Reiersrud, Jacobsen and Vajra
Himalaya Blues (Grappa Heilo)
Norwegian guitarist Knut Reiersrud, flute player Hans Fredrik Jacobsen and The Funky Homosapiens are joined by the traditional group Vajra from Nepal to present a mixture of traditional Norwegian, American and Nepalese music, recorded in Katmandu.
Santosh Bhakta Shresta - Israj, vocals
Raman Maharjan - Bamboo flute
Suresh Raj Bajracharya - Sarod
Bidur Rajkarnikar - Tabla
From the artist:
This record was recorded on Monday, March 3rd, 2003. The music here is the result of our collaboration for several years with a group of young Nepalese musicians who are based in the country’s capital, Kathmandu. During a tour in India and Nepal with The Funky Homosapiens (yes, Knut, Hans Fredrik, Anders and Audun were sent out into the world to spread the joyful message of funk), we were reunited with Vajra, a band working to keep the folk music of Nepal alive. After three concerts at the jazz festival in Kathmandu, poetically called “Jazzmandu”, we walked over to Studio 2000, sat in a circle, took one microphone each, and let loose. Nepalese music possesses a beauty and depth that are difficult to describe with words. It is reminiscent of the sounds of the more prominent Indian and Pakistani cultures farther to the south, but its form is more “folky” and is based more on short, catchy melodic phrases. For many years, the area where this little country surrounded by huge mountains is found has been associated with Shangri-La. This name has become the symbol of paradise on earth since James Hilton wrote the book Lost Horizon in 1933, about a mysterious, legendary land hidden in a valley deep within the Himalaya Mountains. The people who lived in this land enjoyed exceptionally long lives in perfect harmony, peace and happiness. The music of Nepal runs like a murmuring brook through this landscape of goodness. - Knut and Hans Fredrik
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