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Encyclopedia > Raga
Indian classical music
Carnatic music
Composers
Purandara Dasa
The Trimurti
Tyagaraja
Muthuswami Dikshitar
Syama Sastri
Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma
Singers
M. S. Subbulakshmi
Hindustani music
Concepts
Śruti
Raga
Melakarta
Katapayadi sankhya
Swara
Tala
Mudra

Raga (rāg /राग (Hindi), raga (anglicised from rāgaḥ/रागः (Sanskrit)) or rāgam /ராகம் (Tamil)) are the melodic modes used in Indian classical music. "Raag" is the modern Hindi pronunciation used by Hindustani musicians; "Ragam" the Tamil form used by Karnatak (Carnatic music) musicians. Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and... Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and... Sri Purandara Dasa (1494-1564) (the follower (dasa) of Lord Purandara Vittala [Lord Vishnu in one of his many avatars. ... In Hinduism, the Trimurti (also called the Hindu trinity) are three aspects of God, or Parabrahman, in Gods personae as Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. ... Sri Tyagaraja (శ్రీ త్యాగరాజ) (17??-1848), an ardent devotee of Sri Ramachandra, was one of the most important composers of Carnatic music. ... Muttusvami Dikshitar is one of the Carnatic music composer trinity. ... Syama sastri, who is said to be one of the trimurthi in carnatic music, was born at Thiruvarur on Apr 26, 1762. ... Sri Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma (April 16, 1813 - December 25, 1846) was a South Indian king of the state of Travancore, in India. ... Madurai Shanmukhavadivu Subbulakshmi, மதுரை சண்முகவடிவு சுப்புலட்சுமி (popularly known as M.S. or M.S.S./M.S. Maami. ... Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and... The Å›ruti (Sanskrit thing heard, sound) is the smallest interval of the tuning system of Indian classical music. ... In Carnatic music, a melakarta or melakartha or janaka or sampoorna raga is one that comprises all seven swaras. ... The katapayadi sankhya is a way of determining the number of a melakarta ragam from the first two syllables of the name of the raga. ... The notes, or swaras, of Indian music are Shadjamam, Rishabham, Gandharam, Madhyamam, Panchamam, Dhaivatam and Nishadam. ... In Indian classical music, Tala (tāl (Hindi), tāla (anglicised from talam; in Sanskrit), literally a clap, is a rhythmical pattern that determines the rhythmical structure of a composition. ... In the music of India, a mudra is the signature of a composer on a composition, usually in the form of a few unique words added to the song. ... Hindi (हिन्दी or हिंदी in DevanāgarÄ«), an Indo-European language spoken mainly in Northern and Central India is an official language of the central government of India. ... Sanskrit ( संस्कृतम् ; pronunciation: ) is an Indo-European classical language of India and a liturgical language of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. ... Tamil (தமிழ் ) is a classical language and one of the major languages of the Dravidian language family. ... In music, a mode is an ordered series of musical intervals, which, along with the key or tonic, define the pitches. ... Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and... Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and...

Contents


Description

A raga functions both as description and prescription. It describes a generalized form of melodic practice; it prescribes a set of rules for how to build a melody. It specifies rules for movements up (aarohanam [आरोहणम्]) and down (avarohanam [अवरोहणम्]) the scale, which notes should figure more and which notes should be used more sparingly, which notes may be sung with gamaka, phrases to be used, phrases to be avoided, and so on.[1]The result is a framework that can be used to compose or improvise melodies, allowing for endless variation within the set of notes. Look up melody in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In music, a scale is a set of musical notes that provides material for part or all of a musical work. ... Gamaka is a unique form of story telling used in Karnataka, India. ... Musical composition is: an original piece of music the structure of a musical piece the process of creating a new piece of music // A musical composition A piece of music exists in the form of a written composition in musical notation or as a single acoustic event (a live performance... Improvisation is the act of making something up as it is performed. ...


