This has been one of the toughest tasks I have faced with the sitar.
Playing this with even tempo and in pitch has been brutal. In addition, I feel like every time I ask my teacher to review I learn that I have been practicing it slightly wrong (or completely wrong) as the subtle elements are beyond my grasp.
Hopefully I am now on the right track. Let’s take a listen and see how I am doing.
Here is a video of me practicing Alap for Raga Yaman.
As many of you already know, sitar is really hard to play!
Raga Yaman Alap is something I have been slowly learning over the years. For the past few months my teacher has been having me focus a lot of Gat and Taans. Then over the past few weeks we started spending more time during my lesson discussing and playing Alap.
Since I was traveling this week I figured I would shoot a video playing alap to document my current progress compared to the previous videos I have posted. You can see those in the links below. I hope I am getting better. Leave a comment and let me know what you think.
I am working to build up speed as my teacher wants me to play at my gat and taans at 250 beats per minute (BPM).
Tonight’s video really focuses on one fast sitar taan at 200bpm. I mixed in a few others as well. This practice was very hard and you can see that my endurance was starting to fade by the end. That said, I can’t believe that 200bpm is starting to become a reality.
A year ago I was maxed out at 150 and I didn’t think I could play much faster than 170. My teacher really motivated me to push myself harder. As a new dad it’s easy to find excuses and not practice. Making these videos has been a great motivator and I’ve seen a lot of improvement since I started this series.
I give all my my Taans nicknames. The one I am playing tonight I call, “Singing Woman #1.” I play, “Singing Woman #2” a few times toward the end as well.
I took my first sitar lesson on January 27th, 2012.
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It’s been a busy week and sometimes life get’s in the way.
I needed to get in a decent sitar practice before my lesson so this video includes paltas, a gat and taans in raga yaman.
I am quickly approaching my 5 year anniversary of playing sitar and I’ve been struggling recently to find time to practice and it has slowed down my growth. It’s been frustrating. This isn’t some of my best playing, but I wanted to be honest about my progress and post the good with the bad.
For those new to this series, I am working to build up my speed. My teacher wants me to eventually play at 250 beats per minute (BPM). Let’s see how fast I can get today!
My teacher said that he booked me for a sitar performance in NYC this December!
I am stressing out! Back in November 2015 I had my first public performance. I was background music for an event at the Pakistan Mission to The United Nations. It was an honor to be invited to play there, but I was REALLY nervous about it.
In tonight’s video I reflect on that performance, where I am now with my training and I show a super old clip from 2012, after I had taken my third sitar lesson. I’ve come a long way since then!