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Remembering Pandit Bhimsen Joshi: A voice that will be heard forever

On Pandit Bhimsen Joshi's fifth death anniversary, we pay tribute to the legendary vocalist by revisiting some interesting facts from his life and career...

>> A member of the Kirana Gharana, he was renowned for the 'khayal' form of singing, as well as for his bhajans and abhangs.

>> He was born in the town of Ron, which was then in Gadag, Karnataka. He was the eldest in a family of 16 siblings.

>> Pt Joshi heard a recording of Ustad Abdul Karim Khan's Thumri 'Piya Bin Nahi Aavat Chain' in Raag Jhinjhoti when he was a child, which inspired him to become a musician.

Pandit Bhimsen Joshi
Pandit Bhimsen Joshi

>> Until the first half of the 20th century, Khayal was principally taught in the Guru Shishya tradition. In 1933, the 11-year-old Bhimsen Joshi left Dharwad for Bijapur to find a master and learn music. With the help of money lent by his co-passengers in the train, Bhimsen reached Dharwar, Pune and then Gwalior where he joined a music school. He traveled for three years around North India trying to find a good guru. Eventually, his father succeeded in tracking him down in Jalandar and brought him back home.

>> In 1936, Pt Rambhau Kundgolkar agreed to be Bhimsen Joshi's guru.

>> Pt Joshi moved to Mumbai in 1943 and worked as a radio artist. He first performed live at the age 19. His debut album that had songs in Hindi and Kannada was released when he was 22.

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