Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sitar and Bhajans

Last night's Global Soul Music Vol 2 was a big success! Thanks to all who came. First set was Saikat Bhattacharya on sitar performing Raga Desh: Alap, Jor, Jhala, Gats in Vilambit and Drut Teentaal. Second set was Bhakti featuring Yani, with some beautiful bhajans and vocal improvisations. Thanks also to the Bhaktas (Alicia, Steff and Pete), Menaka and Ravi for joining in the jam, and as always Alicia on the door, Sheri on sound and Core Yoga for the space.

Sheri of also has some photos of Global Soul Music Vol 1, as well as last night's Vol 2 including this one of Saikat:

Saikat Bhattacharya performing Raga Desh

Shen, Yani and Alicia

Yani and her Bhaktas - Alicia, Steff and Pete

Bhakti invited guest singer Menaka Visvanathan to join the chorus
Menaka will perform at next month's Global Soul Music with Tibet2Timbuk2

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Brisbane Bengali Durga Puja

Tonight I had the honour of taking part in the Bengali Society of Queensland (BSQ) Durga Puja Cultural Night. My Guru-ji of tabla is Bengali and so I have very warm feelings for that distinctive Bengali atmosphere. As well as musical and dance presentations, some children recited Bengali poetry. They were really cute, but unfortunately I couldn't get any good photos of them. Here are some photos that did come out:

The altar for Durga Puja
L to R: Ganesha's wife (a banana tree dressed in a sari), Ganesh-ji, Lakshmi, Durga, Saraswati, Karthik

These statues were imported from India especially for the event. Must have cost a fortune!

Bengali boy playing violin - what tune? "Tijuana Taxi"

Kawaii ne!

Two more Bharat Natyam students of Brisbane teacher Chitra Yogi.

Rajyashree Josyer Shrikanth (electric veena) accompanied by Shen on tabla

Bengali ballads

The final group performance

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Kora session @ Forest

It was one of my best World Music Wednesday sessions at The Forest yesterday, with regulars Ravi (jazz guitar), Tony (vocals/bongos) and myself (tabla) joined by Aden on kora. Aden's beautiful kora made an excellent base for the rest of us to improvise with, and Ravi & Tony's soloing was wonderful. Thanks heaps Aden - always welcome!

Aden (kora), Ravi (jazz guitar), Shen (tabla)

Aden (kora)

Ravi (jazz guitar)

Guess who...

Tony channeling Magambo spirits

Thanks to Ruth for taking the photos!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Qld Multicultural Festival

Some photos of Qld Multicultural Festival on Sunday. For most of the day, I stayed at the Ceremonial Stage, which featured more acoustic traditional world music acts.

RAASA - guest artist Tunji Beier (excellent Indian/world music percussionist), Dave Fernandez (tabla), Armando (bansuri), Yuval Ashkar (oud)

The set was very impro and they had a "lucky finish" in the second piece (ie they all stopped at the same time, luckily). It was really nice to see Armando again after a few years. After the RAASA set we went and played a little bansuri-tabla together under a tree nearby.

The Parade at the Amphitheatre Stage

Dheeraj Shrestha (tabla) and Saikat Bhattacharya (sitar)
Brisbane folks: please look out for my concert with Saikat in West End on Sat October 27.

Efiq Zulfiqar

Efiq played flute and percussion with a soundtrack of Javanese gamelan. He's a talented musician - unfortunately I didn't get a chance to chat with him after his show. It would be interesting to work with him.

"Sounds of Peace" - Cieavash Arean (tar), Shen (tabla), Vijaya Visvanathan (vocal), Menaka Visvanathan (vocal), Asim Gorashi (oud)

This is my newest ESL combo and it's a very nice group. We actually don't have a name yet, and asked the audience for suggestions - the one I like the most was "Sounds of Peace", although I hope for something more........

Set list:
1. Song from Vijaya (not the one we were expecting!)
2. Sufi song featuring Asim on guitar and whistling - sweet and beautiful
3. Turkish song featuring Cieavash on oud
4. "Payo ji mene" - featuring Vijaya and Menaka
5. Sudanese song by Asim on oud
6. "Aum Namah Shiva" - bhajan led by Vijaya and featuring beautiful vocal solo by Cieavash

Cieavash singing beautifully as ever

Asim on violin

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Forest session on Youtube

Friend Murray has uploaded a short vid of one of my Wednesday sessions at The Forest, featuring Alicia on mbira, Sam on whistles, George on accordion, Tony on bongos...

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Global Soul Music + Rosecliffe photos

On Saturday we had the first edition of my new monthly concert, Global Soul Music. The music was beautiful, the space lovely. This group has an excellent chemistry, bringing together music spanning Sudan through Iran to India.

Just need a bit more community support... Next month, sitar player Saikat Bhattacharya and bhajans with Yani.

Global Soul Music Vol.1 : Shen (tabla), Vijaya Visvanathan (vocal), Menaka Visvanathan (vocal), Cieavash Arean (vocal, tar, oud, daf), Asim Gorashi (vocal, violin, whistling, oud)

There are lots of much nicer photos at the Divine Arts website.

Rosecliffe St
Some snaps from my lovely home...

Akira cooking while Alicia feeds Tiger the cat

Akira, Alicia and Simon. Akira and Simon are both currently in Japan.

Tiger aka Tigga aka Mr Stripey Trousers

Another regular visitor

This week my cousin Ed came up from Sydney. Here he is with my housemate Melissa.

Ed, Mel and Alicia hanging out at Rosecliffe

Our mate Sammy - a great whistle and trumpet player - stops by to relax on the balcony.

The view from our balcony - Brisbane River in the background