Rasik Raga Lakshan Manjari
Introductory songs on the ragas of the North Indian Music System with English Lyrics for the Western student. The words will teach you the raga's rules, while the melody will simultaneously unfold the raga's image (swaroop)! Listen and Learn ...... An idea so simple yet so brilliant manifested as Panditji and I were trying to create an educational tool to teach our English speaking students in the West. Rasik Raga Lakshan Manjari is the product of our quest. It is the first time traditional ragas have been expressed with English words so that students in the West and all over the English speaking areas of the World can learn the basics of the Hindustani Raga Padhiti by simply learning a song. Lakshan Geet are introductory raga songs and they express within the song all the necessary rules that are required to learn and play the raga. These have, in the past, only been available in Sanskrit and Hindi for Indian students. The compositions that are weaved around the English words are built with all the Raga's attributes in mind and hence reinforce the words thus making this a very powerful learning tool. Panditji sings them with powerful yet clear renditions so that the student can sing along. All the ornaments are expressed and might take a while to digest fully. But in time we are very confident that the student will listen and learn successfully. S.D. Batish's career in music is nothing but extraordinary. Since a very young age his love of singing was evident. When asked, he attributes this gift to his beloved mother whom he credits with many old compositions. He often starts singing them in remembrance. His time with his Guruji Chandan Ram Charan gave him an acute and critical look into the classical raga structures. He was quick to learn and rendered his Guruji's songs with great accuracy and love. This brought a great deal of attention and focus on him from the Indian music community as he traveled all across India as an All India Radio artist accompanied by some of the best instrumentalists such as Ustad Ahmedjan Thirakwa (tabla), . His frequent concerts also brought him fame and he was naturally inducted into the film industry by his cousin Pt. Amarnath. Here he honed his skills as a singer, and composer. Later, he was to direct and compose music for many movies in Patiala, Lahore, Bombay and England. This bought him fame and respect amongst his fans and peers. Today these years of experience and this skill of composing and writing with such acute awareness has all come together to enable him to write over 30 books on Indian music and compose over 5000 compositions to help teach the music of India to the lover and student of Hindustani Sangeet. He is a true master of the various vocal and instrumental styles of North Indian music, including Bhajans, Geet, Thumri, Ghazals, Film Sangeet, etc. Some of his outstanding films are Betab, Bahu Beti, Toofan, Harjeet, Tipu Sultan, Ham Bhi Kuch Kam Nahin, and Amar Keertan. His songs have been sung by such top artists as Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhonsle, Talat Mahmood, Mohamad Rafi, Sudha Malhotra, Manna Dey, and Geeta Dutt. Some of his all time hit songs are, Pagadi Sambhal Jatta, Khamosh Nigahen, and Aakhen Kehe Gayi Dil Ki Baat. Ashwin Batish is an extraordinary sitarist and tabla player. He received training in the North Indian classical tradition from his father S.D. Batish and later created his own unique fusion of Indian classical sitar with pop, rock, jazz, calypso, funk... an example of a few hybrids he excels at. He is famous for such songs as the Bombay Boogie, Raga Rock, Raga Jazz, Casbah Shuffle and Sitar Mania. Ashwin is also very well know for being an educator. His series of instructional videos for the sitar, tabla, dilruba, dholak, vichitra veena, harmonium that he has produced with his father Pandit Shiv Dayal Batish have become a very sought after commodity by the Indian music student. Ashwin often gives private and group Indian music lessons at his Santa Cruz, California USA facility and is often called upon by various music festivals and universities to perform his sitar and be a guest lecturer for weekend workshops and seminars on Indian music and ethnopop, raga rock sitar fusion. Ashwin Batish's pioneering effort in worldbeat music called 'Sitar Power' has earned him some critical reviews and great respect in the music community. The sitar is ageless in Ashwin's hands. It is souped up for amplification and effects! We hope you get to catch one of Ashwin's electric performances. His music is as dynamic as his stage presence.