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Diatonic Chords and Indian Classical Music


Diatonic Chords and Indian Classical Music

The Indian Classical Music genre basically drives the soloist notes which form the melodic within the particular scale of the various Raga. The Ten fundamental Scales in Hindustani Music- North Indian Classical Music and Seventy-Two Fundamental Scales in Carnatic Music- South Indian Classical Music are the root of Raga classification which emerged in the post-medieval period and was significantly modified in various periods by several musicologists. Thaat or the Mela are supposed to be the root of raga classification where similar scale rage is categorized and framed under each Thaat/ Mela. Perhaps, the Thaat may not cover up all the scales, or Raga has a distinct character. Even in a similar scale raga, it can notice the Characteristics are quite different from one another. Thus the entire music genre of Indian Classical Music is having a diverse quality that cannot be related to one another in any way. They might share a similar Thaat or similar scale but the character might be totally reversed in nature.

Chord Progression in Indian Classical Music does not resemble the originality of Classical music. Moreover, these chord progression is not easy to understand for beginners because the scale, Ragana, and pathway of Raga is confined in Jati where notes are structured as Audav- Audav, Audav-Shadav, Audav-Sampurna or Shadav-Audav, Shadav-Shadav, Shadav- Sampurna, or Sampurna- Audav, Sampurna- Shadav, Sampurna- Sampurna or Vakra-Sampurna or Sampurna – Vakra. Ascent notes may have a minimum of five and a maximum of seven or vice-versa is regarded as Jati of the Raga. Shadaj(the root note),  Madhyam, or Pancham (Perfect Fourth-Fifth) are not abandoned in such scales.  Thus the proper chording is quite completed in most of the Raga. The chords of course create harmony but this may not be suitable as per the structure of certain Raga. Here one should not that Indian Classical Music is not as similar as the Diatonic or Chromatic Scale of western Music. But understanding the formation of Chords in Indian Classical Music is make sense in some music genres that embellish the melody and create a harmony that soothes the audience and spectators.

Generally, Chords are formed with the combination of three or more notes that harmonize the assonate sound in a particular series. For Example, C E and G are the keys of C Major Chord. Let’s understand the key combination of these keys and how these keys are recognized in the diatonic scale. 

As we know the base note of the scale is called Root note in western music and Shadaj-Sa in Indian Classical Music. The position of Sa is variable in Indian music whereas, the keys are fixed in Western Music.  If we supposed base note Shadaj – Equivalent to the Pitch of C of a middle octave and construct the natural notes from C D E F G A B then Bilawal Scale of Hindustani Music is formed were minor seventh keys is used as dissonant notes sometimes used in between Major Sixth. Let’s understand the formula of Major and Minor Chords.

A Major chord is created with Root + Major Third+ Perfect Fifth. Before moving forward we shall remember the name of Notes. In western music, the notes are named as Root, major Second, Major Third, Perfect Fourth, Perfect Fifth, Major Sixth, and Major Seven, or the same can be named as Minor Second, Minor Third, and Perfect Fourth, Perfect Fifth, Minor Sixth Minor Seventh. With the connection of these degrees of notes Tonic Supertonic, Mediant, Subdominant, Dominant, Submediant, and leading notes/ chords are created. The basic thing to understand the chord progression or chord formation in Chromatic/ diatonic scale is the interval between the Root Note to other notes. According to this semitone/ tone interval, several chords can be created.

Let’s supposed the Scale is C natural then the root note is obviously the C so C Major (C M) will be 1+ 5 +8 i.e. the First key will be C and Second Key will be E(C C# D D# E means five Semitones interval) and The third Key will be G(C C# D D# E F F# G) means eight Semitones interval) or this can be said as Root+ Major Third + Perfect = Major Chord. Similarly, Minor Chord is constructed in a chromatic Scale C minor (Cm) will be 1+ 4+ 8 i.e. the First key will be C and Second Key will be Eb(C C# D Eb) means four Semitones interval) and The third Key will be G(C C# D Eb E F F# G) means eight Semitones interval) or this can be said as Root+ Minor Third + Perfect = Minor Chord. Here we can see the third degree of the key is the variable in a major and minor chord.

Now let’s move this part relating to Indian Classical Music. Shadaj -Sa is the root note in each and every pitch and in all the Scales of Indian Classical Music. The A major chord is the combination of Shadaj+Gandhar+ Pancham( Sa+Ga+ PA ) and Minor chord can be formed with Shadaj+ Komal Gandhar+ Pancham( Sa+ga+ PA ). So In Bilawal Scale, all the notes are Natural/ Suddha that why chord progression is formed as: if Stander Pitch is C#

Sa+Ga+ Pa= C#Major


Ga+Pa+Ni=F minor

ma+ Dha + Sa= F#Major

Pa+Ni+ Re=G#Major

Dha+Sa+Ga= A#minor

Ni+Re+ma = Cdim

Note: diminish chord is a combination of triad combination with root note and minor the third and minor fifth means both keys are half semitone down in Major triad.


To be continued …..




