Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Classification of musical instruments


When we talk of the classification of musical instruments, the first thing that comes in our mind is the traditional four-fold classification. This classification has been very elaborately described in 'Sangeet Ratnakar'. Many papers have been presented on the subject and many research works have been published in the pursuit of this topic. Therefore, I will not go into the details of this traditional classification. In this paper, I would like to draw the attention of the distinguished audience to the limitations of the aforesaid classification. Prof. Lalmani Misra, in his remarkable book on musical instruments, "Bharatiya Sangeet Vadya", had for the first time felt the need to reclassify the musical instruments. In fact, he proposed some new categories in the same book. However, the conservative world of our musicologists did not take note of this very urgent matter. So the proposition was not included in the discourses of musicologists except that the research scholars, who took up the subject of categorizing musical instruments, referred Prof. Misra's innovative suggestions. Hence, the need of the hour is that the traditional four-fold classification of the musical instruments should be discussed and analyzed in this context and if the scholars feel that some changes are required in the ancient classification, we should opt for the same.

The ancient classification is stood for around 800 years now. We are aware of the fact that many new musical instruments have come into being in due course of time. There are many musical instruments which cannot be accommodated in any of the four categories. Prof. Misra has suggested many new categories for such musical instruments. For example, Sarod, which is considered to be a stringed instrument, uses a layer of skin to amplify the sound. Likewise, Jaltarang is considered to be a chime, [Ghana] instrument. We are aware Jaltarang is a full-fledged instrument which is capable of solo performances. Therefore, it does not sound proper to include this instrument in the Ghana category. There are many such flaws in the traditional classification of musical instruments. Therefore, I propose a new classification. This proposed classification should be discussed and debated in a very healthy manner. After the discussions, if the distinguished scholarly presence thinks it proper, it can be adopted for the future classification of Indian musical instruments.


Proposed Classification of musical instruments:


Therefore, on the basis of the above description, we can reclassify our musical instruments in the following categories:


1 Tat, The stringed musical instruments,


These instruments can further be classified as:

  1. The musical instruments, which are played with a bow, [Vitat],
  2. Group A can further be categorized as:

    A1. Musical instruments with frets, like Dilaruwa etc,

    A2. Musical instruments without frets, like violin, Sarangi, Israj etc.

Group B has a variety of musical instruments which come in different shapes and sizes. Therefore, it needs further categorization:

B1 The musical instruments with gourd like Sitar, Veenas of different kinds etc,

In this group, some musical instruments have one gourd and some have two. The instruments having one gourd can be classified as: B1 [a] and the musical instruments having two gourd, can be included in B1 [b]

B2 The musical instruments which have a gourd-like thing, but it is not the natural gourd; it is made of wood. Such musical instruments which have an artificial gourd and not a natural one can be included in this category. For example, Guitar, Sarod etc.

B3 This category will represent those musical instruments which do not have frets. For example, Sarod, Sarangi etc.

B4 The musical instruments whose tonal quality is modified to the satisfaction of the artist by means of a process called "Juvaari". In this process, the bridge is very precisely given a desired shape on the point on which the string passes by. This results in the production of harmonics, which determines its tonal quality. Instruments like Sitar, Tanpura may be included in this category.

B5 The musical instruments, which are put in a position whereby, the strings face upwards. These include, Santoor, guitar which is used in Hindustani classical music, Swaramandal etc.

B6 musical instruments which have a keyboard attached to them. These include, Banjo, piano etc.


