Ustad Aslam Khan is one of the most interesting and refined singers of recent decades. He comes from a musically extremely rich background (see below), which is very manfest in his singing. We had already posted some recordings by one of his teachers, his uncle the legendary Altaf Hussain Khan (see here).
Thanks to Ambrose Bierce for sharing this cassette.
|Ustad Aslam Hussain Khan (A Living Legend)|
Ustad Aslam Khan is one of the top and most senior musicians at present. Ustad Aslam Hussain Khan has descended from the Hapur Gharana (Meerut U.P.) of Shaadi Khan and Murad Khan whose achievements sound legendary. Ustad Shaadi Khan and Ustad Murad Khan were the court musicians of the Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar. Ustad Aslam Khan, has completed 50 years of dedicated service to Indian music this year, and on this occasion, his disciples, students and fans congratulate him for this great achievement. Born on 14th April 1940.
"Music runs in my blood" as he replies during an interview. Ustad Aslam Khan, is the representative of 500 year old traditional Musician's family of the prestigious Khurja Gharana, Atrauli (Jaipur) Gharana, Agra Gharanas and the Delhi Tanras Khan Gharana. These Gharanas have given India such giants as Haji Ustad Altaf Hussain Khan, Gayan Samrat Ustad Azmat Hussain Khan, Sangeet Samrat Ustad Allahdiya Khan, Gayan Acharya Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan, Aaftab-e-Mausiqui Ustad Fayyaz Khan and many others. The contribution of these music stalwarts, to the enrichment, promotion and popularity of Indian Music is monumental.
"I was initially trained in music by my maternal uncle Haji Ustad Altaf Hussain Khan of Khurja Gharana." "Later around 1950, I came to Bombay permanently, to stay with my brother-in-law, Gayan Samrat Ustad Azmat Hussain Khan, who not only became my Guru but also mentor and benefactor". "My Guru Ustad Azmat Hussain Khan, belonged to the Atrauli (Jaipur) Gharana, and was one of the greatest musicians India has ever produced". "He was a performer, musicologist, poet as well as a perfect teacher". "He not only taught me music but also urdu and Arabic". "I owe most of what I am today, as a musician and as a social being to my Guru". "I also had a golden opportunity of learning music under the great Ustad Vilayat Hussain Khan of Agra Gharana, and also Ustad Khadim Hussain Khan." Aslam Khan was a child prodigy who gave his first stage performance at the age of twelve years. He is a khandani Musician belonging to the near extinct world of "Guru Shishya Parampara". This gem of purest ray serene, happily vegetates, in the dark unfathomed caves of sincere dedication and unalloyed devotion to music, blissfully unmindful of the honours like Padmabhushan, Sangeet Natak Academy Awards, Cultural Awards or Gaurav Puraskars, that should have come his way long ago but have not.
Ustad Aslam Khan's inborn genius enabled him to blend the diverse speciality of each respective Gharana into an individual style which has tremendous aesthetic appeal, his khayal singing is marked by a leisurely development (badath) of the "Vilambit" while the "Drut" is embellished by a spectacular variation of "Layakari" and breath takingly "tayyar taans".
Aslam Khan has recorded not less than four hundred bandishes (compositions) in rare ragas with the ITC SRA, SAPTAK (Ahmedabad), SNA (New Delhi), AIR (Mumbai & Delhi), Goa Academy Samvad foundation & NCPA Mumbai. He has recorded 300 rare ragas with SRA and fifty Ragas with Saptak. In recent times Aslam Khan Sahab has been declared as one of the greatest exponents of khayal gayaki & the senior most representative of the legendary Khurja, Atrauli (Jaipur) & Agra Gharanas.