Debashish Bhattacharya

Calcutta to California

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Imagine the unimaginable. Then try to come to terms with a melding of American folk music and the traditional music of India. This difficult conception comes across as a natural mix bursting with fun due to the enthusiasm and virtuosity of Santa Monica-based Hindustani slide guitarist Debashish Bhattacharya, tabla player Subhankar Banerjee, and folk singer and guitarist Mark A. Humphrey doing up American standards with a raga twist. Hank Williams' "Lost on the River" somehow shares space with Bengali folk song "Bhawaiaa," and "Red River Valley" merges with "Bhattacharya" on this disc that divided into music of valleys, mountains, rivers, and seas. Forget divisions, though. Playing a mutant, multi-stringed hollow body slide guitar of his own design, Debashish Bhattacharya and band members never let a single seam show.

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