Hindustani vocalist Ram Krishna Das always believed that the values of peace and love inherent to Indian classical music are not usually conveyed to audiences, who are merely given a superficial feel of good music.
At his concert at the YB Chavan Centre on Wednesday, Das hopes to fill this gap by putting together a recital of classical and folk songs from Amir Khusro, Kabir, Tulsi Das, Ustad Vilayat Khan, and chants from the Vedas, Quran and Buddhist texts. “This music is our tradition and it has been talking about peace, love and calmness for centuries,” said Das, a Kirana Gharana vocalist whose four-member group, Kala Vilas, has titled the concert Ishq aur Aman (Love and Peace). “The best way to promote the message of harmony is through lyrics written by the great masters of India.”
“The concert will also be an interface of classical as well as folk music, because I believe music should be friendly for listeners,” said Das, formerly a physics professor who is now working on a book analysing Indian music through physics and linguistics.
To mark how Amir Khusro, a 13th century Sufi poet, shaped Indian classical music, Kala Vilas has chosen to use instruments developed through Islamic culture – the sitar, shehnai and sarangi.