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Popular and Raga-Based Songs of South Asia

Popular and Raga-Based Songs of South Asia (Music 78) 

Indian music is mostly an oral tradition. Singing has been its main instrument of study with the words of the song used to help remember and carry forward generationally historical information and cultural norms of a people. In this class, students learn about regional and communal song forms as well as special vocal compositions that have their basis in ragas where the words help define the rules of the raga. It covers the various popular rhythmic cycles used in South Asian folk music. While the focus is on singing, you will also learn about the various melodic and percussive instruments that are used to accompany the song. These include instruments such as the dholak, dhol, khanjira, manjeera, khartaal, harmonium, and sitar. Knowledge of reading music is not essential, but instruction will make use of Western Staff or Indian Sargam notation to get a point across. Ornamentation (Gamak) is an essential element of South Asian music. Students will learn about them in a general sense but also as applied specifically within a song being taught.

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Instructor: Ashwin Batish

See the Auditions Schedule and the Schedule of Classes for further detail.