Indian Folk Music

Purna Das Baul presents a devotional music concert with 5-8 musicians on Monday April 7th, 2003, from 7:30 to 9:30 pm in the Great Room.  Purna Das Baul represents the seventh generation of an authentic Baul family where tradition is passed down from father to son. Purna Das spent his childhood accompanying his father Nabani Das Baul, the legendary singer, philosopher and close friend of the great poet Rabindra Nath Tagore.  Purna Das can be credited for bringing the unique Baul traditions to Indian cities and the West Today, he is the most popular exponent of Baul music and famous in India as "Baul Samrat", the "Emperor of the Bauls".  Donít miss this rare, ecstatic musical feast.  For tickets call 928-445-2451.  $10/Advance,   $12/at door.  For more information visit  www.sufibaulfolkmusic.com

Touring the world since 1962, Purna Das appeared repeatedly in major cities all over Europe, USA, UK, Canada, Australia and The Far East. Besides giving concerts, Purna Das has appeared on radio, television and in films worldwide and has worked with such artists as John Buzz, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Mahalia Jackson, Allen Ginsberg ,Gordon Lightfoot, The Bands, Peter Grabrial and others.  His audio albums, cassettes and CDs are distributed throughout the world.  Purna Das has participated in many storytelling festivals, and has given workshops at numerous Universities around the world music folk festivals.

The Baul way of Life

Bauls are India wandering minstrels of West Bengal whose ecstatic songs and dance reflect their joy, love and longing for mystical union with the Divine. To them the human body is the holiest of holies wherein the Divine is intimately enshrined as the "Moner Manush",the man of the heart. Baul philosophy emphasises love for all human beings as the path leading to the Divine Love. Romantic love to the Baul is the link between the human being and God. In fact, they believe that God is the eternal lover of the eternal woman which is the human soul. The word "Baul" is derived from the Sanskrit word "Baul" which means "mad". Bauls are free thinkers who openly declare themselves to be mad for the God who dwells within us all. Among others, Bauls use the following instruments:


1. TABLA - the high drum

2. DAYA - the bass drum: commonly known as a set of TABLAS. Capable of a myriad of different sounds and tonal combinations, these are the most popular drums of North Indian classical music.

3. EKTAR - literally "one string". This two string drone instrument is used to accompany singers into he folk traditions of many regions of India. In addition to plucking the strings, the skin head is also struck like a drum to provide rhythm accompaniment.

4. GUNGAROO - these ankle bells add to the orchestration as a singer plucks and beats his ektar, creating a kind of one-man-band effect. Classical dancers use a much heavier set of gungaroos with many more bells to create startling rythmic counterpoints to the slapping of their feet against the floor.

5. DOTAR - a folk instrument much like it's classical cousin, the sarode, and not unlike it's western relative, the fretless banjo. Plucked with a coconut shell pick, the strings are depressed with the fingernails of the left hand, rather than the finger pads as in a guitar or violin. the finger nail becomes like the slide on a slide guitar. My dotar has an electric pickup built into the bridge, which is normally made of bone.

6. CHIMTAS - combination rhythm instrument fire tongs, and weapon used by Sadhus (wandering mendicants all over India)

7. HARMONIUM - portable pump organ, introduced to India by the missionaries, this little reed organ has become one of India's most popular instruments, perfect for 2 finger typists like myself - the left hand pumps the bellows while the right hand plays the keys.

8. KANJIRA - small frame drum. Used by both folk and classical musicians. This one has a goat skin head, but usually the head is made from a lizard skin.

9. KARTALS - finger cymbals. Great for making a lot of noise while singing Kirtan (chanting the names of God).

10. SMALLER KARTALS - for the quieter moments.

11. GUBGUBBI- (also known as Khammak) - an inverted bongo drum with two gut strings attached from the inside of the hide to the membrane on a small cup. You put the bongo drum under your arm, pull on the cup and pluck the strings. This is the most popular instrument of the Bauls of Bengal. It's also called "anandalahari" - waves of bliss.

12. GOPICHAND - this one string instrument allows you to change the pitch by squeezing the bamboo sides. The tighter you squeeze, the lower the note gets, until the instrument breaks and you have to get a new one at the corner gopichand store

13. DHOLAK - 2 headed barrel shaped drum popular in all sorts of Indian folk music.


 For further information please contact
Sedona Creative Life Center

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