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cd cover Sangeeta Bandyopadhyay
Shruti (audio CD and video CD ROM set)

Musicians:
Sangeeta Bandyopadhyay, voice
Sankha Chatterjee, tabla
Saibal Bandyopadhyay, harmonium

The press from the record label (Felmay, Italy)

Tabla maestro SANKHA CHATTERJEE returns with his second recording for Dunya after his acclaimed debut Raga Darbari (FY 8025) this time accompanying his daughter SANGEETA BANDYOPADHYAY on her debut album dedicated to North Indian classical music. Performing two ragas along with a number of devotional hymns SANGEETA BANDYOPADHYAY unleashes a formidable vocal talent cultivated through long years of study with singing maestros such as Chinmoy Lahiri and Sri Kamal Bandyopadhyay. With a three octave vocal range SANGEETA employs her amazing technique in dizzyingly acrobatic renditions of these pieces, a technique that is nonetheless welded to a singularly fine sensibility able to slip gracefully from the fast to slow tempos that different ragas demand from the performer.

The first raga on Shruti is particularly demanding. Entitled Raga Behag, with its enormous variety of rhythms it's considered one of the most romantic ragas of the whole North Indian repertoire and is normally performed late in the evening. The album's second track, Raga JogKauns, is a refined combination of two different ragas which are intertwined in a mid-tempo that gives SANGEETA's voice the opportunity to express all its nuances and vocal shadings. Finally there's Bhajan a two-part devotional hymn whose poetic melodies were composed by SANGEETA herself.

Accompanying the audio CD is a CD ROM video featuring almost an hour's worth of interview with SANGEETA and CHATTERJEE, interspersed with concert footage (featuring the excellent sitarist Manilal Nag) as well as material showing some of the finer points of tabla construction. SANKHA CHATTERJEE is one the great virtuosos of the tabla. From a very young age he studied a number of instruments that broadened his musical horizons (he's also known for his singing). He shaped his percussive art under the tutelage of great maestros such as Ustad Maseet Khan, Keramatullah Khan and the late Alla Rakha at three of the most renowned gharanas (schools) in Farukhabad, Delhi and the Punjab. More than a simple fusion of these three different philosophies of percussion, his technique and particular way of playing are the fruit of a highly personal approach to the instrument. He has played live with some of India's top musicians, including the sitarist Ustad Vilayat Khan and has received numerous accolades and prizes from the Indian government. His work as a teacher in various seminars and workshops, meanwhile, has brought him into contact with musicians in the west (since 1979 he has held courses in Indian music in Berlin) leading to a number of collaborations in different musical ambits (Albert Mangelsdorff, Chico Freeman). SAIBAL BANDYOPADHYAY hails from a family of Calcutta musicians and as well as being a mean harmonium player is also a highly respected vocalist. His playing style, developed under the tutelage of a famous fellow citizen, Sri Pintoo Battacharya, is deeply rooted in the Indian classical tradition. As well as being a musician, Saibal is also an engineer and practising computer analyst.

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