Getting started with Tabla

Indian music has fascinated the west for many years. The table in particular has attracted the attention of a number of American and European percussionists. It has been used in popular music as early as the 60’s and is heard in popular media even today. However, many percussionists shy away from this instrument. The reasons for ‘not getting into it’ are varied. Sometimes it is the lack of instruments, teachers or a belief that the tabla is just too difficult. This article will address the concerns of a person just to get started with tabla.
Indian music is one of the oldest traditions in the world. Although the mechanics of the music have undergone tremendous changes, the essential characteristics of respect and devotion have remained unchanged. The method of learning is to learn from a “Guru” not from books or online videos available these days. The strong bond between teacher and disciple is considered essential for the continuation of the musical tradition. There are two systems of classical music in India, northern and carnatic, found in southern India. The northern Indian music comprises tabla popularly known as Hindustani music.
In Tabla, the word ‘taal’ means clap. Clapping of hands may be the oldest form of rhythmic accompaniment. Most fundamental unit is ‘matra’ or beat. Next higher level of structure is ‘vibhag’ which in western music can be referred to as ‘measure’ or ‘bar’. This brings us to the concept of overall cycle called “avartan”. If one is playing a 16 beat structure or “taal”, one must maintain that structure throughout. One can learn, evolve and become a performer or a trainer after attaining knowledge in terms of fundamental’s and technical aspects. One can form a performing band of any genre and can also work in recordings in the studios these days after learning.
This article has just been a brief overview about tabla. To strengthen one’s ability and performance a person needs to learn tabla from a good guru or trainer available at prestigious organisations and colleges present as they know what exactly one needs while starting this journey to attain success


Article Writer
Name:- Dr. Parth Sinha
Course:- SOPA


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