• Ustad Zakir Hussain - Tabla
  • Zakir Hussain Nationality: Indian
  • Zakir Hussain Chest Size: 36.5 inches
  • Zakir Hussain Biceps Size: 12.5 inches

Shivkumar Sharma & Zakir Hussian: Classical Indian Music

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Zakir Hussain tabla
Seiichi Tanaka taiko drums
Anantha Krishnan mridangam
Mannargudi Vaidyanthan tavil
Navin Sharma dholak
Sabir Khan sarangi

For his second week of residency, tabla virtuoso and SFJAZZ Resident Artistic Director Zakir Hussain brings one of his most exciting and enduring projects, augmented with special guests. Ever since Hussain started presenting the Masters of Percussion tour in the mid 1990s he’s scoured India for out-of-the way drumming traditions, looking to spotlight the subcontinent’s rhythmic riches. While billed as a percussion showcase, the project also encompasses India’s infinitely variable melodic tradition. Unfolding as a series of solos, duets, and ensemble jams, the concerts are designed as an extended encounter between the venerable classical traditions of North (Hindustani) and South (Carnatic) India, as well as folk and Western influences. Hussain credits his father Alla Rakha, India’s greatest 20th century tabla master, with encouraging him to present various Indian rhythmic traditions to international audiences. For this engagement, Hussain and his superlative ensemble of Indian percussionists are joined by Japanese taiko drum luminary and founder of the San Francisco Taiko Dojo, Seiichi Tanaka, as well as musicians and dancers from the Diamano Coura West African Dance Company. Astounding, athletic and utterly electrifying, the Masters of Percussion offer an unforgettable journey into the world’s most intricate and sophisticated rhythmic practices.


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The tradition of Indian percussion has been revolutionalized by tabla player Zakir Hussain. The son of Ustad Allah Rakha, the long time collaborator of Ravi Shankar, Hussain has inherited his father's quest for bringing the music of India to the international stage. His recording credits include albums with George Harrison, Joe Henderson, Van Morrison, Jack Bruce, Tito Puente, Pharoah Saunders, Billy Cobham, the Hong Kong Symphony and the New Orleans Symphony. His work with Mickey Hart of The Grateful Dead have included performances and albums with the Diga Rhythm Band and Planet Drum. Hussain joined with British guitarist John McLaughlin and Indian violinist L. Shankar to form the east-meets-west supergroup, Shakti, in 1975. Although the group disbanded in 1978, they reunited to tour as Remember Shakti in 1998. Hussain has been equally successful as a bandleader. During the 1980s, he toured with Zakir Hussain's Rhythm Experience. His debut solo album, Making Music, released in 1987, was called "one of the most inspired East-West fusion albums ever recorded". In 1992, Hussain launched a record label, Monument Records, that focused on Indian music. A lengthy list of awards have been bestowed upon Hussain throughout his career. In 1988, he became the youngest percussionist to be awarded the title "Padma Shri" by the Indian government. Two years later, he recieved the Indo-Ameican award in tribute to his contributions to furthering relations between the United States and India. Planet Drum, an album co-produced with Hart in 1992, received a Grammy for "best world music album", a NARM Indie Best Seller award and won the Downbeat Critics Poll for "Best world music album". Still a youngster when he began to attract attention with his virtuosic playing, Hussain began his musical career at the age of seven and was touring by the age of twelve. In 1970, he made his American debut as accompanist for Ravi Shankar. Three years later, he became the leader of the Tal Vadya Rhythm Band. The group subsequently evolved into the Diga Rhythm Band. In 1976, the band collaborated on a self-titled album with Mickey Hart. Hussain has performed on the soundtracks of numerous films including Apocalypse Now!, In Custody and Little Buddha. At the 1983 Cannes Film Festival, he was nominated for an award as composer and music director of the film, Heat And Dust. ~ Craig Harris