For all press inquires please contact us.

The 2016 press release is here.

New-York-Times-Wall Street Journal

June 25

Though she’s now a music legend, Dolly Partoncame from humble origins: She and her eleven siblings grew up “dirt-poor” in Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains before she moved to Nashville as a teenager and broke into songwriting. Those down-home roots show on her latest release, Pure & Simple, a double-disc compilation of classics new and old, showing the full range of her career and talents. Her tour in support of the record is the biggest she’s staged in the last two decades; here, she visits Forest Hills Stadium to grace us with her shining light. Forest Hills Stadium, 1 Tennis Place, Queens, foresthillsstadium.com — Lindsey Rhoades

Summer Sounds: Eight Concerts to Catch in NYC
Dolly Parton

Ragas Live Festival at Pioneer Works – Diana McLure

Whether you are a devoted student of Ragas, Indian Classical Music, an avid admirer, or a casual listener who has simply heard it streaming out of yoga studio sound systems, the Ragas Live Festival, now in its fifth year, is an awesome joy to behold.
Mesmerizing in its annual 24-hour continuous labyrinth of aural pleasure, this year’s program broke new ground; its presentation live at Pioneer Works in Red Hook, Brooklyn.
Epic in its scope, the festival has streamed live in-studio performances by connoisseurs of Indian Classical Music for 24 hours straight, once per year, on New York’s WKCR 89.9 since its inception in 2012.

Created by musician, producer and radio host David Ellenbogen with Brooklyn Raga Massive, HarmoNYom,
Chhandayan and several other community partners, this year’s festival, supported by the Rubin Museum of Art, featured 24 sets of music and over 70 musicians performing live in Pioneer
Works’ cavernous main gallery.

Ragas Live’s international following could tune in, as usual, in real time via partner media outlets www.wkcr.org , NYC Radio Live Podcast and Radio Al Farouk 89.0 Timbuktu.

According to festival materials, “The beauty of Indian Classical Music and the Raga system around which it developed is that it is closely tied to the rhythms of nature.”

Ragas can be understood as musical modes or essences that are associated with the mood of a specific time of day or season. Each raga is meant tobe played at a particular time in order to color the mind and feelings with its fullest essence.

Arriving at 3:30 am and blending into melodic cyclical rhythms over the next several hours, I was graced by
the Sohini Paraj (pre-dawn), Bhatiyar Lalit (dawn) and Bhairav Ramakali Jogia (early morning) hours of music
from the Raga Samaya System.

Amidst a multi-tiered stage draped in textiles, candlelight, a dozen or so Persian rugs and seating, an intimate group of festivalgoers sprawled out on carpets below massive picture windows as musicians created a meditative atmosphere for quiet listening.

The festival lineup included traditional Ragas as well as fusion experiments that embraced a community of musicians and a variety of instruments including: Sitar, Tabla, Mridangam
(India), Cello (Italy), Kora (West Africa), Djembe (West Africa), Bansuri (South Asia), Harmonium (Europe/America), and vocals from a variety of artists.

At 3:30 am, Kane Mathis and Roshni Samlal of the duo Orakel, an electroacoustic project, were seated on the stage floor playing Tabla and Kora.

Peaceful, cascading, vibrant melodies caressed the room gracefully mingling with the mood of a deep balmy night on the verge of dawn.

A fusion interdisciplinary group, Orakel explored the intersections of West African Mandinka Kora patterns
and classical Indian rhythmic cycles of the Tabla. Mindful of maintaining the integrity of the musical vocabularies
of each culture, the duo creates new compositions grounded in points of similarity within the two art forms.

The following two sets, from 4 am to 5 am and 5 am to 6 am, featured Tabla player Shivalik Ghoshal. The former was a fusion set featuring Adam Maalouf on Hand Pans, the latter a
traditional classical raga set featuring Deepal Chodari on Santoor, a first timer at the festival.

Pioneer Works outdoor garden space offered a welcome sensory shift to cool moonlit air, a handful of city starlight
and a sculpted green landscape.

With one speaker seamlessly streaming music, listeners could digest the timeless sounds reverberating in the atmosphere, accompanied if they wished, by food, drinks and a city
view from an elevated sky deck.

Enveloped in morning twilight, with a smaller amount of attendees in session, listeners could spread out and immerse themselves in an internal knowing and reading of sound.

