More from India this week – a track from my double album Sangeet Sartaj by Zakir Hussain. For those who don’t know, Zakir Hussain is a tabla player – so those who always leave when the drum solo starts, you can head for the bar now.
But Zakir Hussain is not any old tabla player – he is “the most celebrated classical percussionist of modern times” in the words of the album notes. And this is probably not hyperbole either.
Zakir Hussain was born the son of another famous tabla player, and accompanist to Ravi Shankar, Alla Rakha and his younger brothers are also percussionists of some stature.
Apart from his playing of classical Indian music, Hussain is known for his many collaborations with western musicians. Amongst others, he has played with George Harrison, Bill Laswell, John McLaughlin, Mickey Hart, and Bela Fleck & Edgar Mayer.
He has also composed and arranged music for the cinema most notably the Merchant Ivory Film Heat and Dust.