Shyam Sundar Goswami
Biography and CD Peace & Harmony of the singer of Indian classical music
Added on December 3, 2012: next concert in Kolkata on December 24, 2012
Added on May 19, 2011
In 2010/2011, with the help of a scholarship by the French government, Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami spent three months in Paris to work with other musicians on a project regarding medieval songs.
Article added on September 2, 2006
By chance, in the summer of 2005, I came across a remarkable demo-CD, the one by Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami, a singer of Indian classical music. Although I am not a specialist of Indian vocal music, his profound and sincere singing immediately captured my attention. In April 2006, his debut CD Peace and Harmony was finally released and, in May, he embarked on a successful European tour, including France and Switzerland (Paris, Rennes, Dinard, Lyon, Lugano, Ascona), where he performed especially in churches. On the tour, he was accompanied by Pandit Sanjay Mukherjee on the tabla and Shabbir Hussain on the sarengi.
Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami was first exposed to music by his mother Srimati Maya Goswami. After years of serious studies (Sadhana) at the feet of several Gurus, including Pandit Jadunath Chakraborty and Guru Madan Mohan Thakur, he emerges now as a new outstanding voice, "a jewel", as the late artist Prabhas Sen of Santiniketan used to say about him.
Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami is trained in the tradition of Kirana Ghrana. He studied Indian classical music at Rabindra Bharati University in Calcutta (Kolkata), from where he got a Honors degree in Hindustani classical music and then specialized in Khayal, the most appreciated and the most elegant form of Indian classical music. It is the style of the great vocal maestros who can use all the subtleties of the technique" (Alain Daniélou: The Music of North India, 1968). Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami successfully obtained the M.A. degree in Khayal, his specialty. He is a master of Kyhal, Thumris and Bahjaans.
He has become an excellent teacher himself and has educated children, especially those who struggle to study in spite of financial difficulties. He has taught the children at the Study House and Training Center of the Noviciate of Barasat for three years as well as those at Ashalayam in Kolkata who are street children and at Rainbow School in Loreto Sealdah. In addition, he gives private tuitions.
In 2000, Pandit Syham Sundar Goswami sang at the "Biswa Bango Samelan" Festival at Rabindra Sadan, Calcutta.
Among his many public performances in and around Calcutta were memorable ones organized in the historical Rajbari palaces of North Calcutta in 2003 and 2004: At Natmandir in November 2003, at Madan Mahan Thakurabri in March 2004, at Chattubabu Latubabu Rajbar in September 2004 and at the historical Sree Sree Krishna Jew of Shovabazar in December 2004, to name just a few. On July 1, 2004 Shyam Sundar Goswami gave a special concert in the memory of Prabhas Sen at the residence of Mrs. Ruby Pal Choudhuri. On June 10, 2006 Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami had been invited by the Governor of West Bengal, Sree Gopal Krishna Gandhi, to perform at "Flag Staff House" Barrackpore.
Debut album of Indian classical music Peace and Harmony
The debut album of Pandit Shyam Sundar Goswami, Peace and Harmony, was released on April 24, 2006 at World Music in Park Street. The CD was launched by Shanu Lahiri.
The first Rag on the album, Miyan Malhar, is sung especially in the late evenings in the rainy Monsoon season. It is composed in Khayal Taal - Vilambit Rupak "Gagan Garaje Bijori Chamake" and Drut - Teentaal "Rimi jhimi Badaria Aayee Re". The Rag evokes the heavy and threatening clouds, thunder and lightning. Somebody is missing the person he loves. His tears resemble the pouring rain.
Miyan Malhar is an ancient Rag composed by the greatest Indian musician, Tansen (1506-1589), one of the "nine jewels" (Navaratnas) of the Mughal Emperor Akbar. Miyan Malhar was composed to be performed in palaces. Shyam Sundar Goswami first performed this Rag publicly in Raj baris (palaces) in the Calcutta area. As in ancient times, the singer is accompanied by the Indian violin (Sarengi).
The second Rag, Raga Shivaranjani, Drut Tintaal "More Ghara Aaja" is an evening song, influenced by South Indian classical music. The Thumri, the last piece on the CD, is a love song. Thumri Raga - Khambaj "Kaise Jaaoon Panaghat Mein". The interpretations of these three court songs belong to the tradition of Khyal, the one of creativity.
The musicians accompanying the singer Shyam Sundar Goswami on Peace and Harmony are Pandit Sanjoy Mukherjee on the tabla, Pandit Mahesh Prasas Misra on the sarengi, Sri Sanatan Goswami on the harmonium and Bandana on the tanpura.
In Hindustani classical music the vocalist has to be able to lower his voice in a dramatic manner and to raise it very high. Shyam Sundar Goswami has an exceptional scale. Peace and Harmony is the promising debut CD of a rising singer who has already his own "voice" and his distinct way of interpretation.
Read the related article about Indian classical music. - Buy Indian sitar sheet music.
The cover of the debut album of Shyam Sundar Goswami, Peace and Harmony, released on April 24, 2006.
Concert by Sundar Goswami (in 2006) at the Summer Residence of the Governor of West Bengal, Mr. Gopalkrishna Gandho. Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami / Peace and Harmony.
Concert at St. John Historical Church in May 2007.
Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami/Peace and Harmony.
Added on September 9, 2009: I had the chance to witness Shyam Sundar Goswami's excellent concert at the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris on June 14, 2009. Just one regret: the loudspeakers to amplify the sound were not helpful. The institute should rethink its acoustics. - Recovering from a series of computer crashes, working with a new computer, my concert notes are gone. - Buy Indian sitar sheet music.
Latest photo added on September 3, 2007: Concert in Memory of Mother Teresa at Mother House (A.J.C. Bose Rd) in Kolkata aka Calcutta on August 26, 2007. Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami/Peace and Harmony. Sitar sheet music.
On August 23, 2007, Shyam played a concert at the Raj Bhavan, the residence of the Governor of Kolkata. In the foreground, the Governor of Kolkata, Sree Gopalkrishna Gandhi, the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi. In the background, Shyam (in red) on his left. The concert was organized by the Calcutta School of Music where Shyam teaches Indian Classical Music. Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami/Peace and Harmony.
Concert in Kolkata at St. Xavier College in February 2007.
Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami/Peace and Harmony. - Order sitar sheet music.
Concert at Bharat Sevashram Sangh in March 2007.
Photo © Shyam Sundar Goswami/Peace and Harmony.