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At 67, veteran Indian music master Ali Akbar Khan successfully blends tradition and technology on Journey, a moving CD produced by his protege and student Jai Uttal. Journey, however, isn't modern secular Indian pop, but rather is best described as traditional Indian spiritual and devotional music using high-tech elements. Under Uttal's direction, Khan's sarod and other acoustic Indian instruments like the sitar, the tabla and the dholak successfully interact with electronic synthesizers (none of which sound forced or mechanical). Uttal had learned a lot from Khan, and showed his appreciation by seeing to it that technology was used soulfully throughout this album.
Maestro Ali Akbar Khan and a thirteen-piece East/West orchestra follow up his critically acclaimed Journey, performing classical ragas and Rajasthani folk songs. Combining sarod with Western classical instruments such as the cello, violin, bassoon and oboe, Khansahb brilliantly merges Eastern and Western musical traditions to produce an album of astounding beauty. The title song, "Garden of Dreams," explores memories of paradise and is an original raga composed by Khansahb. "Dhani," with guest artist Zakir Hussain, features a wind section of oboe, bassoon and native Australian didgeridoo. Also featured (and produced by) Jai Uttal.
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