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Archive for February 3rd, 2012

Music therapy… A harpist for infants.

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on February 3, 2012

Music therapy

Posted: Friday, February 3, 2012 1:53 pm | Updated: 1:58 pm, Fri Feb 3, 2012.

Cord Prettyman

A tiny infant lies in a neonatal ward. An incubator replaces the warmth of her mother’s arms; tubes filled with nutrients replace her mother’s milk and every breath is a struggle.

She is surrounded by other infants in distress — their monitors beeping in time with their struggle for life. Even through these infants are not fully conscious of their surroundings, the stressful, noisy environment affects their ability to relax and sleep — which is essential for their survival.

Into this tragic hospital scene walks a harpist. As she begins to softly play an ancient lullaby, the monitors stabilize, nearly all the infants breathe more easily and many fall asleep — the first sleep they have had since the harpist’s last visit. These infants are fortunate enough to be in one of the 15 percent of American hospitals that incorporate music therapy into their health-care protocols.

The idea of music as a healing influence is at least as old as the writing of Plato and Aristotle. Its introduction into Western Allopathic Medicine; however, it wasn’t until the 20th century when musicians of all sorts began going to Veteran’s hospitals after World War’s I and II to play for the thousands of veterans suffering from both the physical and psychological trauma of warfare.

The patients’ notable healing response to music led the veterans’ doctors to request the hiring of musicians by the hospital creating a demand for some type of college curriculum. The first music therapy degree program in the world was founded at Michigan State University in 1994 and the American Music Therapy Association was created in 1998.

Today, music therapy is rapidly gaining recognition as an effective tool in addressing the physical, emotional, cognitive and social needs of individuals of all ages — infants to centenarians. Interventions can be designed to promote general wellness, manage stress, alleviate pain and help individuals express feelings.

Research scientists contend that music’s ability to alter brainwaves creates changes in bodily functions governed by the autonomic nervous system — such as breathing and heart rate — which can help counteract or prevent the damaging effects of chronic stress and help calm children with ADD. Other studies have demonstrated the positive benefits of music therapy on treating depression and anxiety, lowering blood pressure, boosting immunity, easing chronic pain and helping cancer patients.

Certified music therapists are treating children and adults who suffer from Autism, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Cerebral Palsy, Down syndrome, as well as stroke victims. The professionals are finding that music can enhance social interaction, emotional expression and cognitive and motor skill development.

You’ll find music therapists working in psychiatric and medical hospitals, outpatient clinics, agencies for the developmentally disabled, senior centers, nursing homes and in private practice. When I Goggled “Music Therapists, Colorado Springs, I was rewarded with 16 listings.

Here’s a testimonial from the website of NeuroRhythm Music Therapy Services in Colorado Springs: “Music therapy uses my son’s love for music to teach him how to learn, play and interact with people. He used to be very unhappy and appeared unteachable, but music therapy broke down that wall and opened the door for him to learn in other settings. Now he is excelling in all of his therapies and schooling. It seems that every major accomplishment he does first happens during a music therapy session.” — Parent of a child with autism
Perhaps there’s someone in your life who could benefit from the miracle of music.

Cord Prettyman is a certified Master Personal Trainer and the owner of Absolute Workout Fitness and Post Re-hab Studio in Woodland Park. He can be reached at 719-687-7437 or at

(Source: 02/03/2012 –

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India: Playing a song? It can land you in jail

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on February 3, 2012

 | February 3, 2012

Indian music industry is suffering immense losses owing to unauthorised playing of music at various places and also downloading the same. According to an estimate, 95 per cent of the music out in the industry downloaded from various websites.


Against this background, the phonographic performance limited, (PPL), an apex body issuing licences and copyrights for music content, is increasingly becoming an important revenue source for the Industry. It is generating `500 crore to the Indian music industry with 10–15 per cent growth every year, said Sowmya Chowdhury, Country Head, PPL.

He said that almost 50 per cent of the total revenues generated by music labels are from PPL by protecting copyrights of 98 per cent of the major labels under one umbrella.

Every individual or business should pay required licence fee to PPL for playing music or radio for a group of people in a public place. If anyone tries to violate a law, there are chances that he ends up in a jail paying a fine of `2 lakh and imprisonment up to three years. Two persons were arrested in West Bengal for violation of law, he said.

The approximate revenue of PPL is around `500-600 crores out of which 85 per cent would go to the labels, according to the popularity of their albums and the number of times their songs has been played at various public places. There is also a 10 per cent fixed amount that would go all the labels (members), said Chowdhury.

PPL does not charge any fee from the labels to get the membership. If some label does not become a member of PPL, it is a loss to the label because radio would play only music of PPL members and pay royalties accordingly, he said.

