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Chapter 6 Indian and South India Madras in southern India on the east coast Chennai means “the city” in Tamil. Brief History 2500-1700 BCE—Indus Valley cities 3 rd century BCE—countless kingdoms and emperors such as the Buddhist Asoka c. 1400-1800 CE—Moguls

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Chapter 6 l.jpg

Chapter 6

Indian and South India


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Madras

  • in southern India on the east coast

  • Chennai means “the city” in Tamil.


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Brief History

  • 2500-1700 BCE—Indus Valley cities

  • 3rd century BCE—countless kingdoms and emperors such as the Buddhist Asoka

  • c. 1400-1800 CE—Moguls

  • c. 1600-1947 CE—three centuries of British colonialism


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Hinduism

  • “the dominant religion of India.”

  • Caste: “one of the hereditary social classes in Hinduism that restrict the occupation of their members and their association with the members of other castes.”


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Islam

  • Moslems

  • “belief in Allah as the sole deity and in Muhammad as his prophet.”

  • About 10%


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Palimpsest

  • “a manuscript parchment written on again and again in which everything written before is never fully erased. Everything written before is somehow still there, visible and readable . . .

  • ” Similarly in Indian culture old traditions persist and “coexist with the new and innovative . . .


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History, Culture, Politics

  • one billion people—a fifth of the world’s population

  • an area one-third the size of the United States

  • “The country hosts fifteen major languages

  • “Its continuous history . . . stretches back five thousand years and beyond . . .”


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Regions

  • Hindustani -- North

    • Moslem concentration

    • Hindus Valley

  • Carnatic -- South

    • Hindu concentration

    • Carnatic Plains



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English Influence

  • railways

  • democratic systems of government

  • bureaucracy

  • universities

  • European musical instruments


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“While Indians adapted European musical instruments to their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

violin

clarinet

piano

saxophone

Guitar

Mandolin

European musical instruments


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Traditional literature their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • two Sanskrit epics between 400 B.C.E. and 400 C.E.”

    • Ramayana

    • Mahabharata

  • In Carnatic music many song texts refer to events in these epics.


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Important religious works their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • The four Vedas

  • Upanishads

  • Puranas


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Hindustani and Carnatic Music their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Similarities

    • ragas

    • talas

  • Differences

    • The Hindusthani north -- expansive improvisations

    • Carnatic south -- pre-composed devotional songs


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Raga their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • “that which colors the mind and the heart

  • a collection of notes, a scale, intonation, ornaments, pillar tones,

  • a precise melody form

  • sa ri ga ma pa da ni (sa)


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Tala their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • regularly recurring metric cycles consisting of groups of beats.


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veena their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • plucked string instrument with seven strings

  • three drone strings and four playing strings (for playing melodies).


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Mridangam their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • double-headed, barrel-shaped drum.


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Sruti-box and tambura their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “


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The Carnatic texture their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Melody Layer

    • vocalist(s)/instrumentalist (veena)

  • Drone Layer

    • sustained (continuously sounding) central tone

    • tambura or sruti box

  • Rhythm Layer (percussion)

    • mridangam—multi-timbral, double-headed

    • tala


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Music of India their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Pop music

  • Devotional song

  • Classical music


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Cine Music their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Indian popular music

  • A blend of East and West

  • Music is reminiscent of early rock and roll


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CD 2:20 their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “ “Our Wedding”

  • 0:23 to 0:31—“retro”-sounding guitar solo

  • language of lyrics (Tamil);

    • “a love marriage,” more common in Indian movies than in real Indian life,

    • 0:20, 0:22, 0:50, and 0:52—incongruous “whistle sound”

    • sudden insertion of Woody Woodpecker theme

    • (timbre)—flute, clarinet, “retro” guitar

    • 1:15-1:41 and 2:13-2:35—unique percussion instruments playing heavy rhythmic accompaniments


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bhajan their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • devotional song

  • sung by a soloist with accompanying instruments

    • or by a vocal group in a call-and–response manner


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chinna melan their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • “small band,” an ensemble of two or more

  • A chinna melam is likely to be performed at any auspicious occasion, for example, at temple worship, weddings, the opening a new store, and so on.


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Chinna Melam instruments their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • nagasvaram double-reed pipes,

  • tavil drums and

  • sruti-box drone


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CD 2:21 their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “ “O Devi! with Fish-Shaped Eyes”

  • Vocal solo

  • mridangam (Indian drum)

  • electronic drone


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O Devi! their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 0:00–0:06—Drone (electronically-produced)

  • 0:07—singer enters with raga-based solo

    • glides/slides to and around the important notes of the melody

  • Raga: a precise melody form


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O Devi! their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • The song text “praises Devi Meenakshi, a beautiful [Hindu] goddess . . . who is worshipped in . . . [a] great temple.” “O Devi! (“Goddess”) with fish-shaped eyes (that is, her eyes are always open) . . . protect me.”

  • 0:35 to end—

    • adi tala (an Indian metric cycle of 4 + 2 + 2 beats

  • Tala: rhythm pattern


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Karnataka Sangeeta their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Classical Music of South India

    • in English simply Carnatic music.

    • It is named after the Carnatic plateau


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Transmission their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • oral tradition passed down by memory. The music is to nudge the memory.

  • no definitive version of the music exists.

  • musical renditions may become highly variable


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Extra: Kriti by Tyagaraja their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • Banturiti

  • Hamsanadam raga

    • c e f# g b

  • adi tala

    • 4 + 2 + 2


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Drone their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

srutibox

alapana

pallavi

anupallavi

pallavi

Niraval

vocal

violin

vocal

svarakalpana

returns to text

pallavi

Banturiti - Overview


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Banturiti their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 0:00 sruti -box

    • drone

  • 0:05 alapana

    • singer explores raga

    • violin minics

    • SA range


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Banturiti their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 0:43 pallavi

    • listen for “Banturiti”

    • violin is in unison

  • 1:30 empty space

  • 1:34 anupallavi

    • begins on eduppu

  • 2:14 pallavi returns - Banturiti

  • 2:31 caranam begins


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Banturiti their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 3:00 niraval

    • vocal improvisation

    • violin improvisation based on voice

    • vocal improvisation

  • 4:28 svarakalpana

    • vocal improvisation on syllables

  • 5:14 singer returns to words


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Banturiti their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 5:25 pallavi returns

    • listen for Banturiti


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CD 3:1 their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “ “Sarasiruha” (“To the Goddess Saraswati”)

  • Kriti in Natai raga and Adi tala.

  • Performed by veena and mridangam.


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Sarasiruha their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 0:00-3:15Alapana “free-flowing exposition and exploration of the raga

    • absence of meter

    • drone sustains tonal center and the tone a fifth above tonal center

  • 3:20-8:15 Tanam

    • “strong sense of beat.”

    • improvised melody continues


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Sarasiruha their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 8:25-15:45 Kriti “Sarasiruha”

    • “centerpiece” of the performance

      • Pallavi: “O Mother who loves the lotus seat,”

      • Anupallavi: “Save me who have taken refuge in you!”

      • Charanam: “Complete Being, who holds a book in her hand which bestows all dominion.”


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Sarasiruha their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • 15:45-18:05 Kalpana Svaras

    • mridangam continues to accompany

    • melody played on the veena

  • 18:06-22:20 The Drum Solo: Tani Avartanam

    • A long and complex improvised drum solo played on the mridangam accompanied only by the drone being played on the drone strings of the veena

  • 22:04


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Ravi Shankar their musical styles, they did not adopt European musical styles. “

  • virtuoso sitar player

  • 1960s concerts brought him superstar status in Europe, the United States and India.


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