World Fusion / Jazz Related Electronica/Hip-Hop • United States
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Born in the US, Sarathy Korwar grew up in Ahmedabad and Chennai in India. He began playing tabla aged 10 but was also drawn to the American music that he heard on the radio and that leaked through the doorway of his local jazz music shop, Ahmad Jamal were John Coltrane early discoveries. At 17, Sarathy moved to Pune to study for a degree in Environmental Science, but instead dedicated his time to music: practicing tabla under the tutelage of Rajeev Devasthali, translating his skills to the Western drumkit and playing as a session musician. Finishing his studies, Sarathy began to think about pursuing a career in music and moved to London, where he trained as a classical tabla player under the guidance of Sanju Sahai and graduated with a MMus in Performance from SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies) focusing on the adaptation of Indian classical rhythmic material read more...
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SARATHY KORWAR Day To Day album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Day To Day
World Fusion 2016
SARATHY KORWAR More Arriving album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
More Arriving
World Fusion 2019
SARATHY KORWAR Birthright album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jazz Related Electronica/Hip-Hop 2020


SARATHY KORWAR Day To Day Remixes album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Day To Day Remixes
Jazz Related Electronica/Hip-Hop 2016

SARATHY KORWAR live albums

SARATHY KORWAR Sarathy Korwar & The UPAJ Collective : My East Is Your West album cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
Sarathy Korwar & The UPAJ Collective : My East Is Your West
World Fusion 2018

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Album · 2019 · World Fusion
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US-born, India-grown and UK-based percussionist Sarathy Korwar last year released one of the best album containing African American spiritual jazz and Indian music mix for years if not decades, "My East Is Your West". His new release,"More Arriving", indicates the change of recording company (from Gearbox to Leaf) and radical change in the musical genre itself.

There are no sitars and bansuri flutes anymore in Korwar's new music, and the Indian (or South Asian) component is predominantly represented by hip-hop recitatives (besides of percussion,of cause). Album's title doesn't relate with any song, but demonstrates author's reaction on "brexit" (with very illustrative cover art as well). Being a Westerner and a member ob Britain's largest ethnic minority at the same time, Korwar with his album is trying to produce naturally non-existing music. In States, African Americans have the blues and jazz, which for years became the sound that is a visit card of American music around the world. There is a trad Indian music, and Indian fusion in UK, and burgeoning spiritual jazz scene strongly influenced with Afro-beat and Caribbean rhythms, and the hip-hop scene as well. Korwar uses original hip-hop from South Asian megalopolises mixing it with London's spiritual jazz of today elements and adding some modern British polishing over it.

As a result we have funny music, and explosive music, and danceable music and a sad music-all in one. Korwar's regular collaborator British reedist Tamar Osborn on bari builds very signature sound of today's London spiritual jazz, when different vocalists are responsible for different atmospheres of each song. Sometimes it sounds as Bollywood soundtrack transferring to battle hymn (as on opener "Mumbay" with rapper MC Mawali singing on Hindi/Marathi). Or like meditative prayers full of passion as on songs where British-Pakistani singer Zia Ahmed sings.

Some songs are sung in English, and others - on South Asian languages, the listener can understand some lyrics, and most probably just be hypnotized by others. As on Korwar previous album, there is obvious East and West here in this music, but the difference is there is much more nerves and tension here. As Korwar says himself, here on "More Arriving" (what illustrates his vision about more and more immigrants coming to UK without the relation with "brexit" final result)he tried to construct "brown voices" music, a new standard of South Asian diaspora representation in musical culture.

Different from what Korwar did before and obviously not for everyone's taste, this album wouldn't pass unnoticed that's for sure.

SARATHY KORWAR Sarathy Korwar & The UPAJ Collective : My East Is Your West

Live album · 2018 · World Fusion
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
US-born, India-grown and London-based percussionist and tabla player Sarathy Korwar debuted as leader two years ago with studio album "Day To Day" recorded in India (participating was one of the new British jazz scene's leaders - tenor Shabaka Hutchings) and released on hip Ninja Tune label. The album contained an eclectic mix of Indian music, dialogues, electronics and London sound and was a partially successful debut, hardly more.

"My East Is Your West", Korwar's second release,is a strong improvement. Massive triple-vinyl live set is all-organic and contains all-new material. Band's line-up is slightly modified with British female tenor Tamar Osborn replacing Shabaka Hutchings, additional alto sax player Jesse Bannister and improved Indian instruments section (incl. Santoor/Tabla player John Ball, Mridangam / Kanjira player B.C. Manjunath and Bansuri player Aravindhan Baheerathan).

As a result, the new band (named Upaj Collective) sounds much more "Indian" and recalls Shakti's Indian fusion sound. This is not strange, third album contains a John McLaughlin composition, "Mind Ecology". And that's only for starters - album's songs are covers of renown spiritual jazz, fusion or World fusion songs, just seriously reworked and presented as Indian music scented longish pieces.

Pharoah Sanders' "The Creator Has A Master Plan" lasts almost ten minutes and besides of main theme's intro and some snippets sounds quite different from original. Cover of Alice Coltrane "Journey In Satchidananda" is closer to how it sounded decades ago, as well as Ravi Shankar's "Mishrank". One can find Abdullah Ibrahim's "Hajj", Don Cherry's "Utopia And Visions", and Joe Henderson's "Earth" on a list among others.

With no doubt a significant component of successful result is not only strong material, but HOW the band plays it. Multicultural collective of authentically trained Indian instruments players and Europeans find a unique balance between two cultural traditions. The music is obviously Indian-influenced with characteristic arrangements, techniques and sound, but at the same time it never slips toward esoteric meditative repetitive noodling which undermined some of Shakti's later releases. Instead, the Europeans add more framed structures, rhythmic order (almost groovy in moments), and in general more accessible, slightly "westernized" sound.

A bit conventional for today's fashion, acoustic-only sound makes this album probably a bit less hip but at the same time builds a bridge with spiritual jazz and Indo-fusion of the 60s and 70s producing a music which has bigger value than just a hit of the day. One among stronger world fusion albums of the last couple decades.


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