hope springs eternal
ptv features sitar virtuoso ustad raees khan ably accompanied by his son Farhan Khan
ustad jee has unique body language & the pair played raga malhar & haunting rendition of raga bhairveen.
in the early 80s, I heard ustad raess khan recording on bbc tv & sang the following
mohay ayee na jag say laj
main itnee zor say nachee aaj
kay ghungroo toot gayay
a BBC 4 recording.
I am not aware of raees sb having too many vocal recordings to his credit but an awesome voice nonetheless and the defiant tone given to “ghungroo toot gayay”
sitar, sarangee always have a special impact on me... i am intrigued by the concept encapsulated by Shah Lateef in his Sur (Beejal-) Rai Dyaach – the story of supreme sacrifice hy Rai Dyaach, the ruler of Jhunagarh.
the ruler of the adjoining kingdom, unable to defeat Rai Dyaach militarily, hires the services of Beejal a musician par excellence knowing Rai Dyaach’s penchant for music….
beejal plays his instrument to his desired outcome…..in the wee hours of the morning, held in complete rapture by Beejal’s instrument, Rai Dyaach asks Beejal for anything that he desired as folk tales usually go
beejal jumps at the opportunity & asks the king for his head & reveals the real purpose of his visiting Jhunagarh.
true to his word, the king fulfills his promise & loses his life & his kingdom gives way to marauding enemy forces…
talk about primitive operation desert storm…(that beejal regrets his actions comes only after Jhunagarh capitulates & this aspect of the tale of lesser importance)
secular interpretation/perspective of such folklore is that of devotion to music and for a right note of a surinhdo a proto-type of saarangee, being moved to the point of complete surrender no matter what price you must pay …
the sufistic interpretation is achieving closeness to God through a vehicle, ironically in this case, music. That the modern day guardians of faith, the detestable mullahs consider music as haram goes to prove the harm done to faith than any external force
as nusrat fateh ali khan has demonstrated, music can hold the unbelievers in a trance and make converts out of them by the sheer force of genius
my latest discovery is sm shahid’s book on tufail niazi that comes with a 2-cd set that had me in tears but more on that later
in the meanwhile raga malhar has had a desired impact and Karachi has seen the first sign of the monsoon….