String maestros offer insight into spiritual world
INDIAN-born sitar player and vocalist Kanada Narahari is set to take the stage as part of the Guy Buttery Trio at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre on October 10.
The artist said he was in high school when he saw Pandit Ganapati Bhat Hasanagi, a renowned hindustani classical vocalist, performing in concert.
“It was clear to me there and then that I needed to learn music. I dreamt of becoming a musician.”
His musical influences include Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, Vilayat Khan, Shahid Parvez, Rais Khan and Peter Gabriel.
The Guy Buttery Trio will perform at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre for a special one-off mid-week concert. The collaboration consists of Guy Buttery on guitar, Narahari on sitar and vocals, and bass player Shane Cooper.
The trio premiered two shows together to packed-out audiences at the 2018 National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.
On fusion and music, and how it affected social change and cohesion, Narahari said it was another face of “social cohesion”.
“When we watch, with an open eye, the masters from various genres performing together on stage, we see the beauty and traditions of world music. With the closed eye we imbibe the beauty of music inside and that is spirituality.
“The music, especially the fusion music or collaborative music, can be successful only when there is insight to the spiritual world. This spirituality is the foundation and roof for social cohesion.”
During the 70-minute experience, Buttery will swop his guitar for the mbira (the African thumb piano), while Narahari’s emotive voice will complement the various instruments. Cooper will feature on electric bass and acoustic double bass, as well as a variety of live samples.
In an age where digital technique and autotune are in, Narahari spoke about the value that traditional sounds offered.
“Technology-induced music is always cool, but with the background of rich traditional music, the technical music can be sweeter. We can digitalise chords and so on but we can never digitalise tone. This is the human touch.”
Guy Buttery and Kanada Narahari.