Although notes are an important part of raga practice, it by no means exhausts what a raga is. A raga is more than a scale. Many ragas share the same scale.


The underlying scale may have five, six or seven tones made up of swaras. This provides one method of classifying ragas. Ragas that have five swaras are called audava (औडव) ragas; those with six, shaadava (षाडव); and with seven, sampoorna (संपूर्ण) (Sanskrit for 'complete'). Those ragas that do not follow the strict ascending or descending order of swaras are called vakra (वक्र) ('crooked') ragas. (To see the order of notes, check the article on swara.) In music, a pentatonic scale is a scale with five notes per octave. ... In music a hexatonic scale is a scale (music) with six (hexa) degrees. ... In music a heptatonic scale is a scale (music) with seven (hepta) degrees. ... The notes, or swaras, of Indian music are Shadjamam, Rishabham, Gandharam, Madhyamam, Panchamam, Dhaivatam and Nishadam. ... Sanskrit ( संस्कृतम् ; pronunciation: ) is an Indo-European classical language of India and a liturgical language of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. ... The notes, or swaras, of Indian music are Shadjamam, Rishabham, Gandharam, Madhyamam, Panchamam, Dhaivatam and Nishadam. ...


The basic mode of reference is that which is equivalent to the Western Ionian mode (this is called Bilawal thaat in Hindustani music and shankarabharanam in Carnatic music). All relationships between pitches follow from this basic arrangement of intervals. In any given seven-tone mode, the second, third, sixth, and seventh notes can be natural (shuddha, lit. 'pure') or flat (komal, 'soft') but never sharpened, and the fourth note can be natural or sharp (tivra) but never flattened, making up the twelve notes in the Western equal tempered chromatic scale (but without Western pitch equivalencies like, for example, A# and Bb). A Western-style C scale could therefore theoretically have the notes C, Db, D, Eb, E, F, F#, G, Ab, A, Bb, B. Ragas can also specify microtonal changes to this scale: a flatter second, a sharper seventh, and so forth. Treatises from the first millennium report that the octave used to be divided theoretically into 22 microtones ("shrutis"), but by the 16th century, this practice seems to have died out. Furthermore, individual performers treat pitches quite differently, and the precise intonation of a given note depends on melodic context. There is no absolute pitch; instead, each performance simply picks a ground note, which also serves as the drone, and the other scale degrees follow relative to the ground note. The Ionian mode is a musical mode or diatonic scale. ... Bilawal is the basic thaat (musical mode) in Hindustani classical music. ... Natural is defined as of or relating to nature; this applies to both definitions of nature: essence (ones true nature) and the untouched world (force of nature). Natural is often used meaning good, healthy, or belonging to human nature. This use can be questioned, as many freely growing plants... Figure 1. ... This article is about the musical notation. ... Equal temperament is a scheme of musical tuning in which the octave is divided into a series of equal steps (equal frequency ratios). ... The chromatic scale is the scale that contains all twelve pitches of the Western tempered scale. ... Microtonal music is music using microtones -- intervals of less than a semitone, or as Charles Ives put it, the notes between the cracks of the piano. ... Absolute pitch (AP), widely referred to as perfect pitch, refers to the ability to identify a note by name without the benefit of a reference note, or to be able to produce a note (as in singing) that is the correct pitch without reference. ... Drone can refer to many things: // In music A drone is a continuous note or chord. ... In music or music theory a scale degree is an individual note of a scale, both its pitch and its diatonic function. ...


Some Hindustani (North Indian) ragas are prescribed a time of day or a season. During the rains, for example, many of the Malhar group of ragas--associated with the monsoon--are performed. Some musicians take these prescriptions very seriously. However, since the majority of concert hall performances take place in the evening and night, musicians often have to make concessions for the sake of public performance.


