INDIAN MUSIC FORUM ARCHIVES: Sitar Forum: Going back to Cali, (Calcatta)

 

Author Message
Vishal
Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 10:14 a.m.


I will be visiting calcutta soon, and I really want to bring back a few instruments. (aleast a sitar and a harmonium). Are there any leads to what manufactures/retailers are honest?. On my previous trip Feb '03 I spent half the day looking for MPS shop, no body knew where his shop was and when I finally found his shop he had no sitars ready for sale. A very kind man though, we sat around and talked sipped some chai. He had mentioned that about a few years ago, a few people from the US have come to him, he had mentioned a man named Bruce and Peter. He had told me one thing that kinda stuck with me, you could have 8000 rupees or $ 8000 dollars it wouldn't matter to me, I can only make 4 sitars a month and even then its sold locally. Which confuses me about all the retailers in the US claiming to sell his products. Clouds of smoke. Perhaps on this trip I will be able to find the makers of Shristi Musicals and if possible, select my sitar before its shipped to Lars shop!
Russ
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 11:32 a.m.


Vishal, based on what little I know, word got around locally in Kolcatta that MPS sitars were of above-average quality, due to Mr. Sharma's knowledge, experience, direct involvement in the making of the instruments, and use of quality materials. Yes, both his shop and staff is minimal, and his primary clients in the past have been local.

But, word also got to the US from commissioned "agents" in the field, trying to source a good quality sitar for a reasonable price. There aren't that many retailers in the US, and word spread among them all quickly. A couple fo them (Peter yes, Bruce I don't know) took a chance and bought a few to see how they would sell. Some of us took a chance too and bought one. Overall, the results seem to have been favorable, according to owners' word of mouth. But as you say, his production has to be limited to keep the quality up. So even now, you don't find many retailers selling them. Not because of quality, but because of demand exceeding supply. These sitars are not cheap ripoffs, made for mass comsumption. So, not smoke and mirrors. Supply and demand.

From all I hear nowdays, the Shristi is another up and coming quality sitar. But once again, it is word of mouth that sells these things! From what we've all heard here, results are once again favorable.

Amitava
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 02:19 p.m.


Mysterious Bruce...may be Bruce Hamman, the keeper of the Ali Akbar School of Music....Hmmm?

A

K.K.
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 02:31 p.m.


Amitava: I think you are correct. The only difference is that the sitars Peter sold were custom built to his specs and hence were slightly �different� from the ones sold through AACM.
Russ
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 02:47 p.m.


Ahh yes, that Bruce. I think AACM still offers a tun MPS at lower cost. But I get the feeling Bruce doesn't think much about them.
You're right KK. Peter's consignment were made to his specs. I've always wondered how the versions sold locally differed from ours.
Vishal
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 03:49 p.m.


Thank you for the feedback. However that still leaves 1 question unanswered. He specifically said that he made only 4 - 5 sitars per month, which means there is no way possible or a very slight chance that anyone in the US was able to sell his sitars. I mean people think about it, do you honestly believe that Buckingham or AACM only sold 1 sitar a month between the two of them?

Anyhow, this in only my secondary interest in knowing that what these people advertise is the truth or just a market hype?

My primary concern is finding a knowledgeable sitar maker in calcutta with ready stock.

Vishal
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 04:14 p.m.


Here's the contact info, if anyone interested:
Russ
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 06:09 p.m.



Vishal (Sep 04, 2003 03:49 p.m.):
Thank you for the feedback. However that still leaves 1 question unanswered. He specifically said that he made only 4 - 5 sitars per month, which means there is no way possible or a very slight chance that anyone in the US was able to sell his sitars. I mean people think about it, do you honestly believe that Buckingham or AACM only sold 1 sitar a month between the two of them?

Anyhow, this in only my secondary interest in knowing that what these people advertise is the truth or just a market hype?

My primary concern is finding a knowledgeable sitar maker in calcutta with ready stock.


As a matter of fact, Peter typically sold one MPS every 6 weeks on average, and he never had more than a couple to show. If Sri Sharma has none in his shop to show you, then you know they all all pre-ordered, and go out the moment they're finished. Building 4 sitars a month is moving along pretty fast. From what I saw, AACM only had the one MPS to sell. They did not buy in stock.

Lars
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 04, 2003 08:56 p.m.


