Homepage > Indian Classical Music > Fundamentals of Rag > This Page


by David Courtney working tools

The pakad or swarup, is a defining phrase or a characteristic pattern for a rag.  This is often a particular way in which a rag moves; for instance the "Pa M'a Ga Ma Ga" is a tell-tale sign for Rag Bihag, or "Ni Re Ga M'a" is a telltale sign for Yaman.  Often the pakad is a natural consequence of the notes of arohana / avarohana (ascending and descending structures).  However, sometimes the pakad is unique and not implied by the notes of the arohana /avarohana.  It is customary to enfold the pakad into the arohana / avarohana to make the ascending and desending structures more descriptive.

Sometimes the pakad involves a particular ornamentation.  A good example is the peculiar andolan (slow shake) that is found in Rag Darbari Kannada.  This particular andolan slowly oscillates around a komal Ga which is so low that it is almost a shuddha Re.

Not every rag has a clear pakad.  For instance some peculiar rags may be defined simply by their modal characteristics.  This seems to be a growing trend, especially for new rags which are coming into Hindustani sangeet from other sources.


Other Aspects of Rag



This page last updated

© 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 David and Chandrakantha Courtney

For comments, corrections, and suggestions, kindly contact David Courtney at david@chandrakantha.com