Tag Archives: Susheela Raman

Morocco’s Essaouira Gnaoua and World Music Festival Reveals 2019 Lineup

Acclaimed Moroccan event Essaouira Gnaoua and World Music Festival 2019 will take place June 20-23. The festival is held in Essawira, on Morocco’s Atlantic coast.

The festival will feature Gnawa music masters (maâlems) along with Cuban music, Tuareg grooves, Tamil sounds, jazz, flamenco, and reggae.

The lineup includes Osain del Monte (Cuba), Tuareg act Tinariwen (Mali), flamenco artists Maria del Mar Moreno and Jorge Pardo (Spain), Amazigh group Imdiazen, Congolese musician Baloji, and Tamil-British singer Susheela Raman.

The event also includes rising talent such as young maâlem Houssam Gania, Moh! Kouyaté, and Betweenatna.

More at www.festival-gnaoua.net

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Artist profiles: Susheela Raman

Susheela Raman

Susheela was born in London in 1973 to a Tamil family. From her childhood she studied traditional Southern Indian music as taught by her parents. She grew up between two musical cultures: western and Indian.

At the age of 11 her family moved to Sydney where she started her singing career. Her strong stage presence was soon noticed. Wishing to delve deeper into her Indian cultural heritage she left for India to study with Shruti Sadolikar, a leading Hindustani classical singer.

Back in Great Britain in 1997, she sought to combine Indian and Western musical styles. In 1998 Susheela started to work with Joi, pioneers of “Asian breakbeat fusionist” music and was featured on their album One and One Is One (Real World).

Susheela Raman

In 1999 Joi won the BBC Asia Music Award. Susheela sang with Joi in Europe and the United States supporting the Eurythmics at Wembley Arena and winning over audiences unfamiliar with the new Asian sound.

She continued her fusion of South Asian and Western musical styles in her solo recordings.

Discography:

Salt Rain (Narada, 2001)
Love Trap (Narada, 2003)
Music for Crocodiles (2005)
33 1⁄3 (2007)
Vel (2011)
Queen Between (2014)

United Kingdom’

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Powerful and Refreshing Simplicity, Susheela Raman at The Stables

Susheela Raman

 

Susheela Raman and Sam Mills at The Stables, Wavendon, Buckinghanshire, UK.
November 13th 2005

I came to Susheela Raman rather late in life ~ but better late than never in this case ~ when she guested on Mercan Dede’s Su where I was immediately transfixed by her ‘lush, breathy voice’
on the track Ab-i Beka.

On a cold Sunday night she, with her husband, Sam Mills, impressively skillful on acoustic guitars, played to a small but truly enthusiastic and appreciative audience in the up close and personal surroundings of Johnny and Cleo’s Stables in the hinterlands of Milton Keynes.On stage there was a powerful and refreshing simplicity to their pairing ~ they had no other musicians with them and used only the minimum of tracks ~ but they still made a totally involving and mesmerizing night of it, with that acrobatic and throaty depth to her real woman’s voice that has something of the dark and primeval about it.

She moved seamlessly from emotive, traditionally based songs to smooth cool jazz and was equally as exciting to watch as to listen to, throwing herself physically into the wilder, rocking renditions from Music for Crocodiles and her earlier albums, making full use of that amazing mane of hair.

She apologized before the encore for the frog in her throat ~ well, it must have been some incredibly talented frog! ~ and then sinuously launched into the most sexy, sensual and scary, scary version of Trust In Me from Disney’s Jungle Book as it was never sung by the snake, Kaa!!!

I’ll never be able to look Mowgli in the eye again………………..

Buy Susheela Raman’s CDs: Love Trap, Music for Crocodiles, and Salt Rain.