2 Avanaddha, The percussion musical instruments:

These musical instruments can also be further categorized as follows:

  1. The drums facing upwards. For example, Tabla, drums used in the Western bands and the military bands.
  2. Both A and B categories of the group 2 can further be divided as:

    1. II. The drums which are not capable of producing a musical note.


3 Sushira, The wind musical instruments:

This category has many different kinds of musical instruments. Therefore, it needs further classification:

  1. Simple [wooden, bamboo or metallic] cylindrical shaped musical instruments having wholes to increase or reduce the chamber of vibrating air. This will represent various kinds of flutes, [metallic or bamboo], algoza etc.
  2. Metalic rounded and twisted chambers, which have very narrow whole from the blowing end and a big, bowl-like end from which the air is released. For example, clarion, bigulls etc.
  3. This group will represent the musical instruments which have an air-tight bag in which the air is filled. For example, bag-pipes, Shahnayee etc.
  4. Some musical instruments have metallic chambers. But these instruments have keyboards attached to them. These instruments do not have reeds. For example, Clarionette, saxophone etc.
  5. This group can further be categorized as:

    E1 The bellowed reed instruments; which have a bellow attached to them in order to blow the air.

    E2 The musical instruments wherein, the air is blown through the lips.


4 Ghana, The bell/stone/wooden chimes,

This group of musical instruments has a variety of items. In fact, these are not very complicated instruments. Whatever looks to be helpful in order to create or inhance the rhythmic pleasure, is included in this category. Be it a piece of wood, metal, stone, or any kind of synthetic material. For example, Manjeera, Khartaal, Chimta, Jhaanj, Cymbol, Triangle, Qabbakas, Ghungharu, Khanjari, Bells, Stone-chimes etc. here, Khanjari attracts our attention. Khanjari should be included in the group of the percussion musical instruments. However, it has its limitations and there is nothing very special about it. Therefore, it is counted in this category.

These musical instruments can be classified on the basis of the material they are made of. For example, metal, wood, stone etc. these can further be classified as having two or more parameters from the above categorization. Like Khanjari has the metal as well as wood. Khartaal is also made of wood and metal.


5 Mishra Vadyas or mingling of two or more categories,

This category will represent such musical instruments which have two or more parameters from the main categorization.

6 Tarang, the chimes:


Here, let me clarify that the chimes have been categorized in 4 Ghana, The bell/stone/wooden chimes. However, This group is different from that category. Simply, because the category 2.5.4 Ghana, The bell/stone/wooden chimes, represents only those musical instruments which help in the enhancement of the pleasure of rhythm. Whereas, this category of group 6 Tarang, the chimes represents those musical instruments which can be played to create melody and these instruments can be played in solo performances also. For example, Jaltarang, Naltarang etc.


7 musical instruments with amplified sounds:


In this era, amplification of musical instruments has been extensively been experimented with. That is why, a special category is required for them.


8 Electronic musical instruments:


Electronic musical instruments are different from that of the amplified musical instruments. These instruments have an electronic chip implanted in them in order to produce sound.


9 musical instruments with synthetic material:


Now-a-days, the natural and the traditional materials are being replaced with the synthetic ones. The reason being, the unavailability of the natural material. For example, the gourd for Sitar and Tanpura, is not easily available these days. That is why, the artificial alternatives are being explored. Likewise, the bridges of these musical instruments are being replaced with the synthetic bridges. Moreover, new musical instruments are being made with the synthetic material. Like Plastic drums, Plastic flutes etc.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

On the occasion of 200th birth anniversary of Louis Braille, we pay tribute to him.


The story of Louis Braille's life, told in a lively style

Louis Braille

Louis Braille (1809-1852)

Six dots. Six bumps. Six bumps in different patterns, like constellations,
spreading out over the page. What are they? Numbers, letters, words. Who
made this code? None other than Louis Braille, a French 12-year-old, who was
also blind. And his work changed the world of reading and writing, forever.

Louis was from a small town called Coupvray, near Paris-he was born on
January 4 in 1809. Louis became blind by accident, when he was 3 years old.
Deep in his Dad's harness workshop, Louis tried to be like his Dad, but it
went very wrong; he grabbed an awl, a sharp tool for making holes, and the
tool slid and hurt his eye. The wound got infected, and the infection
spread, and soon, Louis was blind in both eyes.

