Zakir Hussain - The Elements - SPACE (MUSIC CD)|
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ProductID: 2808 - Jewel Case - Pages (Year: 3/98)
Music Today ~ ISBN: CDM 95011 A
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About the Author
Zakir Hussain is the most popular exponent of tabla. He has received worldwide acclaim for his innovative
techniques and dexterity.He has established himself equally and firmly both in quality-conscious international music and in the highly demanding, critical field of Indian music. He encompasses tradition as the purists
conceive it and yet he possesses an individual creative talent that can reach out to ideas as contemporary as the Jazz Yatra. He is also well versed with other percussion instruments like the dholak and khol.
Zakir Hussain has taken tabla playing to new heights and in the process highlighted the subtle nuances of this
instrument which is said to be the most precise and sophisticated in the world. He has a unique ability to communicate with his audience. He is also a master at fusion.He believes in experimenting with music from all over the world and has created some of the finest music with a jazz band called Shakti.
He was born in Bombay on March 9, 1951. His father is the renowned tabla maestro Alla Rakha,
and it was only natural that as a toddler, he started experimenting with the tabla, which was
the focal point of the household.
He played his first formal concert at the age of 12 years with Ali Akbar Khan. He left for
the United States with Ravi Shankar to perform at the Filmore East in New York City in 1970.
He studied ethnic musicology at the University of Washington, and learnt different kinds of
instrumental music. He got his degree in western classical music, and then taught Hindustani
classical music at the University of Washington, Portland State University,
and Ali Akbar College of Music in San Francisco. In 1978 he married Antonia Minnecola,an
Italian American, Kathak dancer.
He has composed music for films like The Little Buddha of Bernardo Bertolucci, Ismail Merchantªs
In Custody and Heat and Dust, Cappolaªs Apocalypse Now, Merchant-Ivoryªs A Perfect Murder and
for some American television serials. Besides accompanying many Hindustani classical musicians,
Zakir plays with the jazz group Shakti. He has played with the rock group called Grateful Dead
and many jazz musicians. In 1973, he took over the Tal Vadya Rhythm Band, which later evolved
into the Diga Rhythm Band, and more recently, Zakir Hussain and the Rhythm Experience. Zakir Hussain
had teamed up with co-composers Philip Glass and Mickey Hart to write the score for the Atlanta
Olympic Games, 1996.
In 1988 he was honoured with a Padmashree and was bestowed with the Sangeet Natak Academy Award in 1990.