Monday, March 30, 2009

Folk Songs Instruments

There are number of instruments used in folk songs. It differs from region to region. However few instruments are quite common. For example, drum is one instrument frequently used by folk song musicians in many regions. These drums are far from refined and yet they produce the desired effect. Other common music instruments are, Ghungharu, Vina, Naggada, Rabab, Dholak, Saringda, Santur, Nal, Kartal, Daf, Bansuri, Ektar, Magadi, Dotar, Pung, Chimpta, and Shankh to name a few. Not every style of folk songs uses all these instruments. The primary focus is upon lyrics and atmosphere. Instruments are simply used to enhance the feel. These instruments are not refined to say so, but interestingly enough made by musician themselves. Often made up of ordinary substances, instruments used in folk songs provide that earthy charm and traditional feel.

As mentioned in previous article, folk musicians don’t receive any formal training. They just learn it from their surrounding. It’s a wonderful medium of celebrating life. Go to any part of the country and you will find people playing folk music to celebrate all types of occasions. Events like marriage, birth, festivals, arrival of monsoon etc are perfect occasions for celebrating by playing folk songs. Most of the rural parts in India celebrate harvesting with folk songs. This way they thank god and wish for better agricultural results. In tune with the culture, Indian movies have also incorporated several scenes of folk songs that have found huge popularity.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Indian Folk Songs

Apart from classical and filmy songs, Indian music has several other beautiful facets. One of them is Indian folk songs. Immensely rich in history, folk songs are in existence since the inception of civilization. Folk songs are popular all across the country. Al the regions in India have different folk songs culture that are so dissimilar from each other and yet enchanting enough to sooth one’s soul. Very few things match the contribution made by folk songs in terms of representing cultural diversity of India. Indian folk songs possess variety and charisma. Folk songs have also been termed as rustic representation of Indian civilization.

Almost all the regions in India boast of unique folk song a style that is entirely different from other regions. Similarity is quite restricted to usage of few instruments and nothing more. Many people confuse folk songs with tribal songs but one must note that both are completely different things. Folk songs represent celebration and fun. Mostly performed and used in particular occasions, many regions celebrate smaller things of life by indulging in folk song. Folk songs are not taught and no one has ever heard of folk songs training school. There is nothing formal about this form of enjoyment. India has produced many quality folk singers who have learned this art on their own and mastered it. Many Indian folk singers have also performed aboard and managed to enchant foreigners.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Music Therapy

Music is an eternally beautiful gift. Music does wonders to humans. Its effects are mesmerizing to say the least. No wonder, we tend to lose ourselves in different types of music. We all have our favorite songs than we can relate to varying emotions occurring inside us. We can find several instances where music has managed to transform peoples’ lives in a positive way. Many of you must have heard of the term ‘music therapy’. This term has been credited to cure numerous diseases and to provide healing touch to the troubled souls.

Definition wise, Music Therapy is the sum total of music and related activities to cure problematic things like, fruitless learning patterns and developing non-musical goals. It is also used for promoting mental and physical growth along with motional and social development. Music is a type of medicine that manages to cure many diseases. We all go through several types of emotional, mental and physical stresses every day. Blame it on lack of time or deadlines faced by us in different walks of life, stress has become an integral part of our lives. Music has provided that much needed stress-relief factor to many of us. Ailments like backaches, piles, asthma, intestinal gas, hypertension, headache, cough, constipation, and many more diseases have been cured by music therapy.

Many Indian ragas have found to be wonderful in tackling diseases like blood pressure and speed of brain waves. Ragas like Hindol, Sohani, Malkauns, Bhairavi and Madhuvanti are very effective in curing common ailments. Try listening to music and stay relaxed. It will do wonders for you and your life.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Item Songs

What is the common element between ‘Chamma Chamma’ and ‘Khallas’? No prizes for guessing the answer! Yes, they both are very popular songs that also helped in the movie earning great revenues. But more than anything else, both songs are known as ‘Item Songs’ in popular bollywood potboilers. Item songs did not exist in old age. But need of creativity and popularity of such songs gave rise to this phenomenon. Most of the movies released during last one decade have one or two item songs. These songs not only help in popularizing the movies but also help in pulling the crowds to the theater.

‘Chamma Chamma’ got so popular that the director of famous English movie, Moulin Rouge came over to Mumbai to acquire the rights of the song. This song gave a tremendous boost to the concept of items songs. Majority of the run of the mill stuff movies give us colorful items songs picturized in glamorous locations. Item songs opened a new revenue stream for movie industry.
When talking about item songs, many such songs come to our mind. Songs like ‘babuji jara dheere chalo’, ‘One love’, ‘Chaiyan Chaiyan’, ‘Hello’ etc remind us of talented actors dancing on groovy tunes. Many non-stream actors have found their niche in item songs category. It has also given a new lease of life to upcoming singers from far flung places. Item songs are there to stay in bollywood movies.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Changing Musical Trend

Songs play a major role in pulling people to the theatres. Needless to say, songs are extremely important element in the context of Hindi movies. In fact, all the regional movies also contain certain number of songs. Sometimes, songs sequence pop out of nowhere while you are watching a movie but aren’t songs supposed to be fun? Songs are a way of life for Indian public. It gives vent to our innermost emotions. Since long, we have thrived on melodious and heart warming songs of yesteryears. Modern songs have continued to make their presence felt in every sphere of our lives. The only change has occurred in the time frame of songs in our subconscious. We still find ourselves humming songs of golden era. Songs sung by Mohammad Rafi, Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar etc continue to rule the roost but modern day songs don’t last long in our memory.

Now our songs focus on popularity and best use of latest musical techniques. Lyrics are not the most important thing anymore. Rhythm and mixing has taken precedence over quality of lyrics. The latest trend is that a song is released, becomes the chart booster and soon it fades away from our memory. Also the fact that, genres of songs have increased tremendously, plays a major role in sustainability of a song. Now film music is not the only source of music for us. Now we have choices like filmy, pop, rock, remixes, hip-hop, trance and several other forms of music. In that sense, music in India is still evolving. It is also attracting people from diverse cultures.