|B. D. Musics|
Pakhawaj are a double ended barrel drums with leather strap or metal tuning hardware. The metal hardware type is called Mridang. It is the commonly used drum in ashrams for accompanying chanting. The leather strap type is called Pakhawaj.
It is a classical drum for accompanying druphad vocal music. It requires a wheat paste gob to be applied on the bass head every time it is used.
Once the most important drum in Hindustani music, the pakhavaj – also known as the mrdang (mridanga) is now relatively little known and even less-well understood.
Its rhythmic system, its compositions and its technique are all fundamentally different from that of the tabla, as are its function and aesthetic when used to accompany dhrupad.
There are regional pakhavaj traditions that are still linked to Hindu temples (most notably Nathdvara and its tradition of haveli sangeet), and there are folk traditions about which very little is as yet known. There are also "classical" traditions from Rajasthan, Punjab, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, and Madhya Pradesh/Maharashtra. The majority of pakhavaj players today trace their musical ancestry to two silsilas – or teaching lines – that arentified with two prominent figures who were active in the ide mid-19th century: Kudau Singh and Nana Panse.
Beginning in the late 19th century notations of pakhavaj music began to appear in India, and it is my intention to translate and transnotate these to shed more light on this most magnificent drum.