How do you learn how to play taqasim?
This is a subject that is difficult to articulate.
There are very few materials out there that teach taqasim.
There are not many study materials written on paper about taqasim.
For some Oud players, taqasim might eventually develop. For others, it takes some guess work, trial and error, and coaching.
I’m of two minds in regards to this:
From one perspective, you might think that taqasim needs to be taught.
You say or think to yourself:
“This doesn’t sound right,”
“I don’t sound authentic.”
But what about the first person who tried to play taqsim? In everything there is always someone who tried or did something first. This then evolved and became what it is today.
Was the first attempt always perfect? Can someone do anything right the first time?
It’s the same with taqasim.
I was already an accomplished Persian style Oud player when I started to listen and study Arabic music. But I could not play taqasim that sounded Arabic when I first started. Even now, you can hear strong Persian elements in my Oud playing. You are what you are, and you have to use that.
But if you ever feel stuck, that’s where specific instructions and learning materials come in handy.
So I present to you a taste of a pre-composed taqsim in Maqam Bayati. This is study material. Learning this taqsim will help you develop your own.
Taqasim Bayati Practice
Up arrows = Down stroke
Down arrows = Up stroke
Two lines through the notes = alternating down stroke upstroke like 8th notes
Three lines through a note = tremolo
Right pointing arrow beneath a note = accent
It’s challenging to understand how this is supposed to sound like, so I will post a sound file soon to demonstrate.
If you are interested in learning taqasim step by step and want more study materials such as this, email me at email@example.com. I’m thinking of developing a program that teaches taqasim.
I hope to hear from you.