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Photos: The Journey Continues – A Tribute To Ustad Alla Rakha Khan

A concert dedicated to the legendary tabla maestro’s 95th birth anniversary featured performances by Fazal Qureshi, Louiz Banks, Gino Banks, Rakesh Chaurasia, Sheldon D’souza and more

Rolling Stone India
Rolling Stone India Apr 30, 2014
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The talented string quartet performs at the tribute concert Photo Credit:

The talented string quartet performing at the tribute concert
[L-R] Jake Charkey, Shirish Malhotra, Mynah Marie, Marie- Line Aubry, Anaar Desai Stephens
Photo Credit: Chirag Vachha

Relatives, friends and fans celebrated the birth anniversary of tabla legend Ustad Alla Rakha Khan with a tribute concert called The Journey Continues. The concert, which was conceptualized by Khan’s son and  percussionist Fazal Qureshi featured jazz keyboardist Louiz Banks, drummer Gino Banks, flautist Rakesh Chaurasia, bassist Sheldon D’souza and a string quartet, helmed by Canadian composer Mynah Marie, which was assembled ahead of the show for a special performance. The fourth edition commemorated the artist’s 95th birth anniversary and brought together Indian classical, western classical and jazz. Says Gino Banks, “Fazal Qureshi wanted to showcase each genre in its original form.”

As one of the first pioneers of fusion music, Ustad Alla Rakha Khan collaborated with musicians from across the world, including musicologist and drummer for the Grateful Dead, Mickey Hart. Khan had also performed with the jazz musician Buddy Rich and violinist Yehudi Menuhin, among others.

While Chaurasia and Qureshi performed for the entire Indian classical segment on their own, the string quartet performed the western classical segment and Louiz and Gino Banks performed the jazz segment with bassist D’souza. The finale included a composition, which fused elements of all three genres and highlighted the sound of the tabla. Said drummer Gino Banks, on performing what he calls contemporary new classical jazz, “I don’t like using the word fusion anymore because a lot of musicians have brought confusion to the fusion scene. Fusion is not easy music to do.” The concert ended with a standing ovation and resounding cheers, long after the performers had left the stage.

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Photo Credit: Chirag Vachha

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