The two streams of Indian classical music, Carnatic music and Hindustani music, have independent sets of ragas. There is some overlap, but more "false friendship" (where raga names overlap, but raga form does not). In north India, the ragas have recently been categorised into ten thaats or parent scales (by Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande, 1860-1936); South India uses a somewhat older, more systematic classification scheme called the melakarta classification, with 72 parent (melakarta) ragas. Overall there is a greater identification of raga with scale in the south than in the north, where such an identification is impossible. Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and... Hindustani (हिन्‍दुस्‍थानी) classical music is an Indian classical music tradition originating in the North of the Indian subcontinent circa the 13th and 14th centuries CE. Developing a strong and diverse tradition over several centuries, it has contemporary traditions established primarily in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. ... False friends are pairs of words in two languages (or letters in two alphabets) that look and/or sound similar, but differ in meaning. ... Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande Pandit Vishnu Narayan Bhatkhande (August 10, 1860 - September 19, 1936) was a Hindustani classical musician widely acclaimed to have brought in a renaissance in Hindustani music. ... South India is a region of India that includes the entire Indian Peninsula, south of the Vindhya ranges. ... In Carnatic music, a melakarta or melakartha or janaka or sampoorna raga is one that comprises all seven swaras. ...


Note that the term "parent scale" is a metaphor, and is potentially misleading. It might seem to imply that scales came before ragas, or that ragas are made from scales. In fact, it's the other way round--parent scales (both melas and thaats) were induced from raga practice. Again we stress that ragas are not scales.


As ragas were transmitted orally from teacher to student, some ragas can vary greatly across regions, traditions and styles. There have been efforts to codify and standardize raga performance in theory from their first mention in Matanga's Brhaddesi (~10th c.) Some people approach raga performance from the Vedic philosophy of sound; others from a Sufi perspective; still others approach raga primarily as an aesthetic entity; others approach it as a kind of combinatorics. Oral history is an account of something passed down by word of mouth from one generation to another. ... The Vedas are part of the Hindu Shruti; these religious scriptures form part of the core of the Brahminical and Vedic traditions within Hinduism and are the inspirational, metaphysical and mythological foundation for later Vedanta, Yoga, Tantra and even Bhakti forms of Hinduism. ... A schematic representation of hearing. ...


Indian classical music is always set in raga, but all raga music is not necessarily classical. Songs range from being clearly in one raga or another to being in a sort of generalized scale. Many popular Indian film songs resemble ragas closely. Again, it is important to stress that just even if song shares a scale with a raga, it isn't necessarily "in" the raga. Filmi is Indian popular music as written and performed for Indian cinema. ...


Ragam

योऽसौ ध्वनिविशेषस्तु स्वरवर्णविभूषितः ।


रञ्जको जनचित्तानां स च राग उदाहृतः ।।


"That which is a special dhvani, is bedecked with swara and varna and is colorful or delightful to the minds of the people, is said to be ragam." The notes, or swaras, of Indian music are Shadjamam, Rishabham, Gandharam, Madhyamam, Panchamam, Dhaivatam and Nishadam. ... Yat Ranjayiti iti ragam is how ragam is defined in one of the earliest texts in Indian music. ...



This is how ragam is defined by matanga in the brihaddesi. This means that Ragam is a part of music which can make a man's mind happy. Broadly, it means that Ragam is the part of music which can bring about a tirade of emotions in us. Each ragam has a definite collection and orders of Swarams (the basic notes). In Carnatic music, there are 7 basic notes of which there are 12 varieties. Yat Ranjayiti iti ragam is how ragam is defined in one of the earliest texts in Indian music. ... The introduction to this article provides insufficient context for those unfamiliar with the subject matter. ... It has been suggested that Feeling be merged into this article or section. ... Timeline and Samples Genres Classical (Carnatic and Hindustani) - Rock - Pop - Hip hop Awards Bollywood Music Awards - Punjabi Music Awards Charts Festivals Sangeet Natak Akademi – Thyagaraja Aradhana – Cleveland Thyagaraja Aradhana Media Sruti, The Music Magazine National anthem Jana Gana Mana, also national song Vande Mataram Music of the states Andaman and...


