Raga Darbari Kanada

Album cover art for upc 3415820000791
Catalog: C 560276

Das, Kushal

Unanimously praised for his mastery of the sitar – the king instrument of North Indian classical music – Kushal Das is particularly renowned among aficionados (the rasika) for his art of the surbahar: this 'bass-sitar' with its long sustain, ideally suited to subtle alap, is here at the service of the raga Darbari Kanada performed in concert in the setting of the Radio France Auditorium. The adjective darbari comes from a Persian term meaning "royal court", and this was indeed a "majestic" concert lasting almost two hours. What a wonderful harmony between the acoustics of the venue, the choice of raga, the instrument and the artist, for this first concert of Indian classical music in the Auditorium! Although Kushal Das went on to perform other raga with tabla accompaniment, it is only the raga Darbari Kanada that is the subject of this disc: an alap –an improvised prelude, exposition and development of the raga; these terms reflect only an approximation of the real meaning, for when a complete alap is presented in this way by a master, it is much more a world in itself, in which the artist expresses alone, without accompaniment, the extreme of his musical thought in the service of the raga. Darbari Kanada is a deep night raga, and undoubtedly one of the most difficult to master. It requires a great deal of musical maturity to, through its melodic rules, unleash the full extent of its emotional impact imbued with breadth, dignity and depth. A fundamental raga, Darbari Kanada is also a perfect illustration of the fact that in a raga, the note (swara) must be considered as a "note in context", as are so essential the choice of ornaments, proportions, dynamics, angle and direction of the attack –everything that constitutes the "approach to the note".

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