Changing Sa's revisited

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ragamala
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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Mon Apr 12, 2010 2:48 pm

westsea wrote:ragamala,
What is the answer you are seeking?
Are you wanting to know, in exact Hz, what the ascending and descending
frequencies are, for a particular raag?

My examples of spectrum analysis were not intended to widen the shifting sa debate to include scientific theory. Rather, they were just offering a different way of thinking about the same debate... a visual view.
I think it's all one topic.

You keep bringing things back to Ashish Sankrityayan and his discussions (which are very
good, thank you for reminding us of those articles).
Have you considered contacting him and asking?

I think that's the only way any of us are really going to get this. Go directly to someone
who knows; be able to ask questions and listen to the verbal and musical answers.
Oh, and spend years getting to the point where it actually becomes knowable,
let alone doable.

I thank Bahauddin for stretching the limits of our thinking.


I had thought I had made my specific questions about this topic very clear.

I surely don'#t have to repeat those, this would only be a regurgitation of my last post, to anyone who has read through this topic and assimilated the info that was presented and discussed in the last.

If you revisit the last you will find Ashish contributed. We do not need to contact him again - the reaction is now against the new input from this topic's contributors.

I don't give a fart about real frequencies. If you think this is important you have a poor perception of my attitude and understanding. Perhaps I am not expressing my point well. Perhaps sometimes I just have to accept I'm banging my head against a brick wall.

The whole point of the discussions that have taken place is that we have different explanations given BY dhrupad exponents, people trained and practising, and that none of the explanations have been complete enough to satisfy our curious and sometimes simple minds.

Grr...........

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby CarnaticConnection » Tue Apr 13, 2010 1:48 am

Ragamala-

I understand what you are saying, with the Sa's below the tanpura sa. But I think a "lower" Sa as Sankrityayan puts it is just the low end of the Sa spectrum. There is a defined value of frequencies for Sa. You can play anywhere in that range and have it be a shade of Sa, but once you go too high or too low you aren't playing Sa anymore. That's why I have an issue with the "below Sa" idea, because going below the lowest note of Sa would just be the higher shades of Ni, right?

Just my two cents, I am not claiming anything. This is all just opinion.

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Tue Apr 13, 2010 6:59 am

CarnaticConnection wrote:Ragamala-

I understand what you are saying, with the Sa's below the tanpura sa. But I think a "lower" Sa as Sankrityayan puts it is just the low end of the Sa spectrum. There is a defined value of frequencies for Sa. You can play anywhere in that range and have it be a shade of Sa, but once you go too high or too low you aren't playing Sa anymore. That's why I have an issue with the "below Sa" idea, because going below the lowest note of Sa would just be the higher shades of Ni, right?

Just my two cents, I am not claiming anything. This is all just opinion.


First of all, apologies for my last post, especially to westsea, I guess I have been chewing this bone long enough. Too long.

I will just add a couple of thoughts on this, though.

If what you say is correct, and I have no reason to disbelieve beenkar's view on the video, this makes less understandable what musicslug reported Bahauddin as saying (as opposed to playing) - "in the video, Bahauddin explains the Dagarbani take on sa - that it, like the other notes, can be flatted or sharp. the 'system' is that, as the day progresses, the sa gradually becomes sharper - e.g. in todi (AM raga), sa is one microtone (out of 7) up from the lowest. "

I have been thinking mostly in vocal terms. To me it has seemed reasonable to assume the "spectral range" of sa to extend either side of the tanpura sa. As long as all the other notes similarly centre on their "normal" positions relative to the raga sa then there is no overlap.

Having a tanpura tuning for the raga that gives the highest sa - the one almost reaching komal re of the tanpura sa - seems rather odd, my initial reaction to this is that as the tanpura will reflect both sas the tanpura would be perceptibly out-of-tune by normal standards, far more so than with raga sa varying around fixed tanpura sa.

The idea of sa extending from its normal fretted value on a been, up to a shade below komal re, seems more appropriate to an instrument, where it becomes understandable in terms of the playability of the varying notes.

And tanpura is not necessarily at all an issue with a been performance, if not present!

However, I have always assumed that the same theory would apply to both vocal and instrumental dhrupad,
particularly when historically singers and been players played together far more than today.

I have not even thought about beenkar's suggestion that the "spectrum" of sa could be played in one raga - I have assumed that once the raga is fixed so is the raga sa, and hence all the other notes.

One final thought - if there are seven shades of sa, why only 6 raga groups (along with their raginis and offspring)? :? Or was the 7 sas just an example and not a fixed part of the theory?

Anyway, I am off to bury this bone in the garden. I'll get back in my kennel and put my paws over my ears.

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:14 am

OK I know what I said, but I have just had a further thought. I have been barking up the wrong tree.

Having revisited all the previous discussions on changing sa, firstly I found I had answered my own question on tuning by quoting Ashish S from his Mewar CD liner notes.

This describes not only basic method of tanpura but of been strings to achieve the raga sa as distinct from the "tanpura sa". I repeat this below.

Also see "sankrityayan"'s post of Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:00 am which I accepted at the time as being pretty conclusive.

It now seems apparently that when Bahauddin Dagar is demonstrating shades of sa, it is the sa played straight on the sa fret that IS the raga sa. The others ascending from there are NOT the raga sa but different shades of sa which beenkar implies can be played in performance. Main problem solved.

Hence my conclusion is that this has very little to do with the changeability of sa depending on raga but is a quite different changeability/spectrum of sa as played WITHIN the raga.

This means the raga sa could indeed theoretically be lower or higher than the tanpura sa, and much of what I said above re conflicts is resolved.

The only thing puzzling would IF Bahauddin did suggest there were only 7 sas and his main playing string were NOT tuned as Ashish suggests to "raga sa" but remained tuned to "tanpura sa". :shock:

------------------------------
Ashish S on tuning.

The two centre strings of the tanpura establish the sa, and the sa of the raga to be performed, which varies in relation to this, is tuned on the fourth string (the kharaj string). The first string, which is usually tuned to pa, ma or ni, is made to coincide with the overtone of the fourth string.

In the rudra veena, the two chikari strings establish the sa, and the sa of the main string is tuned according to the raga to be performed. The other strings are tuned to match the overtones of the main sa string. If the chikari has three strings, then the third can be tuned to the sa of the raga to be performed.

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby westsea » Tue Apr 13, 2010 6:19 pm

First of all, apologies for my last post, especially to westsea, I guess I have been chewing this bone long enough. Too long.

Absolutely no apology necessary. Look what good came from it!
You found important, pertinent information to share with us.
Thank you for your research and persistence.

I wish you could see the video of Bahauddin. The main string sa is played without
pulling, at the 7th fret. In his demo, Bahaudding plays the sa by pulling to it, from the 6th fret.

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Tue Apr 13, 2010 7:27 pm

westsea wrote:
Absolutely no apology necessary. Look what good came from it!
You found important, pertinent information to share with us.
Thank you for your research and persistence.

I wish you could see the video of Bahauddin. The main string sa is played without
pulling, at the 7th fret. In his demo, Bahaudding plays the sa by pulling to it, from the 6th fret.


That's very gracious of you, thank you.

Re my last post, of course by saying the main string was tuned to raga sa I really meant it was tuned to the appropriate lower note to give raga sa on the sa fret. That's interesting what you describe about the playing the sa.

Ragamala you will go to the ball. One day you will see that video.

(Sorry - saw Rossini's Cenerentola=Cinderella opera at the wonderful and beautiful newly reconstructed Bari opera house a day ago. Hard to get its associations out of my mind).

--------------------

In the hope it will be of some interest, I am uploading the booklet of that great Royal Collection of Mewar set of cds with Moinuddin and Aminuddin Dagar from which I extracted the quote in my last post.

http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=43b1 ... ff558c5f6c

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby jaan e kharabat » Thu Apr 15, 2010 7:35 am

Okay here's a summary what Ust. B. Dagar says in the clips:

*Each swara has seven shrutis, so there are 7x12=84 shrutis in total
*Each Raag takes one of the shrutis of the respective swaras as its base notes
*In the Raag-Raagini system, the various melodies were grouped according to the commonality of the shrutis of their swaras, e.g. Raag Megh had as its Raaginis Jaijaiwanti and Darbari because they all share the same Re shruti. What is not clear if ALL the swaras of a Raagini must be in accordance with the shrutis of the Parent Raag.

What I would like to know is that if this is the case, why have tampura drones tuned to the wrong shrutis, chikaris tuned to the wrong shrutis? What's the point of the drone?

And also, if the claim about the Raag-Raagini system is correct, why hasn't anyone else but the Dagars made this connection before? None of the reference material on aforementioned system that I have come across has even hinted that microtonal arrangements were at the heart of that taxonomy.
If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby panchamkauns » Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:53 am

jaan e kharabat wrote:What I would like to know is that if this is the case, why have tampura drones tuned to the wrong shrutis, chikaris tuned to the wrong shrutis? What's the point of the drone?

If you tune the drone to the raga sa, each sa would again be the same, and there would be no difference.
We are 3

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby jaan e kharabat » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:17 am

panchamkauns wrote:
jaan e kharabat wrote:What I would like to know is that if this is the case, why have tampura drones tuned to the wrong shrutis, chikaris tuned to the wrong shrutis? What's the point of the drone?

If you tune the drone to the raga sa, each sa would again be the same, and there would be no difference.


I don't understand what you are getting at here. What does each sa mean here and no difference to what?
If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby jaan e kharabat » Fri Apr 16, 2010 3:01 am

ragamala wrote:Ashish S on tuning.

The two centre strings of the tanpura establish the sa, and the sa of the raga to be performed, which varies in relation to this, is tuned on the fourth string (the kharaj string). The first string, which is usually tuned to pa, ma or ni, is made to coincide with the overtone of the fourth string.

In the rudra veena, the two chikari strings establish the sa, and the sa of the main string is tuned according to the raga to be performed. The other strings are tuned to match the overtones of the main sa string. If the chikari has three strings, then the third can be tuned to the sa of the raga to be performed.


