What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Discussions about the Indian hand-drums known as tabla.

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sbandyo
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What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby sbandyo » Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:56 pm

Can someone share their experience with what Dayan scales are normally used for different accompaniment? I have seen ladies usually sing at scale B-flat or A and men at C#. But I was curious what scales normally sitar, sarod etc. are played at?
I have 2 old Dayans both at C. Both doesn't sound that great. I am thinking of getting a couple of new ones and was wondering what scale should I get.
Also, for Riyaz or practice they say to get a wider diameter low scale Dayan is better. Is that at D# (lower octave) usually?

evening84
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby evening84 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 7:25 pm

I occasionally accompany some vocal students. In general, men have their tonic at (C, C#, D) and women at (G,G#,A) although there are always exceptions. (And then of-course, there are proponents of the "harmonium gharana", who change their tonics by pushing in or pulling out those knobs on the harmonium so as to pick a scale where they will sound the least besur - and are likely the ones to complain the most that the Tabla is not quite right, whatever that means). Most Sitar players use D, in my limited experience. Don't know about Sarod although I do not expect it be very different, perhaps a tad lower so maybe C, C#. For your own riyaz, it is a personal choice - I mostly use wider Tablas in the lower octave (I have one at G# and another one even lower at E) but I do switch to higher-pitched ones occasionally for variety.

And one other thing I wanted to mention is that although matching your daya to the vocalist's tonic is ideal; one could also tune to PA (fifth) or MA (fourth) if you only have one daya with a limited range and it is just not possible to tune to the tonic.
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dhatitdha
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby dhatitdha » Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:00 am

Male vocalist : C, C#, D
Female : G, G#, A
Sitar, Sarod : C, C#
Santoor : C#, D, D#
Flute : C, C#, D

In my opinion you should have Tablas of scale C#, D#, G# which will normally address your requirement, because every Tabla scale can be shifted +/- 1 note i.e. C# can be used for C & D scale, same with others.

For Riyaz, one should practice of different diameter/scales Tablas, that will help.

Vivek
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby Vivek » Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:35 pm

dhatitdha wrote:Male vocalist : C, C#, D
Female : G, G#, A
Sitar, Sarod : C, C#
Santoor : C#, D, D#
Flute : C, C#, D


This is mostly correct, but a few refinements:
1. Females often sing in Bb (A#) as well
2. D is not uncommon for sitar, although C# is certainly the most common
3. D is quite rare for flute (bansuri) and C is VERY rare. The most common concert bansuri pitch is E. Some players will play one note lower (Eb) or higher (F). Beyond that, you might hear any bansuri pitched higher than F, but rarely below Eb or D, because below that the are simply too big to be played easily by most people.
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rch
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby rch » Thu Oct 06, 2016 10:02 pm

Very Informative thread. I always wondered about this. During tabla practice our teacher always had us tune to C#.
However, when I tried to google the chromatic tuner( below), a bit bewildered on Female vocalists scale of G#. Afraid of ripping my head and ear drums!!!! :lol:

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... F09F0F4645

profpandit
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby profpandit » Fri Oct 07, 2016 7:13 pm

if you want to cater to everyone,
keep two daayans, one with a larger diameter head
to play for males
and one with a smaller diameter to play for females
if you cover these two bases,
I'm pretty sure you'll have enough range to match the instruments
if you want to get a little more exotic,
you can add a third daayan with an even larger head
that plays at the male scale one octave below

proxmire
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby proxmire » Wed Oct 12, 2016 12:50 am

From what I have heard, the high E is the smallest and highest pitch tabla you can get, correct me if I am wrong. so that means when you play with a male singer at c#, you have to have a larger and lower pitch tabla at around g# for female right?

profpandit
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby profpandit » Wed Oct 12, 2016 3:56 am

C# tablas are roughly 5.5-6" for the higher octave and about 7" for the lower octave

here's a little math

Assuming the primary mode of the vibration is a concentric wave
that radiates in from the chaanti the center