All of a sudden, Louis needed a new way to learn. He stayed at his old
school for two more years, but he couldn't learn everything just by
listening. Things were looking up when Louis got a scholarship to the Royal
Institution for Blind Youth in Paris, when he was 10. But even there, most
of the teachers just talked at the students. The library had 14 huge books
with raised letters that were very hard to read. Louis was impatient.

Then in 1821, a former soldier named Charles Barbier visited the school.
Barbier shared his invention called "night writing," a code of 12 raised
dots that let soldiers share top-secret information on the battlefield
without even having to speak. Unfortunately, the code was too hard for the
soldiers, but not for 12-year-old Louis!

Louis trimmed Barbier's 12 dots into 6, ironed out the system by the time he
was 15, then published the first-ever braille book in 1829. But did he stop
there? No way! In 1837, he added symbols for math and music. But since the
public was skeptical, blind students had to study braille on their own. Even
at the Royal Institution, where Louis taught after he graduated, braille
wasn't taught until after his death. Braille began to spread worldwide in
1868, when a group of British men, now known as the Royal National Institute
for the Blind, took up the cause.

Now practically every country in the world uses braille. Braille books have
double-sided pages, which saves a lot of space. Braille signs help blind
people get around in public spaces. And, most important, blind people can
communicate independently, without needing print.

Louis proved that if you have the motivation, you can do incredible things.

Where Can I Find a Picture of Louis Braille?

We hear this question a lot-why are there no photographs of Louis Braille on
the Braille Bug site?

We looked long and hard for a photograph of Louis Braille. But he died in
1852, and at that time photography had been around for only 13 years. It was
still a relatively difficult and rare process.

Also, Louis Braille's code for reading wasn't adopted by the school where he
taught until eight years before he died. France didn't officially adopt
Braille's system until two years after he died. It wasn't until 1890 that
the code was adopted in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, England, Germany, Spain,
and Scotland-and it took even longer to reach the United States. Louis
Braille really became more famous after his death!

Maybe people didn't think of taking a photo of him while he was alive
because they didn't know how famous he would later become. But someone did
think to take an old type of "photo" called a daguerreotype shortly after
his death. Here is a

portrait of Louis Braille

that was based on the daguerreotype. You can see this image, as well as
others, in a new biography from National Braille Press entitled Louis
Braille: A Touch of Genius . As the author notes, "This is the visage of a
dead man; in life, he kept his eyes open."

The only other image we have of Louis Braille is a sculpted bust, which can
be found at the school in Paris where he taught, the Royal Institution for
Blind Youth.

It's hard to remember in these days of digital cameras and instant pictures
how young photography actually is. Sculpture has been around for thousands
of years-photography for only 165 years!

- The Braille Bug


What is Braille?

What When you first look at something written in braille, all you see (or
feel) is a jumble of dots! However, like any other code, braille is based on
a logical system. Once you understand it, you'll be able to read and write
braille easily. That's because braille is not a language, it's just another
way to read and write English (or any other language, such as Japanese).
Learn more in "Braille: Deciphering the Code" and check out the other links

Braille: Deciphering the Code


Braille Technology

Printable Braille Alphabet Key

braille alphabet card

...Overview of the Braille Bug Site...

table with 2 columns and 44 rows

Six tiny raised dots, ingeniously arranged by a fifteen-year-old boy nearly
two hundred years ago, have brought literacy to thousands of people with
visual disabilities worldwide. Louis Braille, the inventor of the braille
code, was born on January 4, 1809, so January is celebrated as Braille
Literacy Month. The Braille Bug web site for children was launched in
January 2002 to commemorate the achievements of this remarkable young

The information, activities, and games found on the Braille Bug web site are
designed to teach children in grades 3 through 6 about braille. As they
explore the site, children will be able to:

list of 6 items

. develop an appreciation for the efficiency and versatility of braille;

. learn why and how Louis Braille invented the literary braille code;

. understand the importance of braille for another famous blind person,
Helen Keller;

. learn to recognize braille letters and numbers;

. describe different ways to read and write braille, including the use of

. use suggested resources to learn more about braille, blindness, and
related topics.

list end

About Braille Literacy

Braille enables people who are blind or visually impaired to develop
literacy skills comparable to those of sighted people who read print. Those
who know braille can perform tasks as varied as jotting down a phone number,
writing a shopping list, solving a long division problem, reading a musical
score, or composing a doctoral thesis. Sighted elementary students initially
are fascinated by braille as a kind of "secret code." However, as they learn
more about braille and its many uses, they expand their knowledge of people
with disabilities and the accommodations they use to lead full and
successful lives.


