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Shukriya CD and
the 2008 Grammys

By NARAS Committee vote,
SHUKRIYA was made eligible
for a Grammy nomination
(World Music Category)

Attunement and Shukriya
in Europe

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What people are saying about Sukhawat Ali Khan:

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Global Qawwali

Qawwali musician Sukhawat Ali Khan lives in the USA and adds new elements to the venerable Sufi art. The opening piece on Shukriya, titled "Mustafa," blends traditional Qawwali sounds such as vocals, tabla and harmonium with electric bass, creating a powerful resonance that enriches the overall sound.

As a young musician, Sukhawat is also influenced by contemporary popular sounds. He uses bhangra and world beat sounds, in addition to the funky electric bass played by African musician Baba Ben Okulolo, to enhance his music.

While some of the pieces are upbeat and festive, combining South Asian percussion with African drums, some of the best material on the CD are the two dreamy cuts titled "Natnarayani (part 1) and (part 2). Sukhawat's intimate style, accompanied by a hypnotic drone and strings brings the listener a soothing feeling of calm and peace.  Highly recommended.  Buy Shukriya.

~ A. Romero, World Music Central


    On the three albums he made as part of the Ali Khan Band (aka Shabaz) a group he formed with his sister and brother-in-law, Pakistani singer/harmonium player Sukhawat Ali Khan employed crossover elements, but he takes a more traditional approach on his debut solo album Shukriya (which means "thanks" in Urdu). Khan is a teacher of traditional northern Indian and Pakistan classical music, and although the songs are original compositions, they are played on traditional instruments for the most part, even if Robert Halim Friedman does introduce acoustic and electric guitars here and there as well as organ on "Ajameri." That song has a syncopated rhythm somewhat reminiscent of reggae, but elsewhere Khan often leads the instruments with his voice, slowing or speeding up as the mood takes him. He sings in a variety of languages -- Urdu, Farsi, Punjabi, Hindi, and even a bit of English in "Barapar" -- mixing religious and secular sentiments. The centerpiece of the album is "Natnarayani (Part 1)," which is based on a raga composed by Khan's father, Ustad Salamat Ali Khan, a slow, contemplative piece. But just because the music is traditional, that doesn't mean it doesn't kick up its heels on occasion. "Bhangra Piyar," coming late in the set list, is an up-tempo, celebratory track appropriate for dancing. As one would expect of a first solo album from a veteran performer, Shukriya gives a more direct sense of the artist than previous collaborative works.

 

~ William Ruhlmann, All Music Guide


What people are saying about Wingin It:

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       On their debut album, Robert Halim Friedman and Vakila Marjo ter Veld, who perform under the name Wingin It, play what might be called "folk reggae"; the dominant instrument is Friedman's acoustic guitar, and more often than not the songs are set to a reggae beat, over which the two usually harmonize. The reggae connection is strengthened by the couple's devotion to Bob Marley, two of whose compositions, "Natural Mystic" and "Redemption Song," earn covers. (They are also fans of Kate Wolf, whose "Brother Warrior" and "Give Yourself to Love" are included.) And their devotion to Marley is not merely musical. They have some fidelity to his spiritual leanings, which they mix up with their Sufi faith, so that both "Jah" and "Allah" (along with "God") get name-checked frequently. Their songs combine romantic and spiritual love as twin themes, such that sometimes it isn't clear whether they are declaring their love for each other or for the Almighty, not that it seems to matter, since it's all "one love," anyway. This mood of sweetness and light gives way on occasion, notably on the songs "Oh Listen Within," "Playing with Fire," and "Light Into Darkness," to critical messages to the less-enlightened of the world, whom Friedman and ter Veld feel must get with the program. The Internet and television, as well as "the downtown suits" and -- Marley's term -- "the downpressors" are named as villains, and Wingin It warns that their ways must change: "Stop commercializing your soul. / Let go your desire to control. / Wake up now and you'll arrive / In the sacred web of life." But much more space is given over to those who have arrived already in the sacred web of life, particularly Friedman and ter Veld, who are happy to share their love of each other and of God with the world in music.

~ William Ruhlmann, All Music Guide
 

 

    “Your contribution to Earthfair was outstanding. I felt very fortunate and honored that you took the time and effort to come out and kick it on our stage. You’re both awesome musicians and I was really stoked to hear you perform”             

~ Pete Welch, Director, Vashon Island Earthfair

 

    “Thanks for the album (Attunement) with its nice, folksy feel. All best wishes as you bring the message to the Northwest”          

  ~ Roger Steffans, Bob Marley biographer

 

    “Heard (Attunement). Gorgeous. I was especially taken with your lovely
version of Brother Warrior…I put it right on my computer so I can play it in the Camp Winnarainbow office while I am working. I hope many people can enjoy it”

~ Jahanara Romney, Co-Director (with Wavy Gravy) of Camp Winnarainbow

 
   
 
 


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