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Whether you know the sitar from classical Indian music or the psychedelic music of the 1960s, it’s impossible to understate its popularity. Though the Western popularity of sitar music peaked with its inclusion in tracks by The Beatles, The Doors, and The Rolling Stones, it maintains a stronghold on folk music in India, and is highly regarded across the world.

Some of its most-popular players include Vilayat Khan, Ravi Shankar, and George Harrison, who tuned his sitar like a standard guitar. If you’re looking for traditional or electric sitars, Reverb has you covered.

What is a sitar?

A sitar is a stringed instrument most popular in Indian and its surrounding regions. The sitar’s origin can be traced back to the 16th century, and it maintains popularity today.

How much do sitars cost?

Sitars range in price from just about $300 to over $1,000 USD depending on brand name, quality of construction, condition, and other factors.

How many strings does a sitar have?

Though its name originates from the percian seh tar, which means “three strings,” most sitars have between 18 and 21 strings. Between six and seven of those sitar strings are actually played by the musician, while the rest are sympathetic strings that produce overtones with the notes actively being plated. Since the number of strings vary, the sitar tuning varies depending on the instrument and the key in which the musician wants to play.

What is the range of sitar?

The range of a sitar depends on the style and number of strings of the sitar. Most sitars have a range of between 2.5 and 4 octaves.

Do electric sitars exist?

Versions of electric sitars exist, such as the Danelectro Coral Sitar and some boutique instruments. However, these are more sitar-like than actual sitars. However, there are mixed opinions on whether or not electric sitars can capture all of the sonic qualities of an acoustic sitar.

How difficult is playing the sitar?

Like with any instrument, playing the sitar requires dedication and practice. In basic principles, it’s similar to playing other stringed instruments, but it takes finger strength and patience to produce bends and quarter tones. Thankfully, there are books and other resources to teach you how to play sitar.

Sitars Near Me

If you’re wondering where to buy a sitar near you, reference the list of top cities and countries available on Reverb to search within a desired location. You also can review shipping details within an item’s “Shop Policies” section.