INDIAN MUSIC: The quest to save it

Two men are trying to save Indian folk music, one haunting song at a time. Andrew Buncombe joins them as they haul their microphones to the farthest reaches of the Thar desert. A father and his sons sit in the desert, barely looking at one another as their hardened fingers press on the dark teak necks of their instruments.

As they draw horse-hair bows across steel strings, the pulsating energy summons the sound of a train accelerating. Suddenly, the pace eases: the musicians pause, preparing themselves before all at once they move the drawn bows staccato-like across the strings: the train, the performance suggests, rapidly approaches, puffing away until the piece is brought to crescendo. The "train" has arrived. And quiet descends upon this desert scene once more.


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