On this day 100 years ago, the Emperor of Melody (Swar Samrat), Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, graced us with his presence on this beautiful but troubled Earth. This humble and unassuming man bridged the distance between the wondrous musical mathematics of our universe, and the totality of emotion and beauty that the human heart can bear.
May we all get to sit again at his feet, in the great here-after! (more…)
Within weeks of moving to San Francisco from the East Coast, I met by happenstance several of Khansahib’s students and next thing I knew I was standing on line at the Ali Akbar College of Music registering for a vocal class, despite not being a singer! During the span of about ten years, I would continue, though less and less as I got buried in a PhD and the co-founding of a youth music and arts center in Oakland. Yet still, whenever I would see Khansahib he would encourage me – “even if you don’t have time to practice, keep coming to class.” (more…)
Happy 100th Birthday to beloved Khansahib, Baba Ustad Ali Akbar Khan. My life totally changed the night he performed in Burlington, VT on October 12, 1977. Little did I know that I’d meet my future husband, Roop Verma, who came to town to see Khansahib perform before Roop started his own tour. Roop stayed in my landlord’s guest room for artists, as he had a non profit performing arts center called Mountain Greenery. I missed the concert studying for a thermodynamics exam. But I knew the moment I met Roop, that I would marry him someday. (more…)
I am so happy to have this opportunity to offer tribute to Khansahib, who so powerfully influenced my life. Meeting Baba changed the course of my life, and I cherish each of my many memories with this remarkable human being. Like so many others, I have a plethora of wonderful stories of my experiences with Khansahib. I’ve chosen to share a story which to me demonstrates the complexity, magnanimity & beauty of this phenomenal man. (more…)