Friends, I have been working for about two months on this review essay titled “The Music Room: On losing and finding Hindustani classical music.” The essay is on Amit Chaudhuri’s book, Finding the Raga: An Improvisation on Indian Music. The book discusses the history and development of the raga, tying it together with art, literature, philosophy, and anecdote to offer a modern understanding of the ancient art form.
While discussing the book, I had the chance to weave in my own thoughts and personal narrative, including the ways in which my journey in Hindustani classical music is informed by my training in Western classical music. I also included some anecdotes about my own lessons with Ustad Salamat Ali.
I am grateful to The Baffler Magazine for commissioning this piece, and to Ratik Asokan for his work in editing it. I hope it’s an enjoyable and meaningful read.