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Indian Sargam Vs Western Notes

Following chart may come handy while translating western notes of any tune or song into Indian Sargam, and vice-versa.

ScaleCDEFGAB
IndianSaReGaMaPaDhaNi
WesternDoReMiFaSoLaTi

The letters in all the above rows (column wise) generally follow a sequence.  For example, if we start the scale at F, then the sequence would be FGABCDE, or when at B, it would be BCDEFGA, and so on.

Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Dha Ni and Do Re Mi Fa So La Ti remain constant.

Every musical instrument can be tuned to a certain scale.  With the above example, we would be playing Sa at C scale.

Following table can be used as a key to play Sargam on Western Instruments and vice versa:

western and indian notations western and indian notations

Following video tutorial will help you understand this concept with more clarity:

15 Responses

  1. Sir – Thanks for explaining this so well. At around 12:50 time, you mentioned that you will create a full video on western scale. Can you please create one? Also, why is there a need to call the same note as sharp or flat depending on whether its in an ascending sequence or descending sequence?

    1. Good question. Sharps and Flats are the part of description of musical notes as per western music theory. As a thumb rule, a note which falls in between two notes is called sharp while ascending and flat while descending. The sound of C# and Db is exactly the same. So, even if theoretically they are different but acoustically they are same. At the end of the day, in music, acoustics are more important than theory, since that is what your listeners will experience. They don’t care if you are playing C# or Db. They will hear the same exact sound. And that is all what you should be focusing on. However, for knowledge it is important to know the names of all notes including sharps and flats, because if someday you happen to play with another musician and he asks you to give him D Flat, you should know that he is asking for C sharp.

    1. Dha ‘ Re Ga Ma Re…….
      Dha ‘ Re Ga Ma Re…….
      Dha ‘ Re Ga Ma.. Ga Re Ma.. Ga Re Dha..Dha…….
      Dha Pa Dha Ni(k).. Ni(k)….
      Ni(k) Dha Pa Ni(k) Dha Dha…..
      Dha Pa Ma Ga Dha Ga Ma Re….

  2. Guys this is diatonic scale consisting of 2 whole steps followed by 1/2 step then 3 full steps & finally 1/2 step (C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C) notice C to D whole, D to E whole, E to F half step, Fto G whole, G to A whole, A to B whole & B to C half step.
    Apply this to any key & you will get ur query answered.

  3. I bought some notes from abroad and it was written do re mi fa so la ti do on it i was not able to understand it …now i am …… thanx verry much! i got a lot of help….
    AZALEA INARA

  4. Hello sir, your page is very very useful. Thank you for the above chart. In the same way could you please provide me with the sa ri ga ma pa da ni sa of all the minor keys Cm, C#m, Dm, D#m, Em, Fm, F#m, Gm, G#m, Am, A#m, Bm and more if any? I searched in the net for more than 2 hours but no avail. Pls help me. Thank you much.
    Love David

      1. Hello
        For minor keys I have a doubt too for the conversation.Have been trying to
        Figure out from the chart but couldn’t can you please elaborate?
        Thank you

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How to read SARGAM notations

  • CAPITAL LETTERS = Shuddh Swars (Pure Notes)
  • small letters = Komal Swars (Flat Notes)
  • A Note with # [hash] = Tivra Swar 
  • Letter/Alphabet ONLY = Medium Pitch/Normal blow on flute
  • Letter/Alphabet PRECEDED BY a ” . ” [full stop] or  a ” , ” [comma] = Low Pitch/Softer blow on flute
  • Letter/Alphabet FOLLOWED BY a ‘ [single quote] = High Pitch/harder blow on flute
  • Notes in { } = “murki” or “khatka” which have to be played very fast without any pause
  • A Note in ( ) = “kann swar” has to be just touched before moving on to the next note
  • A “~” between two Notes = “Meend”. That is, you have to glide from one note to another slowly to produce that wavy effect.
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