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Zakir Hussain Concert

14SMZAKIR_31507fRecently, I attended Ustad Zakir Hussain concert,  a stalwart with whom ‘Tabla’ term has been synonymized.

When he was playing, and when it all got over, I realized my  pleasure hormone, may be dopamine, anticipating to have some more of it.

Zakir Ji and Sabir Khan saab on saarangi started their scintillating performance in Raga Kalawati/Teentala, which was the only raga they worked on in the recital. A short non-beats ultimate Aalap by Khan Saab, followed by Zakir Ji’s Tukde. Their chemistry, jugalbandi, spacious, and tremendous blend of the ragadari and parans/tukde, lasted for a long time which was incredibly captivating. Zakir Ji’s culminating and clear tukdas and immediate laggis often made me hard to maintain my regular taps. Initially, I could hardly tap correctly when he trailed the complex and fluent laggis, which he sustained for longer. I could hardly stand on the Sam correctly which was out of anticipation. Gradually, I became comfortable with his tempo, and intonations when I could get the sam.

Table Ki Bhasha

Eventually, he decided to interact with the audience. He explained the language of tabla by speaking the tabla syllables impeccably clear and unblemished. He then started the jugalbandi between the speech and hand bols, i.e., he played what he articulated at the same time. Then he engaged the audience by the tabla stories based on the tabla language and his demeanor on this was simply splendid. He started the audience-interaction by the story, Invite Guest at home. Watch this out:



Tope-paran: Next gig was the tabla language for ‘description of a missile’ i.e., tope-paran. How the missile looks, its nozzle, etc…pretty whimsical description. Watch this:


Listening to their perfection and potentials, I do not mind considering them Gods on earth who are especially manufactured to provide bliss and pleasure through their lineage and abilities, in this frustrated world. For that matter, I consider comedians too as God, and people like them are actually needed in today’s hi-tech world. I can still perceive the soft tabla dhun in my ears.

Power of ‘Nritya’

Gaurav Sharma

Gaurav Sharma

An acclaimed Lucknow-based young Kathak Dancer Gaurav Sharma becomes a permanent Meera to marry his (her) Pakistani boyfriend:

Indeed, music and dance has no boundaries which has the direct connection towards unconditional love. Sometimes, in today’s scenario, ‘unconditional’ also replaces the word ‘obsessive’. A dancer Gaurav Sharma, authored many books, has undergone around three sex reassignment surgeries to marry her Pakistani boyfriend, Rizwan.

Gaurav Sharma, now Meera, was a pretty much normal man before, only when proposed, decided to change his gender by his family support. Read some more here.

“I am very happy today”: Ghulam Ali

Ghulam Ali was overwhelmed with the immense gratitude received in Kolkata while performing after 35 years, who accompanied his son Aamir:


“I am very happy today. I have been coming to Kolkata for 30-35 years. But this time it feels like I have come back after 50 years. I was so sad and today my sadness ends,” admits Ghulam Ali saab with immense delectation. Read some more on this on NDTV.

These mature gestures (served by Mamta Ji) should be encouraged as our country needs it implicitly. Above all, music, arts are above all the boundaries and ego. A feel good factor really imbibes in when you get to make someone happy especially from the other country.

SO Why can’t we keep it simple? Why do we need to churn people, their specializations, their art, their attributes with the religion, caste, creed… Why can’t we just appreciate people and that’s it…No thoughts trailing by behind … No filters … trashing all the jargon aside for a moment and just praise once … Believe me, by this, we are helping the country in the positive direction.

Let’s continue to Welcome, enjoy, & APPRECIATE people’s art at least once.

Techniques To Sing Like A Star

You are ambitious, aspire to become a musician. You work pretty hard over particular songs, but are often told “Better luck next time..”

Above all, the most disheartening aspect is when you get rejected by a few disastrous judges who actually do not possess the right kind of singing.

In today’s scenario, the one who has confidence, stage presence, and idea to handle technology is the Star. He or She can easily hook the listeners. Can reach the peak in no time. But that would be momentary.

Why? It’s the lack of basic knowledge, practice and accuracy. After a period, listeners can easily make out the these imperfections.

Not just Music but in any field one needs solid skills to stand the test of time. To get good at singing, here are a few areas where a vocalist should focus during Riyaz.

To grab a potential and perfection in singing, here are a few areas where a vocalist should focus while Riyaz:

Remember to create bigger space in the mouth while singing:

imagesIt might be whimsical but opening adequate mouth while singing amazingly helps. Remember to drop the jaws and prepare a good oval steddy mouth shape for singing. This creates a sufficient space in the mouth and provides enough rooms for the air to cross in the form of sound. If you notice any good singers like Shreya, Sunidhi,  Lata Ji, or Shankar M, you will notice their mouth shape pretty much spacious which makes them loud and clear even in the lucid impromptu nuances. Watch out Lata Ji’s old live recordings like “ Tum Asha Vishwas Hamare…

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Swar-O-Metre in Indian Classical Music

While practicing Indian Classical ragas, my mind often innovates a device which gives an accurate measurement of Swaras. Whenever I perceive the uncertainty or some inaccuracies in the rendition of  swaras while practicing swaras, I often wonder that there should be an instrument ‘swar-O-metre’ which can scan our voice while we sing and accordingly judge the notes with the help of the markings made on it.

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Origin Of Western Classical Music

The word ‘classical’ connotes something of lasting value, something conceived with certain standards in mind. The word classical conveys structural order, a clear sense of form, design, and content. The story of classical  music is old and ongoing one, which encompasses many different styles and developments. In general. classical music has tended to reflect the times.

Like all the other art fields, music tends to shape itself according to the then public tastes and demeanor. In classical music, entertainment should be the last thing to think about. Classical music art works as an art first, then discipline, rules and principals, aesthetics moreover extracted from the limitations of rules. As stated before, classical music systems the art form by certain rules and theories. A good answer to the question “what is Classical music” is “a music which does not make money.

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Indian Classical Raga Therapy

Music is a  sound or nada generating particular vibrations which moves through the medium of ether present in the atmosphere and effects the human body. Pt. Sarangdeva mentions in his Sangeet Ratnakar that ahata-nada or music is always produced by striking or Agatha by a living being on an instrument of any kind So music is a power or universal energy in the form of raga.

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Visualizing The Indian Classical Hindustani Ragas

Raag Madhuvanti

 I visualize  raga Madhuvanti with the yellow majestic  sun-set, which somewhat darkens the environment. An insipid but beautiful evening full of balmy environment…as if, however all the flora has been darkened because of the sun’s radiance, but still that radiance merge into soul’s flame end up giving a pacifistic feel.

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    Since my specialization is Indian Classical music, I always want me to listen to different kinds of musicians or instrumentalists and their music, to enhance my classical knowledge and notes-accuracy, as I’ve been told from my own teachers that listening adds up to better singing. In fact, listening to classical music is more beneficial in singing than just practicing rigorously. The more we listen, more musical notes are grasped in our brains which leads to better perception while singing.

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Two Types of Music Therapy

Hansel and her more than 3,200 colleagues of the American Music Therapy Association practice two types of music therapy: active and passive. Familiar and, most importantly, likable, music elicits the best responses. For example, Big Band music motivated social interaction more than making a puzzle in one 1993 study, and another study that same year found playing music of a patient’s choosing six days a week reduced his or her agitation.

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