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Two Raga MoodsRavi Shankar
Capitol Records...ST-10482...33 1/3 LP...Stereo
1) RAGA: Ahir Lalit - Not Given...NTG
1) RAGA: Rasiya - Not Given...NTG
Recorded in INDIA
ON THE BACK OF THE JACKET
BY THE GREAT
Ravi Shankar, Sitar
Kanai Dutt, Tabia
Gopi Mohan and Wren Roy, Tanpura
RAGA: AHIR LALIT
Alap. Jod. Vilambit Gat in Teental.
Vilambit Gat in Teental.
The years between have proved that critic dead wrong. The fascination of this spellbinding music has worked its charm upon sizable segments of the American listening public, who have found it delightfully assimilable. Albums of the music of India sell briskly on college campuses and" in metropolitan centers; and the great Indian virtuosos of the sitar, veena, tabia and tanpura play to large audiences in their annual concert tours of the United States.
Far and away the most celebrated of the great Indian masters is, of course, Ravi Shankar. This genius of the sitar made his first appearance in the United States in 1957. Since then he has returned often for concert tours and recording sessions. His influence has, in fact, been felt across the entire musical spectrum. In addition to being the leading ambassador for pure Indian music, he has performed on records with the Western world´s great classical violinist Yehudi Menuhin. He has performed with such American jazz artists as Bud Shank, Paul Horn, and Yusef Lateef. He took as student George Harrison of the Beatles, whose subsequent performance on the sitar in the hit recording "Norwegian Wood" launched a new style in today´s rock ´n´ roll music field known as "raga rock!" Ravi Shankar has also composed scores or acted as musical director for a number of distinguished films, including the great Indian trilogy "Pather Panchali" "Aparajito", and "The World of Apu", by director Satyajit Ray.
But these activities must be viewed as colorful ramifications of a very versatile virtuoso. It is when Shankar performs the music he was truly born to, as he does in this album, that the listener realizes the full impact of his artistry, and understands why he is mobbed like a film star in the streets of his own country and cheered in the capitals of the world. Monumental technique, vast intellectual creativity, and profound emotionalism are the components of his music. A Raga, it may be useful here to re-state, is a melody form used as the basis for improvisation. Ravi Shankar has been called the most brilliant master of improvisation in the music world today.
Here, he is heard in two long performances, the first of a Raga, and the second of a Raga-like Dhun. The former, which he has titled "Ahir-Lalit", he first heard performed by his teacher, the great Ustad Allauddin Khan. Many other musicians have sung or played it since, always in a light Thumri style. Ravi Shankar gives it a more serious expression appropriate to the morning hours, creating a mood of pathos, languor and pining. It consists of a concise Alap (slow movement without rhythm, in which the soloist improvises upon each note of the Raga melody or scale), a Jod (movement in which a more organized rhythm emerges), followed by a slow Gat (in which the tabia, or drums, join in). The Gat is in Teental (16 beats).
The second performance is "Rasiya" a light classical form rich with folk flavor. Although the essential elements of a Raga are present, Ravi Shankar treats "Rasiya" in the Thumri style with all the lilt of a Dhun.
Prepared for release in the U.S.A. by BILL MILLER
The Tabia consists of a pair of drums. The right-hand one is tuned to the tonic, sub-dominant or dominant, according to the key-note of the Raga being played. The left-hand one is the bass. These mark the rhythmic cycle of the music performed and supply a virtuoso counterpoint to the Sitar. The outstanding young Kanai Dutt, who has performed frequently with Ravi Shankar since 1955, plays the Tabia in this album.
The Tanpura (also sometimes spelled tamboura) is a four or five-stringed instrument which functions to maintain a continuous, hypnotic drone behind the Sitar. It also helps establish the Raga by stressing its tonic and dominant. Performed in this album by Copi Mohan, Niren Roy.
CAPITOL´S NEW IMPROVED FULL DIMENSIONAL STEREO
SOUNDS BETTER THAN STEREO HAS EVER SOUNDED
THIS STEREO RECORD SHOULD BE PLAVEO ONLY WITH A STEREO CARTRIDGE AND NEEDLE TO AVOID DAMAGE.
Cover Photo: EMI/David Farrell
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YOUR KEY TO COLLECTIBLES© 1997