The best of both worlds

Balanced mix

in sync A performance by Geetha Navale and ‘Esparanto’.

Although the performance was interrupted by frequent power cuts, the band kept to their beats. Their music was a mix of blues, Carnatic, rock and Hindustani.

The ‘Esparanto’ band members comprised: Denmark Michael Sorenson on blues harp, sound designer Nanda Kishore on the lead guitar, Sandeep Vasistha on the flute, Sangappa Hagur on tabla and Rajkumar on tavil. Gopal Navale played the rhythm guitar and also sang.

The band began with a Muthuswami Dikshitar’s composition titled Mahaganapatim in Raag Nata. Here the performers retained the original composition and did a little bit of improvisation in between and towards the end of the piece. Here the Raag Nata was very close to blues scale and blues Harp player Michael Sorenson did some great improvisation.

Next was a composition Khanda Chapu and the piece that the band performed was a Walter De La Mere poem— ‘Slowly silently now the moon’. The main improvisations to this piece were by Sandeep Vasishta on the flute and Nanda Kishore on the string synthesiser. Most of their pieces were connected to nature in some form or the other and the moon was an integral part of most of the pieces such as ‘Moonlight Cafe’, ‘Tsunami No Not me’. A flamenco piece was performed  by Nandakishore.

Another composition, on Raag Todi titled ‘Inner fire’ was a beautiful blend of the blues harp and the veena. This was set apart from the other songs. There were a lot of improvisations in ‘Raag Todi’ that made it all the more interesting.  

Among the Carnatic compositions that were performed on the occasion were Ambavani Nannu in Raag Keeravani, Raja Raja Radhite in Raag Niroshti. The concert drew to an end with ‘Tillana’ in Raag Hamsanandi, a jugalbandi by Geetha and Sandeep on the bansuri.

Talking about fusion music Geetha said, “Just using various instruments is not fusion music, it’s a seamless blending of different genres to create a new sound. Fusion is possible only when all the members of the group are listening to each other and have an open-mind  approach. Else, it becomes a cut and paste job.”

 M A N Prasad, one among the organisers, said that the concert was an effort to draw young people towards Carnatic music.

Muralidhar M K said, “It’s great when different instruments blend to make a new sound. It’s a good evening.”

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