How to Write Good Research Proposal in Music and Performing Arts


Research Proposal in Performing Arts

The objective of a research proposal is to present and justify the need to study a research problem and to present the practical ways in which the proposed study should be piloted. The design elements and procedures for conducting research are governed by standards of the predominant discipline in which the problem resides, therefore, the guidelines for research proposals are more exacting and less formal than a general project proposal. Research proposals contain extensive literature reviews and hypotheses of the proposed research work. They must provide persuasive evidence that a need exists for the proposed study. In addition to providing a rationale, a proposal describes detailed methodology for conducting the research consistent with requirements of the professional or academic field and a statement on estimated outcomes and benefits derived from the study's completion.

Proposal Process

As with writing most college-level academic papers, research proposals in Music and Performing Arts are generally organized the same way throughout most social science disciplines. The text of proposals generally vary in length between three thousand words to eight thousand words or broadly from Ten pages to Twenty-five page , followed by the list of references. However, before you begin, read the assignment carefully and, if anything seems unclear, then ask the expert whether there are any specific requirements for shaping and writing the proposal. Curiosity and self-analyzing the purpose of research might bring you more closely to the study.   

·         What do I want to study?

·         Why is the topic important?

·         How is it significant within the subject areas covered in my class?

·         What problems will it help solve?

·         How does it build upon research already conducted on the topic?

·       What exactly should I plan to do, and can I get it done in the time available?


In general, a convincing research proposal should document your knowledge of the topic and demonstrate your enthusiasm for conducting the study. Approach it with the intention of leaving your readers feeling like, "Great, that's an exciting idea and I can’t wait to see how it turns out!"

Most proposals should include the following sections:

       i.            Title of the Proposal

     ii.            Introductions

  iii.            Objectives and Significance Research  

  iv.            Background and Literature Review

     v.            Research Methodology

  vi.            Research Gap, Preliminary Ideas and Variables

vii.            Conclusion

viii.            References and Bibliography


I.  Introduction

In the Indian higher education system, a research proposal or synopsis is most often written by scholars seeking grant funding for a research project or it's the first step in getting approval to write a doctoral dissertation. Even if this is just a course assignment, treat your introduction as the initial pitch of an idea or a thorough examination of the significance of a research problem. After reading the introduction, your readers should not only have an understanding of what you want to do, but they should also be able to gain a sense of your passion for the topic and to be excited about the study's possible outcomes. Note that most proposals do not include an abstract before the introduction.

Think about your introduction as a narrative written in two to four paragraphs that briefly answers the following four questions:

1.     What is the central research problem?

2.     What is the topic of study related to that research problem?

3.     What methods should be used to analyze the research problem?

4.     Why this is important research, what is its significance, and why should someone reading the proposal care about the outcomes of the proposed study?

II. Objectives and Significance of Research

This is where scholar explains the context of proposal and describe in detail why it's important. It can be merged into your introduction or you can create a separate section to help with the organization and narrative flow of your proposal. Approach writing this section with the thought that you can’t assume your readers will know as much about the research problem as you do. Note that this section is not an essay going over everything you have learned about the topic; instead, you must choose what is most relevant in explaining the aims of your research. To that end, while there are no prescribed rules for establishing the significance of your proposed study, you should attempt to address some or all of the following:

·         State the research problem and give a more detailed explanation about the purpose of the study than what you stated in the introduction. This is particularly important if the problem is compound or multidimensional.

·         Present the rationale of your proposed study and clearly indicate why it is worth doing?

·         Describe the major issues or problems to be addressed by your research. This can be in the form of questions to be addressed. Be sure to note how your proposed study builds on previous assumptions about the research problem.

·         Explain the methods you plan to use for conducting your research. Clearly identify the key sources you intend to use and explain how they will contribute to your analysis of the topic.

·         Describe the boundaries of your proposed research in order to provide a clear focus. Where appropriate, state not only what you plan to study, but what aspects of the research problem will be excluded from the study.

·         If necessary, provide definitions of key concepts or terms.

III. Literature Review

Connected to the background and significance of your study is a section of your proposal devoted to a more deliberate review and synthesis of prior studies related to the research problem under investigation. The purpose here is to place your project within the larger whole of what is currently being explored, while demonstrating to your readers that your work is original and innovative. Think about what questions other researchers have asked, what methods they have used, and what is your understanding of their findings and, when stated, their recommendations.

Since a literature review is information dense, it is crucial that this section is intelligently structured to enable a reader to grasp the key arguments underpinning your proposed study in relation to that of other researchers. A good strategy is to break the literature into "conceptual categories" rather than systematically or chronologically describing groups of materials one at a time. Note that conceptual categories generally reveal themselves after you have read most of the pertinent literature on your topic so adding new categories is an on-going process of discovery as you review more studies. How do you know you've covered the key conceptual categories underlying the research literature? Generally, you can have confidence that all of the significant conceptual categories have been identified if you start to see repetition in the conclusions or recommendations that are being made.

