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Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Ideas and innovations in Indian classical music
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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by ragam-talam » 08 Dec 2010, 22:27

Nick H wrote:(historical joke between r-t and me)
>>He might have but few lessons for us
surely you meant 'a few' ?

Anyway, enuff digression... let the lessons continue!

Nick H
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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by Nick H » 09 Dec 2010, 01:11

Absolutely right, indeed I did.

But, as you just taught me one ...
Anyway, enuff digression
The trouble (if it is a trouble) is that this is a topic that we approach, in one way or another and under one heading or another, every few months ...

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Location: U.S.A

Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by VK RAMAN » 09 Dec 2010, 01:42

Sangeetha Mahayuddham in Malayalam is an eye opener if fusion is going to be the ultimate result of modern trend

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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by mkranthikiran » 10 Dec 2010, 08:19

How about the use of kanakku in manodharmam? In most of the vintage records, I hardly heard vidwans using calculations in swara prasthara. Their kalpana was purely based on sarvalaghu swaras. In the present day concerts, we can't find anyone singing swaras without calculations and korvais.

Isn't this a new trend?

Kiran Mudigonda

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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by veeyens3 » 02 Feb 2011, 05:31

With due apologies to fellow rasikas, I would like for a moment to revert to mike less concerts.
Members have shared their views on mikeless concerts held in famous concert halls and churches both in India and abroad.I do not know many have heard about concerts held in“Gol Gumbus” in Bijapur According to Wilkipedia,this is actually a mausoleum containing a ruler of Adil Shahi dynasty.built in 17 century. This a rotunda spanning a diameter of nearly 140 ft and enclosing an area of more than18,000 sq.ft.Along the inner periphery of the dome runs a platform An unique feature of this structure is that even a small whisper along the plat form can be heard all over the platform I have personally experienced this by listening to the ticking of watch from a place on the round platform diametrically opposite. I was also told that sound gets reflected seven times.Is the carriage of sound waves along the periphery is total internal reflection, akin to total internal reflection in diamonds, which is the cause of the brilliant lustre in a 16 faceted diamond.I was also told musical concerts were held here when the artists performed from a platform over the grave My query is if the musician's voice is to be heard all over hall, will not the echo effect interfere with the original sound not to mention the beat effects from any two frequenciesI am eager to hear the comments of our members. May Sri Rama bless you all

Nick H
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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by Nick H » 02 Feb 2011, 17:51

I recall such an experience. Not certain, but I think it was somewhere in Hyderabad? It was possible to stand by the edge of the structure and hear a whisper from the other side.

My thoughts are that the acoustics of a room may be engineered for different purposes. One that is designed to reveal the whispers of plotters is probably not ideal for the performance of a concert.

I think that the ideal concert venue would have no echo at all --- which just goes to show how ridiculous it is to add echo to a studio recording --- which is certainly possible.

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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by veeyens3 » 02 Feb 2011, 20:31

It was formerly in erstwhile Bombay presidency and after linguistic reorganisation came into Karnataka

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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by lochana » 17 Feb 2011, 18:55

Hello, I have joined this forum recently. I need help from all of you for a survey I am conducting on mikeless concerts. I would like all of you to fill in the questionnaire & send it to me if possible. Thanks a lot.
Rasikas’ Questionairre
S.No Questions Answers
1 Have you heard mike less vocal concerts in olden days?
2 Was it for a small audience?
3 Was it in a closed hall?
4 Were the artistes seated on a raised dais?
5 Were the audience seated on the floor?
6 Was the distance between the artist & 1st row audience more than 10 feet?
7 Was the mridangam too loud?
8 Was the soft upa pakkavadyam like morching heard?
9 Were you able to make out the nuances in the music of the vocalist?
10 Were you able to make out the nuances in the music of the instrumentalists?
11 Have you heard an instrumental concert without Mike?
12 Were all the conditions similar with regards to mike & mike less concerts?
13 Have you heard the same artists with mike?
14 Was it in a closed hall?
15 If so, was it in an acoustically treated hall?
16 If open, was it a music concert, uninterrupted by temple / wedding sounds?
17 Were good quality mikes & PA systems used?
18 Did you like the sound quality produced?
19 Were you able to make out the nuances better?
20 Were softer instruments heard without being drowned by louder ones?
21 Do you feel mikes & good PA systems have improved listening quality?
22 Have you heard the same artists in an LP/EP/AIR/ TV ?
23 Do you feel the studio quality recording adds to the listening quality?
24 Do you feel the artists’ musical quality is enhanced with electronic media?
25 Do you feel manodharma is hindered in studio recording?
26 Do you feel short concerts cannot show the true quality of a musician?
27 Do you feel cassettes & CDs in a home theatre can replace live concerts?
28 Do you feel electronic aids result in unnatural tones & balance of sound?
29 Do you feel electronic media is a boon for Carnatic music?

Email: Any other comments on the back please.

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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by thenpaanan » 07 Oct 2011, 20:34

mkranthikiran wrote:How about the use of kanakku in manodharmam? In most of the vintage records, I hardly heard vidwans using calculations in swara prasthara. Their kalpana was purely based on sarvalaghu swaras. In the present day concerts, we can't find anyone singing swaras without calculations and korvais.

Isn't this a new trend?

Kiran Mudigonda
Maybe. Note that the vintage recordings that are available to us are only of a few vidwans. It is possible that kanakku swarams were sung by vidwans other than the ones for whom we have many recordings. For example, TK Rangachari sang extensive kanakkus and it is a fair assumption that he was part of an existing tradition of singing kanakku swaram. However we can probably infer that kanakku singing was not a popular/widespread practice. It is possible and likely that the audience demands have changed.


