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Ustad Rashid Khan has included the slow elaboration in his vilambit khayals in the manner of his maternal uncle and also developed exceptional expertise in the use of sargams and sargam taankari. He has also included the slower tempo vilambit. He is also extremely adept in producing all the other techniques and characteristic features of the Rampur Sahaswan style. His taankari is as powerful and varigeated as any of his predecessors and, in fact, among the best in the nation at the moment.

The brilliant Enayat Hussain drut and medium pace khayals ring as true in his voice as they have done down the ages. He is also a master of the tarana like his guru but sings them in his own manner, preferring the khayal style rather than the instrumental stroke-based style for which Nissar Hussain was famous. There is no imitiation of instrumental tone in them either. His vocal prowess is in the best tradition of the Rampur Sahaswan gharana. His mastery of all aspects tonal variations, dynamics and timbre adjustment leave very little to be desired in the realm of voice culture.

A notable achievement of Ustad Rashid Khan is the infusion of an emotional content into his melodic elaboration. This was generally considered to be lacking in the styles of the older exponents. The older ustads, being essentially court singers, put the emphasis on polished technique, skillful execution of difficult passages and the power to astound with their musicianship. The Nawabs and Mahrajas and their courtiers who were their prime audience found these things more interesting and did not bother about emotional appeal. For the khayal to them was classical art song and emotional appeal was not an important requisite for this type of music.

But after independence and especially in the second half of the 20th century, classical music, including khayal, which like the thumri, was the most popular vocal form, was patronised by audiences coming from the middle and upper-middle class segments of the society. The modern listener thus tended to find Mushtaq Hussain or even Nissar Hussain rather dry for their taste. As a result these singers were not as popular as certain contemporaries who infused emotions into the khayal. With the entry of Rashid Khan the tables have been turned and the spontaneous emotional appeal of his manner of singing, be it in the melodic elaboration or in the upper octave pukars, have won him enthusiastic listeners and followers the world over.

 

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