Ustad Asad Ali Khan «Back
New Delhi,
Rudra Veena
 Ustad Asad Ali Khan is the scion of the Beenkaars of the Jaipur tradition. Born in Rampur where his illustrious father, the late Ustad Saqiq Ali Khan, was the court musician to the late Nawab Raza Ali Khan, Ustad Asad Ali Khan received his training in Dhrupad and Rudra veena from his father.

His recital for the Akashvani National Programme of Music this month would be long remembered for his superb exposition in raga Mian-ki-Malhar, an immortal creation of Mian Tansen. Its three main constituents, Malhar, Kanada and Sarang, have been blended to create this melody with noble effect, and at the same time without giving the least prominence to any of the three constituent ragas. The rich tonal flavour of the bass strings was brilliantly put to release the bold and sweeping glides, thereby almost creating the image of the monsoon clouds roaring and thundering. There was a good number of reposeful phrasings in the alap, which was taken at length. This was followed by jod-jhala sequences of varying hues and colours, at times creating the effect of a charmingly sung lullaby. The overall appeal of the recital was akin to singing through the frets and the strings.

The dhrupad composition in the 12-beat Chautala played with commendable pakhawaj accompaniment by Pandit Dal Chand Sharma provided a befitting finale to Ustad Asad Ali Khan's hour-long rendering in the opening Mian-ki-Malhar. sThe Rudra veena maestro provided a colourful finale to this most memorable recital with a brief alap-jod in raga Desh followed by a composition in the same raga that was set to the 10-beat Jhap tala. Incidentally, raga Desh too is a form of the Malhars that are a specialty for the rainy season.
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