Saturday, February 3, 2018

A Soulful, Melodious Evening At The Music Academy, Chennai!

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On 31st January, '18, we had attended a concert at the Music Academy.  The famous Ustaad Zakir Hussain played the tabla and another famous artiste Rahul Sharma played the unique instrument, Santoor.  We had attended Zakir Hussain's concerts 3-4 times earlier and are great fans of him as a person and as a tabla player.  His talent speaks everything here, in this small clip:



Ustaad Zakir Hussain is the son of the very very famous tabla player, Alla Rakha who used to play with Pt.Ravishankar (Sitar) in those days.  He learnt to play the instrument from a very young age and got a Ph.D. degree from the University of Washington too.  We, Chennai audience, love to attend his concerts.  He is a very soft-natured person with great sense of humour.  He always engages the crowd with some funny antics in the tabla or body language too.  People  never get bored in his concerts! Read about the awards these artists had in the highlighted wiki link pl. 

Rahul Sharma...we had attended his father's concert (Pt.Shivkumar Sharma, the famous Santoor player) once, some 4-5 years back along with Pt.Hariprasad Chaurasia (Flute).  This concert in Chennai was the first one for Rahul Sharma, it seems.  He played raag Bageshri first and then the famous Kashmiri raag Pahaadi.

This unique instrument, Santoor (the original name is Shatha thantri veena ... veena with 100 strings). Pt.Shivkumar Sharma explains here:

In Ancient Scriptures of India there is mention of Shata tantri Veena which is known today as “Santoor”. This instrument got its present name Santoor with the Persian language influence in our Country. There are Hundred Strings in Santoor. It is a hollow box on top of which there are 25 bridges. Each bridge used to have 4 strings resting on it. To play this instrument, two wooden mallets are used. This instrument had been in use in the Valley of Kashmir for many centuries, in a typical type of Music known as “Sufiana Mausiqi” which means a music connected with Sufi philosophy.

The Journey of Santoor changed in early 1950’s when Pt. Umadutt Sharma, Father of Shivkumar Sharma, who was a very versatile Musician, a performing Vocalist, and Dilruba player but equally well versed in playing Tabla & Harmonium, saw this Instrument in Kashmir and thought of introducing Indian Classical Music on Santoor. He had an intensive training of Music under Pt. Bade Ramdasji a legendary Vocalist of Benaras Gharana. In early 50’s Pt. Umadutt Sharma was Music incharge of Radio Srinagar for a few years. During that period he did an extensive research on Santoor and started teaching his Son, Shivkumar Sharma the intricacies of Santoor.

Pt.Shivkumar Sharma has passed on his family's talent to his son Rahul Sharma. 

The father was a tabla player too and the son is a singer too like his grand father! Multi-talented family! The son is mostly into fusion music nowadays.  World music. He showed the taste of fusion music for some 10-15 mts. at the concert.

Pt.Shivkumar Sharma and Pt.Hariprasad Chaurasia had created some good music for Hindi films in the name of Shiv-Hari.  Rahul Sharma played some traces of those songs in this concert.  The songs in 'Silsila' are memorable.  Their favourite raaga was Pahaadi!



I searched for a good link of Rahul Sharma.  Only audio links were available, well, mostly.  This link is interesting.  Father and son with the Kanjeera player, Selva Ganesh (Ghatam player Vikku Vinayakram's son!).  Interesting!



I hear 'Sangeet Saritha', a classical music programme via radio in the morning (I should say the programme involves interviews VIPs in different fields of mostly music).  I had been hearing this for the past 30-40 years! Many music directors, Classical singers discuss about their music/musical journey for 15 mts. a day, for 13 to sometimes 20 episodes.  7.30 to 7.45 am every morning.  I jotted down some points when Pt.Shivkumar Sharma spoke and did a post on it.  You can read it here!

Stress reliever....hear this!

Hope to attend more and more concerts in the years to come and write about them here!

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18 comments :

SG said...

I love Ustad Zakir Hussain's concerts. I have met him in person.

Rama Ananth said...

Wow! It was good to know so much about him.
I love the silsila song.

Destination Infinity said...

I like to attend Hindustani & Carnatic concerts but have not attended much in the last few years. Need to make time to see & listen more.

Destination Infinity

Sandhya said...

SG: Thank you, for the first comment, SG! We have attended some of his concerts. You are lucky to have met him in person!


RAMA ANANTH: All the songs in Silsila are good. Shiv-Hari's music was superb. They did for 'Chandni' also.


DESTINATION INFINITY: Music Academy and Narada Gana sabha are best for attending concerts and the artists over there are always good.

Ramakrishnan Ramanathan said...

Thanks for sharing the instrumental jugalbandhi ! The two maestros Zakir & Rahul are astonishing magical wizards. And the Silsila song featuring the amazing Amitabh & the ravishing Rekha is symbolic of the sizzling off screen romance between the two. What a pleasing and wonderful post.

Bikramjit Singh Mann said...

wowo I bet it was soulful.. Reminds me when I had the pleasure of an evening listening to all..

Lovely songs toooo :)

Sandhya said...

RAMAKRISHNAN RAMANATHAN: Thank you, Ramakrishnan! The atmosphere was serene at the concert hall. I have noticed that Zakir lets the other players also take credit by giving them more space though he is more famous than them. Crowd goes gaga over him even now. But Rahul got equal appreciation this time. Both were good.


BIKRAMJIT SINGH MANN: I heard that all our musicians come over there often. Attend the concerts often... All the songs in this movie were superb.

Radha said...

I have watched Zakir Hussain a long time ago. What a performer !! I watched his brother more recently , he was very good too. Their music can transport you to somewhere else altogether.

Onkar said...

Nice post on our icons

Sandhya said...

RADHA: Yes, I agree with you, Radha! And he is a very polite human being too!


ONKAR: Thank you, Onkar!

Kirtivasan Ganesan said...

Must have been a cherished evening. Looking forward to more such posts after attending many such events.

Sandhya said...

KIRTIVASAN GANESAN: Welcome to this space, Kirtivasan! Thanks for the comment! Will definitely write more!

rudraprayaga said...

Such people are the direct creations of God! Ustaad Zakir Hussain's and Rahul Sharma's this concert went viral in Whatsapp. Full of soul.Thank you for this post,Sandhya.

Sandhya said...

RUDRAPRAYAGA: I too admire these born artists! Thanks for the comment, Rudraprayaga!

baili said...

i truly loved to find your place my friend!!!

i used to hear ustad Zakir little bit ,Silsila is most fav movie of my husband and rekha is gORGEOUS lady indeed!

Sandhya said...

BAILI: Welcome to my space, Baili! Happy to know that you liked this post of mine. Thank you!

Renu said...

Silsila is my favourite movie for so many things,one of them its songs.

Sandhya said...

RENU: Yes! Same here! Watched it again yesterday in Amazon Prime:)

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