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This 1996 album pairs two great Indian musicians with distinct musical backgrounds. The late sarod player Ali Akbar Khan was a master of Hindustani classical music, while the vocalist Asha Bhosle has sung songs from a variety of traditions in her lengthy career. (She’s best known as a Bollywood playback singer, a vocalist who records tracks for film actors to lip-sync to.) Performing material from the 16th to 18th century, the featured artists are accompanied by sarangi, sitar, cello, harmonium, and by Swapan Chaudhuri on tabla and pakawaj. The spotlight is primarily on Bhosle, with Khan providing introductions and accompaniment for her lovely voice rather than spinning out the lengthy improvisations he’s known for. “Guru Bandana In Desh Malhar” features a delicate instrumental opening that nicely sets the stage for Bhosle, whose tones bend and move in ways that organically grow out of Khan’s melodic statement. “Tarana In Adana,” the album’s shortest track, delights with its rippling percussion and vocal interplay, while “Prayer In Bhairavi” brings the album to a stately close.
Fine blend of Khansahib's sarod and Asha's vocals
This album is a refreshing blend of Asha's incredible and soulful voice and Ali Akbar Khan's vibrant sarod - covering many traditional compositions. I heard that these songs were taught by the great Acharya Baba Allauddin Khan himself to his son Ali Akbar Khan. Undoubtedly the best album for music lovers who want to get past Bollywood songs deeper into the ocean of Indian classical music. All songs are great - they sit in the mind for a long time. The concluding piece "Prayer In Bhairavi" is a fitting finale to the stream of lively melodies. Sincerely recommended.
Transcends all western music...
If you could buy one song from this collection, it should be Dhrupad In Sankara Bharan. It's appropriate for itunes to make this track available only in the album format and not the single as this is the only way to really build up to track six and allow this masterpiece to settle in your chest. What can a western musician say about the masterful connectivity Bhosle and Khan share with us? Masters of phrasing and tone...they invite you to sit with them and enjoy, making you wish they were in front of you live so that all of their trascendant energy could flow around and through you! This is a gem of a recording and one that every western musician needs to listen to and study regardless of your instrument or singing style.
I've had the great good fortune to see and hear Maestro Khan and his sons play on many occasions with many other musicians, but never with a vocalist as stunning as Asha Bhosle. Ravishing.
Born: September 8, 1933 in Maharashtra, India
Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s