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trippy monkey

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Reply with quote  #31 
C'mon Ragamala & Jaan Bhai
Pull your keks (trousers) up!!!

Although I'm a gourd-head as R puts it, I have nearly as many vocal recordings as instrumental. Just put up the Salamat Ali recording on mediafire.

Knowing something of the language a song is written in surely must highten your appreciation of it, no? Although I wouldn't say one misses half or 2/3rds of what the verse has to offer if one's only familiar with the music itself.

Nick
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ragamala

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Reply with quote  #32 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "trippy
C'mon Ragamala & Jaan Bhai
Pull your keks (trousers) up!!!

Nick
That's new - I've often been told to "butt out" of conversations :wink:
Quote:
Originally Posted by "trippy
Knowing something of the language a song is written in surely must highten your appreciation of it, no? Although I wouldn't say one misses half or 2/3rds of what the verse has to offer if one's only familiar with the music itself.

Nick
Get the specs back on and read again - I didn't deny that there could be something to be gained by understanding a language, but suggested just that the extra is minimal and peripheral to the music

Perhaps it would be more constructive to suggest ways in which newcomers to ICM, or those who felt alienated by vocal music, can approach this in order to get more enjoyment out of vocal.
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trippy monkey

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Reply with quote  #33 
My comment wasn't AIMED at anyone & was only my TINY opinion as someone who's made an effort to learn a bit of the language.

Nick
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ragamala

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Reply with quote  #34 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "trippy
My comment wasn't AIMED at anyone & was only my TINY opinion as someone who's made an effort to learn a bit of the language.

Nick
Oops! My mistake - must have been some other Ragamala you told to pull their pants up....
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trippy monkey

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Reply with quote  #35 
Now THAT was aimed at you OBVIOUSLY but my comment about learning languages was MY view.

Nick
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ragamala

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Reply with quote  #36 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "trippy
Now THAT was aimed at you OBVIOUSLY but my comment about learning languages was MY view.

Nick
And a potentially valid one.. We're only disgreeing (if at all) about the amount of significance -

Still wondering why JeK and I need our trousers pulling up though! A lot better to detail the comment, no?

Seriously, I was wondering whether you feel any differently about Indian music in other than Hindi or other related Indian languages you have to some extent picked up, whether a lack of southern Indian languages for example (and I am aware that Carnatic relies MUCH more on composition texts than northern khyal, also you studied S Indian arts) this affects your comparative - as you stated recently - lack of enthusiasm for Carnatic vocal? Or does that come from somewhere else?
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jaan e kharabat

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Reply with quote  #37 
When it comes to thumris, ghazals, bhajans, the lyrics are very important, they are really the centrepieces of the compositions. To not know the meaning of the verses there is to miss a lot of the point in the idiom. This is probably why I don't enjoy thumris as much as khyal or dhrupad. In the latter genres as they are practiced today the lyrics take supportive role in the proceedings, almost mere pegs to hang a melody on, and or by clever manipulation of which, to showcase artistry through devices such bol baant, bol taan etc.

p.s. Nick bhaai, I don't recall accusing you of only being interested in instrumental music, and certainly not with my keks down.

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luvdasitar

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Reply with quote  #38 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "ragamala"
Quote:
Originally Posted by "luvdasitar"
I was just listening to a classic "Ab tohe jaane naahee doongee" by Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan and it kinda reinforced my belief that there is a disconnect for people who can not understand the meaning and more importantly the cultural context in vocal music.
I've no cultural or linguistic link to India myself, however these days I have little time for other than a select group of favourite instrumentalists but get a heap of pleasure out of listening to vocal music.

So it's a pity to hear you describe a distancing or "disconnect".

Hmm - what to do...

I don't know what version of BGAK's thumri you are listening to so can't say anything specific about the piece, but would be amazed if there wasn't a host of musical interest there to keep you interested, he was such a great performer.

My feeling is although my listening might be enhanced by understanding of the language it isn't vital, in fact would be a small part of my enjoyment.

Firstly it is doubtful in many khyal performances whether all listeners hear all the words as they are performed, just as an opera aria's words are not necessarily heard correctly by a listener, even if the language is the listener's mother tongue.

The words of the bandish are not extensive however in any event, and in most cases become subservient to the music. It is the music - the raga/bhava which convey the rasa, and in most cases I don't feel any distancing from this, just as I should not feel distanced from an instrumental performance. It is a lot easier when starting out just to ignore any linguistic problem and regard the voice as an instrument - that really isn't so hard.

With thumri and then, more, bhajans we are probably approaching an area where cultural background starts becoming more important to appreciation or enjoyment perhaps, but I am not really understanding regarding vocal music generally why cultural context is an issue for anyone who admires classical music as played on sitar or other instruments.
I did not any way mean to beliitle your listening experience or the joy you obviously get from listening to vocal music. You are right that there are not too many words in a Kheyal piece anyway and the point you make about Thumri, Horis, Bhajans, Ghazals, Kauls and Qawwalis is valid too. I am not going to quantify how important words or cultural context are, I just feel that there is another dimension that is added to the music with words and context. For example when Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan sings " Suniyo Nand Kumar" (Lord Krishna) , there is a great bit of emotion in those words. I am not religious myself, yet can not but be touched by the words and yes, more importantly by the genius of the great man which enhances and reinforces that emotion. Anyways, I am finding it more and more difficult to explain it, so will leave it there.
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ragamala

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Reply with quote  #39 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "luvdasitar"
I did not any way mean to beliitle your listening experience or the joy you obviously get from listening to vocal music. You are right that there are not too many words in a Kheyal piece anyway and the point you make about Thumri, Horis, Bhajans, Ghazals, Kauls and Qawwalis is valid too. I am not going to quantify how important words or cultural context are, I just feel that there is another dimension that is added to the music with words and context. For example when Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan sings " Suniyo Nand Kumar" (Lord Krishna) , there is a great bit of emotion in those words. I am not religious myself, yet can not but be touched by the words and yes, more importantly by the genius of the great man which enhances and reinforces that emotion. Anyways, I am finding it more and more difficult to explain it, so will leave it there.
My apologies are due to you for misunderstanding your post, which I obviously did. I think we're all in agreement on this, and the main thing is that no-one should be put off vocal music altogether because of the language issue.

