Understanding 22 Shrutis – Part 2

with Dr. Vidyadhar Oke

There are 12 Universally identifiable musical notes or ‘Swaraprakara’ in a Saptak or Octave.

- Dr. Vidyadhar Oke

Dr. Vidyadhar Oke icon

Dr. Vidyadhar Oke is a Medical Doctor, MBBS, MD (Pharmacology) from Mumbai. He later trained at London Business School, Oxford Workshops, Wellcome Foundation in England; and Duke University in America. He worked in the Pharmaceutical Industry for 28 years working as ‘President’ for companies including Glaxo, Burroughs Wellcome, Wockhardt, and Nicholas Piramal. At the age of 52 years, he gave away his career to pursue his passion for research in Music.

He was already a 3rd generation musician, and he became a disciple of Pt.Govindrao Patwardhan to emerge as a renowned Harmonist. In 1972, he began his career with a Solo on Mumbai Doordarshan. He received Sur-mani of Sur Singar Samsad in 1978. Over the next 20 years, he participated in over 150 programmes on Mumbai Television and also accompanied Asha Bhosle, Sudhir Phadke, Vasantrao Deshpande, Rashid Khan and others. He also performed in programmes compered by P.L.Deshpande and Ashok Ranade at the NCPA. He presented a special educational performance on Harmonium all over India, in London for Latur Earthquake victims in 1993, and Maharashtra Mandal Annual event in America, in 1995.

Additionally, Dr.Oke is the 1st Indian to have completed research on 22 Shrutis (the fundamental tones) of Indian Classical Music, providing the underlying principles of Mathematics and Physics, and creating various new musical instruments. His website 22shruti.com has the honour of being the 1st on the 1st page of Google for the search term : 22 Shrutis, for the last 9 years, and his work also features on Wikipedia. In 2016, he created an Ap for Android phones called 22 Shrutis in 500 Ragas, which is FREELY available for downloading from Google Play store.

Dr.Oke has created 8 new musical or electronic instruments including a patented 22-Shruti-Harmonium, written 9 books, given 12 major Media Interviews including All India Radio, 32 invited lectures including a TED-X lecture, has 97 Newspaper articles related to his work, and 25 Awards.

Ganasaraswati Late Kishori Amonkar has written that Dr.Oke’s work is outstanding, and Pt. Vishwamohan Bhatt has said and written that this work deserves a Nobel Prize.

Gyan session

Introduction and emergence of Harmonium in India and when and how did it come to India or Indian classical music?
How can a technically wrong instrument which was banned, be more popular? What exactly is the problem in a Harmonium or Piano?

How is harmony and melody connected in Indian classical music?
Were you the 1st to actually think of creating a 22 Shruti Harmonium?
Can one develop an ear to be able to listen to 22 Shrutis? If yes, How?
What could be the process of learning and unlearning the existing Western Shruti structure?
If 2 people are singing (For e.g.: Rajan and Sajan Mishra or Mallikarjun and his son) Both sing the exact shadja, but still, we can identify 2 different people on stage. How is that possible?
What else have you come up with, in your research on 22 Shrutis ?
What is the message would you like to leave to the listeners about 22 Shrutis ?