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Remember Shakti
Saturday Night In Bombay (ft. John McLaughlin)

Remember Shakti — Saturday Night In Bombay (ft. John McLaughlin) (June 19, 2001) [Verve]

 Remember Shakti — Saturday Night In Bombay (ft. John McLaughlin) 
•»   Live album by the world fusion band Remember Shakti released in November 2001 on the Verve label. The live set features John McLaughlin on Guitar, U. Srinivas on Mandolin, Vikku Selvaganesh playing Kanjira, Ghatam, Mridangam, all Indian percussion instruments, Zakir Hussain on Tabla and a number of Indian guest musicians.
Born: 4 January 1942, Doncaster, West Riding of Yorkshire, England
Notable instruments: Gibson EDS–1275*, Gibson L–4, Gibson Hummingbird, Fender Mustang, Gibson Les Paul Custom, Abraham Wechter–built "Shakti guitar", Ovation acoustic, 13–string Custom J–200.
Location: they live in the south of France.
Album release: June 19, 2001
Recording date: December 8, 2000 & December 9, 2000
Record Label: Verve / Universal
Duration:    
Tracks:
1. "Luki"    (John McLaughlin)      5:42
2. "Shringar"    (Shivkumar Sharma)      26:42
3. "Giriraj Sudha"    (U. Srinivas)      10:47
4. "Bell'alla"    (Zakir Hussain)      18:49
© 2001 Verve / Universal | 014 164–2
℗ 2001 Universal Music India Pvt. Ltd.
Notes*:
•»   Gibson EDS–1275 — McLaughlin played the Gibson doubleneck between 1971 and 1973, his first years with the Mahavishnu Orchestra; this is the guitar which, amplified through a 100–watt Marshall amplifier "in meltdown mode," produced the signature McLaughlin sound hailed by Guitar Player as one of the "50 Greatest Tones of All Time."
Personnel:
•»   John McLaughlin (guitar);
•»   Shankar Mahadevan (vocals);
•»   Debashish Bhattacharya (Hindustani slide guitar);
•»   U. Shrinivas (mandolin);
•»   Shiv Kurmar Shauma (santur);
•»   Sivamani (drums, percussion);
•»   Bhavani Shankar (dholak, pakhawaj);
•»   Roshan Ali (dholak);
•»   Aziz (dholak);
•»   Taufiq Qureshi (def, dafli, percussion);
•»   Zakir Hussain (tabla);
•»   Vikku Selvaganesh (kanjira, ghatam, mridangam, Indian percussion);
•»   A.K. Pallanival (tavil);
•»   Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma (santoor) Track 2.
Other credits:
•»   Max Costa — Recording Engineer
•»   Sven Hoffman — Engineer
•»   Lïla Guilloteau — Assistant coordinator
•»   Producer — John McLaughlin, Daniel Richard
•»   Licensed from — Universal International Music B.V.
•»   Marketed by — Universal Music India Pvt. Ltd.
•»   Manufactured by — Sagarika Accoustronics Pvt. Ltd.
•»   Mixed at — G.K. Studios
•»   Mastered at — G.K. Studios
•»   Mixed and Mastered at G.K Studios Monaco.
•»   Artwork — Barilla.design
•»   Coordinator [Assistant Coordination] — Leila Guilloteau, Virginie Papet
•»   Coordinator [Production Coordination] — Christian Pégand
•»   Engineer [Sound Stage Ingeneer] — Sven Hoffman
•»   Executive–Producer — Daniel Richard
•»   Management [Tour Manager] — Christophe Deghelt
•»   Mixed by, Mastered by — Max Costa
•»   Photography by — Christian Pégand
•»   Product Manager [Prepared for release] — Pascal Bod                            © John McLaughlin with his 13–string Custom J–200.
Description:
•»   Saturday Night in Bombay was nominated for the 2002 Grammy Award for Best World Music Album.
