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Raga Bhankar
Ustad Vilayat Khan;Akram Khan
Raga Bhankar
Genres: World Music, Pop
  •  Track Listings (2) - Disc #1

Ustad Vilayat Khan is a maestro whose synonymy with the sitar is now a fact which the musical world naturally takes for granted. Here, Vilayat Khan offers his unique interpretation of the rare raga Bhankar, creating a moda...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Ustad Vilayat Khan;Akram Khan
Title: Raga Bhankar
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: India Archives
Release Date: 9/16/1997
Genres: World Music, Pop
Styles: Reggae, India & Pakistan, India
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
Other Editions: Raga Bhairavi - Alap & Jor
UPC: 731838103020


Product Description
Ustad Vilayat Khan is a maestro whose synonymy with the sitar is now a fact which the musical world naturally takes for granted. Here, Vilayat Khan offers his unique interpretation of the rare raga Bhankar, creating a modal spectacle incorporating fleeting glances of many other related and unrelated ragas.

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CD Reviews

Yes, there is more than one living sitar master!
Pharoah S. Wail | Inner Space | 04/04/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I've finally decided to start getting around to some reviews of the music of northern India.I decided to make this my first "sitar review" because I feel the world needs to know about more than just Ravi Shankar. Not that Ravi isn't a top-notch musician, but no, he is not the end-all and be-all of Indian music like some people would have you believe.This is one of my favorite Viliyat Khan cd's. There is no tabla accompaniment here (as some of you already knew as soon as you saw that there were no gats in the track list). The lack of tabla sort of allows the sitar to take up the entire sonic spectrum, leaving us with a very warm and rich sounding sitar tone throughout this cd. Again, Ravi is not the be-all and end-all... Viliyat's sitar tone and playing style are completely unlike Ravi's.I'm not sure how I should describe Viliyat's playing style. On one hand, his playing on this cd, Raga Bhairavi, is tranquil and meditative... you feel like you can listen to this cd and just drift away on a dream. On the other hand, there is always an impending tension in Viliyat's playing. As if he is on the verge of going to battle. No one plays meditative war music with the grace and danger of Viliyat Khan.If you're interested in some of the other brilliant musicians on the India Archive label (many of whom are indeed brilliant but have also been overshadowed by the mainstream recognition of Ravi Shankar) let me recommend acoustic slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya (though you have to spell it "Debashis" to search for him on this site). Deb's cd's like Raga Saraswati and Raga Bhimpalasi will be a revelation to those of you who thought Vishwa Mohan Bhatt was the premiere guitarist of northern India.Viliyat Khan's son, Shujaat Khan (also a sitarist), has established himself as a master of playing with other string players. Examples of this can be found in two of the cd's by Ghazal...Lost Songs Of The Silk Road, and As Night Falls On The Silk Road... two wonderful cd's that magically combine Iranian and north Indian classical musics.To sum up, if you already love Viliyat then this is an essential cd for you. On the flipside, if you're really only aware of Ravi's style of sitar then this is also an essential cd for you because it will help in illustrating the broader world of Hindustani classical music for you."
Great Musician and Great Performance
Hamid Mahmood | King Of Prussia, PA USA | 04/20/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I am a sitarist myself and have found this recital one of it's own kind and a most remarkable one. The raga performed is not a very common one and not for everyone to listen to. You have to have a ear for classical music and somber and sad ragas. If you don't have that the you really cannot appreciate and enjoythe CD. Khansahib has used very complex and different tecniques of the "meendh". His style is typically of the person who knows very well how to sing this raga. He has done a remarkable job."
A Great Symphony from India's Beethoven!!
Rizgar | Sweden | 02/14/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

This is the best and most impressing interpretation of raga Bhairavi I have ever heared. Vilayat is definitely the greatest Indian musician and sitarist in the 20th century, and I would call him "India's Beethoven" because of his musical mood and style. I have always prefered Vilayat Khan's gharana and style to those of Ravi Shankar's, and I think that no Indian musician has yet reached the maturity and mastery of Ustad Vilayat Khan.

The CD is about 60 minuts long, with the alap over 36 minuts. Khan Saheb's performance is complex as he uses many accidentals and shifts to several other ragas. Khan Saheb uses many themes and melodies and with much innovation that would definitly rise much controversy if he was less prestigous or less famous.. But simultaniously, these innovations and variety of themes make Ustad Vilayat Khan's performance Raga Bhairavi an immortable symphony that will never ever be forgotten or ignored.

It's true that Shahid Parvez is an elegant and very skillful sitarist, but he has by no means surpassed Ustad Vilayat Khan in musical maturity and expression. Just listen to Shahid Parvez when he plays Raga Bhairavi - alap, he is almost immitating Ustad Vilayat Khan!! And not only in that performance is Ustad Vilayat's touch prevalent in his performance, but also in all his other performances, although he doesn't want to admit that.

Finally, I think it's some sort of folly or blind hatred to give two or three stars to such a great and widely acknowledged album like this one.