Some 55 years after John Coltrane began his foray into the study of Indian classical music, cultural exchange between raga and jazz culture is flourishing within the borough of Brooklyn. Brooklyn Raga Massive was founded in 2012 with the aims of both bringing classical Indian music to a new audience, and updating the music itself to match the time and setting. These simultaneous backward and forward-looking impulses will be on display at The Gallery on August 10, when the Massive will present two distinct sets, including a workshop.
The Massive draw from a myriad of sources: Hindustani music of northern India, John Coltrane, George Harrison & the Beatles, and modern Western classical composers like Terry Riley. Of course, Ravi Shankar has an outsized influence on the group. And as opposed to the guru-driven hierarchy typically found in Indian musical studies, the collective prides itself on being collaborative and democratic, and hosts open jam sessions on a regular basis.
The early set will feature a face familiar to The Jazz Gallery: drummer Dan Weiss, who will man the tabla along with singer Samarth Nagarkar and Rohan Prabhudesai on harmonium. The late set features a group called DRONE GHOST, which consists of Kane Mathis on kora and oud, Joshua Geisler on bansuri flute, Max ZT on hammer dulcimer, and Rich Stein on percussion and hydra, an instrument of Stein’s own design.
Brooklyn Raga Massive presents a workshop and two performances at The Jazz Gallery on Wednesday, August 10th, 2016. At 7 P.M., vocalist Samantha Nagarkar, harmonium player Rohan Prabhudesai, and tabla player Dan Weiss will present a Hindustani classical vocal workshop and performance. At 9:30 P.M., the group Drone Ghost—Kane Mathis on kora & our, Joshua Geisler on bansuri flute, Max ZT on hammer dulcimer, and Rich Stein on percussion & hydra, will present a set of their music. $15 general admission ($10 for members) for each set. FREE for SummerPass holders. Purchase tickets here.