A unique and thoroughly engaging presentation of Indian classical and light classical music demonstrating the great mastery Aniket Khandekar has over his art
Aniket Khandekar - Vocals
Amit Thakkar- Harmonium
Hemant Joshi - Tabla
1 Raag Kaunsi Kanada - ‘Rajan ke Sirtaaj’ - Vilambit Ektaal 23.48
2 Raag Kaunsi Kanada - ‘Damodar Hari naam bol’ - Teentaal 5.18
3 Raag Miya Malhar - ‘Umad Ghumad Garaj Garaj’ - Madhya Ektaal 9.08
4 Raag Miya Malhar - ‘Mohammad sa Rangila Re’ - Drut Ektaal 3.49
5 Raag Marwa - ‘Ye ri kaise jaaun main’ - Teentaal 11.37
6 Raag Kedar - ‘Kaanhaa re Nand Nandan’ - Teentaal 5.03
7 Raag Kedar - ‘Saawan ki bundaniyaan’ - Drut Ektaal 2.30
8 Raag Gujari Todi - ‘Bhor bhayi tori baat’ - Teentaal 4.37
9 Raidaas Bhajan - ‘Prabhuji tum chandan hum paani’ 5.28
10 Kabir Bhajan - ‘Man laago mero yaar fakiri mein’ 6.34
Aniket Khandekar is one of a number of remarkable Indian musicians who have excelled in both their artistic and academic careers. Aniket is a skilled composer, singer and teacher, as well as a highly qualified engineer. A feat only attainable through a combination of talent, single minded commitment and dedicated practice.
Born into a family of musicians, he was first attracted towards playing the keyboard. Although vocal music played a significant role in his early years, it was not until he was fifteen that he realized his true musical calling was singing.
He started off with formal classical vocal training from his grandmother, late Smt. Leela Vilasrao Khandekar, and grandfather, late Shri Vilasrao Khandekar, skilled exponents of the Kirana school of khayal singing.
He further developed his 'gayaki' under the tutelage of Shri Krishnakant Parikh, and was hence introduced to the Mewati Gharana of classical music. To this day he continues to hone his singing skills under the constant guidance of his proficient violinist father, Shri Sudhir Khandekar.
Having learnt both the Kirana style, and the Mewati style from his guru, Shri Krishnakant Parikh, Aniket Khandekar refuses to bind himself to any one gharana.
He believes in blending the best of different styles of classical music into his performances. His singing depicts a genuine effort to bring out the best in each raag, sometimes through tried and tested methods, at other times through trial and experimentation, without ever compromising the authenticity, or grammar of the music.
In addition, he has composed several light classical songs and ghazals and, as a singer, does equal justice to them as he does to his beloved classical khayal gayaki.In 1991, he was forced into teaching music due to the sudden demise of his grandfather and grandmother within a span of six months. He willingly took up the challenge, juggling between teaching music to students, while studying engineering at the same time.
Today, he runs the 'Khandekars Voice Culture Academy', where he trains more than 150 students, in both classical and light classical vocal music.
This recording features both khayal and bhajan demonstrating Aniket's versatility and command of contrasting vocal forms.
Khayal, a Persian word meaning imagination, has been the predominant classical vocal form in the North Indian sub-continent for well over one hundred and fifty years. The emergence of this style is associated with Nyamat Khan Sadarang, chief court musician to the Mughal emperor Mohammed Shah Rangile in the early 18th century.
The khayal composition, or bandish, consists of a verse of poetry of between just 4-8 lines. It is brought to life through the singer's ability to improvise around these lines in a particular raag. The first phrase, or mukhra, of the composition acts as a refrain, to which the singer returns throughout the recital. After the composition is first sung the singer embarks on a series of improvisations within the grammatical framework of the raag. The bandish has two main sections, the sthayi and the antara. The sthayi is generally composed in the lower and middle octaves, while the antara explores the higher octave.
Khayal texts draw on both Hindu and Muslim poetic traditions, and are usually romantic or devotional in content, sometimes a combination of the two. Khayal is commonly sung in brij bhasha, an old Hindi dialect.
Khayal singers are traditionally associated gharanas, distinct schools or styles of singing originating in provincial cities or courts. Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, Gwalior, Rampur, Benares and several others have all nurtured khayal styles with unique repertoire, techniques and aesthetics which have combined to create a rich tapestry of classical vocal music in the sub-continent.
The tradition of bhajan singing can be traced back to the Sama Veda, an ancient book of Hindu scriptures composed in hymn form. Bhajan is a popular devotional song form which features episodes from the lives of Gods brought to life through the insights of saints. This recording features bhajans composed by two of India's greatest poet saints.Raidas was the guru and mentor of Meerabai, one of India's most celebrated poets.
Kabir was an Indian mystic born in the fifteenth century. His vision of humanity as one,transcended religious boundaries and his philosophies were equally at home in both Hindu and Muslim ideals.
Notes: © John Ball
(John Ball is based at the University of Sheffield)
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