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GCSE Music Revision 2014. Area of Study 4: Rag Desh. Indian Music: Context & Background. A long history lasting over 2000 years Close links with Hinduism & Indian philosophy Many Hindu gods are worshiped through performance of raga (Indian melody)

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gcse music revision 2014
GCSE Music Revision 2014

Area of Study 4:

Rag Desh

indian music context background
Indian Music: Context & Background
  • A long history lasting over 2000 years
  • Close links with Hinduism & Indian philosophy
  • Many Hindu gods are worshiped through performance of raga (Indian melody)
  • The god Shiva is associated with music & dance
  • This set work is taken from the Indian Classical Tradition of Northern India
rag desh the oral tradition
Rag Desh: The Oral Tradition
  • Indian music is not written down – music is learnt through listening & playing by ear
  • Skills are passed on through generations of a family through a system known as gharana
  • Indian music is always learnt via a master – pupil system
rag desh elements of a raga
Rag Desh: Elements of a raga
  • Melody – improvised from notes of a particular rag. Sung by a voice or played by instrument
  • Drone – a supporting “drone” usually of one or two notes provided by the tambura
  • Rhythm – a repetitive, cyclic rhythm pattern played by the tabla drums
rag desh the rag
Rag Desh: The Rag
  • The rag is the set melody on which the music is improvised (think of it as a cross between a selection of pitches and a scale)
  • There are over 200 different rags in existence, each has a particular mood
  • The chosen rag will be used as the musical material in a full raga performance
rag desh rhythm drone accompaniment
Rag Desh: Rhythm & Drone accompaniment
  • The rag melody is always supported by a supportive drone – usually the tonic & dominant notes
  • The drone adds to the texture
  • The rhythm is provided by small tabla drums (below
  • Rhythmic cycles are known as the tala, the most common is called the teental, made up of 16 matras(beats)
  • The first beat of a cycle is known as sam
rag desh the sitar
Rag Desh: The Sitar
  • Seven principal strings
  • Two strings used as drone notes
  • Sympathetic strings are loose fretted strings which vibrate when the top strings are plucked
  • Meend – the technique of sliding between notes or interval
  • Tan – playing rapid scale like melodies