Workshop on Sarod, Indian Classical and going beyond tradition. In conversation with BRM host and bansuri player Jay Gandhi.
Alam has been touching the hearts of audiences worldwide with his music for over 20 years as a Sarodist, composer, performer, teacher of North Indian Classical Music, and son of the legendary Sarode Maestro, Ali Akbar Khan. Since his initial training into the Maihar Seni Gharana at the age of seven, Alam was blessed to learn and live in the traditional style of Guru and student. Ali Akbar Khan's careful crafting and guidance shows in each note as well as in Alam's imaginative way of expressing the ancient ragas passed down from the courts of Emperor Akbar by Mian Tansen in the 16th century.Alam's performance career was introduced to the world when he began accompanying his father onstage, internationally, from 1996 to 2006. They played in such prestigious venues as the Royal Jodhpur Palace, the Dover Lane Music Festival in Calcutta, and New York's Lincoln Center Jazz festival, as well as highly acclaimed concerts all over the United States, Canada, Europe and India.Along with accompanying his esteemed father, Alam's inner voice began to emerge and grow with his solo career, which began in 1998. He has toured worldwide and established himself as Ali Akbar Khan's true heir and the face of a new generation of Sarode players, attracting praise and attention from musical icons such as Sitar Legend Ravi Shankar, Carlos Santana, Slide Guitarist Derek Trucks, Ustad Vilayat Khan, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma, Pandit Buddhadev Dasgupta, and many more of India's finest musicians. Alam has had the privilege and honor of performing alongside some of India's greatest Tabla masters–such as Zakir Hussain, Swapan Chaudhuri and Anindo Chatterjee–in a constantly growing list of highly reputed venues, including the Dover Lane Music Festival, Saptak, Darbar Festival, the Chicago World Music Festival, the Carnegie Group, and many more.Alam has also collaborated and performed with a wide array of artists from different genres such as the Grammy winning Tedeschi Trucks Band, Karsh Kale, Beats Antique, Indie Hip-Hop visionary Eligh, film composer and performer Michael Andrews, composer Christopher Hedge, Rabab virtuoso Homayoun Sakhi, The San Francisco and Fremont Symphonies, conductors Christian Reif and Michael Morgan, Oud musicians Yair Dalal and Rahim Alhaj, Bob Weir, Rob Wasserman, and producer Amp Live. He is also a founding member and primary composer of the genre breaking group "Grand Tapestry" and is a composer for classical and contemporaryfilm and dance forms as well.Alam was the personal assistant to his father during his final years of life, helping aid him in teaching at the Ali Akbar College of Music. Alam, following in his father's footsteps, is now the head of instrumental studies at the Ali Akbar College of Music in San Rafael, California–amecca for students and lovers of Indian classical music.It is his life’s mission to keep his lineage's music alive and well–while bridging centuries–and creating a space both timeless and accessible for the present into the future.