Ganges Delta Blues - from A Meeting By The River
February 21, 2015 2:41 PM   Subscribe

This is a piece of magical music VooDoo by Ry Cooder and VM Bhatt.

A Meeting by the River can best be described as a spontaneous outpouring of music, unhindered by convention or form, brought into being by musicians so supremely capable that the music is never labored, the technique of their craft always subservient to the final product.

Cooder and Bhatt are genuine masters of the guitar and mohan vina, respectively. The latter, an instrument created by Bhatt himself, is a sort of hybrid between a guitar and a vichitra vina, and is played with a metal slide.

This fact is just one of the many things that connect Bhatt's playing to Cooder's, who plays nothing but bottleneck guitar here. The musical interplay between Cooder and Bhatt is nothing short of astounding, especially so considering that they met for the first time only a half-hour before the recording of this album.

The whole album is great, but this track sticks with you. It takes a while to get cooking, but at about 1:58 you are in it. This is all live, and one take.
posted by bobdow (12 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
This is a fantastic album, one I've had for well on 15+ years. Gorgeous.
posted by gsh at 2:44 PM on February 21, 2015

Never heard this before. Great stuff and thanks for sharing!
posted by mangasm at 3:21 PM on February 21, 2015

Music from this album was used to good effect at the ending of Dead Man Walking
posted by polecat at 3:25 PM on February 21, 2015

Love, love this album, but it deserves a better post than this. A link to the writeup used in the FPP would be a good start. It might help us learn what a vichitra vina is.

I read an account of the recording session for the album, published at the time of its release, but it doesn't look like it's online. The report was a bit gear-fetishy (Water Lily Acoustics is an audiophile label, and have a lot invested in their two-mic-to-analog live recording setup) but had an interesting play-by-play on the session itself, being literally an on-the-spot jam session.
posted by ardgedee at 3:26 PM on February 21, 2015 [1 favorite]

Also don't miss Bourbon and Rosewater, with Jerry Douglas and Vishwa Mohann Bhatt! Astounding!
posted by sutt at 3:56 PM on February 21, 2015 [4 favorites]

That's spectacular. I'm going to have to get a copy. I'm a big fan of Bob Brozman's collaboration with Debashish Bhattacharya. So, what is it about slide players and the music of India? Even Derek Trucks sounds more inspired than ever jamming to Sahib Teri Bandi.
posted by cleroy at 4:29 PM on February 21, 2015

The whole album is recorded live, one take, in front of an audience of silent meditating monks. Recorded using custom constructed microphones.

Oh, and each principle musician is assisted by a son, so this is a real classical Indian music master-journeyman moment.

Just buy the damn CD.
posted by clvrmnky at 5:34 PM on February 21, 2015

This is cool. I'll probably listen to the whole record after I've listened to Ry Cooder's "Paris, Texas" Soundtrack you've now reminded me of. :)
posted by bigendian at 5:47 PM on February 21, 2015

my personal favourite from that record is the achingly beautiful longing - obviously made for playing on your ipod when you're walking your cow to the river for a drink, but, when it comes up randomly on the way to the dentist, it will put a spring in your step too
posted by toycamera at 8:40 PM on February 21, 2015

obviously made for playing on your ipod when you're walking your cow to the river for a drink

Hipster artisanal dairy farming.
posted by clarknova at 9:00 PM on February 21, 2015

I love all of these Water Lily Acoustics Recordings. Tabula Rasā with Béla Fleck, Jie-Bing Chen, and the previously featured V. M. Bhatt is pretty great.
posted by dhens at 6:29 AM on February 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

If you like this, check out Harry Manx. He studied under Bhatt for five years in India.
posted by mysprocketisborked at 2:53 PM on February 23, 2015

« Older An Answer to the Novel’s Detractors   |   That goat does not care. Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments