have seen Anindo using two tabla rings under each drum to raise them, (I think that was on one of the videos that was posted here) and I watched Trilok Gurtu sound checking at the Queen Elizabeth Hall last week and he was actually sitting on a riser slightly lower than the riser that the tabla were on.....interesting....

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visible_world

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Reply with quote  #6 
i use split hand that means three+one finger to play ke. it is very hard to play for example gege tete gege nana keke tete keke nana with the full palm. u will get a more "similar" sound of split hand playing fast keke than the full palm struggeling to play ke.
reagars Jon

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