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Salon de Musique

Salon de Musique

Ken Zuckerman & Swapan Chaudhuri in concert

A performance in the Salon de Musique of the Ali Akbar College of Music in Basel, Switzerland, on February 15, 2002.

Ragas Chayanat & Kirwani
LMT CD3008 C 2002 Living Music Traditions, Inc. P LMT Verlag

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1) Direct from CD Baby (best for USA customers). Now also available as an MP3 download!

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Review from FolkRoots

Ken Zuckerman: Born in New Jersey, USA in 1952 and student of Ali Akbar Khan for the past 30 years. Since 1985, he has been director of the Swiss branch of the Ali Akbar College in Basel. www.kenzuckerman.com

Ken Zuckerman: Salon de Musique (Living Music Traditions, 2002)

Listening to this disc, I don’t believe anyone would know Zuckerman was not an Indian sarod player. An intimate recital in the salon de musique of the Ali Akbar College in Basel in intimate acoustic conditions with no microphones, specifically designed for Indian classical music. Ragas ‘Chayanat’ and ‘Kirwani’, the latter absolutely exquisite, with Swapan Chaudhuri on tabla.

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CD Booklet Text

Listening to ragas like a Maharaja…

An intimate hall adorned with oriental carpets, cushions and comfortable chairs, the music room of a Maharaja was a perfect setting for music lovers to luxuriate in the microtonal riches of India’s traditional ragas. Today, the Salon de Musique in Basel is permeated with this atmosphere of another era – quiet, dedicated listening where, once the music begins, time seems to stand still.

Raga Chayanat
1. Alap 9:23
2. Jor 6:31
3. Gat in slow jhaptal (10 beats) 16:52
4. Gat in fast tintal (16) 8:58
Total Time: 41:44

Chayanat is a very old, traditional raga and encompasses the moods of peace, pathos and heroism. It is based on a major scale and in addition, sometimes uses the augmented 4th. Long descending glissandi from the 5th to the 2nd degree and from the tonic to the 6th, exemplify the ragas’ microtonal nuances.

The performance begins with alap, the unmeasured introduction where the flavor and details of the raga are carefully developed. In the jor, a rhythmic pulse is added and the exploration of the raga becomes more accentuated. The first section with tabla accompaniment consists of a theme (gat) and improvisations in a slow tempo of jhaptal, a rhythmic cycle of ten beats. This is followed by a theme and improvisations in a fast cycle of sixteen beats (tintal), ending in a climatic section of rhythmic intensity known as jhala.
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Raga Kirwani
5. Alap 6:01
6. Gat in deepchandi (14) 10:41
7. Gat in medium chachar (14) 7:39
8. Gat and jhala in fast tintal (16) 10:16
Total Time: 34:37

Although the exact origins of this popular raga are difficult to trace, Kirwani belongs to a melodic mode that is used extensively all over the world. It corresponds closely to the western harmonic minor scale, and additionally employs the minor 7th in some descending passages. The raga dwells in the intermingled moods of romance and pathos and although considered by many to be a “lighter” raga, is often performed with much passion and depth.

The performance begins with a brief alap and continues with a theme and variations in a slow cycle of 14 beats known as deepchandi. This cycle is then rendered with a new theme in a faster tempo (known as chachar), and the performance culminates with a theme and improvisations in a fast cycle of tintal. (more…)

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