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Inner Knowledge

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Album Review

This is the pro-happiness music of the Baul sect of Bengal, India. While not as joyous as the music of the leading exponent of this style, Purna Das Baul, the music of Paban Das Baul has a greater "classical" feeling that makes it quite interesting. Vocals are accompanied by lutes, drums (including one of those amazing Indian drums that growls and bends tones) and cymbals. Paban's voice sounds a bit like that of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan when the latter is singing full out, although Paban is not striving for Nusrat's style of vocal gymnastics. The lyrics speak of the usual Baul mixture of love and spiritual growth. Summaries are provided in the liner notes. The moods vary from slow and contemplative to fast and a little strident. One track, "Khejur Gachey Hari," sounds as much like Arabic music as it does Baul music. The disc clocks in at a generous 67 minutes. Check out Purna Das Baul first; then, if you want more, get this album.


Born: 1961 in Mahamedpur, Bengal, India

Genre: World

Years Active: '90s

The rich and melodic musical tradition of India's Bengali region is given a modern sensibility by Paban Das Baul, a master of the dubki (a small tambourine) and a hypnotic vocalist. Synthesizing Tantric Buddhism, Baishnavism and Sufism, Das Baul has created worldwide attention for his trance-inspiring performances. Born in Mohammedpur, a small village in the West Bengali district of Murshibadad, Das Baul inherited his musical interests from his father, a martial arts champion who turned to singing...
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Inner Knowledge, Paban Das Baul
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