Sangam: Hindustani Music Meets Jazz & Contemporary Classical

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Something magical can happen when two rivers meet, two traditions collaborate, or two talented friends work hard on a joint creation. Paul Livingstone on sitar and Pete Jacobson on cello take inspiration from the Hindustani musical tradition, and from Paul’s teacher and mentor Ravi Shankar who collaborated so eloquently with Yehudi Menuhin on violin and helped to popularize Hindustani music in the West. Pete and Paul also draw inspiration from American jazz improvisation. Sangam, in Hindi, means many things, including “confluence,” or the blending of two people, ideas or traditions into something fresh and new. Paul and Pete focus on the Hindustani tradition in this recording. Hindustani music centered in Northern India after diverging from Carnatic music in the 12th Century. The most basic elements in South Asian classical music are the raga and tala. A raga is traditionally a monophonic melody, though Paul and Peter take liberties, incorporating occasional counterpoint and harmony (often in thirds). Each raga adheres to a strict musical structure, which can be executed vocally or on instruments in their individual styles. The tala is the cyclic rhythmic framework which outlines a beat cycle and provides the glue to bring the instruments together in polyrhythmic play. I love what Pete and Paul do within this classical tradition, blended from time to time on this album with their inspired incorporations of new music and jazz. This is not as far-fetched or radical as it may at first seem; both Indian classical musicians and modern jazz cats focus on improvisation on the main melody or idea, just as European players did in the Renaissance. (Bob Attiyeh, producer)

Product Description:

  • Release Date: September 16, 2022

  • Catalog Number: YAR84146

  • UPC: 198002841469

  • Label: Yarlung Records

  • Number of Discs: 1

  • Period: Contemporary

  • Composer: Hindustani Traditional

  • Performer: Paul Livingstone, Peter Jacobson