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Scottish violinist Patsy Reid Performs With The Suhail Yusuf Khan Collective In Chennai And Mumbai

British Council India’s three-year collaborative arts project, Folk Nations, brings Scottish folk, Carnatic and Hindustani classical to stage at two free gigs this week

Rolling Stone India Sep 19, 2013
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Scottish fiddle player Patsy Reid. Photo: Leila Angus and Archie Macfarlane

Scottish violinist Patsy Reid. Photo: Leila Angus and Archie Macfarlane

Collaborations can be a magical experience for both musicians and their audience, and Scottish multi instrumentalist Patsy Reid should know. Reid has performed (and formed bands) with leading musicians from the UK and across the world including tabla genius Zakir Hussain. This week, Reid will take to stage with the Suhail Yusuf Khan Collective comprising Khan of Delhi-based group Advaita, leading ghatam player Giridhar Udupa from Bengaluru and experimental tabla artist Shariq Mustafa from Delhi. Says Reid in a phone interview from Chennai, where she is scheduled to perform this evening, “Suhail is fantastic and very used to collaborating. He not only wants to share his music, but is also hungry to learn all that he can.” 

Reid, who plays the fiddle, viola, cello and piano, is an equally enthusiastic collaborator if we go by her schedule in India. She tells us, “I landed last evening and we managed to rehearse for a couple of hours.” Reid, who was in India earlier this year for a residency in Kolkata, which included musicians from the UK, Pakistan, Bangladesh and India, says that she was drawn to the sound of the sarangi since the start. She adds, “The violin, viola and sarangi are similar in tone and when Suhail came to London in April, we jammed for about 10 minutes and that point, it became apparent that it would be very easy and natural for us to create something new together.” 

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When they take to stage in India, Reid hopes that the performance will not showcase Indian and Scottish music separately, but give the audience a sense of how well the two merge. “Both Suhail and I have some ideas, which have resulted in some new melodies,” says Reid, “I don’t want to imitate the sound of the sarangi, but maybe I’ll come with a new Patsy Scottish sarangi sound.” 

Reid and Suhail Yusuf Khan Collective perform as part of the Folk Nations series organized by British Council India.

Catch Reid and Suhail Yusuf Khan Collective  in Chennai at Boardwalk at Ramada Egmore on September 19th at 7.30 pm. Entry: free. Email [email protected] for a pass in Mumbai at Bandra Base on September 20th. Entry: Free

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