Saturday, 20 January 2018

Ali Akbar Khan 1967 'Pre-Dawn To Sunrise Ragas'

Here is another great recording of the Sarod Master Ali Akbar Khan. This LP was released in the USA in 1967. Connoisseur Society released many Ali Akbar Khan LPs throughout the 60s and 70s and all of them are wonderful. Fortunately several of Connoisseur Society's recordings were remastered in the 90s and re-released on CD as the 'Signature Series Vol 1-5'. This LP album was not however on these volumes.

This LP in my collection is the Japanese pressing on the Philips label. I try to by Japanese pressings whenever I can because of the reputation for high quality. 

Label: Connoisseur Society - CS 1967 (this version: Philips - SFX-7676)

Tracks:
A - Raga Bairagi 20:32
B - Raga Aheer Bhairow 21:13



Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (sound reduction on surface noise + click removal + Normalised to -2.0db) and then saved as 256kbps MP3. 

Friday, 19 January 2018

Vilayat Khan 1979 'The Brilliance Of Sound'

This is a 1979 Indian release by Ustad Vilayat Khan. I think this LP was never commercially digitised or re-released on CD. Ustad Vilayat Khan is quite an interesting character. He was determined personally to become one of the best sitarists in history, leaving a legacy behind. To a large extent this has been accomplished. There are many many disciples of his school. He also made several modifications to the sitar - creating what is known as the Vilayat Khan style of sitar. Effectively he sacrifices some of the range of his instrument for better performance and more flexibility with meend and ornamentation - as he was focused on melodic expression of raga. Vilayat Khan was originally trained in a vocal tradition 'Gayaki Ang' and therefore is well know for adopting this style on sitar. This LP may not be one of his best recordings, but as it is only available on LP it's an important addition to this blog.

Note: I'm not sure why the tone falls gradually towards the end of side A and the opposite effect on Side B. This seems to be a fault in the actual recording - either in the original tapes or master cutting process.

His Master's Voice ‎– ECSD 2828

Tracks:
A1 Raga Ghara
B1 Sindhi Bhairavi
B2 Punjabi Dhun


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (slight sound reduction on surface noise + click removal) and then saved as 320kbps MP3. 

Jamaluddin Bhartiya Circa-1983 'Jamaluddin Bhartiya'

This is another LP by Jamaluddin, recorded in the Netherlands, presumably in the 80s. This is a lovely recording, personally Raga Charukeshi is one of my favourite ragas. The LP is in good condition, so some really good results with the digitisation. Enjoy. Unfortunately none of Jamaluddin's 4 LPs have interesting cover art... despite being really nice recordings all round.

Space Records (7) ‎– SP 4

Tracks:
A Raga Charukeshi
B Raga Jog


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (slight sound reduction + click removal) and then saved as 256kbps MP3. 

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Amjad Ali Khan Rare 1968 'Music Of The Monsoon'

Here is another rare-ish LP released in India in 1968. I'm pretty sure this recording was never commercially digitised or re-released. I was fortunate to find a clean copy in good condition.. much worth it - despite costing a lot of money! These LPs only pop up sporadically and I have to be lucky to find them in good condition.

About the raga: "One of the most popular rag-s of the malhar family, Miyan ki malhar or Miya malhar is supposedly a creation of the legendary Miyan Tansen and patronised by the great Emperor Akbar. Many interesting anecdotes are woven around this rag because of its association with the rainy season, and the texts of vocal compositions include descriptions of rain, thunder, clouds and lightning..."

Even more rare is Amjad's first LP from 1967, which fortunately I have a copy of and will post later.

Label: His Master's Voice - EALP 1330

Tracks:
A Raga Mian Ki Malhar
B Raga Mian Ki Malhar (Continued)


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (slight sound reduction on surface noise + click removal) and then saved as 256kbps MP3. 

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Jamaluddin Bhartiya Circa-1980 'Raga Yaman & Dhun'

This is an LP recorded in the Netherlands, presumably in the 80s. There are only 4 LPs of his ever released. The other recordings are also really nice: the 1980 'Two Ragas' on the Opus 3 Records label and 'Jamaluddin Bhartiya' on the Space Records label. Jamaluddin was a student of Ravi Shankar. He became known to audiences in Central Europe in the 1970s, when he temporarily settled in Amsterdam where he established a school for Indian music. He passed away in 2012 at the age of 83.

Label: Chappell - 6814365

Tracks:
A1 - Raga Yaman (Vilambit Gat In Teental)
B1 - Raga Yamal ( Drut Gat And Jhala In Teental)
B2 - Dhun ( In Mishra Mand In Keherwatal)


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (sound reduction on surface noise + click removal) and then saved as 256kbps MP3. 

Amjad Ali Khan Rare 1974 'Ustad Amjad Ali Khan'

Here is a difficult to find/rare LP released in India in 1974. I searched a while for a copy of this in decent condition. To my knowledge it was never re-released in a digital format or CD. I have heard a copy online, however it was not downloadable and the quality wasn't great. I hope you enjoy! These rare LPs are important for preservation and the main reason for this blog. Unfortunately the cover was not in good condition - but the record was fairly good.

Label: His Master's Voice - EASD 1405

Tracks:
A - Raga Rageshwari - Aochar, Madhya And Drut Gat In Teen Taal
B1 - Raga Kirwani - Aochar & Gat In Rupak Taal
B2 - Bihari - Drut Gat In Teen Taal


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (sound reduction on surface noise + click removal) and then saved as 256kbps MP3. 

Amjad Ali Khan 1976 'Raga Shree'

This LP was released in India in 1976. This is a nice rendition, with Amjad taking the time to fill the whole LP with an extended performance. Side A is a full Alap with the Gat starting on side B. As for the cover art - Amjad's other LPs which I will be posting have done much better... I find it funny they went for the double chin shot :-P

Label: EMI - EALP 2542 and His Master's Voice ECSD 2542

Tracks:
A - Raga Shree - Alap, Jad, Jhala
B - Raga Shree - Gat Jhanptal & Trital


Digitised with: Project Essential II Turntable, Ortofon Red Stylus, recorded as WAV in Audacity (sound reduction on surface noise + click removal) and then saved as 256kbps MP3.