This is not consistent with B.Dagar's demonstration on the been. For one, if the chikaris are tuned to this inane "drone" Sa, and the playing string to Raag Sa, he could have easily demonstrated the pitch variance by pointing it out and playing them in turn. But he does nothing of the sort, instead he demonstrates the 7 shrutis of sa by bending from the sa fret. To all intents and purposes, all the strings were tuned to the same tonic pitch.
If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby DrKashyap » Fri Apr 16, 2010 3:39 am

What Ashish has said is the essence of the thing, however it is made unduly occult by others - not able to answer simple questions by others due to lack of proper knowledge/intention/explanation power. - feeling more superior over those who fail to surrender to their whims.

There has to be some scientific base for everything. Today non- science person talks too much about science, some non medical people opine too much about medical research & so on. Mere information without underlying scientific base has no value - does not carry you a long way. Each information has to be verified on the basis of scientific principles. Even if there is a gap in scientific base & fact, that gap has to be highlighted, otherwise this wonderful art will be unduly criticized for making excessive occultism a 'tool of trade'

It is so sad that Ragmala's modesty & Jan's curiosity are misunderstood.

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Fri Apr 16, 2010 7:33 am

jaan e kharabat wrote:
This is not consistent with B.Dagar's demonstration on the been. For one, if the chikaris are tuned to this inane "drone" Sa, and the playing string to Raag Sa, he could have easily demonstrated the pitch variance by pointing it out and playing them in turn. But he does nothing of the sort, instead he demonstrates the 7 shrutis of sa by bending from the sa fret. To all intents and purposes, all the strings were tuned to the same tonic pitch.


Yes that would puzzle me IF I did not now believe what he was demonstrating was NOT the variability of the sa of the raga against the "tanpura" or chikari sa BUT what he was demonstrating was how even when the raga sa has been established the played sa can vary.

This now makes clearer to me the variability of the sung sa which I have heard in recordings (for example when studying the Megh and Miyan ki Malhar which Ashish S recommended. It makes sense of what Beenkar was saying. EG a "meend" is not necessarily a smooth slide, it is a trip down the ladder of the microtones between two notes, sometimes with pauses along the way. I think this is what Bahauddin was demonstrating, and to some extent this makes sense of my previous listening.

This takes me to your second point "To all intents and purposes".

My listening has convinced me that my musical ears are just not good enough to hear microtonal differences of the small size that we are talking about here. The difference between two adjacent sas, working on the basis of seven per semitone, is minute. I think few people would be able to perceive the difference between one and the next. This difference is about half a Pythagorean comma, and I'm not sure many people can even detect that.

So sadly (for me) I have to struggle to understand the theory and not really appreciate the outcome.

But I am happy that I have a grasp of the tanpura tuning. The tanpura sa is there to provide the frequency reference point for the raga sa, which is different, and hence for all the other notes of the raga's scale. The presence of BOTH sas in the tanpura tuning ALSO allows more flexibility in the tuning to enable by fine adjustment the significant notes of the raga to "leap out of" the mass of overtones produced.

Regarding the ragas and raginis, I wonder if anyone has access to Ganguly's Ragas and Raginis book? This might provide some more information.

Clearly the Dagar's system although it may have the same six main ragas defined in it, differs considerably from the other systems I have see in the raginis assigned to them.

My question is - if there are 7 varieties of sa, and the sa defines the raga classification, why only six ragas? :o

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby jaan e kharabat » Fri Apr 16, 2010 8:44 am

ragamala wrote:My question is - if there are 7 varieties of sa, and the sa defines the raga classification, why only six ragas?


I'd like to get to the rest of your well written post when I have some time to think about all the issues but for now just this part:

well apparently, there is one variety of Sa (and the set of swaras resulting from the intervals thereof) that no Raga ever likes, the plain old base Tampura Sa and plain old perfect 5th Pa and plain old perfect 3rd Ga, etc.
If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby jaan e kharabat » Fri Apr 16, 2010 8:47 am

ragamala wrote:But I am happy that I have a grasp of the tanpura tuning. The tanpura sa is there to provide the frequency reference point for the raga sa, which is different, and hence for all the other notes of the raga's scale. The presence of BOTH sas in the tanpura tuning ALSO allows more flexibility in the tuning to enable by fine adjustment the significant notes of the raga to "leap out of" the mass of overtones produced.


Some people call this going besura...
If there are just ''six tones'' in an octave [sic] then why have frets for tones that don't exist?

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Re: Changing Sa's revisited

Postby ragamala » Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:08 am

jaan e kharabat wrote:
ragamala wrote:My question is - if there are 7 varieties of sa, and the sa defines the raga classification, why only six ragas?


I'd like to get to the rest of your well written post when I have some time to think about all the issues but for now just this part:

well apparently, there is one variety of Sa (and the set of swaras resulting from the intervals thereof) that no Raga ever likes, the plain old base Tampura Sa and plain old perfect 5th Pa and plain old perfect 3rd Ga, etc.


Ah - that thought had occurred to me as a possible reason - thanks for that (and for your other explanation on the video).

Anything simple has to fly out of the window with the Dagars, doesn't it :lol:


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