Growing up I played classical piano for 6-7 years, but the thing was, it was more for the normalization/”paying my dues” to my parents than me. At this particular time in my life my youngest sister took up piano as well, and excel…well excelling is an understatement; if my siblings and I are quintessentially The Royal Tenenbaums (Great movie if you haven’t seen it, and if you seen it, see it again!) with me as the writer, H* is the artist, A* is the athlete, K* is the musician.
Anyway, where was I? Ah yes, pulling teeth without anesthesia…er…playing classical piano. I probably would have liked it to some degree if I had been allowed to play what I wanted to play; yes Vivaldi, Brahms, Beethoven are my homelads but there’s so much more to play on the piano than the classics and that was never afforded to me.
So I quit, and I haven’t looked back.
Yet when I was taking one of my first college courses, an elective called “Music of the World” taught by an awesome guy who liked his music loud and ripped Christopher Colombus a new one pertaining to colonialism and genocide…well, in that class, apart from it being my first (and not last) A in a college course, I learned about Indian music, I learned in particularly about the sitar.
Now what I like about the Sitar is that George Harrison played it. Not so much my favorite member of The Beatles, but the guy who I appreciate most for his solo career post-Beatles. I liked listening to the music of India in Mr. Becker’s classroom, it stirred my wanderlust, it stirred my desire for more of the world and less of me, a truly musical transcendental moment if there ever was one.
I also liked how there were regular notes, and then notes between the notes! Who’d have thunk it but Indian musicians?!? It kind of reminds me of hidden rooms and easter eggs in a video game, not that I play much of them, but just discovering something that’s there that might be glossed over or just hidden in plain sight…that’s pretty cool.
I haven’t started yet, as the instrument is pretty expensive, but I do know where to get one and I do know someone who teaches the sitar so it’s all a matter of time.
All in due time playing one heck of an instrument, the Sitar.