Review
•»   East–West fusions are so common now that the idea of a British guitarist with a jazz–rock pedigree mixing it up with Indian classical musicians raises no eyebrows. But in 1975, when John McLaughlin debuted Shakti, the concept and the music itself were downright alien, especially in comparison to the Mahavishnu Orchestra, which McLaughlin had just disbanded. Here was McLauglin sitting cross–legged, surrounded by Zakir Hussain’s tablas, L. Shankar’s Indian violin and Vikku Vinayakram on the ghatam, a bowl–like percussion instrument. McLaughlin had traded in his double–necked electric for an acoustic, found commonalities in places few had previously explored and, with his new cohorts, taken it all somewhere new. By 1977 it was over.
•»   Remember Shakti, the reconstituted iteration of of the group that came together in the late ’90s, is softer, more nuanced and less showy than its younger predecessor. From the earlier lineup, only McLaughlin and Hussain remain. U. Shrinivas on mandolin, V. Selvaganesh on kanjira, ghatam and mridangam, and vocalist Shankar Mahadevan fill out the group, and although the general approach has not changed radically, it’s a more mature Shakti showcased here in performance footage filmed in Bombay in 2000 and Montreux four years later. In interviews that supplement the live music, both McLaughlin and Hussain recall the bond they formed upon first meeting in the ’70s. They were, says Hussain, « like two minds, two thoughts, one action. »
•»   That telepathy still exists between the pair as well as the others. On « Giriraj Sudha, » the opening number from Bombay, the rhythms are airtight and the playing mesmeric, even as McLaughlin’s guitar sits out much of the tune, the co–leader preferring to clap his hands in wide–arcing forward movements. When he does hit the strings, he does so with a more graceful, unhurried touch than he ever would have considered in the ’70s.
•»   To underscore the differences, ’70s footage of the first Shakti, and even some brief Mahavishnu, is generously interspersed. Although Hussain now utilizes electronic percussion in addition to his tablas, Remember Shakti somehow seems even more organic and single–minded than the pineering group being remembered.
— Jeff Tamarkin — JazzTimes — June 2008
•»   A concert in support of the 2000 CD Saturday Night In Bombay offers the first of three concerts. The other two are excerpted Montreux shows from 1976 and 2004. Going from color to black and white to color (a distraction), the Bombay show offers proof of what the CD could only hint at: the picture of relaxed intimate creative expression among members — intense, traditional and jazzy. In the morphing Shakti and Remember Shakti, the melding of classical Indian technique and Western jazz improvisation finds the perfect expression. — John Ephland — DownBeat — July 2008
Product Description
•»   Formed in 1975, the Indo–Western world music group Shakti are celebrated in this fantastic release. First, the documentary « Shakti Timeless » (2006) examines the compelling history of the band. Then, original members John McLaughlin and Zakir Hussain present a variety of their fusionist classics in concerts filmed with their new group, Remember Shakti, in Bombay and Paris. Also includes two live sets that were recorded at the Montreux Jazz Festival. 180 min. total. Soundtrack: English.
Review | Stuart Broomer
•»   Guitarist McLaughlin and tabla drummer Zakir Hussain first joined together as Shakti in 1975 to fuse together the rhythmic and improvisational energies of jazz and the classical music of northern India. Regrouping in the late '90s, the two have since raised the level of the synthesis significantly in a quartet with the extraordinary young mandolin player U. Shrinivas and percussionist V. Selvaganesh. These recordings come from December 2000, when Remember Shakti was playing concerts in Bombay at the end of a world tour. It's clearly the occasion for celebration, with the group expanding to include several guests, but it's distinguished by the same quality that has graced their live performances and the previous CD, The Believer: a hypnotic luminosity that enfolds flights of extraordinary virtuosity and sustained dialogue into a tranquil whole. That mood is further enhanced here by the setting, the layered polyrhythms of multiple drummers, and the singing of Shankar Mahadevan. The wedding of East and West is most apparent in McLaughlin's sprightly "Luki," with the guitarist's harmonies specifically invoking jazz. "Shringar," nearly 27 minutes long, is played by a quartet, with its composer Shiv Kumar Sharma on santur, a Persian zither. Beginning in a sustained meditative stillness, it eventually builds to one of McLaughlin's most brilliant solos. As they have in the past, McLaughlin and Hussain again give new meaning and possibilities to the idea of "world music."           © Remember Shakti: Ramallah, Palestinian Territories, February 14, 2012
AllMusic Review by David R. Adler | Score: ****
•»   John McLaughlin brought his revived Indo–jazz project Shakti to Bombay (Mumbai) in late 2000, and the result is this live disc, which features only four compositions but runs over an hour in length. (The title is a deliberate play on 1980's Friday Night in San Francisco.) McLaughlin's electric guitar and Zakir Hussain's tabla remain at the core of the group's sound. U. Shrinivas (on mandolin) and V. Selvaganesh (on kanjira, ghatam, and mridangam, all Indian percussion instruments) remain from the previous album, but there are also a number of Indian guest musicians, giving the music many added dimensions. The most remarkable guests are Debashish Bhattacharya on Hindustani slide guitar, Shankar Mahadevan on vocals, and Shiv Kumar Sharma on santur, an Indian hammered dulcimer. Sharma composed the second track, "Shringar"; nearly half an hour long, it consists almost entirely of a hypnotic dialogue between santur and guitar. Mahadevan's vocal performance on the opening "Luki" resounds with spiritual power, while Shrinivas's "Giriraj Sudha" gives a sunny, optimistic lift to the somewhat mournful set.
