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Customer Reviews

Simply superb!!

The Santoor is part of a larger family of musical instruments known by various names throughout the world, most popularly played in China 'yang chin', Iran 'santoor and Eastern Europe 'cymbalon' and the 'hammered dulcimer' played in western Europe and the U.S.A. It found its way into India through Kashmir, where the Sufi mystics helped to establish it as an important part in North India's vibrant folk music tradition. With its one hundred resonating strings, the Santoor's magical charm has won over classical music audiences and played an important role in the popularisation of Indian music worldwide. Tarun Bhattacharya is the most established Santoor player of the younger generation. He hails from Calcutta, which has become a 'hotbed' for musical talent, ensuring a healthy future for India's classical music culture. His music possesses a rare dynamic vitality, with a highly developed aesthetic sense and an impressive command of rhythmic syncopation. Like many of India's leading artists, his earliest music training came from home. He was first encouraged to learn Sarangi, Sarod, Sitar, Tabla and Piano before finally settling for the Santoor. Initially guided by his father, his musical skills have been fine- tuned by the revered Pandit Ravi Shankar, and his bent for innovation is a tribute to his mentor. He has embarked upon revolutionary changes to the Santoor, which have enhanced its tonal quality and increased its range, introducing glides and slides which emulate the bending of notes characteristically associated with more established instruments like the Sitar. In this recording Tarun Bhattacharya plays Raga Kalavati, a popular evening melody, which has been adopted from the South Indian musical repertoire. He begins with a traditional alap in which the main melodic phrases of the raga are gently articulated. Gradually as a rhythmic pulse is introduced, these phrases become more expansive and the pace is increased. After the conclusion of the alap, a composition is played in a rhythmic cycle of seven beats (Rupok) provided by the tabla. The recital of Raga Kalavati concludes with a faster tempo composition in tintaal, a sixteen beat rhythmic cycle, which gives the soloist opportunity to demonstrate his virtuosity with intricate patterns played at great speed, as the momentum builds up to an exciting climax. The third track features Tarun Bhattacharya's light classical music interpretation of a composition by the celebrated Bengali artist Rabindranath Tagore. As well as a great writer and poet, Tagore composed over two thousand songs, popularly known as Rabindra Sangeet, which are still widely appreciated in India and Bangladesh today.


Genre: World

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Tarun Bhattacharya has been called "a master of one hundred strings." One of the most influential players of the santoor, India's hammered dulcimer-like instrument, Bhattacharya has continued to expand on the instrument's capabilities. In addition to adding an extra string, whose pitch can be varied by finger pressure, Bhattacharya has incorporated meend, an expressive sliding style of ornamentation. Jazz Times described Bhattacharya's playing as "subtle in inflection and supple in phrasing." The...
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Transcendence, Tarun Bhattacharya
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: World, Music, Asia
  • Released: 2002

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