Music Greats

April 9th, 2012

Last week Marc Rossi, professor of piano at Berklee College of Music, graced IUE with a number of music presentations.  In just 3 days Rossi, a classical music composer; jazz pianist-composer; and practitioner of Indian music, lectured on Indian music; led a jazz workshop; performed at the Gennett Mansion; and led a composition master class. Whew!

During the lecture on Indian music Rossi played tracks from Ali Akbar Khan and Ravi Shankar while clapping out the time and discussing their individual styles as well as the influences of North and South Indian culture.  Rossi also gave listeners a taste of his own tune “Jazz Impressions of a Kriti” available here while students thumbed thru the score and measured the meter along with him. 

Those of you that missed the lecture or who Rossi left wanting more can listen to these musical greats by using the Naxos Music Library database.  Listen to the likes of Ali Akbar Khan, Ravi Shankar, and Marc Rossi with Arnold, Bennett, and Prasanna or search the database for performers, composers, and works.  If listening to them just isn’t enough you can read biography information about Kahn and Shankar in the Biography in Context database or in the Oxford Music Online database.  Beatles fan?  Search within your results for mention of Shankar’s influence on the Fab Four.

 Ali Akbar Khan in 1971 image via ImageQuest

For general information about Indian music search the Garland Encyclopedia of World Music Online database. According to Garland, “Each volume contains an overview of the region, a survey of its musical heritage, traditions and themes; and a description of specific musical genres, practices, and performances. Articles include detailed photographs that show musicians, musical instrument, and the cultural context of dances, rituals, and ceremonies.”  The Oxford Music Online database can further define terms you’ll find like raga, kriti, tal, and alap.

Last but not least read up on Indian history with the Asia & Oceania section in the Modern World History Online database.  Or, read the literature of the region in the South and Southeast Asian Literature database.

Happy reading, listening, and playing!