Children who are blind or visually impaired can enjoy the activities on the
Braille Bug website right along with their sighted classmates. However, they
will need special software and/or hardware on their computers.

. Those with low vision have the option of

changing the color of the site

to increase contrast and make the text easier to see. They also may use
screen magnification software to enlarge the text and pictures on the

. Those who do not learn visually may access information and participate in
the games & activities by listening. To do this, they need to have a screen
reader installed on their computer that will read everything that appears on
the screen, including text, menus, icons, and alt tags. All the games and
activities are designed to be completely accessible. However, the objectives
for children who participate by listening are somewhat different from those
for children who access the site visually. Although they will not be
learning to recognize simulated braille letters and numbers, they will
benefit from practice using their screen readers as they select menu items,
listen to information, and play the games. Children with screen readers may
access the games that have simulated braille characters by listening to the
alt tags that give the dot numbers for each one. In this way, a player who
is blind can work on the same questions with a classmate or friend who is
sighted. This arrangement can promote the development of social interaction
skills for both children. Children who would like more practice using their
screen readers may also select the "

Jumble Puzzle

" game that provides clues in regular print letters and words, rather than
in simulated braille.

. Those who read braille may access the screen by using a refreshable
braille display or by downloading and printing out a hard copy of the file
on a braille embosser. Directions for creating a hard copy of any part of
this website are found in another submenu item under "

Parents and Teachers

" entitled "

How to Download Braille Files


The Home Page

The Braille Bug, a ladybug with the six dots of the braille cell on her
back, welcomes children to the website on the home page. There are four menu
items for them to choose from, in addition to the "Parents and Teachers"

Change the Colors of the Site

: Children have the option to change the color of the text and background
based on their personal preferences for comfortable viewing.

What is Braille?

Five submenu items provide children with information about the Braille
Code, tools used to read and write braille, and the life of Louis Braille.
It is recommended that children read "Braille: Deciphering the Code" before
attempting any of the games or activities under the next main menu item.

list of 5 items


Braille: Deciphering the Code

-An introduction to Louis Braille's systematic arrangement of dots in the
braille cell to form letters, punctuation marks, and numbers. In this
section children also learn about braille contractions and short-form words.
These are special symbols or spellings that reduce the amount of space
needed for writing words in braille.



-Interesting facts about braille


Braille Technology

-A description of low- and high-tech tools used to read and write braille.


Printable Braille Alphabet

-A copy of the braille alphabet that students can print out and use as a
reference while playing the games, writing their own simulated braille
messages, or decoding braille words and numbers they find in the


Louis Braille

-The story of Louis Braille's life told in a lively style.

list end

Games and Secret Messages:

Children can explore a variety of interactive activities that challenge them
to decode simulated braille letters, words, and numbers on the screen. All
of the activities except the first one include a copy of the braille
alphabet and numbers for reference.

list of 7 items


See Your Name in Braille!

-Type in any name or other word, and watch it appear on the screen in


Trivia Mania

-Decode braille words related to a specific category, such as "Insects."
After a practice round, players earn points for correct answers.



-Read a riddle in print and decode the braille answer.


Braille Jumble

-A more difficult version of Trivia Mania. The braille letters for each word
in a specific category are scrambled. Players decode the letters, rearrange
them, and type their response. After a practice round, points are awarded
for each correct answer.


Jumble Puzzle

-Games designed for use with a screen reader or refreshable braille display.



