Indian classical music legend Shiv Kumar Sharma has died at the age of 84.
Sharma was an exponent of santoor, a dulcimer-like instrument. He suffered a heart attack at his residence in Mumbai on Tuesday morning. Sharma is credited with converting the santoor, which was mainly played in Kashmir, into a major instrument of Indian classical music. Sharma was also part of a duo – along with flautist Hariprasad Chaurasia – who worked on classical and film music. Shiv-Hari, as they were called, composed music for at least eight Bollywood films, including Silsila, Chandni, Darr and Lamhe.
Sharma was born and raised in Jammu in a house by a river where, in his words, “from dawn till dusk, someone or the other was singing or playing an instrument”. His father, Uma Dutt Sharma, came from a family of priests, and was himself a classical vocalist and played the tabla, the traditional Indian drum. In the early 1950s, when he was handling music programmes for a state-run radio station, Uma Dutt began researching the santoor, a traditional instrument of Kashmir used in local Sufi music. He bought home a 100-string santoor and encouraged his young son to try playing it. Years later, Sharma recounted that he had initially resisted playing the instrument. “My father told me, ‘You have no idea what is going to happen with your name and the santoor. They are going to become synonymous. So you have to play this’, Sharma told interviewer Ina Puri. Lees verder op de BBC-site >>>