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Original Best Quality Authentic Genuine Indian Traditional Professional – Sarod (Sarode)

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The sarod (or sarode) (सरोद, সরোদ) is a stringed instrument, used mainly in Hindustani music. Along with the sitar, it is among the most popular and prominent instruments. The sarod is known for a deep, weighty, introspective sound, in contrast with the sweet, overtone-rich texture of the sitar, with sympathetic strings that give it a resonant, reverberant quality. It is a fretless instrument able to produce the continuous slides between notes known as meend (glissandi), which are important in Indian music.

 

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Description

Sarod (Sarode)

The sarod (or sarode) (सरोद, সরোদ) is a stringed instrument, used mainly in Hindustani music. Along with the sitar, it is among the most popular and prominent instruments. The sarod is known for a deep, weighty, introspective sound, in contrast with the sweet, overtone-rich texture of the sitar, with sympathetic strings that give it a resonant, reverberant quality. It is a fretless instrument able to produce the continuous slides between notes known as meend (glissandi), which are important in Indian music.

The sarod is widely believed to have descended from the Afghan rubab, a similar instrument originating in Central Asia and Afghanistan. Many scholars of Indian classical music believe that the sarod is a combination of the ancient Chitra veena, the medieval Rabab and modern Sursingar. Some scholars even contend that a similar instrument may have existed about two thousand years ago in ancient India during the ages of the Gupta kings. In fact, a Gupta period coin depicts the great king Samudragupta playing a Veena, which many believe to be the precursor of the Sarod. The present Indian Traces of similar Rabab style instruments can also be found in southern India, especially in the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka, where it is known as the Swarbat. The folk Rabab, an instrument popular in north India, had a wooden fingerboard, its strings were made of silk, cotton or gut, and it was played with a wooden pick. In history, reference is also made to a Sharadiya Veena from which the name Sarod may have been derived.

The word sarod roughly translates to “beautiful sound” or “melody” in Persian, one of the many languages spoken in Afghanistan. Although the sarod has been referred to as a “bass rubab” its tonal bandwidth is actually considerably greater than that of the rubab, especially in the middle and high registers. Lalmani Misra opines in his Bharatiya Sangeet Vadya that the sarod is a combination of the ancient chitra veena, the medieval rubab and modern sursingar. There is also speculation that the oud may be the origin of the sarod.

Among the many conflicting and contested histories of the sarod, there is one that attributes its invention to the ancestors of the present-day sarod maestro, Amjad Ali Khan. Amjad Ali Khan’s ancestor Mohammad Hashmi Khan Bangash, a musician and horse trader, came to India with the Afghan rubab in the mid-18th century, and became a court musician to the Maharajah of Rewa (now in Madhya Pradesh). It was his descendants, notably his grandson Ghulam Ali Khan Bangash, a court musician in Gwalior, who changed the rubab into the sarod we know today. A parallel theory credits descendants of Madar Khan, Niyamatullah Khan in particular, with the same innovation around 1820. The sarod in its present form dates back to approximately 1820, when it started gaining recognition as a serious instrument in Rewa, Shahjahanpur, Gwalior and Lucknow. In the 20th century, the sarod received some finishing touches from Allauddin Khan, the performer-pedagogue from Maihar best known as sitarist Ravi Shankar’s guru. However, as is the case with most young, evolving instruments, much work remains to be done in the area of sarod luthiery in order to achieve reliable customization, and precise replication of successful instruments. This reflects the general state of Indian instrument-making in the present day.

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