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Re: Modern Trends in Carnatic Music

Post by msakella » 10 Oct 2011, 11:42

In general, any system usually starts by noble people basing on very noble ideas and high expectations to make it much useful to the society. But, in our country, due to the very highly self centred politicians or irrational conservatives or indisciplinarians or outnumbered inefficients, later on, gradually deteriorates in standards over years to come but called ‘Sampradaya’ and followed by many people innocently and ignorantly. But, due to the contaminated scenario, even the handful disciplinarians and efficients are also keeping quiet without properly guiding the youth just to get the fame as ‘uncontroversial-persons’. That is what presently happening now in our country which very badly effects every citizen, every walk of life and every facet of them among which our music is not an exception.

While there are many other facets also falling under these modern trends only two, utilisation of microphones and kanakku in the music-concerts, have been taken for discussion till now. In principle, being a professional-musician and music-teacher I do not find any thing wrong in their utilisation in the music concerts unless they are misused like all other things.

In our country we are used to conduct thousands of music concerts but not in the halls built only for conducting music-concerts where the artists may not need a microphone at all and, at the same time, the audience also keep quiet. But, in our halls microphones are much needed to avoid crying but not singing to reach the audience sitting far away from the artist. But, while the microphone is truly meant to increase only the sensitivity of music of the performing artist but not the volume of the voice or the instrument, unfortunately, in the present conditions, in the absence of a reliable operator with a sense of music, every artist on the dais is used to quarrel with the other to have the maximum volume of his own. Even in regard to our artists, many of our old artists are not that sensitive to feel about their music which was always brought out along WITH Shruti only but not IN Shruti. But, now, we can feel better to find the next generation far better not only in Shruti sense but in rhythmical abilities also even though our irrational conservatives moan about it as a modern trend.

Of course, in one way we must thank the microphone allowing the audience to chat each other even in the midst of the concert which is not possible in a mike-less concert. To speak the truth, the truly charming music naturally makes the audience spell-bound and keeps them attentive avoiding any chat.

In the same manner, even in respect of kanakku which is nothing but mathematics, most of the musicians and audience are ever ready to very heavily harp on ‘Sarvalaghu’ which, in fact, have soothing effect only on the audience but not followed precisely by many of the performing artists. Many are not aware that most of the performing artists are rendering ‘Sama-gati’ but not ‘Sarva-laghu’ at all and the audience, in the absence of proper knowledge, are taking it for ‘Sarva-laghu’. Being the fact, though very bitter, the performer who has deft command over the odd-gatis can only manage with the Tani of an able Mridangist and all others very conveniently hand over the charge of rendering Tala to the Violin-accompanist (if he/she shows any disinclination to do this he/she will not get another chance to accompany the same person) while the Mridangist starts his Tani thus making the accompanist scape-goat for his/her own incompetence. As a professional-violin-accompanist I had experienced hundreds of such incidents. Singing kanakku requires very high level concentration and practice to get through it and any kind of lack of them very badly affects the concert and the singer alike. That is why only the musicians who are used to be alert always in kanakku support kanakku and all others openly hate it. Also, that is why most of the undisciplined musicians are used to sing or play only the Purvanga of any Varna in two degrees of speed and skip to do the same in respect of Uttaranga of it but prefer to run away with a single speed as it involves some mathematical theorems. Mostly the defect lies upon the music-teachers who cannot manage with mathematics but successfully contribute their might in increasing the number of impotent disciples in music.

Once, when I was invited to act as Judge for the selection of candidates for the scholar-ships given by the Central-government to the kids of 14 years of age, I, at the first instance, have asked each and every candidate to render the Alankaras both in Ata-tala and Triputa-tala direct in the 3rd degree of speed. More than 90 per cent of the candidates failed to do so and, naturally, I have failed them. Then came the uproar from their respective teachers (cheaters) that the Judge should not ask such difficult questions and I have suggested them to make a collective complaint to the higher authorities concerned not to invite me later as a Judge. They did so earnestly and I was not invited later. That is the ability of most of our music-teachers (cheaters).

Recently, even when I had to conduct a work-shop on Svarakalpana to 10 or 12 disciples of a reputed Sangeeta Vidwan and teacher, among which each and every one is either an A-grade Artist of All India Radio or a concert-artist or both, to my surprise, each and everybody successfully failed to repeat a very-basic-mathematical-exercise. That is the efficiency and reliability of most of our music-teachers (cheaters). I sincerely bow down to the true-music-teacher who follows the qualitative (but not quantitative) method of teaching music in shaping the aspirants knowledgeable and properly initiates the aspirants sing intricate mathematical Svarakalpana along with brief Ragalapana even before the completion of learning Varnas. Even though this qualitative method of teaching music also falls under the ‘modern trends’ the irrational conservatives may feel bad for their inability either to bring out more effective method in teaching than mine making the process of teaching ‘time-bound and result-oriented” or to condemn my methods.

Just like compelling our kids to learn the mathematical tables by their heart even without knowing the implications of them, unless our kids are properly trained and groomed to deal with the odd-gatis of our music, we cannot produce potents in music which is not possible to each and every music-teacher. That is why, until recently, all our great experts very conveniently avoided prescribing to render both the Purvanga and Uttaranga of a Varna @ 4, 6 & 8-units in any of the music-syllabi or for the scholar-ships or Radio-auditions or for the posts of music-teachers. But, recently, this has been included in some of the music-syllabi. Even if some irrational conservatives moan about this taking it as a modern trend, I very much doubt, whether this has been included in the schemes of examination and truthfully asked by the efficient examiners and adjudged by them. amsharma

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