Stringing notes of perfection

Stringing notes of perfection
Grammy award winner Pandit Vishwa Mohan Bhatt doesn’t take life too seriously, preferring to live and understand every moment.

This is what, he says, inspires him to compose music and offer Indian classical music a new dimension every time he runs his hands over the veena chords.Well over 60 years, Vishwa Mohan still experiments with the veena and has just released two albums.

 He has also invented a new raga, ‘Vihaan’, meaning the first rays of the sun which he has fondly named after his grandson. Talking about where he gets his inspiration to make music, he says, “There is no one thing that inspires me to make music. The waves of the ocean, the footprints or the sand on the beach could inspire me. The tunes I create are based on what mood I am in at that moment.” 

This legendary musician has also invented the ‘Mohan veena’ which has 20 strings as opposed to the traditional guitar that has six strings. He says that this instrument brings out all kinds of moods — sorrow, joy and happiness.

“The Mohan veena is the merging of the sitar, sarod, veena and sarangi. It is an amalgamation of sorts. This instrument sustains sound for a longer time,” he explains.  He observes that an ideal instrument evolves, feels and expresses a musician’s sensitivity. “It cleanses the body, mind and soul,” he adds.

He says that it has been his mission to promote and popularise Indian classical music across the world but he adds that he does not work within the strict realms of Indian classical music — he is open to experimenting with different genres to create something different. “I have worked with country music, Chinese fusion and contemporary tunes to create something new,” he adds.  

The new breed of musicians, says Vishwa Mohan, is intelligent. “The young crop of musicians have the benefit of technology which we didn’t have when we set out to make careers in the music industry.”  

Commenting on the many music reality shows on television, he says, “These shows do well to pick new talent. I enjoy watching these shows minus all the drama that happens on stage. These shows do well to challenge youngsters to come up with new and innovative tunes. It gives them the freedom to explore and experiment.”

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