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Creating a New CD. Stage 1: Sarod Alaap in Rag Sohani


This video was taken while I was recording for a new CD of meditative/relaxation music I am currently working on. I plan to video blog the creative process at each stage from here on.
In Stage 1 seen here I play an alaap (rhythm-less exploration of raga structure) in Raga Sohani. This is a relatively straightforward raga, both ascending and descending lines using in any order the six notes Sa, komal Re, Ga, tivra Ma, Dha, and Ni (C#, D, F, G, A#, C). This makes it simple to play, with no need to keep in mind rules of which note may or may not follow which. The focus is on the middle and upper octaves (I hardly use the lowest playing string) and on the notes Ga (F) and Dha (A#). It is however quite tricky on sarod, where two of its main playing strings, the Pa (G#) and Ma (F#), can not be struck ‘open’ (ie unfingered) as these notes are not used in the raga.
The audio of this recording will now be sent over the internet to Delhi, where my friends Kiran and Lalit will add bansuri (Indian bamboo flute) and piano. Once I receive their contributions back via internet, I can then edit the track, add pads (a light string background that will glue it all together and contribute a minimal Western chord structure) and various sound decorations.
Let’s see how it all works out. The fun is in letting the music take it’s own direction and being surprised!

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