About the Artistes:
Ustad Vilayat Khan
Born into a family of musicians tracing its pedigree generations back to the court musicians of the Mughal rulers, Ustad Vilayat Khan imbibed a legacy known as the Imdadkhani Gharana or Etawah Gharana. His father was Ustad Enayat Khan, recognized as a leading sitar and surbahar (bass sitar) player of his time. Ustad Vilayat Khan’s contribution to the world of the sitar is so great, that the gharana, named originally after his grandfather, Ustad Imdad Khan, may now legitimately be renamed the “Vilayat Khani Gharana”. His ‘gayaki ang’ style possessed an exceptional lucidity and clarity in addition to serenity and calmness. Having declined many laurels bestowed upon him, Ustad Vilayat Khansaheb accepted only the special decorations of “Bharat Sitar Samrat” by the Artistes Association of India and “Aftab – e –Sitar” (Sun of the Sitar) from President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed. Khansaheb’s erstwhile son Ustad Shujaat Khan along with Pt. Arvind Parikh now carry forward the glorious tradition.
Ustad Zakir Hussain
This one name suffices as an introduction of Indian Classical Music to the rest of the world. What the Sun is to the Day, Zakirji is to Percussion! When he performs, time comes to a standstill. As the illustrious son and disciple of Ustad Alla Rakha, Zakirji belongs to the Punjab Gharana. Trained in the traditional style and having imbibed the best from all, today Zakirji is an institution, a Gharana in himself! Zakirji’s efforts in the realm of World Music have resulted in creation of bands such as ‘Shakti’. He’s been the recipient of the Grammy Award twice, the most recent being for the Contemporary World Music Album category for his collaborative album Global Drum Project. Zakirji’s brilliance spans over various disciplines of music. Be it as a soloist, composer or his collaborative efforts with world musicians, Zakirji is a complete artiste.
In this series, we present him as one of the world’s best accompanying artistes!
About the Music:
The album opens with a full fledged Raga Mishra Mand followed by Raga Gaara. The listener is treated to Ustad Zakir Hussain’s versatility with Teentaal and Kehrwa. Khansaheb’ mastery over the ‘gayaki ang’ is characteristic of his music and requires tremendous dexterity on the part of the accompanist to keep pace. With his sheer ingenuity, Ustad Zakir Hussain enhances this blissful experience. The significance of this album may be traced back to the times when Zakirji’s illustrious father Ustad Alla Rakha Khansaheb shared the stage with Ustad Vilayat Khansaheb. The lessons assimilated then by the young Zakirji stand testimony to the great heights he’s attained even as he shares the same with today’s legends.
In this unique series, the ingenious Ustad Zakir Hussain is seen in conjunction with the masters of Indian Classical Music. Each maestro is a world renowned artiste with a magical ouch of his own. And when they team up with Ustad Zakir Hussain the resulting music is enchanting and mesmerizing! The dexterity of Zakirji’s nimble fingers in tune with each legend gives us an insight into the musical genius that he is! The subtleness in their creativity without overpowering each other is a true tribute to the greatness of Indian Classical Music! In this series, we are honoured to present maestros’ prime time performances.
1. Raga – Mishra Mand 
Alap, Gat Teentaal
2. Raga – Gaara 
Alap, Gat Teentaal
3. Dhun Punjabi Ang 
Phota Courtesy: Gautam Rajadhyaksha
Sleeve Notes By Geetha Balsaara
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