Vishal,
Mangla makes a whole range of quality level, from the cheapest model as seen on one site to the better ones that Peter used to bring in....
Srishti's are not available in India off the shelf, sorry....if you want me to arrange something though feel free to email me....
Lars
Vishal
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 05, 2003 03:07 p.m.


Hey Lars,

I will be in Calcutta between the 15th & 16th. If you could provide me with the contacts telephone numbers and address that would be great!. Since im going all the way to India for this, and it wouldn't make a difference for taking it back with me on the airlines (cost for extra luggage). I might aswell ask for their highest grade of instrument, (teak wood). and since it would be a lot cheaper to buy in India.

Thanks in advance.

Vishal
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 05, 2003 03:10 p.m.


Hey Lars,

I will be in Calcutta between the 15th & 16th. If you could provide me with the contacts telephone numbers and address that would be great!. Since im going all the way to India for this, and it wouldn't make a difference for taking it back with me on the airlines (cost for extra luggage). I might aswell ask for their highest grade of instrument, (teak wood). and since it would be a lot cheaper to buy in India.

Would you also have the contacts for Paul & Co. harmoniums?

I've heard they are considerable better then the Pakrashi. (I know im in the wrong forum when I ask this)

Thanks in advance.

Lars
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 05, 2003 08:45 p.m.


Hey Vishal....email me! info@sitarsetc.com
Paul & Co. is a much better instrument in my opinion...
Lars
kalyan
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 21, 2003 07:44 p.m.


my name is kalyan I also work in the aacm store and have scince 2000, I have been doing the tabla repairs there for over 10 years and been studing instrument repair with my father Brian godden scince I was 13.
We (the aacm store) started carrying the mps sitars about a yaer and a half ago, I believe in total we have ordered 5 and only sold 1 so it most likely true that he only makes 4 a month.I have found them to good middle range sitars, the only real problems I see is that the pegs are made from soft wood and the holes they go in sometimes dont fit perfectly, also I think the faces are a bit thicker than some, making it hard to get a real sensitive symp response. they do look pretty nice and we have not had any trouble with the necks bowing too much wich is a problem in a lot of the lower and mid range sitars.
I have seen some of the mps sitars that were sold by the other shop in this country at my fathers workshop and with a couple of students that came through the school. I would say there is no major difference between those and the ones we have. accept we do not carry the teak model.

Russ I thought you said we only had 1 sitar a hemen in stock that you saw and "stand firm on that". if that is the case then how are you qualified to comment on the quality of our mps that you did not see , wait a sec you did say you saw the mps now I am confused

kalyan
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 21, 2003 08:09 p.m.


p.s vishal it is sometimes best to go to the makers shop with someone who is a somewhat respected teacher or musician. often times they will all of a suden rember that they have a sitar that they just made in the back, or they will they will give you one of the instuments they were building for an out of country order. also you will get better quality that way. good luck
Erock
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 21, 2003 11:34 p.m.


I think Kalyan is right. I went to Clacutta last year and got a great instrument from a very respected maker, but I was very fortunate to have a teacher that is well known in the area give me a recomendation, and even then a couple of Gurubai to come to the shop and help make sure I got what I wanted. It doesn't hurt to bring the guy some sweets too, to help break the ice.
Anyway if you are in the states the place to go would be the AACM college store. They have tons of stuff at all ends of the price spectrum in stock, so you can go and do side by side comparison, which in my opnion is the only way to really tell what the differences are between 2 or more instruments. It's a big step to buy an instrument, you should be sure before you commit.
But that's just my 2 shrutis
Russ
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 22, 2003 12:48 a.m.


Kalyan, I wish now I had never brought up my experience at AACM. The young man at the store that I spoke with that day told me the Hemen was the only sitar available, but more would be coming in later. He was obviously mistaken. I'm only repeating what he told me. The MPS I was referring to is the one pictured on the website. I didn't see it in the store.
erock
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 22, 2003 02:46 a.m.


Hi Russ,
When did you visit the AACM store?
I've been there a few times in the past few years for suplies etc.and I've always found that they had tons of sitars and sarodes etc. Not to metnion a beautiful Hemen Surbahar that was sold to a friend not long ago. I was really excited to try an exceptional 30 some yearold Kanai Lal Rudra Veena...a little out of my budget these days, but it's nice to dream.
What did you see when you were there?
Tom
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 22, 2003 06:21 a.m.