-Decode the braille numbers, figure out the pattern (such as 2, 4, 6, 8),
and type the next number in the sequence. After a practice level, players
earn points for correct answers.


Secret Message

-Send a coded message to a friend by clicking on the letters of the braille
alphabet or typing in the text. When the message is sent via e-mail, the
friend will receive instructions on how to see it in braille and decode the

list end

Louis Braille

: The story of Louis Braille's life, told in a lively style.

Helen Keller Kids Museum Online

: A fascinating timeline of Helen Keller's life and achievements. Includes
photos, videos, letters, and more!

We hope that the children who use this site will enjoy learning about
braille and begin to understand its significance for people who are blind
and visually impaired. During the coming year, the Braille Bug website will
expand to include a Reading Club and Friends area. We welcome your comments
and suggestions, which may be sent to

Send instant messages to your online friends

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Fighting terrorism

In the aftermath of 26-11 barbaric terror tragedy of Mumbai, the nation is expressing the anger, distress and above all, the frustration arising out of the lack of a real political will as well as the united and cohesive effort especially, from the leadership, to act rapidly, decisively and strongly in order to eliminate terrorism and extremism from our soil. No doubt, the terrorism has become a Global phenomena and it is difficult to deal with it unilaterally. Even the United States had sought the cooperation from the international community after the 9-11 terror strikes in New York. Therefore, if India has sought the same through the United Nation's Security Council, [and a partial success has been achieved], there is no reason why frowns should come on any face. However, the tendency of looking towards the US for the solutions to all our problems looks to be our indecisiveness or short-sightedness which is dangerous and hence must be rectified. We have been fighting a proxy war with Pakistan for more than a quarter of a Century now and yet we have not been able to devise a suitable strategy to counter this undeclared war! This war has been imposed upon us and yet Pakistan successfully makes the international community believe that they are the aggrieved and we are the aggressors. We keep on giving concessions to our hostile neighbour on different counts and at different levels apparently, thinking that someday the good sense shall prevail and we would be able to live like good neighbourly nations, but the hostilities are rising up incessantly and without any break in the magnitude as well as dimension. To pressurize Pakistan, we look towards the US, the UN, and the International community. All the three praise our self-control, yearning of "good neighbourly relations", our far-sightedness etc and apparently, build up the pressure on Pakistan to our happiness and we feel satisfied that enough is enough; From now on, Pakistan will not repeat the Terror tactics. This is the reason why we have not been able to design an original strategy to combat the hostilities imposed upon us.

The political leadership

For the politicians of our country, "the chair" is the destination by hook or by crook. All kinds of the divisive tactics are used to woo the voters as they say, everything is fair in love and war. They tactically create their vote banks on the basis of caste, religion, language, region, gender and all other such issues. Unaccounted money is arranged for such activities and the revenue department keeps on sleeping. Many of our leaders squander lavishly on the occasions like birthdays, weddings etc and the income tax officials apparently, have nothing to do with these activities. Most importantly, the masses watch these irregularities on TV but very easily forget everything. They do not use their right to vote reasonably, judiciously and effectively. That is why, the criminals, who should be in jail, become the members of the legislative assemblies and the parliament. When some terror tragedy occurs, our leadership demonstrates a show of fire crackers through their lip service. Strong words are used mostly without direct reference to any country, as "we are the matured politicians". Many suggestions and plans are discussed in detail. Media makes the scenario spicier. The emotions of the masses are ridiculed and misused. But after a while, everything is forgotten.

Small states like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan etc strike upon us and we revise the lessons of keeping restrain, tolerance and the universal brotherhood. Countries like Israel very strongly can control the whole Arab world and we have to seek advice from the US whether or not we have the right to self defence. "We cannot engage in a full-fledged war because it is not in our interest", states the leadership of our country. We are destined to die but do not have the right to kill as it is inhuman and hence does not suit the noble Indian tradition. It is far better to sacrifice one's life for the motherland than to live in the fear of the terror. Mahatma Gandhi once said, "If I have to choose between the violence and the cowardice, I will opt for violence." However, with our leadership, the case is the opposite.


