Album info

Album-Release:
2022

HRA-Release:
22.11.2022

Album including Album cover

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FLAC 48 $ 13.50
  • 1Anomaly04:27
  • 2Veer06:24
  • 3Translucence04:04
  • 4In Search of Redemption05:42
  • 5Sajanava04:24
  • 6Enigma 7.506:29
  • 7Undertow03:59
  • 8Rageshri03:09
  • 9Ulterior Motives04:18
  • 10Nadia04:54
  • 11Mahogany21:30
  • 12Redemption (reprise)04:39
  • Total Runtime01:13:59

Info for Anomaly



Submit to the beauty and sorrow, the poetry and power, of the sitar – that plucked string instrument with the long neck, pear-shaped gourd and origins in the courts of the Maharajahs of medieval India. Marvel at the astonishing prowess of Jasdeep Singh Degun, a sitarist who is steeped in the North Indian classical tradition — indeed, in the musical traditions of the Indian subcontinent — and proudly born, raised and based in Leeds, north of England.

In May 2022, Jasdeep Singh Degun releases his debut album Anomaly on Real World Records — a project showcasing an almost preternatural musicality, a way with technique, improvisation, composition and collaboration that will dazzle purists and newcomers alike. Its twelve tracks range from inspired sitar solos and duelling sitar and guitar to all stops out cinematic journeying. Music rooted in the ancient repertoire of raags, the frameworks used in the improvised performances of Indian classical music, and delivered with contemporary flair.

Lie back. Surrender to the undertow. Feel yourself floating away.

Submit to the beauty and sorrow, the poetry and power, of the sitar – that plucked string instrument with the long neck, pear-shaped gourd and origins in the courts of the Maharajahs of medieval India.

Marvel at the astonishing prowess of Jasdeep Singh Degun, who is steeped in the North Indian classical tradition – indeed, in the musical traditions of the Indian subcontinent — and proudly born, raised and based in Leeds, north of England. “My language is music,” says Degun. “Music is where I come alive.”

Anomaly is not just any debut album. It is a project that showcases an almost preternatural musicality, a way with technique, improvisation, composition and collaboration that will dazzle purists and newcomers alike.

A work whose twelve tracks range from inspired sitar solos and duelling sitar and guitar to all stops out cinematic journeying. Music rooted in the ancient repertoire of raags, the frameworks used in the improvised performances of Indian classical music, and delivered with contemporary flair.

Soothing. Healing. Energising. Bringing us closer to ourselves.

“Each track tells a story of my life, and each has something that makes it distinct,” says Degun, 30, sitting at home in a room dotted with instruments: piano, guitar, tabla hand drum and a sitar custom made in India by the Rikhi Ram company, sitar makers for the likes of George Harrison, Vilayat Khan and Ravi and Anoushka Shankar.

“Growing up in England I’ve soaked up different influences,” he continues in his earthy, good-natured way. “I’ve studied Western classical music. I appreciate composers like Mahler and Mozart and film composers like A. R Rahman and John Williams. I’ve done studio sessions for artists such as Guy Chambers and Cerys Matthews and have written, arranged and produced music for orchestras, big music productions and contemporary classical ensembles.

“Sometimes I’ve compromised.” A smile. “Here I had free rein to get my vision across.”

As befits an artist whose free time is spent improvising with Indian classical musician friends, collaboration was vital. There are 33 musicians on Anomaly including a 16-piece string ensemble and celebrated British Asian musician-producer Nitin Sawhney — Degun’s mentor on the 2016 Sky Academy Arts Scholarship that kick-started the project.

Along with a dozen musicians from the British Asian community: sitarist Roopa Panesar, South Indian percussionist Pirashanna Thevarajah, esraj violinist Kirpal Panesar. Each of them a guru-trained virtuoso, and beyond the Indian classical music circuit, a treasure hiding in plain sight.

“There are so many brilliant musicians from the Indian classical community in this country but they are not signed to any western label,” says Degun. “I have looked and looked and rarely found any turbaned, bearded Sikh guys like me represented. I want to change that.”