Is Russ a real person or an alternative ID for someone else?

It is so easy for one person to post with many IDs on the internet......

Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 22, 2003 12:15 p.m.


Hi Erock,
Does AACM usally carry a wide selection of Surbahars? I may be interested in one in the future. Do they usally have them in stock or are they just in occasional supply? Did you notice any the last time you were there, other than the one you mentioned. I havent seen any on the website for some time now.
Jeffrey R King
Erock
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 23, 2003 06:07 p.m.


Last time I was there they had a couple but one of them had already been sold to a friend in Michigan...
I also saw/tried a Hansa Veena....which is an Indian slide guitar, but not a modified archtop like Brij Bushan Kabra, Mohan Bhatt, or D Bhattacharya....
It looks more like a regular Indian instrument with full sympathetics, chikari etc. And the head of a swan.
pretty fancy dobro in other words.
Amitava
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 24, 2003 08:58 a.m.


Think that the Hansa Veena was designed by Barun Pal, uncle of Indrajit Bannerjee. One of his CDs has the instrument on the cover.

A

Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 01:23 a.m.


Maybe I am a stubborn traditionalist, or just afraid to make other instruments extinct. But why do we need the Hansa Veena, Mohan Veena, when the vichitra veena, and gotuvadyam, are struggling to stay alive. I sometimes think an artist will create a new instrument just so they become popular, but thats just my thought. I guess the same thing happened when sitarist abandoned the been, but it still is hanging on (by a thread), and the sursringar was once an amazing new invention along with the sarod too. I can understand the sarode and sursringar, but do we really need to westernize Desi instruments, I have heard Mohan veena, and to be honest, it is basically a slide guitar with chickari, and tarab strings, and it sounds the same, not very impressive at all.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 01:25 a.m.


To correct myself, I have not only heard it, I have played it too... just in case there is a misunderstanding.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
Amitava
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 01:17 p.m.


I guess it is a matter of personal opinion. The evolution (new use, changes, death) of instruments is an important one in my opinion. This is a problem traditionalists seem to have difficulty dealing with...that change is a un-changable factor of the universe.

Personally I like the gottuvadhyam...but will feel no regrets is the vichtra veena vanishes from the universe. The tone/sustain sucks....my opinion. Mohan veena sounds sooo much better tonally.

Also Ravikiran's new GV for example is nothing but an electronic guitar. While the tone is compromised (for the moment), the sustain is much better...so more gayaki....increasing the range of the abilities. As you can see the change is both good and bad.

I see nothing wrong with someone trying to carve a niche or modify instruments. Time will tell if the instrument will last or not...like you provided examples. For example, I think that the veena is in many way an inferior instrument to the gotuvadhyam... But is the dominant one.

If you can accept the sarod and sitar overtaking its ancestors, I would think the logic/sentiment could be extended to modern instruments as well.

My 2 paisas. (whuch my the way has a 2/45 value of a cent).

A

Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 03:39 p.m.


The reason I care so much is that the been is the instrument that I have chosen in life, and the fact that people have no regard for it really frustrates me. Also I don't think you have heard Dr. Gopal Shankar Mishra, or Gianni Richizzi, since both have fantastic instruments, with a lot nicer projection and tone than a mock-guitar-wannabe-veena. New instruments can be cool, but the disregard, or rather disrespect for the traditional or older instruments, is what I don't like.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
pb
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 04:03 p.m.


Hey,
you're calling that guitar thing with a few tarabs a veena? I have heard a few really good musicians play it, but to me it is just a guitar.

By way of example of instrument evolution: the sarode is an advanced rabab. The rabab has almost no meend; while the sarode excels in meend. My instructor has played rabab for 25 years, but after we saw wajahat khan he wants to try sarod because it has such few limitations. I think music is the driving force, the instrument is secondary.

If there was a more modern sitar out there (there may be, but I haven't heard one with the same sound), I would still feel warm and fuzzy about the old style, but I would buy the advanced one as well. Look at vilayat khan's sitar with the gear like things for the ma string and one or more of the chicaris. I think that is a valid inovation. Like amativa said, the only constant is change.

Pb

Remco_Helbers
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 05:01 p.m.


