Hypnotic Khayals

Shweta Jhaveri – Khayal – Saga
Shweta Jhaveri

Khayal – Saga (21st Century Cosmos 21C 002, 2005)

Shweta Jhaveri has emerged as one of the promising young artists of classical Hindustani music. Originally from Gujarat (India) and now residing in the United States, Jhaveri possesses the silky smooth voice and easily proves her mastery over the complicated tradition of classical raga. Khayal – Saga , her latest offering, is soulful and rises above and winds around the tabla and harmonium like a wisp of precious incense smoke.

Khayal – Saga is based on the Khayal, the classical music form from northern India. Hindustani is the style of singing from the north as Carnatic is the style from southern India. Making up the khayal (meaning thought, idea or inspiration) is the raga (or scales), the basis for all Indian music. The Khayal is sung in Hindi with lyrics that can be based on romantic, devotional or traditional stories.

Jhaveri’s Khayal is divided into two tracks Raaga Puriya Dhanashree and Raaga Bhairavi. The first track is a 35-minute voyage of Jhaveri’s vocals that soar, growl and trill over Subhash Kamat’s tabla and Jayant Bhalodkar’s harmonium. Lush slowness evolves into quick, intricate battles of vocals and tabla. Shweta Jhaveri is a master with a voice that winds and weaves its magic spell over the listener. Her mesmerizing vocals astonish with intense emotion and hypnotic virtuosity.

Part of Shweta Jhaveri’s mission is to preserve and expound upon the Khayal vocal tradition. Khayal – Saga must certainly be a new jewel in the classical Hindustani musical tradition.

Fans might also want to check out her other recordings such as Madhuvanti, Anahita, Hindustani Classical, Cosmic Khavals, and In Various Mood .

Buy Khayal – Saga

Author: TJ Nelson

TJ Nelson is a regular CD reviewer and editor at World Music Central. She is also a fiction writer. Check out her latest book, Chasing Athena’s Shadow.

Set in Pineboro, North Carolina, Chasing Athena’s Shadow follows the adventures of Grace, an adult literacy teacher, as she seeks to solve a long forgotten family mystery. Her charmingly dysfunctional family is of little help in her quest. Along with her best friends, an attractive Mexican teacher and an amiable gay chef, Grace must find the one fading memory that holds the key to why Grace’s great-grandmother, Athena, shot her husband on the courthouse steps in 1931.

Traversing the line between the Old South and New South, Grace will have to dig into the past to uncover Athena’s true crime.