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North India: Instrumental Music of Mediaeval India

Various Artists
North India: Instrumental Music of Mediaeval India

The rudra vina or bin is a plucked zither-type instrument that dates to the seventh century. Translated to mean “the vina dear to (the Hindu god) Shiva,” the rudra vina (sometimes spelled rudra veena) was transformed into a highly sophisticated court instrument during the 16th century. By the 19th century, it began to decline in popularity and has now all but disappeared from Indian classical music.

The artist on this late 20th century recording of instrumental music is Asad Ali Khan, an internationally recognized master of the rudra vina. Khan, who died in 2011, was the seventh and last generation of his family to perform on the instrument, and he was given the honorific title of Ustad in recognition of his music achievements. On this recording of “Darbari Kanada,” a night raga, and “Gunakali,” a morning raga, Khan is accompanied by Pandit Gopal Das on the pakhawaj, a traditional two-headed drum, and Mohamed Saklain on tanpura, a stringed drone instrument.

This album is part of the UNESCO Collection of Traditional Music. More than 125 albums are being released by Smithsonian Folkways Recordings to make the series publicly available, including a dozen never-released albums of musical traditions from around the globe.

Track Listing

101
Raga Darbari Kanada: Alap Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 18:40
102
Raga Darbari Kanada: Jod Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 11:43
103
Raga Darbari Kanada: Jhala Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 9:07
104
Raga Darbari Kanada: Composition Bandish in 12 beats Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 13:44
105
Raga Gunakali: Alap Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 10:33
106
Raga Gunakali: Jod Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 8:27
107
Raga Gunakali: Jhala Ustad Asad Ali Khan, Pandit Gopal Das, Mohamed Saklain 5:25

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