PPL has issued 1,50,000 licences to various business establishments in India that includes 10,000 licences in Andhra Pradesh in the last seven years. It is hard to put the exact figure, but PPL has only exploited one per cent of the market. There are 99 per cent businesses and people that are violating the law and yet to obtain licences.

ImageThis would increase drastically with the increase in licence penetration. The music sales have hit the rock bottom due to piracy. It is the duty of the public to save the music industry for the future generations, he said.

The licence fee (tariff) for businesses would depend on three factors — the duration of music played; the number and class of the people attending the event. It has 28 categories like pubs, offices and personal events.

The main reason for violation of law is the lack of awareness. PPL is spending 60 per cent of its revenues in creating awareness and educating people by using different platforms. As part of Hallabol campaign, PPL is approaching a lot of establishments to create awareness for seven days, he said.

There is also a need for stricter laws to save the industry. The establishment has to be charged 10 times of the tariff card fee as damages. PPL is approaching various establishments in Kukatpally, Panjagutta, and other areas in Cyberabad as part of the awareness campaign, Chow­dhary said.

(Source: 02/03/2012 – postnoon | business)

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Brickfields (Little India / Malaysia): Thyagaraja-Tansen Music Festival (9th-12th February 2012)

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on February 3, 2012

by Subhadra Devan

Tribute to India’s music

(02/03/2012 -NST/Malaysia) The four-day Thyagaraja-Tansen Music Festival, in honour of two Indian classical music maestros, features music showcases, performances and talks. Subhadra Devan finds out more.

TWO main contributors to Indian classical music — Saint Thyagaraja and Miyan Tansen — will be honoured with a four-day festival come Feb 9.

Thyagaraja, one of the greatest composers of carnatic music, died in 1847. He, along with contemporaries Muthuswami Dikshitar and Shyama Shastry, formed the Trinity of Carnatic music. As a composer, Thyagaraja was very influential in the development of the South Indian classical music tradition, having devised thousands of devotional compositions, most of them in praise of Lord Rama.

The legacy of Miyan Tansen, one of the nine gems in the court of Emperor Akbar, is found in the raga compositions of north Indian music. In fact, Tansen, who died in 1589, is said to be the father of Hindustani music. Many of his ragas begin with “Miyanki” (or of the Miyan). These include Miyan Ka Sarang while he created major ragas like Darbari Kanada, last played in Malaysia by Kumar Karthigesu at his solo recital, Khayal, in September last year.

Organised by The Temple of Fine Arts Malaysia, the Thyagaraja-Tansen Music Festival will also highlight the variety and richness of Indian classical music, and show its relevance to the overall music industry today.

The event is said to be a first as never have both artistes been paid tribute to in one sitting.

Traditionally, the Thyagaraja Music Festival is celebrated in Thiruvaiyaru, Tamil Nadu, near his samadhi (tomb) at the banks of Kaveri River. The Tansen Music Festival, (in the memory of Miyan Tansen) is celebrated near his dargah or tomb in Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh.

Both of these festivals are annual events.


from left to right: Violinist Dr N. Rajam (9th Febr), vocalist Ravindra Parchure (10th Febr),
flautist Shantala Subramaniam (11th Febr) and Ustad Usman Khan on Sitar (12th Febr)

At TFA’s Thyagaraja-Tansen Music Festival, events include music showcases, student performances and musical offerings to their gurus, lecture-demonstrations, paper presentation and video presentations and talks.

The showcases include a Hindustani violin concert by three generations of performers — Padmabhushan Dr N. Rajam, her daughter Dr Sangeetha Shankar, and grand daughters Ragini Shankar and Nandini Shankar. They will be accompanied by tabla player Ajeek Pathak. Although Hindustani music artistes, they will pay tribute to both Thyagaraja as well as Tansen. It is a treat to have Rajam performing for the first time in Malaysia.

On Feb 10, a Karnatic & Hindustani Vocal Concert Double Bill will see Hindustani vocalists Sveta Kilpady and Ravindra Parchure accompanied by Prakash Kandasamy on tabla. And, vocalist Sampagodu S. Vighnaraja will be accompanied by S. Sriram on violin and Bangalore Ravi Shankar (mridangam).
On Feb 11, flautist Shantala Subramaniam will perform, accompanied by Akkarai Sornalatha on violin and Bangalore Ravi Shankar on mridangam.

On Feb 12, sitar master Ustad Usman Khan will perform, accompanied by Prakash on tabla.

The main performances will start at 7.30pm, at TFA’s Shantanand Auditorium in Brickfields. Invitations at RM30 and RM50 are available at TFA. Admission to lectures and workshops is by donation at the door. Call 03-2274 3709 or 012-310 7434 for details.

(Source: 03 February 2012 | last updated at 07:02pm – New Straits Times | ShowBiz)

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