INDIAN MUSIC FORUM ARCHIVES: Sitar Forum: Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page)

 

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pb
Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 09:26 a.m.


http://www.edwardpowell.com/sitar.html

[quote]
This sitar is a "Vilayat Khan-style" sitar.

There exists 2 types of sitar "Vilayat Khan-style" and "Ravi Shankar-style". "V.Kh.-style" sitar is an older type, but is much much more common and popular these day. Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore, maybe because they are bigger, heavier, and more decorated... perhaps too much wood? The sound is 'thicker'.[\quote]

Is this a common perception? I wonder if he means having no upper tomba? What kind of sitars are commonly sold?

Nobody is my name. (quote from Homer's Odyssey bk 9, Outis emoi g'onoma).

thanks,
Pb

Bad Ustad
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 10:11 a.m.


The blind leading the blind. Anybody who takes 10 minutes to put up a personal no-frills webpage can make himelf out to be an authority. Someone he encounters at a chance meeting tells him that nobody plays a RS style sitar anymore and he parrots this dubious insight in the belief that everyone will think he's as knowledgeable as the guy who told him. It's also another case of: My sitar is cooler than your sitar Dude. My personal fave is VK but every non ICM maven I have met is under the impression that Raviji is the only player worth paying attention to.
pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 11:54 a.m.


Maybe so, but Edward seems to know his way around the sitar, so one would think he knows what he is talking about. Maybe he is just naive spouting off a fountain of misinformation, or sucked into the "VK or RS" is best battle.

BTW quality of a web page does not reflect the information that it contains. Form and content are separate entities. Although I do agree it is not a professional looking page.

Yes, RS is a household name in most of the world I think, so this is likely to arouse a bit of the green monster.

Music is music (toutology of the day).

Pb


Bad Ustad (Feb 09, 2004 10:11 a.m.):
The blind leading the blind. Anybody who takes 10 minutes to put up a personal no-frills webpage can make himelf out to be an authority. Someone he encounters at a chance meeting tells him that nobody plays a RS style sitar anymore and he parrots this dubious insight in the belief that everyone will think he's as knowledgeable as the guy who told him. It's also another case of: My sitar is cooler than your sitar Dude. My personal fave is VK but every non ICM maven I have met is under the impression that Raviji is the only player worth paying attention to.
K.K.
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 12:18 p.m.


Apples & Oranges
Jaym
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 12:20 p.m.


I went to the site and saw what I thought might be the case....he is selling the sitar. So naturally he is going to through in a pitch to potential buyers. I for one have a Ravi Style sitar, but absolutely want to switch to a VK model because I wnat to study and play in his family's style. I actually e-maild Edward to find out more about the instrument.

His bio is pretty impressive....

Matt
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 01:45 p.m.


"In fact, I can't think of even 1 top young sitarist who is using a "Ravi Shankar-style" sitar."

I'm not sure what he considers "young", but Kushal Das plays a RS-style instrument.

Jeff
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 01:56 p.m.


I've seen a dozen or more sitar concerts over the years and have never seen a performer use a VK style sitar. I know that makes me no "expert" I'm just saying what I've witnessed over the years.
pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 03:01 p.m.


Hey Jaym,
you are probably right, but (sarcasm)If he is selling it he is perfectly justified to lie and misrepresent in order to make a sale(/sarcasm). I wouldn't trust that guy for a second let alone buy from him.

Have a look at Lars' VK models from sanjay. Yes, his bio is impressive enough, 4 cds as well.

Pb


Jaym (Feb 09, 2004 12:20 p.m.):
I went to the site and saw what I thought might be the case....he is selling the sitar. So naturally he is going to through in a pitch to potential buyers. I for one have a Ravi Style sitar, but absolutely want to switch to a VK model because I wnat to study and play in his family's style. I actually e-maild Edward to find out more about the instrument.

His bio is pretty impressive....


Jan
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 04:40 p.m.


Why is it so that all VK style players are superior performers to those playing RS style? (sorry, i just had to : )

jan

Remco
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 04:49 p.m.


I'm curious:
How many people on this forum play VK-style sitars and how many play RS-style? And how many play Benares-style (with the low Sa tuned Pa)

I started with the Benares-tuning but switched about half a year ago to RS-tuning.

So that's RS-VK=1-0

Peace,

Remco

pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 05:08 p.m.


