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Page history last edited by Amy 9 years, 4 months ago

Clashing Music War


Amy C. and Dhatri N.




Indian music is unique compared to the rest of the world. It is only in India that some of the oldest forms of music are still preserved. In fact, Indian music dates back to the first millennium or earlier. However, traditional and modern music are two completely different forms now. Modern Indian music has been more influenced by the western music and it barely is influenced by the traditional music. As traditional involves religion. Traditional Indian music is the basics of classical Indian music, incorporating raga and taal. However, modern Indian music incorporates pop music and does not include any traditional elements.While traditional Indian musical instruments include a sitar, sarod, sarangi, flute, shehnai, table and many others. Modern music includes piano, guitar, drums, violins, and etc.



Modern day Instruments vs. Traditional Indian instruments





Ravi Shankar singing and playing the sitar (Traditional classical)                                       AR Rahman- Popular modern singer.

They typically sing about religion and allows for people to form                                        They usually sing pop music.

a connection with god.                                                                                                              




Ravi Shankar: Hi! I have heard a lot about your successes in the music industry, especially with the younger generations. “Jai Ho” was a great success for you, and I am proud of you. You have a great voice, and I think you should try singing some of the traditional music. 


AR Rahman: Hi Ravi! I am honored to meet you. I have listened to your album, Traditional Ragas, and I enjoyed listening to it. However, it is important that we move on from the past and modernize with the rest of the world. If we do not, then we will not be able to compete with the rest of the world.


Ravi Shankar: What have you grown up with? Have you not learned that traditional music is how we connect with god and our past? Some of our traditional music is sung in our ancient language, Sanskrit! Do you want us to lose our identity because of fame and money?!


AR Rahman: Well, clearly, everyone enjoys and loves my music. I have grown up with traditional music, but we can connect with god in other ways that do not involve music. Music is not only meant for religious purposes, but it is also for entertainment. You need to loosen up! 


Ravi Shankar: Our past and history is intertwined into music, and singing is crucial to this connection. In fact, singing is the most important way of expressing emotion, and everything accompanies the singer.


AR Rahman: The rich heritage of traditional Indian music has learned to accommodate itself to the developing sounds of the western world. While India has adapted itself to the modern world, it continues to maintain its own unique combination of music. Now there are remixes, which incorporates traditional and modern beats to fit the younger generations. Times have changed, and we cannot always stay with the past.


Ravi Shankar: If we stay with the traditional music, we will be unique and different from the rest of the world, which should be seen as a positive aspect. Why should we always conform ourselves to fit in with society? That is not who we are!


AR Rahman: Traditional music is mainly related to the Vedic scriptures, but Indians can still read Vedic scriptures without singing. Modern-day music can be sung in popular Bollywood movies, and they add an interesting twist to the pop culture. Not only that, but religious songs are difficult for younger generations to understand; this makes it almost pointless for young Indians to sing traditional songs because they will not understand the complex language. However, modern music can easily be understood because it uses the common language.


Ravi Shankar: This just goes to show that Indians are already losing their history and culture. How can you sit around and just let that happen? In ancient times, music was used in theater, dance, and poetic compositions. Traditional music was used for entertainment too, and it maintained our heritage as well!


AR Rahman: Who is going to want to sing traditional music nowadays? If we do not start adjusting our music, then the younger generations are just going to start listening to western music and completely forget about our language. At least if we start producing modern music, we will be able to sing in our language.  Western influences are inevitable, and we may as well start accepting that fact now.


Ravi Shankar: We are both accomplished singers, and I do not want to disrespect your beliefs. I can understand where you are coming from, and I wish you luck with your career! 


AR Rahman: You are right; we should not be arguing about this. I deeply respect you, and you are an honorable man. I hope we meet some day! 


Works Cited



V.S. Symbol: http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT8CddabMmtKXUtCtLMp-Jp8SFxbjPFKZkpn1hq3z6bYs0Ftqfl&t=1

Traditional Singer: http://landofcreators.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Traditional-Indian-Music.jpg

Modern instruments: http://www.bancroft-music.com/

Indian instruments: http://www.culturalindia.net/indian-music/music-instruments.html

Instruments: http://www.arzoomag.com/culture/indian-instruments/

Traditional Instruments: http://www.artistspages.org/modern_indian_music.htm

Ravi Shankar: http://www.iloveindia.com/indian-heroes/ravi-shankar.html




Bohlman, Philip. "Music: Music and Religion in India." Encyclopedia of Religion. Ed. Lindsay Jones. 2nd ed. Vol. 9. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2005. 6278-6287. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 12 May 2011.


Gupt, Bharat. "Music—India." Encyclopedia of Modern Asia. Ed. David Levinson and Karen Christensen. Vol. 4. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 2002. 222-226. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 12 May 2011.




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