The seven basic swarams of carnatic music are: Sa, Ri, Ga, Ma, Pa, Dha, Ni.


Ragas are classified as Janaka ragas and Janya ragas. In Ancient India, Janaka was the King of Mithila Kingdom. ...


Janaka ragas are the ragas from which the Janya ragas are created. Janaka ragas are grouped together very beautifully using a scheme called katapayadi sutra and are organised as Melakarta ragas. A Melakarta Raga is one which has all 7 notes in both the aarohanam and avarohanam. Some Melakarta Ragas are Sankarabharanam, Maaya Malava Gowla (The fundamental raaga used in elementary Carnatic music ),Kalyani etc. the latter is in fact a very special raga as it is one of the few to have Prathi Madhyamam(The higher note - Ma).


Janya ragas are derived from the Janaka ragas using a combination of the swarams in the parent raga.


Footnotes

  1. ^ Nothing other than the aarohanam and avarohanam (and, in Hindustani music, the pakad--melodic catch phrases) is ever actually written down; if such things are written, they are mostly neglected. The subtle rules of where to give gamakas to notes, what phrases are correct, and so on are usually codified in special songs called varnams. These songs show the characteristics of the ragam in practice and are transmitted orally.

Varnam is one of the most important parts of Carnatic music. ...

External links

  • Rajan P. Parrikar's brilliant articles on ragas backed by thousands of audio clips, many of them unpublished.
  • Sawf's extensive archive of Indian Classical Music --includes Rajan P. Parrikar's articles.
  • The Raga Guide --Nimbus Records collection of 74 ragas on 4 CD's, with booklet containing ascending and descending scales, melodic outlines, and transcribed alaps for each raga, plus a collection of ragamala paintings.
  • Raganidhi - 3 CD-ROM set featuring 350 Carnatic ragams
  • Musical Nirvana --includes some introductory material, raga descriptions, artist biographies and discographies, and a glossary; information on both Hindustani and Carnatic music.
  • Carnatic India
  • Sound of India --online music lessons, raga descriptions with audio, and musicological articles.
  • ITC Sangeet Research Academy --scholarly organization devoted to the promotion of Hindustani classical music; includes information on artists past and present, Hindustani sangeet (theory), and current events in the Indian classical world.
  • Indian Ragas - A complete guide to all Indian ragas
  • Classical Ragas in Tamil film songs
  • SwarGanga by Adwait Joshi - Raagabase a database of raags with raag description, raag bandishes, and backed up with raag audio. Around 230 raags in the database.
  • Raga/ Tala musical culture
  • Swarams
  • Katapayadhi Sutra
  • Melakarta
  • Hindi songs and Ragas

See also

  • Hindustani Music

  Results from FactBites:
 
Raga - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1255 words)
Raga (rāg /राग (Hindi), raga (Anglicised from rāgaḥ/रागः (Sanskrit)) or rāgam /ராகம் (Tamil)) are the melodic modes used in Indian classical music.
Ragas that have five swaras are called audava (औडव) ragas; those with six, shaadava (षाडव); and with seven, sampoorna (संपूर्ण) (Sanskrit for 'complete').
Janya ragas are derived from the Janaka ragas using a combination of the swarams in the parent raga.
The Raga Guide - Introduction (560 words)
In other words, ragas have a particular scale and specific melodic movements; their characteristic 'sound' should bring delight and be pleasing to the ear (or the "minds of men," as Matanga puts it elsewhere).
As well as the fixed scale, there are features particular to each raga such as the order and hierarchy of its tones, their manner of intonation and ornamentation, their relative strength and duration, and specific approach.
It is an open-ended concept in which the association of a particular raga with a specific emotional state, a season or time of day, though intangible, is as relevant as its melodic structure.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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