Learn to Play Toombi - Part 2 - Playing First Four Notes

Uploaded by sangtarheer on 10.03.2011

Today we will see how the notes are played on this side of the Toombi.
Toombi is a fretless instrument.
Meaning that, as there are metalic frets on a guitar or a sitar or on a mandolin
whereever the notes are, there is nothing like that on a Toombi.
Just like a violin, cello, rabab, sarod or other such instruments which are known as fretless instruments
it is a fretlees instrument, like a Sarangi.
The notes on it are learnt with hardwork and ear training.
the notes are there.
On what points do they exist? If one knows a little about that, it helps.
Here I would like to tell you that the minimum interval is known as semi-tone in English.
When two semitones come together, it is known as a tone.
In Punjabi, we refer to them as a half note or a whole note.
If we see this on a Harmonium, the notes right next to each other are a semotone apart.
On a harmonium (keyboard) any two keys separated with one key between them, make one tone.
As Mandolin and Toombi are very similar instruments, I'll show you this on a Mandolin.
Here you see that the Mandolin has these frets.
And, this is a half note.
The second fret, a whole note.
The third fret, one and half note.
The fourth fret, two notes and this is the fifth fret.
And, we will learn Sa Re Ga Ma on this.
The Re is one whole note higher than the Sa.
Which means it would be on the second fret.
And the Ga, is one tone higher than the Re.
It means it is situated on the fourth fret.
And the Ma (fourth) is half note higher than the Ga.
Which means that it is the next fret.
Meaning that if we play Re tivar (sharp), Ga tivar, and Ma komal (flat) These are known as natural (shudh) notes.
Sa, Re, Ga, Ma.
If we play this on Mandolin,
It would play Sa-Re-Ga-Ma (Natural notes).
[Plays first four natural notes]
See here, press on the second skipping the first
press on the fourth skipping the third
And press on the very next one (fifith fret).
As mandolin has a fret
so even if we play a little farther from the fret
as this is the Re (second major),
if we press a little away from the fret, it would still sound like a Re.
Because the string is touching the fret.
Having said that,
even the instruments with frets, only sound their best when we play right behind the fret.
I'll show you that if I move the finger too far back
you'll see that the sound will become a buzz.
It is no good.
If we play close to the fret, it will be much clearer.
It will only sound right when we play very close to the fret.
That means, even when we play a mandolin (or another fretted instrument)
we should learn to position our hand right where the notes are.
So in the same manner, how the hand is positioned here
if we compare, from Toombi's bridge to here
It is almost as long as this mandolin.
It means that even on the Toombi
the first notes will be about this far apart.
As long as the mandolin is in my hand I would also like to show you that
these notes are farther apart. As we move up the notes get closer.
In 'Just Intonation', the sharpness of one tone
we'll talk about that later,
is 9/8 (sharper) than the previous note.
and the distance (on a fret) gets about 8/9 smaller.
So as we go up, the frequency keeps going up (9/8) and the distances keep getting shorter (8/9).
And the notes keep getting closer to each other.
On Toombi as well, as we go up, the notes will get closer and closer .
That... That you have to learn with practice.
how to play them closer and closer.
But you don't have to learn that right now at all,
Right now, we are just concentrating on the first four notes.
Sa - the open string.
Skipping one, that is Re.
Skipping one more that would be Ga.
And the one next to it is Ma.
Sa, Re Ga Ma.
Now we'll see that how to play this on Toombi.
Here is the Toombi.
Here is its Sa.
It means about here, there is the first imaginary fret, Re komal (half note).
We are not using that. So the second fret would be about here.
Should be try playing a note here?
It is playing Re here.
It means about here is the Ga komal (third fret)
skipping over it, we will play the next (fourth fret).
And the Ga is there.
And right next to it was the Ma.
It is there as well.
It means
It played the same notes (as mandolin).
These are the notes you should practice.
Sa Re Ga Ma
Play just that and work hard.
Sa Re Ga Ma Sa Re Ga Ma
I also wanted to tell you that to play a Toombi
you don't really need long nails.
I don't have long nails
But Toombi produces its best sound with nails.
However, smaller your nails, you can bend your finger more this way.
Your flesh should not touch the wood, the contact must be made with a nail.
It doesn't mean that you need longer nails.
Longer your nails, your finger would be standing up and
shorter the nails, shorter the angle between your finger (and the fret).
It won't make much difference.
And now what this Sa Re Ga Ma is,
What tune can you play with this!
You can either play just...
Ga-Re-Ga-Re-Sa Ga-Re-Ga-Re-Sa
I mean...
With a plucking pattern of Da-ra Da-ra
Then add the fourth (Ma) to this
I'll show you a very famous tune here
On these notes, Ma Ga Re Sa.
You know that they play 'dara da d-dara da'.
If you can't pluck fast on this side
you can change the plucking to: Dre Dara Dre Dara x2
It will make it one and half times (rather than double).
I mean Dre Da-ra Dre Da- ra as:
And on this side play: Ma ga re, ga rere sa, right?
Here that is.
And now in the end, I will play the same tune in double time.
with the 'Da-ra Da-ra' (plucking) pattern.
And we'll also incorporate higher notes up to the upper Sa (octave).
So work hard on Sa Re Ga Ma
In the end, I'm playing the same tune a bit faster.
And that is it. In the next video we'll see how to play the Komal suwars (flats).