Points to be considered while citing literature review are:

1.     Cite, so as to keep the primary focus on the literature pertinent to your research problem.

2.     Compare the various arguments, theories, methodologies, and findings expressed in the literature: what do the authors agree on? Who applies similar approaches to analyzing the research problem?

3.     Contrast the various arguments, themes, methodologies, approaches, and controversies expressed in the literature: describe what are the major areas of disagreement, controversy, or debate among scholars?

4.     Critique the literature: Which arguments are more persuasive, and why? Which approaches, findings, and methodologies seem most reliable, valid, or appropriate, and why? Pay attention to the verbs, you use to describe what an author says in his/her research

5.     Connect the literature to your own area of research and investigation: how does your own work draw upon, depart from, synthesize, or add a new perspective to what has been said in the literature?



IV. Research Methodology

This requirement Section be well-written and logically organized because you are not actually doing the research, yet, your reader must have confidence that it is worth pursuing. The reader will never have a study outcome from which to evaluate whether your methodological choices were the correct ones. Thus, the objective here is to convince the reader that your overall research design and proposed methods of the analysis will correctly address the problem and that the methods will provide the means to effectively interpret the potential results. Your design and methods should be unmistakably tied to the specific aims of your study.

Describe the overall research design by building upon and drawing examples from your review of the literature. Consider not only methods that other researchers have used but methods of data gathering that have not been used but perhaps could be. Be specific about the methodological approaches you plan to undertake to obtain information, the techniques you would use to analyze the data, and the tests of external validity to which you commit yourself and your trustworthiness by which you can generalize from your study to other people.

When describing the methods you will use, be sure to cover the following:

·         Specify the research process you will undertake and the way you will interpret the results obtained in relation to the research problem. Don't just describe what you intend to achieve from applying the methods you choose, but state how you will spend your time while applying these in music, musicology, and other forms of performing arts.

·         Keep in mind that the methodology is not just a list of tasks; it is an argument as to why these tasks add up to the best way to investigate the research problem. This is an important point because the simple listing of tasks to be performed does not demonstrate that, collectively, they effectively address the research problem. Be sure you clearly explain this in a systematic way.

·         Anticipate and acknowledge any potential barriers and pitfalls in carrying out your research design and explain how you plan to address them. No method is perfect so you need to describe where you believe challenges may exist in obtaining data or accessing information. It's always better to acknowledge this than to have it brought up by Supervisor or expert in your research field.


V.  Research Gap, Preliminary Ideas and Variables

Just because you don't have to actually conduct the study and analyze the results, doesn't mean you can skip talking about the analytical process and potential implications. The purpose of this section is to argue how and in what ways you believe your research will refine, revise, or extend existing knowledge in the subject area under investigation. Depending on the aims and objectives of your study, describe how the anticipated results will impact future scholarly research, theory, practice, forms of interventions, or policymaking.

When thinking about the potential implications of your study, ask the following questions:

·         What might the results mean in regards to challenging the theoretical framework and underlying assumptions that support the study?

·         What suggestions for subsequent research could arise from the potential outcomes of the study?

·         What will the results mean to practitioners in the natural settings of their workplace?

·         Will the results influence programs, methods, or forms of involvement?

·         How might the results contribute to the solution of social, economic, musical or other types of problems?

·         Will the results influence policy decisions?

·         In what way do individuals or groups benefit should your study be pursued?

·         What will be improved or changed as a result of the proposed research?

·         How will the results of the study be implemented and what innovations or transformative insights could emerge from the process of implementation?


This section should not research idle speculation, opinion, or be formulated on the basis of unclear evidence. The purpose is to reflect upon gaps or understudied areas of the current literature and describe how your proposed research contributes to a new understanding of the research problem should the study be implemented as designed.

VI. Conclusion

The conclusion restates the importance or significance of your proposal and provides a brief summary of the entire study. This section should be only one or two paragraphs long, emphasizing why the research problem is worth investigating, why your research study is unique, and how it should advance existing knowledge.

Someone reading this section should come away with an understanding of:

·         Why the study should be done,

·         The specific purpose of the study and the research questions it attempts to answer,

·         The decision to why the research design and methods used were chosen over other options,

·         The potential implications emerging from your proposed study of the research problem, and

·         A sense of how your study fits within the broader scholarship about the research problem.


VII. References

As with any scholarly research paper, you must cite the sources you used. In a standard research proposal, this section can take two forms, so consult with your supervisor or expert of your field about which one is preferred.

1.     References -- lists only the literature that you actually used or cited in your proposal.

2.     Bibliography -- lists everything you used or cited in your proposal, with additional citations to any key sources relevant to understanding the research problem.

In either case, this section should testify to the fact that you did enough preparatory work to ensure the project will complement and not just duplicate the efforts of other researchers. Start a new page and use the heading "References" or "Bibliography" centered at the top of the page. Cited works should always use a standard format that follows the writing style advised by the discipline of your courses like APA or MLA or Chicago or that is preferred by your intuition or research supervisor. This section normally does not count towards the total page length of your research proposal.



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