RS-VK 2:0,
I'm sure we are more or less equal in number.

Pb


Remco (Feb 09, 2004 04:49 p.m.):
I'm curious:
How many people on this forum play VK-style sitars and how many play RS-style? And how many play Benares-style (with the low Sa tuned Pa)

I started with the Benares-tuning but switched about half a year ago to RS-tuning.

So that's RS-VK=1-0

Peace,

Remco


Matt
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 06:02 p.m.


RS for me, toomba included.

RS:3, VK:0

though I wouldn't mind having a VK too.

pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 06:10 p.m.


Hey Matt,
I wouldn't mind a VK either, but I would rather go for a surbahar instead! I bet I could fit it in my beetle! I'm not changing cars

Pb


Matt (Feb 09, 2004 06:02 p.m.):
RS for me, toomba included.

RS:3, VK:0

though I wouldn't mind having a VK too.


Keshav Das
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 07:09 p.m.


No comment on RS vs VK question. However, I have been buying stuff from J. Modal for some time now, and have always been impressed by their integrity and quality. Their pro tablas are really great. I've never really checked out their sitars but it's likely as good as anything from MKS. I have one VK sitar that has the exact same case as in the photo and it's as good a case as any I've seen. I don't say "Go and buy it". I didn't see a price - but if the asking price was reasonable I'd say it would be worth taking a chance on. But it looks like the seller is in Europe so it's probably a moot question. J. Mondal has a big following amongst serious players of ICM in Europe and make amazing violins with chikaris that sell in Europe for thousands of dollars.
estiven
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 06:34 p.m.


I think I am still kind of confused about the whole vk, rs styles, but my sitar has a double toomba, so does that make it an rs style? and I guess it is a bit embellished with inlays, so...

RS : VK, 4 : 0?

Steve

Matt
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 07:35 p.m.


[quote]pb (Feb 09, 2004 06:10 p.m.):
Hey Matt,
I wouldn't mind a VK either, but I would rather go for a surbahar instead! I bet I could fit it in my beetle! I'm not changing cars

Pb

Have to agree with you there, Paul - a surbahar would be great!

Stephen
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 09:16 p.m.


I would think that the decision to go with a UVK or PRS style sitar would be driven somewhat by the teacher's wishes. I know that most of my teacher's students play an UVK style sitar, but then UVK is his uncle. I'll stay out of the battle by plinking away on surbahar. Actually, Shafaatji has me learning some lahera on esraj right now. Back to surbahar in a few weeks.
I think the answer to this is that you get your hands on a UVK style of sitar if you want to play the Khan family style or pick up a PRS style sitar if you are into that style of music. It's a matter of what particular style that you are going to play.
Boz
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 09:24 p.m.


Hey All,

I have a single toomba VK style sitar that is 40+ years old!!!! And I love it.... I think its incredible sound wise and somehow its stays in tune for days on end is that odd from what ive heard sitars need a lot of tuning? Any how im kinda on this trip of trying to come up with my own style of playing!!!!! I'm recording some stuff very soon and will post it in the weeks ahead.

Peace Love and Happy Sitaring


BOZ
Jeff
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 09, 2004 10:44 p.m.


I never heard VK style of ICM or I should say I've never heard VK, I may have heard that style I'm not sure. So,,,, whats the difference between his style and other styles of ICM on sitar?
I have RS cd's, a few Indrajit Bannerjee cd's, some drupad cd's Stephen sent me, some Sarode albums and an L. Shankar album. So I'm not sure if I've heard VK style or not.

Speaking of L. Shankar, I've seen him twice in concert. He plays a double neck electric violin that sounds quite. haunting.

Jaym
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 10:43 a.m.


I think it is common for everyone that begins exploring this instrument to seek out a RV upper toomba 7/13 string instrument because that is what we are most familiar with. The more I study and listen to sitarist, the more I became a huge fan of th VK family, Shahid Parvez in particular. The technical skill and gayaki ang approach has completely sold me. So, naturally I now NEED a VK sitar!!

I am going to New Dehli in April and hope to visti Rikhi Ram's shop and maybe, just maybe...... =)
http://www.rikhiram.com/nwsitar.html

pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 11:40 a.m.


Hey Jaym,
I don't agree with your suggestion that people buy a RS style because they don't know any better. E.g. I have been a RS fan for 20 yrs or more, so that was the style I chose, and I am waiting for my 3rd sitar.

