India Alba - High Beyond

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Music samples


(2009) 8 tracks (52 mins): Himalayan Hideaway * The Hang Tune / Loch Bheemtal * Highland Dream * Bellydancer * Hartola / Lesley Shaw's * Essaouira * The Black Isle / Lucy Farr's * Jog.

Two Indian classical musicians and two Scottish traditional musicians combine their influences.

India Alba have developed a sound which reflects the broad common ground between their Scottish and Indian traditions.

Many raga gats (themes), particularly those from the borders of the Himalayas, have close relatives in the melodies of the Scottish highlands and islands, and for both of them the drone sounds of the bagpipes or the tampura play an important part in the music.

India Alba are Sharat Srivastava (violin), Ross Ainslie (border pipes, whistles, cittern), Nigel Richard (cittern) and Gyan Singh (tablas, frame drum, shakers) with Duncan Lyall (bass) and Euan Richard (guitar).

"This band have a sound of their own which is not an imitation of any other band or genre. Their strong melodies are supported by having an excellent balance between sur and tal (melody and rhythm). I have seen Sharat's playing growing over the years and his involvement in many different fields of music, so I am happy to hear this new development where he has collaborated with these three other fine musicians." (Ustad Amjad Ali Khan)

"I had a great musical evening with Sharat and Nigel sharing their improvisations on whistle and smallpipes, and was taken aback by how often particular modes and notational progressions reminded me of Gaelic songs or tunes from our own tradition in Scotland... I hope there will be many more expressions of kindred spirits at this musical level." (Allan MacDonald, Glenuig)

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