Essence of Raga Tala
Release date: 28th August 2020
Cat ID: EUCD2920
Essence of Raga Tala is a unique and compelling take on Indian musical tradition; nine Indian ragas and selected talas are re-imagined for both traditional and western instruments in new and exciting directions.
Kuljit Bhamra MBE is a prolific composer, musician and record producer whose main instrument is the tabla. He is best known as one of the record producers who pioneered the British Bhangra sound and for collaborations with musicians of many different genres.
Kuljit has worked on numerous film scores, including Bend it Like Beckham, Bhaji on the Beach, A Winter of Love, and he appears on soundtracks for The Guru, The Four Feathers and Charlie & The Chocolate Factory.
When Andrew Lloyd Webber launched his hit musical Bombay Dreams, Kuljit performed as on-stage percussionist. Kuljit went on to write the Indian music for the West End musical The Far Pavilions and more recently, he co-orchestrated the music for the musical adaptation of Bend it Like Beckham, in which he also performed on stage.
He is the recipient of many awards including a platinum disc for outstanding record sales presented by the much-loved BBC Radio DJ John Peel, who was a big fan of his music. His cutting-edge projects and ground-breaking educational work earned him the prestigious honor of MBE in the Her Majesty The Queen's Birthday Honours List 2009.
In his ongoing mission to Demystify Indian Music, Kuljit recently created a new universal Indian Drum Notation System which he is currently disseminating with his company, Keda Music.
This album features a star-studded cast of London-based performers and musicians, including sitarist and composer Jonathan Mayer (son of the Kolkata composer John Mayer - creator of the well-known Indo-Jazz Fusions) and M. Yogeswaran, whose voice is featured in numerous stage productions and film soundtracks including Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut.
Essence of Raga Tala is a special collection of new recordings captured at Bhamra’s own Redfort Studios. The pieces, performed by prominent UK-based artists, feature traditional instruments such as sitar, violin and bansuri flute in addition to western instruments such as electric guitar, cello, acoustic guitar, synthesizer and an unusual multi-tabla set consisting of up to six tabla drums – each tuned to the prominent notes of the particular raga scale – which Kuljit himself plays.