The music’s intrinsic beauty amplified with 21st century technology seemed to permeate within and without simultaneously; an experience, perhaps, akin to the vibrancy of silent meditation.

Tabla player Ghoshal described morning ragas as deeper emotionally, and often times more serious. Acknowledging
the clear rules of ragas, he noted, “You don’t go outside the
rules, but it’s infinite what you can do within the rules.”

Similar to jazz, each raga is open to interpretation. How a musician introduces it and moves in between the notes is unique each time.

The melodic aesthetics of speed became evident after listening to Ghoshal’s skills on the tabla alongside Maalouf. His ‘shredding’ showcased the meticulous precision it takes to
move up and down scales with rhythmic artistry at the speed of light. A staggering compliment to the muted
steel drum sound of Maalouf’s Hand Pans; an instrument created circa 2000.

Showing his dexterity, Ghoshal moved into quieter accompaniment with Chodari, and had to improvise
spur of the moment when invited to play last minute with a new group of musicians earlier in the day.

Sunrise at Ragas Live 2016 was celebrated with Hindustani classical vocalist, Samarth Nagarkar. Surrounded by four musicians, all seated, Nagarkar’s exploration of each note and lyric expanded and dissected single moments of sound.

Passionate gesticulations with his upper body and hands to accentuate notes added to his full-bodied expression and performance for a bright morning crowd.

Running a festival from 12 noon to 12 noon while managing a live broadcast would be a challenge for anyone. A about 8 am, David Ellenbogen just smiled when asked if he would run
the festival live and in person again next year.

In retrospect, a few days later, he had this to say, “This festival is really a testament to the power of community: over a hundred kindred spirits came together, made beautiful music
and beamed it out to the world for 24 hours. The musicians found the audience and setting of Pioneer Works to
be incredibly inspiring.”

Of the morning music set he also noted, “There is an ideal music for each time of the day, so for us to experience a devotional sunrise raga at first light  is a rare, harmonizing, immersive, holistic experience. “ Something truly aligned with this year’s festival theme: peace, music and global community.

Until next year, and another round of this one-of-a-kind immersive, sensory and vitalizing experience, listeners can find all of the previous Ragas Live Festivals archived on the world music podcast, NYC Radio Live.

 

News India Times

First Ever Marathon Live Radio Broadcast of Indian Ragas

By Ela Dutt

 

pandita

Years ago while traveling around the world, David Ellenbogen, executive producer at New York City’s WKCR radio station, ended up in Calcutta, “at the feet” of Debashish Bhattacharya” whom he describes as “the greatest guitarist in the world” and the experience as akin to “climbing the Himalayas.”

He was bowled over by the immense respect he saw Indians give to ragas, Ellenbogen told Desi Talk. That’s driven him to keep promoting Indian music of all genres on his radio station. On June 20th, that love is manifesting itself in a 24-hour marathon of Indianragas broadcast live over his radio station, the first of its kind in the Western Hemisphere according to Neel Murgai, founder of Brooklyn RagaMassive, one of several Indian-American music groups that thrive in Manhattan and surrounding boroughs. Ellenbogen calls it “a renaissance” of Indian ragas in the Big Apple. Ellenbogen also has a 72 hours of ragas on his podcast site atnycradiolive.org, which includes his recordings of music from around the world.

The Ragas Live Festival 2015 is in its fourth year and features more than 60 musicians, some of them world renowned, performing live at studios around the city and broadcast on WKCR at 89.9 FMNY, midnight to midnight. This will be followed on June 21st by free concerts in Central Park Dairy Lawn, according to a release from the groups behind the whole effort which include Afro Roots NYC, Anindo Chatterjee School of Tabla, Brooklyn Raga Massive, Carnatic Sundays, Chhandayan Center for Indian Music, HarmoNYom, Krishna Bhatt’s Gurukul, Navatman, NYC Radio Live, and Shastra & Taalim School of Indian Music. The event is part of Make Music NY or MMNY,

Several maestros are coming from India including Pandita Tripti Mukherjee , Ustad Aashish Khan , Pandit Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, Pandit Krishna Bhatt , Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan , Sanghamitra Chatterjee , and Pandit Samir Chatterjee.

