Since blogging just after Saraswati Puja I've been neglecting this blog in favour of quickly uploading my mobile phone snaps to Facebook. Very sorry about that! So here's a quick wrap up of my 7 weeks in Varanasi.... This year wasn't exactly my best trip to India, with a bit too much low grade sickness resulting in a lot less practice and music in general. A lot of my energy this year was focused on obtaining Indian government certification for my tabla imports to clear Australian quarantine. While in U.P. I had a quick trip to Kanpur and a couple of days with a friend in Lucknow, who put me onto someone back in Varanasi who is continuing to work on this problem on my behalf. Anyway, on with the photos...
Baha-ud-din Dagar performing on rudra vina in Ganesh Mandir
Japanese folks in Benares gathered to pray for speedy and safe resolution after the massive March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Miyagi-ken.
My good friend Jimi Miyashita also dedicated his concert in Ganesh Mandir to relief from suffering in Japan and around the world.
On March 17 we had the 7th annual Ashu Babu Memorial Concert in honour of my late guru-ji. This year I MCed in English.
The main performer was tabla solo by Subhankar Banerjee. Brilliant stuff, so much practice.
A couple of days after the memorial concert was the festival of Holi, where the whole town (whole country for that matter becomes waterbomb and water pistol battleground. Here's the aftermath on one shopfront in Dasaswamedh.
Just a couple of days after Holi my guru-ma (wife of my late Guru-ji) passed away suddenly. I took this photo at the burning ghats to remind me of that moment.