Does anybody know the difficulty of owning and maintaing a sitar? They have always interested me but all those pegs freak me out. Thoughts?
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I was around when the Sitar had a spate of popularity... Beatles and all. The actual Sitar is a bear to learn and to handle and maintain. The frets are moveable, for instance.

If you check out the used instruments market, you may find a Coral electric sitar... A pretty standard electric guitar that was set up with a bridge that allowed the strings to give that Sitar-like twangy sound... Quite popular for a couple of years.

As the child of parents who grew up the 60's I listened to a lot of 60's and 70's music in my youth, my favorite band was the Beatles and my favorite Beatles songs are "Tomorrow Never Knows", "Love You To", "The Inner Light", "Within You Without You", and "Norwegian Wood". You can see the pattern here. That said I have always been fascinated by a sitar, and any other drone producing string instrument, 12 string-guitar, mandolin etc.

What Bikewer said is entirely accurate sitars are amongst the most complex string instruments, if not the most complex, not counting something like a moodswinger. That's why most sitar sounds on record by American and British bands are either from a Coral sitar or some other sitar emulator, with the exception of Brian Jones and George Harrison and some others.

My recommendation is to buy one of these.
I tried one at a guitar center, and If I had 250 bucks then I would have bought it (and when you think about it 250 for a whole instrument which is essentially what you get is hard to beat). It's truly amazing and I only scratched the surface of what it was capable of, but playing the riffs to "Within You or Without You" and Metallica's "Wherever I May Roam" gave me chills. That pedal is dead on. The Sitar needs to be used in rock more often.
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Originally Posted by Tulkas
Stairway is required on any list of anything involving the words guitar or song, I believe Congress amended the constitution in order to put it into federal law.
I don't know much about them but one thing I do know is that most of the peg are connected to strings that are under the frets and vibrate in sympathy to your main notes in order to fill out the sound. They are not essential and the string only vibrates in sympathy to the resonate frequencies being played. This means that if you don't tune the sympathetic strings then the sympathetic strings simply won't make noise which isn't a big deal. I think (but I'm not positive) that only 5 of the strings are above the frets so that is only 5 strings that HAVE to be tuned every time you play, the others could be tuned once in a while and still do their job just fine
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Quote by CorduroyEW
They are not essential and the string only vibrates in sympathy to the resonate frequencies being played.

It's pretty essential, since a huge part of the sound of the sitar comes from the sympathetic strings.
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^Important yes, essential no. The signature sound comes from the strings vibrating against the bridge (I know it has a different name on sitar but cant remember what it is) while the sympathetic strings only resonate when you play the note that correlates to it. So you only have 1 or 2 audible sympathetic strings at any given time and they fill out the sound but are not necessary for the signature sound. That is also why some electric sitars don't have the sympathetic strings.
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Last edited by CorduroyEW at May 31, 2014,