I think if you know what you want and the type of music you want to play, you are more likely to choose the right sitar. Budget is another story...

I may buy a VK sitar at some point though. There is nothing wrong with 2 or more sitars

Pb


Jaym (Feb 10, 2004 10:43 a.m.):
I think it is common for everyone that begins exploring this instrument to seek out a RV upper toomba 7/13 string instrument because that is what we are most familiar with. The more I study and listen to sitarist, the more I became a huge fan of th VK family, Shahid Parvez in particular. The technical skill and gayaki ang approach has completely sold me. So, naturally I now NEED a VK sitar!!

I am going to New Dehli in April and hope to visti Rikhi Ram's shop and maybe, just maybe...... =)
http://www.rikhiram.com/nwsitar.html[/quote]

Remco
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 02:05 p.m.


I agree... When I was over for my first lesson my teacher did some explaining on the differences between the instruments and played both. That's when I decided to go for the RS-style sitar. I think the VK-style instruments (with their sound and jawari) sound too much like a banjo. Also, it was Nikhil Banerjee that really did it for me......

Peace,

Remco

pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 03:21 p.m.


LOL, banjo! haha! Good one remco, although I think VK sounds a lot better than any banjo player I've heard. I like NB too.


Remco (Feb 10, 2004 02:05 p.m.):I think the VK-style instruments (with their sound and jawari) sound too much like a banjo. Also, it was Nikhil Banerjee that really did it for me......

Remco
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 05:39 p.m.


p.s. I do have to admit that Shahid Parvez is an amazing banjoplayer. He's is definitly in my top 5 alltime faves!! So I guess it doesn't really matter what tuning/instrument you prefer...

Peace,

Remco

Ken
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 07:30 p.m.


Hi Matt, Remco, Pb, Bad Ustad (ilovit), KK everybody,
Well it's the ol' personal preference part of the show folks. So here's my two Chappati's worth. For me have the two RS 7/13 models you all know about (MPSTun, ShristiTeak, by the way no tuning probs for me both are very stable) and I was definitely swayed by Pandit RS, Pandit NB, then my favorite Indrajit Banarjee who is just absolutely brilliant as well as young and plays RS instrument leaving off the Top toomba while on tour here. Apparently many players are not using the upper toomba since microphones are now so common (anybody feel free to correct me here).
While I don't exactly describe VK (I only have one of his CD' s and one of Habbib Khan) like a banjo I do not care for the style nor for the sound of the instrument, just not full enough for me, personal taste there again. But I like a long Alap (Nikhil Banarjee rules) a bit more than the faster movements so what do I know?
As far as "Nobody plays RS style sitars anymore" I rather shy away from a blanket statement such as that on several grounds the first of which is "who's keeping tabs on this subject" the second of which is "why are there so many more RS style sitars available than VK's?"
As a help to all here a posting of the number of current recording's available in both genre's might prove interesting. For me it is 17 CD's of RS style vs 2 CD's of VK style. Not that there aren't more but I just haven't run across them.....
Jeff
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 10, 2004 08:24 p.m.



pb (Feb 10, 2004 03:21 p.m.):
LOL, banjo! haha! Good one remco, although I think VK sounds a lot better than any banjo player I've heard. I like NB too.


Remco (Feb 10, 2004 02:05 p.m.):I think the VK-style instruments (with their sound and jawari) sound too much like a banjo. Also, it was Nikhil Banerjee that really did it for me......


Hey PB, Remco,
You guys should check out Banjoist' Dwight Dillers cd "Just Banjo 99" The guy is amazing and you'll never think of the banjo the same again. I love all types of instruments and music, and all instruments have potential (as you know) in the hands of talent.
I believe most of us here on this forum are very open minded to new things,, so give this guy a whirl if you get the chance. You'll be wanting a banjo after you hear him play.

Remco
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 11, 2004 04:58 a.m.


Hey uncle Ken,
Try out a CD from Shahid Parvez!! You won't be disappointed!! A very lyrical, smooth and stunning player. If you have a fast internetconnection and Realplayer:

http://www.itcsra.org/concert_hall6.html

I think a lot of players leave their top tumba off for logistical reasons a well: a lot easier to carry a single tumba-sitar around.

Peace,

Remco

Aanaddha
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 11, 2004 07:38 a.m.