“Each  raga is meant to be played and heard at a certain time of the day and night. So you can hear the late night ragas late at night and the morning ragas in the morning,” Murgai told Desi Talk.

Alongside will be emerging performers in the city with classical and new genres such as, Yacouba Sissoko, a Kora player from Mali will perform with bansuri player Jay Gandhi representing the monthly Africa/India Collaboration concerts produced at Brooklyn RagaMassive events. Chamber Raga, a form being explored by musician Karavika will be featured. Prodigy Vivek Pandya who made hisRagasLive debut with a 45 minute solo at 8 years old, will now perform at 10 years old with the maestros Samarth Nagarkar (vocal) and Abhik Mukherjee (sitar).

Murgai said because the studios where the musicians will be playing for the live broadcast are small, no audiences can attend. Which is why this year free performances and workshops are scheduled to be held in Central Park on June 21.

NEW DELHI: More than sixty musicians will take part in a marathon 24-hour festival of Indian ragas is to be broadcast live on New York’s WKCR 89.9 FM Radio Station from 20 June featuring Indian and international artistes.

The event has been conceived by David Ellenbogen, who is Executive Producer at WKCR, and who says he is fascinated by the respect Indian musicians give to ragas.

According to a press release on the station’s website, the FourthRagas LiveFestival will have the artistes performing live at studios around the city and broadcast on WKCR midnight to midnight. This will be followed on 21 June by free concerts in Central Park Dairy Lawn.

The event is produced by WKCR, in collaboration with 13 leading organizations- Afro Roots NYC, Anindo Chaterjee School of Tabla, Brooklyn Raga Massive, Carnatic Sundays, Chhandayan, HarmoNYom, Krishna Bhatt’s Gurukul, Navatman, NYC Radio Live, Shastra & Taalim School of Indian Music.

Ellenbogen said, “We are experiencing a raga renaissance in New York City. There are so many amazing musicians collaborating within and beyond the genre. This festival is a result of that and has gained a growing international audience. From what I understand, even in India, they have not produced in-studio broadcasts on this scale.”

Artistes coming from India include Pandita Tripti Mukherjee, Ustad Aashish Khan, Pandit Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, Pandit Krishna Bhatt, Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan, Sanghamitra Chatterjee, and Pandit Samir Chatterjee.

Alongside will be emerging performers in the city with classical and new genres such as Yacouba Sissoko, a Kora player from Mali will perform with bansuri player Jay Gandhi representing the monthly Africa/India collaboration concerts produced at Brooklyn RagaMassive events. Chamber Raga, a form being explored by musician Karavika will be featured.

Prodigy Vivek Pandya who made his Ragas Live debut with a 45 minute solo will perform with maestros Samarth Nagarkar (vocal) and Abhik Mukherjee (sitar).

World Music Day: The Ragas LiveFestival in New York to hold 24-hour long Indian classical music marathon!

Thu, June 18, 2015 3:42pm IST by 
World Music Day: The Ragas Live Festival in New York to hold 24-hour long Indian classical music marathon!

The music concert will be held at Central Park…

A unique 24-hour Indian classical music marathon, the Ragas LiveFestival, with a multi-national and multi-ethnic cast of over 60 musicians is set to be broadcast this weekend here and streamedlive on the Internet for listeners around the world. It is billed as longest broadcast of Indian classical performed live. “From what I understand, even in India, they have not produced in-studio broadcasts on this scale,” Executive Producer David Ellenbogen said.

This is the fourth Raga Festival and this year it will add a six-and-a-half-hour free concert at the Central Park on Sunday, which is the day of the Summer Solstice. Sunday is also International Day of Yoga when there will be a yoga session in Times Square with the expected participation of 30,000 people. The Raga Festival is not a part of that program, but it also reflects the growing interest in Indian culture here.

“We are experiencing a raga renaissance in New York City,” Ellenbogen said. “There are so many amazing musicians collaborating within and beyond the genre. This festival is a result of that and has gained a growing international audience.” The festival is a collaboration between Columbia University radio station WKCR 89.9 FM-NY and 13 other organisations.

The marathon will be streamed live on www.wkcr.org and it will be archived at the station’s website and at www.nycradiolive.org for listeners to hear it later. A vocal by Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan will start the marathon broadcast, at 11:59 p.m. Friday night New York Time (Saturday, 9:29 a.m. IST) and will end at midnight Saturday (Sunday, 9:30 a.m. IST) with a vocal by Pandita Tripti Mukherjee.

