PANDIT SATYASHEEL DESHPANDE
Pandit Satyasheel Deshpande (born 9 January 1951) is an Indian musician who specializes in singing khyal. He is a prominent disciple (pattashishya) of Pt. Kumar Gandharva and the son of musicologist Vamanrao Deshpande. Like his greatest mentor – Pt. Kumar Gandharva, Satyasheelji was born with an uncanny capacity to reproduce the music of the great masters. This talent together with the musical exposure he received in his father, the eminent musicologist Pt. Vamanrao Deshpande’s house soon established him as a child prodigy.
Satyasheelji decided to devote himself fully to the study of music under the guidance of Kumarji, with whom he lived in Devas for three years in the true spirit of a disciple. Satyasheelji knew that Kumarji’s guidance was only the beginning of a hard yet fascinating journey that he would have to undertake alone. He thus began to lay the foundations of his own style, constantly gathering compositions from traditional sources, trying at once to be true to its essence and re-interpreting it to suit his personal temperament. Satyasheelji is a man who possesses as thorough a grounding in the Hindustani tradition as it is possible to have in modern times; and yet for all his deep-rootedness in the tradition, he has allowed himself to emerge organically; spreading himself like a tree in all directions, putting forth new branches and leaves, and shedding what he no longer feels necessary, without forgetting even for a moment his connection with the rich soil from which he derives his creative strength. He has thus achieved an enviably precarious balance between the demands of the tradition he has internalised so profoundly and those of his own imagination and personality.
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