INDIAN MUSIC FORUM ARCHIVES: Sitar Forum: Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all

 

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Amitava
Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 09:41 a.m.


This is a continuation of a deviation...from "Using a chromatic tuner for sitar", since that thread got too long.

I should have clarified why I found RS's KK performance painful.

The manner in which I listen to North ICM � is not based on speed. It is (1) musical ideas/imagination within raag/taal (2) adherence to structure of a performance and its construction (3) execution quality (in tune, smoothness of performance, medium technique) (4) focus/consistency in approach.

I wish to note that I do expect different things from a spring chicken vs. an old hen.

Pt. RS�s performances in regards to (1) and (2) are not an issue. That part remains ingrained in this mature and imaginative musician. His mind seems to be in good order. The painful parts are (3) and (4).

I need to go back and torture myself again...but I found his meeds to be terribly out of tune. He was also slipping - and could not perform many of signature moves ...after starting them. He could obviously not pull as much...and although he tried, he could not finish the meed properly. These problems were consistently present through the whole performance. His physical inadequaecies not only were distracting but also caused (4) to suffer. Anoushka's phrases in contrast, although not as seasoned sounded SO MUCH better...just because of her tunefullness. In fact whe I heard the CD for the first time I thought geez...Anoushka sounds better in her musical approach - but what happened to her hand? How come this is being sold as a RS CD when he played only a few phrases? Little did I realize that the players were reversed !!!! What is the point of calling it music when there bad melody/pitch prevailed through a performance?

I know that is if very unfair to expect the same performance (I am talkiing about physicial abilities only) of a young person than an older one, but that is not what bothered me. I expect a musician to change their approach as time progresses...and eventually stop. And this was a performance that showed a great musician at his worst (well may be not absolute) - on several levels. In this case - besides my impressions that it was a bad performance, I was amazed that it got a Grammy. That speaks volumes about other issues.

Anyway...off to the battle of the worst of all sitarists...

A

PS: My personal impression is that Anoushka tunes for her father because of his physical - not audio weakness.

Sitarsrule
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 12:06 p.m.


I'm so glad that you are as good, or better than Ravi, I'm as equally glad that you've done so much to bring
Indian music to the forefront.I hope to set at your great feet ,and allow your greatness to flow over me like a river.When I see your name on Sites as Influences on
many Generations of Sitar players, then I'll take what you've said into consideration, But I'm sure your playing holds no candle to the master, I'm sure his worse is better than your best any day.
Russ
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 01:43 p.m.


OK let's talk about me, Al Franken. Oops, that's another guy.....sorrrrrry!

Lighten up, you guys. We're only expressing opinion here, and everybody has one! Sometimes its terribly logical, sometimes its shear poop! But whatever......

I have to agree about Ravi. My opinion is that he should be a master teacher only now, and stop playing concerts. His arthritis is interfering badly with his meends. Look at those crooked fingers. Ouch!

Billy, not knowing anything, it was just the shear beauty of the music and the effect it had on me that attracted me to it in the first place. Knowledge in ICM is not required in order to listen to it! But if you're going to play it yourself, then some knowledge of ICM would be necessary. A little training doesn't hurt either..
So, OK. My $0.02 worth.

kedar
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 02:38 p.m.


hello freinds,
yes its very true that pandit ravijee has lost some of his meends and the speed......
but inspite of all this ..if u listen to the material that he playes is still very very inspiring........
nevermind he he does not complete the meed ....
how he is improvising the raaga is more important now....and always was......
his sheer presence has a lastng effect ...........
talking of anoushka............
she seems to have time for all the interviews and marketing herself rather than doing her riyaz...........
it is clearly evident ...........
and we also ahve to undertand a fact that she is simply not strong ehough to play the instrument.....physically
but no matter what happens there is only one ravishankar...............
........
having said that.....anoushkas power....hmmm
has anyone of u guys heard annaporna devi play?(ex-wife of pandt ravi shankar and daughter of allauddin khan, teacher of flaulist hariprasad chaurisa)....?
well for her power and height she played the surbhar.........
and better than ravishankar..........definately better
so i wonder if anoushka has any talent or she playes it preety much precomposed by her father.........
........
take care
kedar
india/pune
Billy
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 03:02 p.m.



Russ (Jul 17, 2003 01:43 p.m.):
Billy, not knowing anything, it was just the shear beauty of the music and the effect it had on me that attracted me to it in the first place. Knowledge in ICM is not required in order to listen to it! But if you're going to play it yourself, then some knowledge of ICM would be necessary. A little training doesn't hurt either..
So, OK. My $0.02 worth.

