This post lists few of my recent observations/thoughts related to music.
Found this old harmonium abandoned near a park in T.Nagar, Chennai. Felt bad for its sorry state. Playing an electric keyboard is not as much fun as playing a harmonium. Playing a harmonium with one hand (left hand) pumping air while the other (right hand) striking the reeds is a nice feeling. (Though left arm starts aching soon, if played continuously) But these are the days of electronic keyboard-no one likes the earlier bulky, heavy, mechanical and wooden harmonium. Owner of this harmonium who has disrespectfully discarded his musical instrument might have probably bought a new swanky keyboard. I only wish he/she could have treated this harmonium with little more care and respect-may be repair and gift it to someone?
How much does a Piano cost?
The other day I was at THE YAMAHA SQUARE in Nungambakkam. (It is a showroom of Yamaha musical instruments, reportedly owned by Drummer Sivamani) The cheapest Piano there was costing close to 5 lakhs. I had no idea Pianos cost that much. A person who is in acquaintance with musical instruments told me there’re Pianos costing as much as 2 crores (available in same store)-Incidentally the price difference is due to quality of wood used which impacts quality of sound. Hmm… (Hotel Wallwood Garden in Coonoor had a person playing Piano to entertain guests-I’m just wondering what components of Buffet cost (Rs 500+taxes) is towards recovering money spent on Piano)
Basics of Western Music
I did study little bit of western music recently at a music school called Unwind Centre. Just managed to clear level 1. Got a good understanding of how western music is different from Carnatic music. (in brief Western music is polyphonic and has detailed notations to describe the usage of both hands, multiple notes at once, sustain, rest and so on. Carnatic music, which I had learnt informally during school days but now almost forgotten, is monophonic)
CDs soon to become history?
In other observation, the new Honda City 2009 doesn’t have a CD player. Is this an indication that CDs as a storage medium have become obsolete? Not so long ago many of us painstakingly converted our collections in the form of Audio cassettes into CDs. Now CD players are almost history. Well, our generation might not even have seen a gramophone. 4 years ago when I was travelling in bus for 1 hour one way many people had portable CD player and walkman to entertain themselves. Ipod hadn’t made its invasion yet then. Now CDs are also getting obsolete. What next?
Update: A comment received by a reader (Sundar) via mail:
Reminded of the words of the great Tamil Poet Subramanya Bharathi:-
“Nalladhor Veenai seyde; adhai nalam keda puzhuthiyil erivadhundo!”
(after making a beautiful Veena, will someone spoil it and throw in garbage?)"