Ken (Feb 10, 2004 07:30 p.m.):
Hi Matt, Remco, Pb, Bad Ustad (ilovit), KK everybody,
Well it's the ol' personal preference part of the show folks. So here's my two Chappati's worth. For me have the two RS 7/13 models you all know about (MPSTun, ShristiTeak, by the way no tuning probs for me both are very stable) and I was definitely swayed by Pandit RS, Pandit NB, then my favorite Indrajit Banarjee who is just absolutely brilliant as well as young and plays RS instrument leaving off the Top toomba while on tour here. Apparently many players are not using the upper toomba since microphones are now so common (anybody feel free to correct me here).
While I don't exactly describe VK (I only have one of his CD' s and one of Habbib Khan) like a banjo I do not care for the style nor for the sound of the instrument, just not full enough for me, personal taste there again. But I like a long Alap (Nikhil Banarjee rules) a bit more than the faster movements so what do I know?
As far as "Nobody plays RS style sitars anymore" I rather shy away from a blanket statement such as that on several grounds the first of which is "who's keeping tabs on this subject" the second of which is "why are there so many more RS style sitars available than VK's?"
As a help to all here a posting of the number of current recording's available in both genre's might prove interesting. For me it is 17 CD's of RS style vs 2 CD's of VK style. Not that there aren't more but I just haven't run across them.....


There's this story - don't know if there's any truth but I've heard it more than once with variations - essentially that NB at one period of his short life spent a fair amount of time listening to VK. Which may be the reason there's more of a 'gayaki' flavor to NB's repertoire than you might hear in RS.
Personally, I prefer NB for his consistency and his ability to get beyond technique and the limitations of his instrument, but that's still no valid reason to discount either VK or RS.
As for VK or RS 'style' instruments, I'm certain that the similiarities of these current so-called instruments are cosmetic in comparison to the instruments with which these artists perform.
- my two Chappati's worth,

Aanaddha

AJ
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 01:08 a.m.


Let us not forget Earl Scruggs, either..........!!!

I still miss when Steve Martin used to play banjo with an arrow thro his head..........! : )

AJ

Jaym
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 11, 2004 03:13 p.m.


PB et. al. You are right! Most of the people here clearly made a thoughtful, musical choice. Not just an ignorance of the different gharanas and sitar models...I think for me, that was part of it....I was a Ravi fan since he was most recognizable and easily accesible. From there, I was blown away by Nikhil Banerjee and then started listening to the VK family and at that moment changed my musical tastes and instrument preference.

I also agree that in the VK school, the jhala gets banjo-ee sometimes which makes me wince abit but, the rest of the techniques, approach and musicality totally inspire me.

You want to talk banjo.....Bela Fleck helped re-invent it. Has anyone heard Roy Clark play? Damn!!

Remco
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 07:03 a.m.


I think I really hit a nerve over here to compare the sitar to the banjo.. hahaha ....I actually thought more about "Deliverance" than Bela Fleck though.....

Peace,

Remco

Bebop Tom
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 09:36 a.m.


I play jazz guitar professionally, but have learned bluegrass banjo over the past year. I also just started playing sitar. I would have to say that if your sitar sounds like a banjo, you should immediately send it out for repair/setup! BTW, if you like banjo, Foggy Mountain Banjo by Flatt and Scruggs is the definitive recording to own. If you want to hear a modern, exciting player in the Scruggs tradition, I highly recommend Bluegrass '96 with Scott Vestal. He has a great, deep tone that is not twangy at all. Go to this link and download As the Crowe Flies:
http://www.stealthbanjo.com/Sample.html
What this all has to do with sitar and ICM, I'll never know
Jeff
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 07:35 p.m.


I wish I could play like that weird looking hick!
I may look like him,,, but I cant play like him!

Squeeeal like a pig!!!!!

pb
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 09:14 p.m.


yep, that is what comes to mind when I think of banjo!


Jeff (Feb 12, 2004 07:35 p.m.):
I wish I could play like that weird looking hick!
I may look like him,,, but I cant play like him!

Squeeeal like a pig!!!!!


Stephen
Re:Almost nobody plays "R.Sh.-style" sitars anymore( see web page) Feb 12, 2004 10:30 p.m.


I saw John Mclaughlin do a solo performance in the late seventies, (not long after his flirtations with ICM as founding member of Shakti,) where he played banjo, very nice.
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