East Facing

by Prasant Radhakrishnan

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about

In the Western world, the term "East Facing" may conjure up a sympathy towards or inspiration from the Far East, in many cases, India. In India, the term is often associated with the direction of a house in relation to Vaasthu Shastra (the ancient Indian version of Feng-Shui).

However, in India as well as in other nations, the direction East also refers to the auspicious direction of the rising sun, signifying new beginnings. It is a tradition that the student must face East when bowing to receive the guru's blessings with the intention of growing and moving forward. Carnatic saxophonist Prasant Radhakrishnan's 3rd album derives its title, "East Facing," from this meaning.

Accompanied by established veterans B.U. Ganeshprasad (violin), P. Satishkumar (mridungam), V. Suresh (ghatam) and B. Rajashekar (morsing), Radhakrishnan continues to hone his distinct style of bringing Carnatic music to the saxophone by emphasizing the vocal quality of the instrument while still bringing out the saxophone's unique strengths.

East Facing is Radhakrishnan's most powerful, yet direct and balanced record to date. He presents a weighty, classic composition often reserved for vocalists in Kshinamai (raga Mukhari, tracks 4 and 5), while also composing a brisk pallavi in the unconventional Misrachapu thalam (7 beat cycle, track 8). Among the six contrasting compositions on the disc, there is no repetition of raga (melody), tala (rhythmic cycle) or composer.

credits

released June 1, 2007

Prasant Radhakrishnan: Saxophone
B.U. Ganeshprasad: Violin
Patri Satishkumar: Mridangam
V. Suresh: Ghatam
Bangalore B. Rajashekar: Morsing

Recorded January 2007 in Chennai, India.

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