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Love Trap by Susheela Raman

Susheela Raman - Love Trap
Susheela Raman – Love Trap
Susheela Raman

Love Trap (Narada, 2003)

Described as “more beauty and more beast,” by the BBC newcomer winner, Susheela Raman, her latest release Love Trap seduces its listeners into taking a wild ride through international musical territory. The titular track with its erotically charged lyrics tossed over a tapestry of Arabic Indian exoticism certainly qualifies this album as the hottest release this summer. And don’t be surprised if the words “love trap” emerge into everyday language since this catchy phrase tells all. Love Trap is the English language version of Ethiopian songwriter Mahmoud Ahmed’s Behmen Sehbeb Letlast, which translates to “it is impossible not to love you.” And it is impossible not to love Susheela’s latest recording with its explosion of percussion, soaring vocals and gorgeous instrumentation provided by who’s who of the global music scene. The repertoire is a mix of folky-blues and a musical journey through the Carnatic tradition of southern India, where Susheela was born to Tamil parents in 1973 and where she trains with Hindustani vocalist Shruti Sadolikar.

Two of the tracks, the Bollywood classic Ye Meera Divanapan Hai with its light drums and bansuri (Indian flute) treatment and Sakhi Maro which features the musicians from Tama on kora (Tom Diakite), clay pot (Djanano Dabo) and guitar (Sam Mills), act as a by product of these musical lessons. Sam Mills, (Susheela’s husband) who produced the award-winning Salt Rain also came on board to produce Love Trap and the album was recorded at the El Cortijo studios in southern Spain. Various musical guests traveled to Spain to appear on the recording, including Afro-Beat drummer Tony Allen, tabla performer Aref Durvesh, Greek clarinetist Manos Achalinotopolous, members of Tame, flamenco pianist David Dorantes, as well as, Tuvan musicians Radik Tiolauch and Albert Kuvezin of the rock group, Yat Kha.

The songs on the album hail from ancient times or are covers of recent international pop, but all of the songs feature innovative arrangements that blend the best of India, North Africa, Mongolia and continental sounds.

The bewitching Love Trap which is sung in a five-note scale representative of Ethiopian church music (not that you would equate this song with church music), features Allen on drums and back up vocals and instrumentation that twangs with sexual intensity. Susheela’s seductive vocals are at an all-time best showing off her versatile talents. The melancholic cover of Joan Armatrading’s Save Me features guitar and tabla light and is sung in a bluesy-Indian style. While Love Trap speaks of the beginning of a love affair, Save Me comes at the end of an affair. The Indian classical songs, Amba and Manusoloni feature Tuvan musicians Radik Tiolouch (also contributes horsehead fiddle) and Albert Kuvezin along with electric guitar and light programming. Bliss begins with an Erik Satie style piano solo performed by David Dorantes and is soon joined by a swirling bansuri duet which is further embellished by Susheela’s vocals.

Also worth mentioning is the dissonant Half Shiva Half Shakti showcasing the dual drumming talents of Allen who performs syncopated jazz rhythms that are fused with Durvesh’s explosive tabla beats. Clarinetist Achalinotopolous contributes a manic performance as well. Susheela and company end the CD with a Durvesh’s tabla beat extravaganza (Blue Lily Red Lotus) and the experience in total will leave listeners breathless. Love Trap isn’t an album for the faint of heart. This is an album that will get your blood pumping, your hormones racing as well as, raising your musical aptitude.

Buy Love Trap

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Susheela Raman’s Love Trap

Susheela Raman - Love Trap
Susheela Raman – Love Trap

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA – Love Trap (Narada World) is the new album by Anglo-Indian singer Susheela Raman.

The recording features Indian music woven with Western cultures as well as European, African and Asian musical stylings.

Joining Raman on Love Trap are such familiar musical powerhouses as Sam Mills and Tony Allen among others. Susheela was born in London in 1973, to a Tamil family. From her childhood, she studied traditional Southern Indian music as taught by her parents. She grew up between two musical cultures: western and Indian.

In 1998, Susheela started to work with Joi, pioneers of “Asian breakbeat fusionist” music and featured on their album One and One Is One (RealWorld). The group won the BBC Asia Music Award in 1999.

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