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Ghatam

Ghatam

The SwarShala Indian music software includes Ghatam and over 80 other perfectly sampled virtual Indian instruments.

About Ghatam:

The Ghatam is a clay pot with a narrow mouth. It is one of the oldest percussion instruments in India. It is made of clay mixed with grounded copper, giving it a copper appearance. The sizes of Ghatam vary. The smaller pots are known or meant to produce low-pitched sounds, while the largest produce high-pitched sounds. In most cases, the alteration of pitch is made possible by applying the plasticine within the inner walls of the pot. The plasticine is thought to reduce the sound produced when the pot's body is struck by hand.

The name Ghatam is very common in India, which could be why various tribes in India refer to it using slightly altered names. For instance, it is called Ghatah among the people of Kannada. In Punjab, it is commonly known as the Gharha.

Ghatam is played by using your palms and fingers. In other words, a player must strike the pot's surface with their palms while twitching fingers occasionally to produce a special effect within the sound produced. The player's stomach must bar the mouth of the pot at all times. However, when the mouth is opened occasionally, it produces a pressure release that affects the pitch of the sound produced.

The pot is placed on the player's laps, but some players prefer to play it when the mouth is facing upside down. Some of the Indian experts amuse the audience by throwing the pot up in the air and then catching it again. Ghatam is the best when playing tempo, and it is very exciting whenever a fast-paced folk song is played.

In India, the best makers of this instrument are natives of Tamil Nadu. One of the areas known for manufacturing this instrument is Manamadurai near Madurai. Ghatams from this area are highly valued and are thought to be of high quality as far as sound production is concerned. It is worth understanding that it takes years for a player to perfect their skills in playing Ghatam.

 

Free Ghatam software download

Try the free SwarShala demo that includes Ghatam along with various other Indian instruments by clicking on the "Try a Demo" button below.

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