Tuesday, January 19, 2010

BrEaKiNg bArRiErS...

Twelve Christmases ago, sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan, played a memorable version of ’Silent Night’ in the Church of North India, New Delhi – an experience that some who were privileged to be there, claim, still brings out the goose pimples for them, when ever they recollect that rare combination of music and devotion. After all these years, the Ustad finally found the time, recently, to get together with a skilled arranger – Stephen Devassy – and a sensitive instrumental group – the Southern String Orchestra – to create, what is without doubt, one of the most unusual, and most ’Indian’ Christmas music experiences to be available in recorded form.

Airtel has supported this venture and Times Music has issued the album (Breaking Barriers; CD Rs 295; Cassette Rs. 65), just in time for the rest of us to experience the warm and mellifluous touch that the Ustad’s sarod brings to “Joy to the World”, “Silent Night”, “Jingle Bells”, “We Three Kings” and five other well loved hymns and carols. The mixing of the solo instrument and the orchestra by Manoj Kumar and
Sam Devassy is superb – and makes for a true-fusion experience.

Let the barriers break and the soulful music flow...

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