Legend goes that thousands of gopis swooned over Lord Krishna when they heard the melodious tune of his Basuri. In the modern era, however, it is rare to come across a flutist whose can mesmerise the audiences. One such flutist is Pandit Ronu Majumdar who believes in the captivating power of the Basuri in comparison to other modern musical instruments.
When Majumdar plays his instrument he keeps juggling between eras. At one moment, he reminds you of the mythical Ras Leela of Lord Krishna and his Gopis and in the next instance he is in a jam session with ace guitarist Ry Cooder and Lary Coryell. He has a Grammy nomination to his name and has performed at concerts at The Kremlin, Moscow, the Palais de Beaux Arts, Brussels and Sawai Gandharva Mahotsav, Pune.
Pandit Majumdar is a major innovator with New Age music and has introduced a completely new aesthetic in Indian music through his album Song of Nature / A Traveller’s Tale. The Guide caught up with the musician as he is set to perform at the Indo-German Urban Mela:
Journey as a Bansuri player
I really enjoyed my journey. Over the last 40 years of my musical career, the flute has been my best friend.
I have many young students who are doing well like Kalpesh, Ajay Pingle, Shivling and many others. I feel that youngsters like to learn the Basuri.
Bansuri in foreign countries
There is a big fan following for the Basuri in foreign countries. Hence, I had to open a school in Chicaco — Sadhana School of Indian Music.
Memories of Pune
I have lots of memories of Pune but I still cherish the memory of my first concert at Sawai Gandharva. I met Bhimsen Joshi at his residence and had a Laddu. The air of Pune is full of culture. Pune ne jisko maan liya, puri duniya ne usko jaan liyaa (whoever gains respect in Pune gets recognition world over).
About the Indo-German Urban Mela
I am happy to be part of the Mela since I played at Darmstadt in Germany many times as part of the Indo-German DIG music festival. I am sure this mela will aid Indo-German friendship.