I should mention, my first RS album was his "India's Master Musician/Recorded in London" from 1963. My brother bought it, kept it a couple of years, then gave it to me. I think I remember it being a hard-to-find import, but I was just a young teenager, and didn't know much except I liked the music. I've long gotten rid of all my vinyl, and had just recently bought that particular album remastered on CD. Guess what: its my favorite RS album. I don't know if its nostalgia, but I really enjoy listening to it, and would recommend it not on the basis of me being some kind of expert on the technical side, but because it is just an exciting listening experience!

I guess that would be the first one I put on my three-foot shelf, but that's another topic!


Namaste',
Billy Enigmar Godfrey
K.K.
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 05:32 p.m.


Hi All: Have you ever looked at an audience and wondered how the various people came to be there and how they will be influenced by the concert? Some people were dragged there by their best friend and have never even heard of the artist who�s performing. Some people have been waiting their whole life for the opportunity to hear their favorite artist perform live. Some people will leave the concert thinking, �that really sucked� and some people will have a religious experience that will change their life forever. It�s just wacky isn�t it?
Russ
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 04:56 p.m.


Yeah, I have to think about the 3 foot shelf. That is not an easy one to answer....

My first RS album was Sound of the Sitar, from late 1965, just before he met George Harrison. I have played that thing almost to the point of smoothing out the grooves, and I still have it! It also was remastered onto CD a few years ago, and of course I have that too. But for sentimental reasons, I just can't part with the old vinyl waffle! That album inspired me to buy my first sitar a few years later.

Billy
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 17, 2003 06:34 p.m.



K.K. (Jul 17, 2003 05:32 p.m.):
Hi All: Have you ever looked at an audience and wondered how the various people came to be there and how they will be influenced by the concert? Some people were dragged there by their best friend and have never even heard of the artist who�s performing

You know, my oldest brother was a tremendous influence on me. In 1965, I was 13 and he was in college, living at home. He introduced me to classical music, jazz, folk, even Broadway, all the popular college-type fad music, but for him, being a musician it was more than a fad. While other kids my age at the time were obsessing on Jan and Dean and Herman Hermits (and I liked them too), my brother was responsible for instilling a wide eclectic appreciation for music that continues to this day. I can have "Tristan und Isolde" in my car player one day, AC/DC the next, Shruti Sadolikar the next day and Stan Getz on another (and another and another, I really like Bossa Nova and other Latin/Carribean music!) All this attributed to being dragged, sometimes kicking and screaming, to the college auditorium for all those concerts, or being given records he no longer needed or wanted.

So lets hear it for the draggers to concerts, for at least for me, it has made my life much more enriched.


Namaste',
Billy Enigmar Godfrey
Sitarsrule
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 19, 2003 05:33 p.m.


The Two best Concerts I've ever been to Were Ravi Shankar at Pasadena College in 1997 I met him That night, he was so warm. The next best concert was an Eric Burdon Concert, He really had a great band. I also met him that night, He autographed 6 records. But not
just because I met thses two people, but the energy I felt
from the performances were Lasting to me.......Peace
Jan
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 19, 2003 07:00 p.m.


Not that many ICM consert around here, but tha best overall musical performance was GONG playing a local place here in Bergen. As far as ICM goes its Roopji that has made an impresion. But he is allso the only player of somewhat size and with a reputation that has been here in the last decade...

(i hope im not wrong, i will paint my sitars tumba Orange if i hear that Vilayath Khan has been in town, while i was livin it up at the local Bingo saloon)


Jan

Jeff
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 19, 2003 09:30 p.m.


Talking about concerts! The best and my favorite would be "King Crimson". I've seen them about 12 times since 1980??? and they kick! Last one I went to was about 5 years ago when they had the double band thing going. But since then the price of concert tickets went sky high. I'm sorry but I refuse to pay $50 or more for anybody unless its Frank Zappa
Now, I've see many a ICM concerts, but I put them in a different catagory. I havent seen a bad one yet.
The last thing I went to was some kind or sort of world dance jazz pop ballet type thingy and I didnt care for it at all. Actually I thought it kind of sucked.
Billy
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 19, 2003 10:49 p.m.



Jeff (Jul 19, 2003 09:30 p.m.):
Talking about concerts! The best and my favorite would be "King Crimson.

OK, yes this is off-topic, but King Crimsom ruled! I first saw them, I think it was their second incarnation, around 1972 in, I think, Austin (hey, I'm an old guy, I can't remember everything!) The other time I saw them was around 1982 in Germany.

Their "Courst of the Crimsom King" album made a significant impact on me, and helped turn me away from Pop to the more artistic rock. But I have to admit that many of their albums after "Court" weren't as good, at least not as a whole. But man, I loved their concernt in Germany! They made me a believer again.

Its great to find out I'm not the only one out there that loves King Crimsom!!!