I feel it's also down to the player; I mean, give me Nikhil Banerjee's sitar and I can assure you it won't sound like him! (unfortunatly...) I saw Debashish Bhattacharya a couple of years ago and really like what he did on his souped up geetar. And, BTW, didn't Ravi Shankar add the extra Sa-string? A bit off topic, but I play an instrument called the Chapman Stick. For many years it was written off as combination of a bass and a guitar. But after 25 years you can actually hear a new breed of players (Greg Howard for instance) who are defining a new kind of music (Stickmusic) instead of rehasing older styles. Also a guy named Teed Rockwell (who studied with Akbhar Ali Khan) released a demo of him playing a raga on the Stick. But again...it's to the player to make the music not the instrument.....

Peace,

Remco

Stephen
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 04:08 p.m.


But I thought you (Ted) were releasing a bunch of new instruments of your own design. So why flame others that have adapted instruments to suit their playing style. Or would you have prefered that the rudra veena remained the very simplistic stick zither that it once was. I kind of like the evolution that takes place, it is in the spirit of our species.
K.K.
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 05:50 p.m.


Ahh...I long for the days when we used to sit around after a hunt and beat on our water vessels, blow our conk shells, and pluck our bow strings...man, we was jammin!
Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 06:15 p.m.


I am not trying to put down other peoples inovations, but rather trying to explain that we don't need to exagerate about the capabilities of the new instruments, and throw the existing ones in the trash. I have been working on making the sitar a lot like rudra veena yes, but that will never go public, that is just me tinkering around with things for fun. I just think maybe some people need to take responsibility and perhaps consider that maybe some of these older instruments have there purpose. Yes the been was considered a stick zither when rudra originally thought it up, but through thought and evolution it has become a wonderfull instrument, however I stick to the older form that Ustad Asad Ali Khan plays because it has 7 strings, but Z.M. Dagar also evolved it more, making a version that has 8 strings, which is traditionally not considered a very safe number for that purpose, and also the tone is way too soft, and lacks the response of the original. There are a few instruments that have evolved very well and thrive, like the sarode, sarangi, sitar, and tanpura. But I don't think it is necessary to let the others go into the abiss. Someday the sitar is going to be in the same position as rudra veena, maybe then will you understand my point fully.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 01:17 a.m.


I guess there is some good to the Hansa and Mohan veena, because it does introduce people to vichitra veena. I know at a time Rikhi Ram was making some portable vichitra been in the 40s, but I think that had stopped after his death.
The been is very difficult to aquire and learn in the US, I have aquired a few, study tons through CDs and guidance from a disciple of Z.M. Dagar, but I have made the decision that if I am serious I better just go and study with Ustad Asad Ali Khan, and thats exactly what I will do. The only issue is that I am also very skilled at sarangi, and pakhawaj, and I know I would have to give up sarangi for sure if Ustad were to accept me (Maybe I will be a "closet-case" sarangiya....lol)
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
kalyan
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 26, 2003 10:13 p.m.


I think the hansa veena and other slide guitar hybrids will probably be good for the preservation of the vichitra veena because: it is a more accessible instrument it is much smaller and easy to carry around; try puting a vichitra veena on a plane. also being related to the guitar it appeals to many westerners starting to study indian music. I would imagine anybody who gets good at playing would eventually look into the vichitra veena as well.
I agree the older veenas are wonderful instruments but unfortunatly there are very few teachers, at least in the US. The veena can seem like such a huge undertaking to someone just starting out.
Remco_Helbers
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 07:23 a.m.


Maybe in the case of the Hansa Veena live-performance is also an issue. Amplifying instruments like the veena (and sitar) is difficult. The newer breed instruments are a lot easier to amplify for bigger venues. With the newer pickups on the market (aimed at acoustic guitars) smaller instruments seem to react better than larger ones. Are there any players out there that have tips on amplifying/recording a sitar BTW?

Peace,

Remco

Jan
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 09:54 a.m.


Remco!

Some Sitar shops (Sitarsetc or Buckingham (maybe more of the sitardealers have it, but i have only seen it at those two sites)) has the following to offer: twin-head piezo transducer system. Or do a google for: twin-head piezo transducer system.

jan

Helon
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 09:04 a.m.


Hello Remco_Helbers, I think this has been addressed in many older posts. If you do a little legwork, you should find alot of information. Goog Luck.


Remco_Helbers (Sep 27, 2003 07:23 a.m.):
Are there any players out there that have tips on amplifying/recording a sitar BTW?

