Tanpura

The Tanpura is an instrument that does not play a melody of its own. Instead, it provides a hypnotic drone (‘shruti’) that gives harmony to the performance by supporting and sustaining the melody produced by the other musicians. It is an essential part of Indian music, and the perfect accompaniment for Hindustani Vocal practice because it helps the singer stay in sync with the rhythm and stay in control of their pitch. In performance, you’ll often hear the resonant drone of the Tanpura as a prelude to Indian classical music. The drone is produced by continuously adding or subtracting long notes to create one sustained sound. It’s a remarkable instrument, and quite beautiful in its simplicity.

You might also have heard the Tanpura called ‘the tambura’ or ‘the tanpuri’.

The Tanpura consists of 4 strings, a long neck, and a resonator. The strings are plucked gently one after the other using the tips of the middle and index fingers. Traditionally, Tanpura are made of seasoned wood and dry hollowed-out pumpkin gourd, but electronic Tanpura are also available. It’s a popular instrument throughout the world, and it’s regularly used in a lot of different musical genres.

If you’ve ever attended a classical Indian concert, you may have noticed the Tanpura player sitting slightly behind the main artist. Very often, that’s because they are the main musician’s students.

I offer private face-to-face or online Tanpura lessons for beginners, intermediate and advanced students. Each student receives my undivided attention for the entire length of the lesson, and either 30 minute or 1-hour sessions are available. I design the lessons according to the students’ own pace and do everything I can to make the lessons as convenient, enjoyable and satisfying as possible.

Testimonial

Your music is Mind and Soul music. Awesome performance, and excellent co-ordination and body language between you and the Tabla player on stage. Astounding!”
5
Sandhya
England

Vijay is a truly wonderful sitar player! He creates a very beautiful sound that was perfect for our event. Our guests were all very complimentary of his music and Vijay was professional and organised to work with.

5
Anna Beketov
London
There is something very spiritual about Indian classical music and my lessons with Vijay always tap into this spirituality. I finish each lesson feeling calm and revitalized
5
Manish
Lawyer/Writer, London
Vijay is a committed artist who infuses sheer magic in his performance and mesmerises listeners with his beautiful compositions
5
Narendra Kumar
England
Guru Vijay Jagtap-ji’s patient hands-on teaching makes music really accessible. Being able to receive one-to-one instruction over nearly two decades has been a privilege
5
Dr Ondrej Pribyl
IT company director, London
I am very happy that I found Vijayji. Guruji teaches in a way which is clear and understandable for the student. His lessons are very informative and enjoyable.
5
Dr Ashwin
England
Vijay is patient and takes you through each step. I like the way we sing together following the notation, just like reciting a song. It helps me to play the instrument better”
5
Mohan
Medical professional, London
I found the first lesson very relaxed and focused. The teaching style was friendly and I was very pleased to have been able to learn a scale within the first session
5
Gurpreet G
Medical Professional, Cambridge, England

Ustad Jagtap-ji is an excellent teacher. His passion and love for music is manifested through his teaching.

5
Hamasa/Sienna
Medical Professional, London, England
Learning the Sitar with Vijay is always a high point of my week. It is a real privilege to have such a talented and committed musician as a teacher
5
Jimmy Pitt-Watson
London
Thank you, Guruji, for continuing to teach the children via Zoom during this pandemic. The kids have thoroughly enjoyed your Tabla lessons
5
Sai School London
UK

We thank you for the music you played 'for us'. How truly delightful it was and it was a magical moment for us to hear it.

5
Mike and Lynda
England
Vijay is an excellent teacher and great artist, and I was impressed by his style of teaching
5
Prachi
Ipswich, Suffolk, England
I highly recommend Guruji to any parent keen on introducing Hindustani music to their child
5
Krish Vasudevan
Software engineer, Bushey England

When I had my first lesson with Vijay my intention was to have a one off class, but in that first hour I learned so much and I understood there was so much more to learn that I immediately signed up for 10 classes.

5
Santiago Alegrett
Sound Engineer UK
Tonight, I had my first Sitar lesson with Vijay. It was one of the most amazing hours of my life. I wish more teachers out there could be like him
5
Adam
London
One of the most highly acclaimed British-based Sitar artists. He is renowned for both his technical excellence and brilliance on strings
5
Swarupam,
London, England
It was an amazing performance leaving an everlasting impression over our minds.
5
Dr Prakash Kumar
Medical Specialist, Reading England

Mr. Jagtap is a true diamond! I am SO delighted to have met him. I am taking Sitar lessons and am truly enjoying every session. He is genuinely professional in many Indian instruments including my favorite Sitar. His teaching method is really excellent I learned the basics in a couple of sessions! I’m so grateful for his kindness!

5
Sarwar Haidari
Engineer UK
I found Vijay’s style of teaching very clear, his manner very encouraging, and the atmosphere totally comfortable. I thoroughly enjoyed it
5
Karmjit
London
Vijay Bhai is the most amazing person/guru I have ever known. The way he teaches the Sitar is beautiful, and very calming and easy to understand. Each process is taught so well. I feel so lucky to have him teach me!”
5
Priya
London

Thank you very much for the lesson - it was great and I learned loads.

5
Mahrey
UK

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