Saturday, 10 September 2011

Jazzing Up The Indian Piano

Harmonix - The New Generation Harmonium by Amandeep SinghThose of you who follow Indian music will know that the Harmonium plays a very integral part in Bollywood music compositions. The instrument per-se may not be used in the songs but when the movie director, music composer, singers and the hero of the movie, sit for “music sessions”, they rely on this instrument for composing the melody. Designers Amandeep Singh gives this dowdy wind instrument a fresh lease of life, by making it look as good as any swanky Yamaha piano!
Designer: Amandeep Singh

The harmonium may have been long forgotten in the west but it is still the life line of Indian music. The features like ability to be played in harmonic as well as melodic style, and that too without any use of electricity, indeed made it indispensable in the Indian Classical and Semi-Classical genre of Music. There were initially many types of harmoniums available however, it was the hand pumped version that struck the right “note” with Indian Musicians as it can be played while sitting cross legged on the floor. However, the harmonium was never designed to be played for long durations and it was never a comfortable ride for the player. The hand stretched out working against a spring to pump air into the bellows can give pain in hand of any healthy individual. Though the music industry is in boom, the harmonium has always taken a backstage because of its inability to cope with the modern playing durations, electronics, and aesthetics.
This design is an attempt to bring back the harmonium into music scene with ergonomic design, aesthetics and electronic plugins. Just like the sound of an acoustic guitar cannot be replaced by the electric guitar, the music from the harmonium cannot be imitated by any electronic synthesizer.

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