So what is the solution? Should we accept the situation as our we are destined to? Are we nothing but the puppets of the destiny? Not at all. Swami Vivekananda had very rightly said, "We are the brothers and the sisters of the Almighty, we are the sparks of the divine fire burning in our hearts. How can we be nothings! We are everything, ready to do everything, we can do everything and man must do everything."

We have the capacity to strike back. We have the potential to eliminate the terror not only from our soil but from the world. What is lacking is only the will power. Dedicate yourself to the nation and you will see miracles happen. The illness of the individualism has been trying to extinguish the fire of the patriotism. Remember, if the nation lives, we live but if the nation dies, who will live! Those who have the individualist approach must think over it.

For years now, we have been living a duel life. We tell others that we are very helpful, caring, sensitive to other's pains, and we posses all the noble qualities. But when it comes to the practice, we forget everything and do whatever in our own short-term interest. We cheat others, we bribe, we see the road accidents but do not react, and we see others in pain but think it better to run away unnoticed. We teach our young ones to speak the truth but when somebody comes to our doorsteps who we do not wish to see, we tell the same children to tell a lie. We have to come out of this hypocrisy.

If bribery is bad, it is bad for everyone. Do not bribe, even if you have to lose some important position. Because, the corruption begins not from anybody else. It begins from you. Contribute to stopping corrupt practices by pledging that you will not bribe in order to get favour.

On one hand, we oppose the Bangladeshi migrant and on the other hand, we hire them as the domestic aids as they are the cheaper ones. Pledge that we will not hire any illegal migrants for any purpose.

The general elections are not very far away. Let us pledge that we will use our right to vote very judiciously. We will surely vote and choose the right candidate. We will not consider the religion, caste, language, and other such things about the candidate but will elect him/her purely on the basis of his qualities.

If the public in general, adopts the aforesaid pledges, we will see a great welcome change in our country.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Dear admirers of Indian classical music!

For a long time I have been planning to create a web space for the good quality musical compositions in Hindustani classical music. Eventually, I have decided to use "youtube" as a tool for the same. My first contribution in this direction is a Drut Khayal in Rag Yaman. Please click Here, and listen to the Bandish. Your comments as well as suggestions are always welcome.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Classical music vs Popular music



All the fine arts can be categorized in two groups. Namely, one, classical and two, folk arts or the arts of the masses. In this essay, we will discuss the art of music in its classical as well as the folk form.

Music is a fine art wherein, the medium of expression is the sound. However, not all sounds are used in music. Only musical sounds are permitted. In the terminology of music, the sounds that are considered musical are called 'tones' or 'naada'. These tones are expressed through musical notes. Names of these notes differ from place to place but in the present era, it is universally accepted that there are seven musical notes in one octave. These musical notes are the alphabet of music. We have just these notes to express ourselves musically. This is the reason, these notes are said to be so important. In the Indian subcontinent, the teachers as well as the scholars of music insist on the practice of these notes. This process of getting control over the musical notes is called 'Swara Saadhana'.

Before going deep into the technical issues, let me tell you that in the folk music, the art comes naturally and instinctively. The folk singers (excluding the professional ones) do not formally learn how to sing or how to take to 'swara saadhana'. In the countryside, people instinctively sing and dance to express their joy and other sentiments. This is the reason that we find folk songs for almost all the occasions. Be it marriage ceremony, occasion of birth of a baby, harvesting season, and what not; there are folk songs for every occasion? Festival songs, seasonal songs, songs associated with different rituals etc are passed on from one generation of folk singers to the one. Thus, the chain keeps on growing.

This is a fact that the origin of all other forms of music is our rich, vibrant and ever new folk tradition. The classical music, popular music, regional music, devotional music, theatrical music, movie songs, light music etc have been originated and evolved from the great ocean of the folk musical tradition. If we go through the first written references about Indian music (the Rigveda), we find that two streams of music have been mentioned there. 1. Aranyagaan and 2. Graamgeya Gaana. It is said that the first one represents the music that was sung by the tribes of the forest. These tribes were far from the urban life and therefore were not cultured enough to devise the rules of singing and dancing.