The resonances of this mode will occur at multiples of the base ratio

7" = ~18cm

assuming a wall thickness of 1cm

that leaves an effective membrane diameter of 16cm

speed of sound in air = ~300 m/s

300 / .16 = ~1925

This will factorize down to 1925 962.5 481.25 240.625

C# is around 275Hz which is pretty close to 240.625

proxmire
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby proxmire » Wed Oct 12, 2016 10:02 pm

profpandit wrote:C# tablas are roughly 5.5-6" for the higher octave and about 7" for the lower octave

here's a little math

Assuming the primary mode of the vibration is a concentric wave
that radiates in from the chaanti the center

The resonances of this mode will occur at multiples of the base ratio

7" = ~18cm

assuming a wall thickness of 1cm

that leaves an effective membrane diameter of 16cm

speed of sound in air = ~300 m/s

300 / .16 = ~1925

This will factorize down to 1925 962.5 481.25 240.625

C# is around 275Hz which is pretty close to 240.625




uh, okay. 240 isn't near 277-278 hz where a c is. the tabla has upper partials that are far more harmonically even than this discrepancy, and is actually the most harmonic drum you can find. I play other tuned drums like ngoma, conga, and shime daiko, and it amazes my every time to hear how harmonic and clear the tabla note is.

Anyway, low C# tablas are very rare, and I have only seen one in my life, and I doubt very many people are using them to accompany male vocals or sitar/sarode.

My question was if tabla players actually accompany female singers with a lower pitch tabla, or do they use a drum tuned to the 5th? And also has anyone seen a higher pitched drum than high E?

profpandit
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby profpandit » Thu Oct 13, 2016 11:09 am

Well, this was a rough analysis without any real measurements
240 is in the ballpark of 277 so obviously if we did a more exact analysis
we would get to the exact diameter needed.
Also, the analysis shows that it's possible to tune a tabla to any point in the octave
The actual choice of tuning depends more on the player's requirement
This is because the range in diameters is enough to provide a whole octave range of frequencies.
I have a lower octave C# tabla
and I have attended a concert of Ajay Chakravarty, a male vocalist
where the tabla player was using a similar tabla
but never other than that one time.

The resonance in the tabla compared to other drums
is probably due to the shyahi which emphasizes the primary mode of vibration

profpandit
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby profpandit » Sun Oct 16, 2016 1:06 pm

proxmire wrote:
profpandit wrote:C# tablas are roughly 5.5-6" for the higher octave and about 7" for the lower octave

here's a little math

Assuming the primary mode of the vibration is a concentric wave
that radiates in from the chaanti the center

The resonances of this mode will occur at multiples of the base ratio

7" = ~18cm

assuming a wall thickness of 1cm

that leaves an effective membrane diameter of 16cm

speed of sound in air = ~300 m/s

300 / .16 = ~1925

This will factorize down to 1925 962.5 481.25 240.625

C# is around 275Hz which is pretty close to 240.625




uh, okay. 240 isn't near 277-278 hz where a c is. the tabla has upper partials that are far more harmonically even than this discrepancy, and is actually the most harmonic drum you can find. I play other tuned drums like ngoma, conga, and shime daiko, and it amazes my every time to hear how harmonic and clear the tabla note is.

Anyway, low C# tablas are very rare, and I have only seen one in my life, and I doubt very many people are using them to accompany male vocals or sitar/sarode.

My question was if tabla players actually accompany female singers with a lower pitch tabla, or do they use a drum tuned to the 5th? And also has anyone seen a higher pitched drum than high E?


It's also cogent to mention
that the skin tension of the vibrating membrane also has a role to play in the tone produced
while the diameter of the membrane and the shyahi will create a resonant mode for the membrane to vibrate
and the volume of the cavity will contribute to that resonance
the tension of the skin can still be used to force the tabla to operate at other tones than its most resonant one
None of these tabla makers have access to any of this Physics knowledge
they play it by ear and the knowledge acquired through trial and error is passed down the generations
So, trying to be precise in such an analysis is defeating its purpose

Shawn
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Re: What Dayans (scale) are normally used during accompaniment?

Postby Shawn » Tue Oct 18, 2016 6:36 pm

Based on my experience, the most common pitches are:

Male vocals: C to E
Female vocals: G# to Bb
Sitar: D (occasionally C#, rarely C)
Sarod: C
Santoor: D
Bansuri: E

It is definitely necessary, over time, to have dahinas in different diameters to be able to accommodate the different pitches.

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