Peace,

Remco


Remco_Helbers
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 10:58 a.m.


Hi Jan,

I know the system, both my teacher uses the system and a friend uses one. Both are not satisfied with it. It is easier to use than a regular mike (less prone to feedback), but the system seems to take away a lot of the original character of the instrument. Also when played in a band situation (as my friend does) it picks up a lot of enviromental sounds. He told me when playing with a drummer it is a disaster: as soon as the drummer hit a kick it comes across very loud though the pick up. (Now I know a lot people will throw up at the idea of using a sitar in a band, but this is just to paint an example...) My teacher told me she actually prefers an ordinary mike, because it will sound way more natural and realistic...

Peace,

Remco

Jan
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 01:44 p.m.


I asked Roop Verma, (when he had a Nada Yoga seminar in my home town) how he prefered to amplify his sitar. he told me that sometimes there could be as much as 4 mics involved. 2 down around the tumba one to handle the upper tumba and one to take care of the ambience.

I guess that in a setting with more than one instrument, you would have to use microphones with a narrow focus (directional mic) to only get the sound from the sitar.

They use the Piezo to mic allmost any acoustic instrument. It should be able to make it work on a Sitar. Perhaps it should be mounted under the jawari feet, in the same way they mount it on a cello. (under the bridge.)


Jan

Estiven
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 02:01 p.m.



Remco_Helbers (Sep 27, 2003 10:58 a.m.):
(Now I know a lot people will throw up at the idea of using a sitar in a band, but this is just to paint an example...)

Hi Remco, I don't ask this in a defensive way or anything, just out of curostiy, what is the matter with playing sitar in a band? Is it frowned upon? Did anyone see the movie American Chai? I thought it sounded kind'a cool. Am I a bad sitar student for thinking that?

Steve

Remco_Helbers
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 05:03 p.m.


Hahaha, no not at all, but I realise that a lot of people will be very guarding/defensive towards their favorite music and thus frown upon these instruments being played in a different setting: I don't mind at all!!!! Have any of you guys ever heard the Teaparty? Canadian rock-band, a bit Zeppelinish/Doorsy, live they kick @ss! And the actually play their instruments! (sarod, ud, sitar) very cool!!

Peace,

Remco

Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 11:37 p.m.


I wouldn't play just anything on a sitar, it is very disrespectfull to the many maestros out there, and also disrespectfull to the religious nature of the instruments.
As far as amplifying tantuvadya, I just use an external Shure SM-57 or SM-58 microphone. I play accordion in a Cumbia group, and we found for almost any acoustic instrument, the SM-57 will do the trick. Putting a mic inside and instrument really warps the sound, and also will give you tons of feedback, believe me, I have been through this with all of my accordions (12) and a few charango I worked on for a friend. Just don't use pick-ups if you are looking to achieve the instruments natural tone.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 06:46 p.m.


Estiven,
Instruments should be played anyway you want. If you want to play ICM play ICM, if you want to play sitar in a rock or fusion situation play it in that situation. Try it playing blues or punk, whatever.
Theres no rules of playing an instrument unless your going for a certain hard lined style of music. Even then you can use what you want. I've heard saxaphone playing ICM and it sounded fine to me.
Mixing things up makes life interesting.
In some home recordings of mine I used the sitar in a song with a sort of sea shanty flair and it turned out very good.
In another one I used didgeridoo in a very bizarre version of Black Sabbaths "Iron Man". And in another I used banjo in a very punk sounding song.
So do what you want with it, if people dont like it, who cares! You gotta play for yourself first and foremost.
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 27, 2003 11:47 p.m.



Beenkarji (Sep 26, 2003 01:23 a.m.):
Maybe I am a stubborn traditionalist, or just afraid to make other instruments extinct. But why do we need the Hansa Veena, Mohan Veena, when the vichitra veena, and gotuvadyam, are struggling to stay alive. I sometimes think an artist will create a new instrument just so they become popular,

I have heard Mohan veena, and to be honest, it is basically a slide guitar with chickari, and tarab strings,


Ted,
Any new instrument is a good thing. Is it not?
All musical instruments will find someone' to express themselves on that instrument. No matter how strange that instrument seems to you and I. And IMHO, the stranger the better.

I just love to hear new things and new music.
I like the discovery of it all.

Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 12:46 a.m.