The second stream of music – 'the gramageya gaana' - was governed by a set of rules and hence it can be considered "nearer to the classical music".


Dimensions of music


Music is a multidimensional art form. In its origin, it comes directly in our instinct, stimulated by the natural surroundings as well as the specific stage of our cultural upgradation. Culture and civilization play a great role in the evolution of musical expressions. The more we develop culturally, the newer dimensions of music peep in. Hence, the music that was in its simplest form at the dawn of our civilization has now grown as if a big banyan tree, which has numerous roots and branches but is still, retains its originality. If we take note of the present era with regard to music, we find that there is a variety of musical forms. (Let us restrict the topic to the context of the Subcontinent for better studies). In India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal etc, we follow almost the same musical tradition. In the region, we have the popular music on one hand and the classical music on the other hand. In between, there are several give and takes, which, more often than not, go unattended.


Popular music


Generally, music that is popular amongst the masses can be called popular music. However, specifically, it is based upon those music Albums that are the most popular on the chart busters. These popularity ratings are given by the electronic media. Different TV networks, which have especially dedicated to the popular music, provide the weekly ratings for different Songs. These ratings are not very transparent and hence cannot be depended upon. However, these ratings contribute to the promotion of the Album and therefore influence and sometimes fabricate the taste of the audience. Thus, we can define the popular music as "the music which is composed keeping in view the taste of the masses; the rhythm and the beat in this music is such that one tends to dance with the music."

This music includes, the movie melodies, Indipop Albums, Disco music, Remakes of the previous Popular Albums etc. In this list of popular music, the folk music has no place. In fact, in due course of time, the folk and the traditional music has become outdated and hence is not the part of the modern popular music. Popular music, though, is said to be the music of the masses yet it is popular only in the youth of the urban localisations. Somehow, the countryside has gone with the music which is called the folk music. This is also true that as the electronic media has increased its penetration to the rural areas, the influence of the so-called popular music can be felt in the villages too. In short, the popular music has liberated itself from the folk music and has become a different form altogether.


Classical music


This discourse about the classical/nonclassical music is a new phenomenon to the music of the subcontinent. In fact, in the ancient as well as the medieval periods of the history of the music of the region, there has no such word as "classical or nonclassical". These words have ushered into our music from the Western musical fraternity. These days, the music that is governed by a strict set of rules and is based upon the one or the other Raga, is called the classical music. It is also called "Ragdari sangeet". This kind of music is targeted at a very thin audience which is appreciative of the classical music. There are different musical establishments which continuously endeavour to extend the audience base for the classical music but day by day, it is getting thinner.

There are other forms of music popular in the Subcontinent like the jazz music, the Rock music and other Western experiments with music but such forms too have not been able to find an encouraging audience base. Therefore, we can establish the fact beyond any doubts that the only musical form which has a strong audience base is the popular music. Popular music is called the pop music in its shorter forms. To attract more and more audience, the composers of pop music experiment with new ideas and come up with innovations. This results in newer musical forms like the Sufi Pop, the Indipop, the Arabian Pop, remake of the previously popular songs, Disco Bhangda, Disco Garba etc. These composers reproduce the folk music in a new manner and with new beats and rhythms. Punjabi Pop Star Daler Mahndi has reproduced many Punjabi songs in the so-called popular style of music. Garba, Daandya etc are some of other examples where the pop composers have presented "the old wine" in a new and attractive bottle. On the first observation, it looks that by the aforesaid experiments, the composers of the pop music are promoting the folk tradition of music but after a deep analysis we reach the conclusion that these experiments are destroying the sentiment and the ethos of the real folk songs. They are producing such music just for the sole purpose to make their compositions sellable. Thus, they wish to earn more and more out of the artificial or the synthesized kind of the folk music. Therefore, let us discourage such trends.