Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan – The Phenom

It’s 4AM and it’s been more than 3 hours now since I started to listen to Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan (BGAK) today. Time has just flown past and I am forced to wind up only with thought of catching some sleep before I leave for office in another 2.5 hours. Such has been the impact of the music of the legend on me in the past few weeks. 

I first heard the Ustad in an old recording of his about 10 years back and was held spellbound by the Marwa he had sung! But I somehow didn’t get a chance to listen to his music much after that … and I am making up for all of that these days by listening to him as much as I can amidst a really crazy schedule at work. 

My recent BGAK mania was triggered off when the audio of A.R. Rahman’s “Delhi 6”  got released. One of the tracks in Delhi 6 is “Bhor bhayi“, sung by the Ustad and by Shreya Ghoshal in the raga Gujari Todi. ARR has just included a part of the rendition by the Ustad. The entire original rendition is just too good, especially the parts that ARR has not included in the album. 

The thing that struck me when I first heard the Ustad was his voice. What a range and what a weight in his singing! How much riyaz he must have done to sing so effortlessly and to traverse 3 octaves with such ease! And what clarity even while singing lightning fast bhrigas! I feel I can just go on and on and on.  Let me however stop right here and drench myself once more in his Megh Malhar before I hit the sack.

19 thoughts on “Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali Khan – The Phenom

  1. The prefix Bade in BGAK’s name is very apt. His Sudh Saarang is haunting, particularly so if listened to around noon.

    My aging aunt and dying me both have a huge collection of Hindustani recorded music in the form of LPs, cassettes, CDs, and DVDs.

    While many individuals have come forward to accept them, we would like them to be of use to the public beyond an individual’s life time. One suggestion made was about Ananya of Bangalore who already have an archive of recordings. Any other ideas?

  2. check this out: another tribute from Rahman to Ustad BGAK via Vijay Prakash’s lovely rendition of the composition based on Raga Bihag:

    And here’s BGAK’s version:

    The legendary Pt. Bhimsen has a version of his own:

    Ustad Shahid Parvez’s interpretation of the same composition on his Sitar:

    Pt. Jasraj tried his hand as well:

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