Namaste',
Billy Enigmar Godfrey
kedar
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 20, 2003 01:47 p.m.


my all time favourite concert will be one of pandit bhimsen joshi(vocal).. he sang raag puriya dhasashree for 6 hours non stop at swai ghandharv.........festival in pune... poeple were crying out of hapiness..the best moment for me......
another one will be of pandit jasraj...hre in pune where he sang jaijaiwanti for 4 hours nonstop.....
it was mesmorising.....
Jan
off topic really... Jul 20, 2003 05:20 a.m.


Yes off topic indeed, but still, when it comes to performers that are loosing the touch and dont sound like they used to.
I was at the opening of the Europeean King Krimson Tour "The power to believe". It was 55 US$ and according to me they have lost it. They were far off the track serveral times, and Robert Fripp was to anonymous (spelling) to my taste.
Since this was the opening of the European tour i guess they are warmed up by now, but really to pay 55$ to see someone preparing for their tour is not worth it.

Anyway this is far, far of topic and im sorry... perhaps we can open an off topic, topic?

Jan

Russ
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 20, 2003 06:42 p.m.


Funny how this topic reincarnates every now and then. We had this identical topic going about a year ago!

Best concert I ever went to was Yes, in early 1973. That's what got me into the "art" rock thing for a while. Speaking of King Crimson, the first time I ever heard a Chapman Stick was on their album "Discipline" from 1980 (hey, Remco!). It was probably King Crimson, or maybe Gregg Lake, that got me into ELP a few years later. Anyway, I could go on and on with this topic! Better not.....Best ICM concert I saw remains Ravi's full circle tour in 2000. Sure wish I could have met him. SitarsRule, I'm a little jealous!

DM
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 23, 2003 04:28 p.m.


I think for great musicians/sportmen we shoud look at the overall life acheivement rather than a single concert performance.

For example, Michael Jordan has done a lot for Basketball but some of his game performances at Washington were not that great.

So also with Pdt Ravi Shankar and other great musicians of our time that have started to age we cannot expect each performance to be brillant but they are brillant in what they have done over the past 30-40 years.

Remco
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 24, 2003 05:53 p.m.


My Favourite concerts vary from different points of view: either it was a stunning performance, the vibe was magical or it was something totally unexpected:
the first catagory: Pandit Ashok Pathak: he gave a concert about 7 years ago that just dubfounded a complete audience, just a stunning alaap. The second category: Johnny Cash: he played a small venue in Rotterdam that most wellkown act wouldn't even consider using as a dressingroom. He bassically blew the roof off: just magic. And the last category: (I'll probably be banned from this forum for this...) a german band called Rammstein, played a very small venue in Amsterdam, their flamethrowers shot over our head and nearly burned the wall in the back! The audience was nailed to the floor to say the least. Other great bands: Teaparty from Canada, nice mixture of cockrock combined with oriental instrument (the singer plays them), great songs, lots of pathos! ....until I saw how he played sitar....hmmmm a rather unorthodox playing style....definitly not a follower of any gharana that I know off.... further...Massive Attack.... Lamb..... the list goes on....

Peace,

Remco

Matt
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 24, 2003 10:52 p.m.


I've only seen two ICM concerts - Ken Zuckerman and Buddhadev Das Gupta. Both were fantastic, though I liked Das Gupta's performance a lot better.

As for others...

U2 in Denver, CO, 1987 - some of this show is in the Rattle & Hum movie - the band at their absolute best, IMO.

Smashing Pumpkins on the Siamese Dream tour, 1994. Blew me away.

Any of the dozen or so Phish shows I've attended over the last 8 years...

Pb
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 24, 2003 11:40 p.m.


Hey Remco,
I'm a Rammstein fan. Good industrial with good lyrics. Nothing wrong with appreciating many different genres.

Pb

und die Welt zahlt laut bis Zehn...

Stephen
Re:Mirror Mirror on the Wall...who is the worst of them all Jul 25, 2003 07:58 a.m.


Miles Davis in any of the 11 performances I was witness to. I'll agree on the Yes vote (6 times). Of course back in the high school days Zepplin and Floyd were two biggies. And then there were the many times I tracked down Mr. Zappa (along with his side kick, Capt. Beefheart). John McLaughlin w/ Larry Coryell warming up was a treat. Pat Metheny in the "steal the stage" catagory. I always like the bass workout that occures on Bela Fleck's stage. Weather Report with Jaco. The Who.
In the ICM catagory, I've seen some of the masters, Amjad Ali Khan, Ali Akbar Khan, Ravi Shankar, etc.
My favorite was my Ustad, Shafaatullah Khan. I was convinced to study with him after hearing his Miya ki Todi. Had the honor of joining him on stage to provide drone last weekend at the Shenandoah Valley Music Fest in Virginia.
Will be sippin' bourbon with Lonnie Mack (friend of my uncle) this coming weekend in Cincinnati and will be seeing Hariprasad Charasia and Shiv Kumar Sharma in the area soon.
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