‘AMARRASS NIGHTS’ to enthrall music enthusiast at Delhi’s Sunder Nursery

Amarrass Records is thrilled to invite you to the first AMARRASS NIGHTS at Delhi’s Sunder Nursery’ — an evening of transportive music in the mesmerising Bagh-e-Azeem, a 16th-century heritage park complex adjacent to Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi.  Delhi will witness two exciting new groups, while highlighting a folk instrument — the kamaicha — that we proudly claim to have saved from extinction. 
On 11th January (Saturday  7pm-10pm) of 2020, as the sun sets and the moon begins to rise, the sound of kamaicha, a 17-string instrument from Rajasthan that is as complicated, beautiful and the endearing dholak will rise to mark the beginning of a new year. 
The performance by Ghewar & Firoze Khan, brothers and masters of these two very Indian instruments, will be followed by young qawwals from Uttrakhand taking the stage. Their rendition of Sufiyana kalaams by Amir Khusrao, Meera Bai, Baba Bulleh Shah, and of course the magical qawwalis of Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, will take you on an immersive, emotional journey and leave you with a life-long memory of a magical night.

Ghewar & Firoze, two brothers from Rajasthan, are the sons of the late Padma Shri Sakar Khan. Masters of the kamaicha and the dholak respectively, they are accomplished musicians and members of the Grammy artist Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt's Desert Slide Project. They have performed at some of the most exciting music events across the world, including at Jodhpur's RIFF and Fez Festival in Morocco. 
The great legacy of the legendary Sakar Khan ji is a heavy burden to carry, but the ease with which the notes flow from Ghewar ji's kamaicha makes one thank the Gods of music for spreading the gift so generously amongst those closest to the great man. Ghewar and Feroze gives the raw beauty of Rajasthan's desert, and the otherworldly romance of the tunes that colour that landscape with heart achingly poignant notes.
Qawwali group Rehmat-e-Nusrat from Uttarakhand are a unique sextet of young musicians who bring an interesting and fresh perspective to the timeless tradition of qawwali music. The group will present qawwalis by Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Sufiyana kalaams by the great poets Amir Khusrao, Meera Bai, Baba Bulleh Shah, Kabir bhajans, and original compositions. It is an aural punch in the gut, delivered with a velvet glove. The raw power of Sarvjeet Tamta's vocal chords, and the often silken touch with which he caresses the notes of "ibaadat" that is the hallmark of the sufiana qalaam make one shake one's head in wonder.  It is not easy to resist the magnetic charm and the sheer power of the music that comes from the very depths of the boys' hearts and reaches the very depths of the listeners as well.
The kamaicha is an instrument played only by the Manganiar community in western Rajasthan. Its body, carved from a single piece of wood cut from a seasoned mango tree, includes a round, hollowed-out belly that extends to the neck and the fingerboard. Its belly, covered with stretched goat skin, produces a warm tone that takes you to the sand dunes of Jaisalmer-Barmer region. Three of its 17 strings are made from goat guts.
Elaborating more on the Kamaicha project, Ashutosh Sharma Co – Founder Amarrass Records said “It was sometime in 2012, when we were recording the late Padma Shri Sakar Khan (father of Ghewar and Firoze Khan) - an ustad of the kamaicha, who had played with Yehudi Menhuin - that we discovered, to our shock, that the only known Kamaicha maker in India, Shankar Suthar, had given up making these instruments as there was no money in it and was instead making sofas in Pune.”
We called him back to Jaisalmer, placed an order for a few kamaicha and since then Amarrass Society for Performing Arts has been able to get him to make almost a dozen of these instruments that, to us, is symbolic of the syncretic ethos and spirit of India. Shakara Suthar, a Hindu, carves the wooden bowl and other parts of the instrument, and then he hands it over to Sakarji's family, who are Muslims, to complete the instrument and play”, Ashutosh commented.
Traditionally, when an instrument, which takes about a month or two to compete, comes home, there is a celebration. A goat is sacrificed for a feast and the skin and guts processed to make the gut strings and skin for the resonating chamber or the belly of the kamaicha.
Tickets are available at https://pages.razorpay.com/amar20201/
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