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Mesmerizing Music: Susheela Raman (Playing in NY Aug09)

In India, Music, Travel on June 1, 2009 at 8:13 am

If you happen to be in New York, catch the mesmerizing jazz sounds of Susheela Raman at the Lincoln Center Out Of Doors Music Festival from August 5-23

Susheela Raman has always been known for her bravery, and this set is her most audacious yet, a confident reinterpretation of rock classics by the likes of Lou Reed, Hendrix, Lennon and Dylan, which are now treated as if they originated from India, Africa or the Mississippi Delta. Amazingly, she gets away with it. If her last album, Music for Crocodiles, was best when she explored her Indian roots (she was born in England to parents from south India), this new set shows she can show equal passion when treating English-language songs, which are tackled with emotion and a restraint she has not always shown in the past. The result is an unexpectedly inventive but intimate set, in which Dylan’s Like a Rolling Stone becomes a cool personal ballad with an African edge and Hendrix’s Voodoo Chile is given an Indian and jazz-tinged setting. Perhaps she didn’t realise that she had borrowed the album title from George Harrison, but I suspect he would have approved. – Guardian Review


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