By WALTER KOLOSKY, Published: November 19, 2002 |
•»   Last year's Saturday Night in Bombay suffers from a bit of confusion in the liner notes. They refer to a "certain Friday Night in San Francisco in 1978." That certain Friday night Jacques Denis was talking about, The Guitar Trio's Friday Night in San Francisco , actually took place in 1980. Liner note mistakes like that are bothersome, since there's no reason not to get things right on the record. Of course, Denis was attempting to link the earlier album's spirit with that from Remember Shakti's Saturday Night in Bombay. It is an apt comparison. Guitar fans in San Francisco couldn't wait to hear the trio of John McLaughlin, Al DiMeola and Paco DeLucia perform its first concert. In 2000, the atmosphere must have been very similar in Bombay, as many of India's most revered musicians would appear for two nights as special guest stars performing with Remember Shakti.
•»   These all–star outings always run the risk of over–polite hosts. When people purchase a Remember Shakti album, they want to hear Remember Shakti. They don't want to hear the group sitting back and letting its guests steal the show. Although Remember Shakti does take a little bit too much of a backseat on santur player Shiv Kurmar Sharma's "Shringar," the music culled from these two nights represents some of the best East–meets–West Indo–jazz fusion ever produced.
•»   The opening cut, "Luki," sounds particularly impressive to Western ears. According to people who were at the concert, this is a truncated version of a piece that went on for many more minutes. McLaughlin has never written any tune quite like this. Featuring many players and the vocals of Shankar Mahadevan, this tune is the perfect marriage of Indian, Western jazz and World music. It cries out bliss!
•»   The amazing electric mandolin of U. Shrinivas is somewhat underutilized on SNIB. •»   But his playing is a dominant and transcending force on the piece he penned, "Giriraj Sudha." The percussion support of the great Zakir Hussain and V. Selvaganesh has been the backbone of Remember Shakti, and its importance becomes even more apparent on SNIB. Rhythm is the common language for all of the players. And of course, McLaughlin makes his electric guitar sing the songs of the world.
•»   While those of us in the Western World listen to and enjoy this music based upon our own paradigms of musical structure, Remember Shakti has become a wildly popular band in India. And this is not just because the band has some Indian musicians. The widespread acclaim is due to the fact that within the framework of the music, its form and structure, the musicians follow traditional Indian precepts. Indians claim this is very rare thing for an internationally integrated band to do. And in fact, most Western ears don't even hear it. We are missing out. McLaughlin has spent years studying Indian Classical music. It has paid off in a big way.
•»   Remember Shakti will be remembered for its continuation of the pioneering musical and social spirit of the original Shakti, as well as the virtuosity of its musicians and the unique combination of electric instruments with Indian rhythms. The beautifully recorded and Grammy–nominated Saturday Night in Bombay represents the culmination of decades of hard work and study. It is the most enjoyable and accessible music of its kind. If one were to indulge in measurement of international jazz, Saturday Night in Bombay would be the yardstick. http://www.allaboutjazz.com/
Website: http://www.johnmclaughlin.com/
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Remember Shakti
Saturday Night In Bombay (ft. John McLaughlin)

 

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