Ted,
By your many post here on this forum you seem to have "so far" lived a full and eventful life in your short 18 years on this planet.
And obviously you have many more talents than most of us that grace this discussion group will ever acquire in ten life times.

I tip my hat to you for your many ambitious pursuits in instrument repair and experimentation, the playing and collection of sitars and Veenas, the accomplishments you made on some type of drum you mentioned on the tabla forum, your soon to be pilgrimage to India and your interest in the accordion.
Your talents are astounding and inspirational to us all.

Thank you!!!!


Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 02:24 a.m.


Hey, thanks Jeff, appreciate the comment. About being a traditionalist, for some reason I just am always that way, but of course new and exciting instruments are cool. Right now I am under the spell of Polish Bagpipes, but beyone Hindustani music, I am an accomplished accordion player, and Maum Kaen, or master kaen player. I sometimes feel strange playing all these instruments when some musicians say to stick to one, but then again the experience and skill you learn from one instrument, you transfer to another.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 12:40 p.m.


ZOOOOOOOMMMM!!!!
Jeffrey R King
Amitava
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 03:44 p.m.


[quote]Beenkarji (Sep 27, 2003 11:37 p.m.):
I wouldn't play just anything on a sitar, it is very disrespectfull to the many maestros out there, and also disrespectfull to the religious nature of -the instruments.

AS>>>Ted, I would not confuse religion with instruments or music. Indian instruments are no less or more sacred than others. A hindoo (whatever definition you choose) or a non-hindu or an aethist's relationship with music can be as goos/bad acroos. I have always failed to see the connection. Respect for an instrument/medium in general is one things..but guitar is no less scred than bongo drum ..or sitar or been. Similarly Jazz is as sacred as north Indian music....although some southeners feel their music is more sacred. Crap...

Putting a mic inside and instrument really warps the sound, and also will give you tons of feedback, believe me, ....

AS>>>> Strangely Asad Ali tried very hard to use a pickup here in Austin...on his last tour Due to wear/tear in the wiring, he finally resorted to putting a mic in the lower gourd of the instrument (Been) and performed. I think it may depend on the instrument and conditions.

Amitava
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 03:50 p.m.



Beenkarji (Sep 28, 2003 02:24 a.m.):
Hey, thanks Jeff, appreciate the comment. About being a traditionalist, for some reason I just am always that way, but of course new and exciting instruments are cool. Right now I am under the spell of Polish Bagpipes, but beyone Hindustani music, I am an accomplished accordion player, and Maum Kaen, or master kaen player. I sometimes feel strange playing all these instruments when some musicians say to stick to one, but then again the experience and skill you learn from one instrument, you transfer to another.

Aallaudin Khan (Maihar) is touted to have performed on many instruments..although violin and Sarod were supposedly his fav. I think there is nothing wrong with trying out different instruments. But your point is taken, can once become a master of all. I guess it depends on your talents, energy level, and goals. It has the great potential of bringing the best of human nature and bridging gaps...or taking music to places that we have not yet experienced.

Matt
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 28, 2003 04:33 p.m.


Amitava, I agree with your comment about Indian instruments being no more or less sacred than any other.

Trey Anastasio of the band Phish has an interesting "theory", if you will, about the nature of music. Basically, all music is out there, somewhere in the universe, ethers, etc. We use instruments to tap into this pool of music, color it with our own experiences, emotions, etc., and transmit it to the listener. The image Trey conjures up is that of a hose, spraying the audience with music!

A great analogy. The point, as I see it, is that it doesn't matter what you play or what you play it on - it's all about making an emotional connection of some sort with the listener and/or yourself.

Beenkarji
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 12:38 a.m.


I asked Ustad about what setup he is using for microphones, and he uses an SM-57 that I gave him in the lower tumba. It works well if you have one in the tumba, and then one external microphone. I think for sitar though, since we are dealing with a closed gourd, it the sound doesn't escape easily, and the vibrations can be too strong for the internal mic.
We some Desi instruments are indeed sacred, but sitar isn't, however rudra veena has a whole bunch of religious rights that need to be performed in order to be made properly. The only maker to stricty follow that rule was Murari Adhikari of Kanai Lal & Bros., so obviously I play on one of his instruments.
Beenkar Ted Ceplina
pb
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 08:39 a.m.


