What real Fusion sounds like

Nov 01, 2014, 07:45 IST | The Guide Team

This weekend, head to the Nehru Centre for a unique musical confluence of Hindustani Classical, Carnatic and American Jazz music

While Fusion music has many takers in India, there are few bands that have actually managed to retain the old, traditional notes, and yet create music that is appealingly distinct and contemporary at the same time. Offering such a unique confluence of music styles, this time is Vishnamo, a five-member piece, which will be performing in the city as part of Banyan Tree’s Kala Viraasat concert.

(From left) Vikku Vinayakram, George Brooks and Ustad Shujaat Khan
(From left) Vikku Vinayakram, George Brooks and Ustad Shujaat Khan

The band features five different artistes, uniting the ancient streams of Hindustani and Carnatic music with Jazz music. So, offering Hindustani singing to this unique event is singer Ustad Shujaat Khan, the famous son and disciple of legendary Ustad Vilayat Khan, whereas, violinist duo Ganesh-Kumaresh bring in their Carnatic music influences. Joining them on the South Indian percussion instrument, ghatam is Vikku Vinayakram, acknowledged for taking ghatam to the world platform.

Finally, adding a Western touch to this Indian ensemble is American saxophone player George Brooks, a popular name in the Indian Jazz Fusion scene. Brooks, the lone artiste adding a Western flavour to the band says, “We have been performing as Vishnamo for several years now. Each performance is unique, as we explore the distinct styles of Carnatic music, Hindustani Classical, Sufi Ghazals and American Jazz. There is really nothing quite like it.”

Interestingly, the band was conceptualised by Mahesh Babu, the managing director of Banyan Tree, and also the organiser of the event. The idea was to create a unique musical bridge uniting the ancient streams of Hindustani and Carnatic music with Jazz music and share it with the world. And Vishnamo seems to achieve that. “Vishnamo, in my opinion is one Fusion get together where artistes, rhythm and melody come together in total harmony,” says Khan.

Vinayakam shares a similar view. He says, “Music can heal anything and can break any barrier across the globe. At Vishnamo, artistes come together and show that spirit through music,” he signs off.

What the band creates is not just music but brilliant creative synergy, also highlighted by the perfect musical chemistry of the group. Don’t miss this performance.

On Today, 7 pm onwards
At Nehru Centre Auditorium, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli.
Call 28260674 
Entry Rs 250, Rs 400, Rs 500, Rs 750

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