1. The reason (literally, "three ") is so called is because it was played in medium to fast tempo, counted as four beats, not sixteen: most commonly it would be marked by older musicians as "one, TWO, three, wave", with the two falling on . The ninth count is not in itself; rather it is the third which is empty. Since each internal phrase is an anacrusis to the next metrically strong beat, the might best be represented as in Figure 7 with its four symmetrical phrases. Further evidence for the validity of this representation is that, when reciting tabla compositions in quick tempo, many older musicians begin from count ten with the words: The was immensely important in the development of performance practice in other genres such as and and the instrumental traditions. (Rebecca Stewart's doctoral work in this regard must surely be the most important unpublished exploration of the subject. See also the work of Bonnie Wade (1984), Allyn Miner (1993), and Peter Manuel). used for the (an extension of the ) such as , , and , soon found new and extended applications.

  2. (See Figure 8), which Stewart has characterized as a catch-all term for several classical and folk rhythms (1974: 96), has superimposed a swinging, sesquialtera (or hemiola) pattern onto the agogic framework of . Its suggests that it is really best understood as four groups of three, in keeping with many of the melodic structures created for it; as such, its / structure mirrors that of the 16-count . Argued in this way, has only one of course has none, because waves in the agogic system of long and short syllables are not per se.

  3. (see Figure 9) has superimposed the popular/folk rhythm from the Northwest Frontier known in India as (but also, sometimes, as the Pakistani-Afghan —the term is virtually unknown in Pakistan) onto the agogic framework of probably in very recent times (compare this with Bhatkhande's version from the early twentieth century). Because of characteristic lilting iambic movement from unstressed to stressed, and from high pitch to low pitch, the ambiguity of becomes an issue (is it notated as a or a ?; and if the latter, then why are the subsequent conventionally-notated as 2 and 3 instead of 1 and 2?).

  1. I have tried to show how Hindustani music has undergone a sea change in temporal thinking, from agogic Sanskritic verse meter to quite different divisive, qualititive structures marked by fixed patterns that emphasize pitch and stress. Stewart emphasized the likelihood of links with the Arabic system through the drum tradition, and while I would not dismiss this view, I suspect that ample evidence for a different kind of rhythmic/metrical thinking exists in folk models drawn from the tabla heartland of the North and Northwest of the Indian subcontinent. is a case in point. Such a principle will come as no surprise to scholars of Karnatak music, since the common are themselves derived from folk sources, quite unlike the primordial seven (Nelson 2000: 144). There will be resistance to this view from those who would like to think that the tabla and its are ancient and neatly accounted for by theory; they will likely feel uncomfortable when challenged with the notion that its rhythms emerged organically from the songs and dances of a category of women modern society now brands as disreputable.

    A nautch party (detail from a painting by Mihir Chand, Lucknow ca.1780)

  2. Much more could be said, especially about like and that, I would argue, have adapted (doubled) 2+3 and 3+4 folk-derived patterns to fit the standard four- / format already described for sixteen-count (and probably also for the twelve-count ). More could be said also about the modern tendency to drive tempi to the extremes of the continuum, thereby altering the character of many of these . That is a long story that will be the subject of future studies. One of the casualties for the tabla has been the loss of opportunity to swing and sway with the medium-tempo grooves of the folk, popular and semi-classical genres: rhythmic realizations of the seductive, sensuous and erotic body and hand movements of the courtesan. Indeed, it mirrors the immense loss to Hindustani music culture of the courtesan herself.

* The original version of this paper was given at the Toronto 2000: Musical Intersections conference on Thursday, November 2, 2000 as part of a panel on "Cultural Constructions of Time in South Asian Music Cultures." I wish to thank the organizer, Richard Kent Wolf, other participants David Trasoff and George Ruckert, and discussant Lewis Rowell for their comments and contributions to this stimulating debate. I also wish to thank the Social Science & Humanities Research Council of
Canada for an operating grant (#72005981) that helped make it possible for
me to conduct this research.

1. I am aware that there is no universally-accepted version of a for any in tabla or playing. There are stylistic differences between the various performance traditions, and tempo has a prominent role to play in how a is performed. Throughout this paper I will cite what I feel are the most common versions: they should be recognizable to most performers and scholars.

2. I defer here to Harold Powers who recommends the use of "counts" instead of the more commonly-found "beats," since the latter may be more usefully reserved for "metrical pulse". It will become clear that the "beat" does not always correspond precisely to the "count." (Personal communication.)

3. The Bhatkhande Sangit Vidyapith is a prominent affiliating and examining body that also prescribes degree syllabuses and course texts.

4. I am aware that considerable interest in diverse exists in Pakistani Punjab, perhaps because the featured prominently in the recent lineages of tabla players in and around Lahore. Furthermore, Pakistani writers on tabla such as Badr ul-Zaman (1991) have listed dozens of obscure . His sources, I suspect, are mainly Indian, and it could be argued that he is unwittingly assisting with the "Hinduization" of .

Bhatkhande Sangeet Vidyapith. Prospectus & Syllabus, 1981-1983. Lucknow:
Citizen Press, 1981.

Bhatkhande, Vishnu Narayan. Kramik Pustak Malika. Parts 5 & 6. Hathras: Sangit Karyalaya, 1983.

Bor, Joep. "The Voice of the Sarangi: An Illustrated History of Bowing in India." National Centre for the Performing Arts, Quarterly Journal, 15.1, 3 (September & December 1986), 16.4 (March 1987).

Erdman, Joan. "The Empty Beat: as a Sign of Time." American Journal of Semiotics, 1, 4, pp.21-45, 1982.

Feldman, Jeffrey. The Tabla Legacy of Taranath Rao: Pranava Tala Prajna. Venice, CA: Digitala, 1995.

Imam, Muhammad Karam. (In Urdu.) Lucknow: Hindustani Press, 1925. [The original MS, lost, dated from the late 1850s or early 1860s.]

Kinnear, Michael. The Gramaphone Company's First Indian recordings,
. Bombay: Popular Prakashan, 1994.

Kippen, James. The Tabla of Lucknow: A Cultural Analysis of a Musical Tradition. Cambridge University Press, 1988.

Manuel, Peter. Thumri in historical and Stylistic Perspective. Delhi: Motilal Banarasidass, 1989.

Miner, Allyn. Sitar and Sarod in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Wilhelmshaven: Florian Noetzel, 1993.

Nelson, David. "Karnatak Tala." Garland Encyclopedia of World Music. New York: Garland, pp. 138-61, 2000.

Ramanathan, N. "The Changing Concept of Tala in North India." Unpublished paper delivered at the International Symposium of the History of North Indian Music 14th to 20th Centuries. Rotterdam, 1997.

Shankar, Ravi. My Music My Life. New Delhi: Vikas Publishing House, 1969.

Sharma, Bhagwat Sharan. (In Hindi. 7th edition, ed. Lakshminarayan Garg.) Hathras: Sangeet Karyalaya, 1981.

Stewart, Rebecca. "The Tabla in Perspective." Unpublished Ph.D. dissertation: University of California, Los Angeles, 1974.

Wade, Bonnie. Khyal. Cambridge University Press, 1984.

(In Urdu.) Lahore: 1991.