Among the featured musicians are Ustad Aashish Khan, Pandit Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, Pandit Krishna Bhatt, Sanghamitra Chatterjee, and Pandit Samir Chatterjee. Besides Hindustani and Carnatic classical music, the new genres and the collaboration across traditions that are emerging in New York will be represented at the festival.

Yacouba Sissoko from Mali who plays the kora, a 21-string instrument from West Africa, is to perform with Jay Gandhi on the bansuri and Ellenbogen on the guitar. Sissko and Bansuri perform at the monthly Africa/India Collaboration concerts produced at Brooklyn Raga Massive events.

Carnatic compositions in jazz interpretations by Arun Ramamurthy Trio (ART) and Chamber Raga form by Karavika are also on the programme.http://www.economylead.com/entertainment/24-hour-indian-classical-music-marathon-in-new-york-over-weekend-77910

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TIMES OF INDIA

24-hour Indian classical music marathon in New York over weekend

on

June 18, 2015

A unique 24-hour Indian classical music marathon, the Ragas LiveFestival, with a multi-national and multi-ethnic cast of over 60 musicians is set to be broadcast this weekend here and streamedlive on the Internet for listeners around the world.

It is billed as longest broadcast of Indian classical performed live. “From what I understand, even in India, they have not produced in-studio broadcasts on this scale,” Executive Producer David Ellenbogen said.

This is the fourth Raga Festival and this year it will add a six-and-a-half-hour free concert at the Central Park on Sunday, which is the day of the Summer Solstice.

Sunday is also International Day of Yoga when there will be a yoga session in Times Square with the expected participation of 30,000 people. The Raga Festival is not a part of that program, but it also reflects the growing interest in Indian culture here.

“We are experiencing a raga renaissance in New York City,” Ellenbogen said. “There are so many amazing musicians collaborating within and beyond the genre. This festival is a result of that and has gained a growing international audience.”

The festival is a collaboration between Columbia University radio station WKCR 89.9 FM-NY and 13 other organisations.

The marathon will be streamed live on www.wkcr.org and it will be archived at the station’s website and at www.nycradiolive.org for listeners to hear it later.

A vocal by Ustad Mashkoor Ali Khan will start the marathon broadcast, at 11:59 p.m. Friday night New York Time (Saturday, 9:29 a.m. IST) and will end at midnight Saturday (Sunday, 9:30 a.m. IST) with a vocal by Pandita Tripti Mukherjee.

Among the featured musicians are Ustad Aashish Khan, Pandit Tejendra Narayan Majumdar, Pandit Krishna Bhatt, Sanghamitra Chatterjee, and Pandit Samir Chatterjee.

Besides Hindustani and Carnatic classical music, the new genres and the collaboration across traditions that are emerging in New York will be represented at the festival.

Yacouba Sissoko from Mali who plays the kora, a 21-string instrument from West Africa, is to perform with Jay Gandhi on the bansuri and Ellenbogen on the guitar. Sissko and Bansuri perform at the monthly Africa/India Collaboration concerts produced at BrooklynRaga Massive events.

Carnatic compositions in jazz interpretations by Arun Ramamurthy Trio (ART) and Chamber Raga form by Karavika are also on the programme.

 

 

New-York-Times- Wall Street Journal

Recent Press on our Producing Partner Brooklyn Raga Massive

For all press inquires please contact us.

 

“Riveting..Soulful…Preserving the past while blurring genres in an inventive spirit” – New York Times

 

“Leaders of the Raga renaissance” – The New Yorker

 

Expanding the notion of what raga—the immersive, epic form of Indian music—can mean.”  -The Wall Street Journal

 

“High-level rhythmic science, delirious drones, and modal mastery….Few musical hangs have been as dependably rewarding as Brooklyn Raga Massive’s jam sessions which feature the cream of the local Indian classical community.” – The Village Voice

“The most exciting thing happening in music in Brooklyn right now.” BrooklynBased.com

“Swiftly, they have created a vibrant and substantial audience for music from India, and they often collaborate with other musical traditions in an attempt to broaden their reach. The ‘raga’ is definitely growing in Brooklyn. And it’s massive”. – Times of India