The second son of non-musical parents born in the North Indian state of Punjab, Degun was a small boy when he began devotional kirtan singing at the Sikh Temple in north Leeds, and vocal training with an Indian classical teacher, an Ustad, while at primary school.

Aged 15 he commenced his study of the sitar under Ustad Dharambir Singh MBE, a master of the North Indian gayaki ang singing style — which mimics the human voice via a gliding, pulling string technique called meend — as created and taught to him in turn by the legendary sitar maestro Ustad Vilayat Khan.

“I worked as hard at becoming a musician as if I were studying to be a doctor, lawyer or engineer, which are the professions Indian parents often expect of their kids,” Degun says.

“The teacher/student tradition in Indian classical music has parallels with Sikhism. Sikh means ‘seeker’ or ‘learner’. In all the projects I do, even if I’m simply having coffee with Anoushka, Nitin or any of the British Asian musicians that influenced me growing up” — and who now attend his recitals — “I’m always soaking up information.”

The learning never stops, he adds. “Your Ustad will always remind you that you are never bigger than the music you are serving.” ...

Jasdeep Singh Degun



Jasdeep Singh Degun
Jasdeep's dynamic performance experience spans a wide range of prestigious and high-profile venues across the UK and abroad, including Buckingham Palace in 2011 for HRH Prince Harry as part the BBC2 documentary Goldie's Band: By Royal Appointment. In 2012, Jasdeep performed at the United Nations opening of the Amphitheatre in Doha, Qatar, in a production lead by the film composer Vangelis.

In 2015, Jasdeep performed live on BBC2 accompanying kathak finalist Vidya Patel on the BBC Young Dancer 2015 Grand Final, and accompanied the legendary Donovan at his Shram-Rock concert at the Royal Court Theatre, Liverpool. That same year, Jasdeep was featured on Shri Sriram's (Badmarsh and Shri) album 'Just A Vibration', alongside the Yorkshire based Hammonds Brass Band, which launched at the EFG London Jazz Festival 2015.

In 2017, Jasdeep had the honour of performing alongside Ustad Dharambir Singh and Roopa Panesar at a concert commemorating the life and legacy of the Late Maestro Ustad Vilayat Khan. Jasdeep was also lucky to perform on the main stage of the prestigious Darbar Festival alongside the kathak dancer Dheerendra Tiwari. The concert was also broadcasted on Sky Arts in December 2017.

2019 saw Jasdeep showcase music from his debut album, Anomaly, at a sell out performance at the Purcell Room, Southbank. The concert was attended by many eminent musicians including Nitin Sawhney, Anoushka Shankar and Smt. Sukanya Shankar, Swati Natekar, and Pandit Sanju Sahai.

Jasdeep has worked with musicians and producers such as Guy Chambers, Cerys Matthews, Melanie C, and Vangelis as a regular studio session musician. Jasdeep continues to push the boundaries of Indian classical music in the UK as well as developing his unique versatility as a promising young artist.

As a British-born composer, Jasdeep has developed a well-rounded sense of musicality and sensitivity towards not only Indian Classical music but many other different styles and genres. He has gained a rich experience in collaborative work across art forms and has regularly accompanied and created music for prolific dance pieces.

The Royal Albert Hall hosted Jasdeep at the 2014 BBC Proms, showcasing his own original compositions based on Indian Classical music and, in 2016, Jasdeep was commissioned by zer0classikal to write a concerto for sitar and string quartet, titled The Bridge.

2017 was a particularly fruitful year as Jasdeep not only wrote the soundtrack to the independent short film 'Taraash', and directed the music for the production 'India's Children: Partition' (commissioned by Opera North and South Asian Arts-uk), but also directed and performed in the production of 'George Harrison: The Story of The Beatles and Indian Music' at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.

In 2020, Jasdeep was commissioned by Opera North to write a new work, 'Arya: concerto for Sitar and Orchestra' which premiered at the Huddersfield Town Hall. The work later went on tour with successful performances at Durham Cathedral, the RNCM, and the Birmingham CBSO to critical acclaim.

This album contains no booklet.

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