There are many reasons for one to begin learning an instrument. You may wish to join a band or musical group, be looking to develop a new skill, earn some money, or simply want to try something different. A great way to get excited and inspired to learn an is to discover a musician you wish to emulate.
Indian music has had a wide impact on music all over the world, with its unique sounds and instruments that can be easily recognized. So, whether you want to purchase a new sitar or browse the shop from Drum Center of Portsmouth for a percussion instrument, you will find your inspiration by listening and taking a closer look at these three Indian musicians.
- Zakir Hussain
Zakir Hussain is an Indian tabla player from Mumbai who was born to Alla Rakha, also a tabla player. He focuses mostly in the genres of jazz fusion, Hindustani classical music, and world music. Taught by his father from age 3, he was considered a prodigy and began touring at the age of eleven. He is considered one of the most significant percussionists and musicians of India, having toured extensively and being invited to events such as International Jazz Day at the White House by President Obama himself.
He has been awarded many achievements including the Padma Bhushan, Padma Shri, the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award, among many others.
- Ravi Shankar
Perhaps one of the most well-known Indian musicians of our time, Ravi Shankar put the sitar on the map not only through Eastern music, but Western as well, inspiring such musicians as George Harrison of The Beatles. This collaboration served to popularize the Indian sounds in music and turn it into a global phenomenon. One of the most influential and revered musicians in the world, let alone in India, his legacy lives on through his music after his passing in 2012. His legacy also lives on through his daughter, Norah Jones, who became a popular jazz musician in the Western world of music.
In 1999, Shankar was awarded the highest civilian honour of Bharat Ratna for his influence on not only music, but other musicians around the world.
- A.R. Rahman
A more modern example of popular Indian musicians, A.R. Rahman wears many hats. He is also as a composer, producer, director, arranger, and conductor. Rahman is known for his ability to combine the sounds of Indian music with electronics, classical orchestral arrangements, and turn them into film scores. His wide repertoire speaks for itself and has awarded him honours such as two Academy Awards, two Grammy Awards, a BAFTA award, a Golden Globe, and many others.
Like Shankar, Rahman has been noted with bringing the beauty and unique style of Indian music to the Western world through the medium of film. He composed the Oscar award winning Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack.
Indian music has not only held its place within its own country’s history but has created a global phenomenon around the world. With its strong harmonies and pulsing percussion, it is easy to see why it has become so influential over the years.
The unique history of Indian instruments such as the sitar and the iconic beauty and flair of Bollywood musicals both offer inspiration to those wanting to learn a new instrument. So, whether you’d like to start delving into the world of the tabla or wish to begin lessons with the sarod, you will find a lot to appreciate (and maybe even emulate) thanks to these musical geniuses.