Beenkarji wrote>>>We some Desi instruments are indeed sacred, but sitar isn't, however rudra veena has a whole bunch of religious rights that need to be performed in order to be made properly.
<<<-----------

Hey Beenkarji,
I had heard that there was some sort of curse involved with make the been. Do you know what it is, and what rights have to be performed?

Pb

Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 09:56 a.m.


Religious rites to make an instrument? I'm sure its done for some reason, for some instruments, by some makers.
But come on, you think because some veena has incantations said over it, it is superior to one that hasn't?

A musical device is just that and nothing more. It should be cared for and treated as such.

They are man made inventions.


Jeffrey R King
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 10:14 a.m.


And further more, religion is a blight on mankinds history, his present and his future. It was, is and will be the cause of oppression and war.

It is like a cancer and should be stamped out at all cost.

Now on to politics,,,,,,,,,


Jeffrey R King
pb
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 11:52 a.m.


Hey Jeff,
I think you want to see a few more pages in this thread. I'm sure you are deliberately trying to be provocative, and you are probably pretty safe back here in page 3 of an unrelated thread. However, I would bet that many are not so nihilistic or perochial in their views.

Regarding religious significance and instruments: I don't treat my sitar as a religious instrument, I treat it with care because it is a delicate instrument and I enjoy playing it. The end is the same, but my motivation is different.

I had heard about the been-curse a while ago and I wanted to know more. I just find it interesting.

Pb

Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 12:10 p.m.


...
K.K.
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 01:41 p.m.


Hey Ted:
Check out this "sitar" on Ebay auction # 2561419966
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Sep 29, 2003 04:00 p.m.


Wow Billy your pretty negative! Politics as a blight?
It may be intrusive, unfair, absurd, greedy, stupid, evil, cruel and untruthful, but blighted?

where would we be without politicians Billy?
I'll tell ya where! We'd all be in some wild flower meadow holding hands singing and dancing in a circle, Thats Where!!!
Now,,,, we cant have that can we?


Jeffrey R King
Bad Ustad
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 03, 2003 05:45 p.m.


Meeowww. Hisss! Come on girls lighten up already! It's so easy to agree to disagree. What do you say?
Matt
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 03, 2003 06:40 p.m.


Agreed!
Matt
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 01, 2003 10:59 p.m.


"I have'nt the time, but how about next time instead of putting on the trancendent album Hoist, listen to real music like that of John Mclaughlin, Zakir Hussain, Edgar Meyer, Shivkumar Sharma."

Have CDs - and even vinyl in McLaughlin's case - by all of the above, except for the last.

"Matt, I think you will come to learn after time that there is so much good music out there..."

Sorry, can't stomach this arrogance. I've got a music collection of 3000 + titles so I'm well aware of how much good music is out there. Do you think I'm in high school?

"I can understand how someone like you could enjoy their music"

"Someone like me" - what does that mean? How can you presume to know anything about me?

"most of the people in this forum are serious musicians"

I've rehearsed 7-8 hours/week with the same fusion trio for the past 14 years. Is that serious enough for you?

Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 03, 2003 10:35 p.m.


I think you guys need a good dose of Britney Spears! Now thats "music" and good 'ol American cultural exportation.

"Oops I farted again, blah blah blah blah, oh baby baby!"

rich
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 03:57 a.m.


Trey Anastasio of the band Phish has an interesting "theory", if you will, about the nature of music. Basically, all music is out there, somewhere in the universe, ethers, etc. We use instruments to tap into this pool of music, color it with our own experiences, emotions, etc., and transmit it to the listener.

I'm glad somebody in this forum recognizes the sheer genius of Trey Anastasio, I mean everybody talks about Ustad this and Pandit that, But who is the real musical master? Who else can write Shakespeare-level lyrics like "run like an antelope out of control", create mozart-equivelant licks like on "slave to the traffic light"? Who is the only musician that can shoot near-fatal doses of heroin and still sing "I've been wading in the velvet sea"? Who else can get a blow job from some stupid skid hippie chick and still go home to his wife and kids? Who else can tap into the "universe of music" like the god that we call Trey Anastasio? I mean the gods themselves could not jump on trampolines and play cheesier sounds than come out of any normal person's asshole at the same time! Thanks for this quote from such a high level of musician as that of the Indian classical musicians discussed in this forum. I think you meant to go to the Trey Anastasio fan club page, where dork phish kids can talk about getting spun and being one with Fishman's dress, not a page where real musicians are discussed.

Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 09:33 a.m.


...
Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 10:11 a.m.


Robert Fripp also has the same belief about music waiting to be found. He says, the music finds him. When it comes time for it to be heard it will be written. They find each other. I met Fripp once, he's,,,,, lets say different.
Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 10:45 a.m.


...
johnnysitarwhatson
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 12:20 p.m.


And if dissonance is part of the universe?
Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 01:09 p.m.


...
Matt
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 01:42 p.m.


Thanks for your insightful response, Rich! Excellent job of perpetuating stereotypes. Might I suggest that next time you also mention the fact that those of us who enjoy Trey & Co. have an aversion to bathing and smoke pot 24/7?

It's clear that I need to change my listening habits. Please provide a list of "real" musicians and I will be sure to discard the items in my collection that aren't acceptable.

Remco
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 01:47 p.m.


Uhmmm... i wouldn't call dissonance "bad". Agreed that Robert Fripp is different from other musicians, but he's probably the most honest person I've ever met (in the sense of living/making music according to his views. he is true to himself.) I studied for one week with him and I must say he's is the best teacher I've ever had.... period. A nice links to learn more about his views;
http://www.guitarcraft.com/aphorisms.cfm

Peace,

Remco

Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 02:58 p.m.


...
Stephen
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 04:05 p.m.


Ah yes, the Ascension album. And then there is Sun Ra, Ornette Coleman, Miles, Tangerine Dream, rap/hiphop, humpback whales etc.
Remco
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 04:27 p.m.


The Coltrane > ICM connection is a lot easier to detect: Coltrane was such a Ravi Shankar fan (according to the RS DVD) that he named his son Ravi. They were supposed to meet, but Coltrane died. So what sounds weird.....

Peace,

Remco

Jeff
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 04:55 p.m.


The late great guitarist John Fahey (one of my favorites) is another to ad to this list??? if there is one? Is there???
Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 19, 2003 08:29 p.m.


...
johnnysitarwhatson
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 20, 2003 11:02 a.m.


Yes, Fripp is great (no flashes, please, keep in the shade, etc., you had the privilege to learn from him, Remco?) - and dissonance is relative -
once the tritonus was considered dissonant, before that the minor third (talking bout the cavemen, i.e. Europe)..... and isn't the jawari a powerful old fashioned distortion device,
after all (the upper natural harmonics are dissonant, anyway). ?? And the street noises in Calcutta are, too .... consonance is boring.
rich
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Nov 30, 2003 11:22 p.m.



Matt (Nov 19, 2003 01:42 p.m.):
Thanks for your insightful response, Rich! Excellent job of perpetuating stereotypes. Might I suggest that next time you also mention the fact that those of us who enjoy Trey & Co. have an aversion to bathing and smoke pot 24/7?

It's clear that I need to change my listening habits. Please provide a list of "real" musicians and I will be sure to discard the items in my collection that aren't acceptable.


No problem, Matt, happy to point out the inferiority of Phish and Trey Anastasio. As for the stereotypes, please show me in my post where I perpetuated one, I'd love to know. And a list of musicians for you to listen to, I have'nt the time, but how about next time instead of putting on the trancendent album Hoist, listen to real music like that of John Mclaughlin, Zakir Hussain, Edgar Meyer, Shivkumar Sharma. Don't get me wrong, listen to whatever you want (I myself am fond of Heavy D and the boys), just don't put a such a good quote on the forum and say it's from a loser musician, it kind of ruins the effect. It's like quoting Mike Tyson saying E=mc^2. I don't care if Trey did say this, he obviously stole it from somebody. Matt, I think you will come to learn after time that there is so much good music out there, even a universe, but "Trey and Co." hasn't the slightest clue on how to tap into that universe. They are drug addict pop stars who have sold out to the highest level. I can understand how someone like you could enjoy their music, but take it from somebody who liked them for a long time in junior high school, most of the people in this forum are serious musicians and don't want to hear about some cheesy boy band.

Tom Puri
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 01, 2003 10:34 a.m.


Just a sugestion - if this thread is to continue - why not start a new one called Going To Cali Pt. 11? It's a big drag looking through so many pages of posts.
Billy
Re:Going back to Cali, (Calcatta) Dec 01, 2003 01:16 p.m.


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