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New Music Concepts 2020

Relation between Swara and Animal/Bird Calls: An Analysis

Part of the New Music Concepts book series (NMC volume 7)
ISBN: 978-88-944350-3-0

Author(s): Haritha Bendapudi, Dr. T.K. Saroja

Abstract: Indian Musicology defines 22 distinct shrutis (microtones), 12 swarasthanas (semitones) and 7 swaras (tones). By implementing the mathematical concepts like cycle of fourths and fifths, these shrutis acquire a discrete frequency ratio which justifies the Bharatha's 22 shrutis experiment. Indian classical music defines the 7 swaras and each swara is associated to an animal/bird call. The Grama system in Indian music distributes the 22 shrutis amongst the 7 swaras. We based our work on the Shadja Grama system. The traversal of pitches in a swara are more important in understanding the swara as compared to the frequency ratio. This shows us that swaras have peculiar properties and an identity independent of the octave.

Keywords: Indian Classical Music, Animal Calls, Pitch Analysis