I do feel that the great artist can project an emotion in a song without the listener being able to follow the words, and music itself can do this. This is clear not only with ICM but with eg opera, where one (ie me!) can be moved to all sorts of heightened emotion - not to say tears - without having more than a smattering of French, German, Italian or whatever.

I do feel with Carnatic that the combination of the more technical nature of the vocal music and the more extensive reliance on texts does cut down the joy factor for me. Although I can still thoroughly enjoy a concert, I can't get as emotionally involved as with Hindustani.
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Aanaddha

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Reply with quote  #40 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "ragamala"
This is clear not only with ICM but with eg opera, where one (ie me!) can be moved to all sorts of heightened emotion - not to say tears - without having more than a smattering of French, German, Italian or whatever.
Took the words out of my mouth - listened to nothing but opera before ICM; from Monteverdi to Lully to Berg and Britten and I can't speak a word of Latin, Italian, French, or German. (My favorite book is Joyce's 'Ullyses' and I've never understood much of that either...speaking of verbal music.) I couldn't quote you the text of any ghazals, bhajans, or thumris, but the basic appeal isn't lost, as far as I'm concerned, even though I'm certain my enjoyment would be enhanced more with better language skills. Cultural appreciation doesn't always have to be cerebral, an open mind will generally suffice.

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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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Aanaddha

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Reply with quote  #41 
Forgive me if this link has been previously posted:



The skill presented here has to be appreciated whether you're a vocalist, an instrumentalist, an Indian, a Pakistani, or Afghan, yes?

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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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talasiga

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Reply with quote  #42 
Cultural context is, IMO, almost always an issue but not such as to deny the validity of anyone's appreciation of the music. Rather, it is an issue that promotes the varieties of apppreciation, even varieties of appreciation not conceived by the performers themselves.

The magic and power of even the greatest music is extended by the audience. If all appreciation were too be totally predictable and predicated upon cultural norms, the timeless infinitude of the music would be shaken.

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panchamkauns

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Reply with quote  #43 
Quote:
Originally Posted by "luvdasitar"
I think most "non-indian" people listen to it because they can draw their own interpretation of the emotion in the raaga without having to grapple with the meaning of words.
I think it’s because they don’t like music: they’re only interested in athletic performance, how fast various people can play, and instrument paraphernalia. I am, in fact, an absolute jerk.
Quote:
Originally Posted by "luvdasitar"
I am also unashamedly a fan of Pandit Kumar Gandharva. People usually never mention him in the same breath as other stalwarts, I have always wondered why though ?
As a fan, you must know about his handicap. He had small lung capacity and couldn't sing the long lines and phrases mainstream singers do. That’s why he had this special style with shorts burts of music between long pauses. Personally I love him very, very much but there are purists who aren’t really interested, because of the way he sang. They only appreciate his drutas and consider him simply a handicapped performer, who can’t be compared with mainstream greats.

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s1owpoke

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Reply with quote  #44 
I am supposed to be Scottish, French and Spanish but not sure what I look like...hahaha! I guess I see myself as more of a conscious human being :wink:

I know this is going to sound crazy but I found my love for ICM through youtube and the internet. I did have a couple of indian fusion CD's (back in 1991 or so) but I could not find anyone who could tell me where I could find more of this type of music. It wasen't until 2006 until I came across some ICM online and have been hooked since. Since then, I have taken tabla for about 4 years as well as vocals for the past year or so. I purchased a harmonium for vocal training and I can't explain how much peace it has given to me. Practicing has become more of a spiritual practice and I treat the music and instruments as such.

I guess I listen to vocal/instrumental about 50/50. I can only speak English so I can not understand the meanings of a lot of the vocals but this is not a bad thing. Infact, I can listen to the singer in a purer way because I feel that sometimes words can distract the listener with its meanings. I love alaap as well. I have been debating lately if I should learn Hindi so I will be able to sing some compositions clearer and understand vocal music. Not sure where this will lead but for now I enjoy singing sargam and it is giving me a great sense of raags and connection with music.

I am still a bit disappointed in my abilities to listen to vocal/instrumental and not able to say the sargam being played. I can hear SA obviously and sometimes common phrases but to just recognize all of the swara, I still can't. I hope hope hope one day I will be able to so that I will be able to learn from recordings instead of just enjoying.

That's my ramble......oh and about the Sitar in the West. I was trying to explain to someone about an Esraj I just ordered. So I said it is bowed and kind of like a violin in sound trying to explain it the best I can. I said it has a neck similar to Sitar which she didn't know what that was neither. But at the same time I had an Indian friend of mine call a Tanpura a Sitar so you never assume.

Esraj is shipped this coming Wednesday!!!! I can't wait!!!!

Peace

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S1owpoke

"Real music is not for wealth, not for honours or even the joys of the mind... but as a path for realization and salvation."
Ustad Ali Akbar Khan
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Shruti Mehta

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Reply with quote  #45 
For amazing vocal music videos go and visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ittC-f5OV-U
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