Jazz Concert - Sharik Hasan & Adrian D'Souza - 7th August


An evening of jazz & Blues with Sharik Hasan and Adrian D’Souza.

     The intimate setting of Bhaskara Auditorium at the Birla science Centre on 7th August 2012 was ideal for an evening of Jazz and Blues - and taking into account that it was a Tuesday evening of a working day in the rainy season with sudden showers peppering the evening, there was a good turnout of people.
     Later, the musicians told me that they liked the auditorium, the sound management, and the discerning audience which enjoyed the music with great appreciation. And considering that this was sober, thinking, yet swinging music that can be played only by proficient, intelligent and expert musicians and appreciated only by an intelligent audience, like jazz always is, unlike peoples perception of Jazz as being rollicking, flashy music that requires little skill or artistry, I understood that the audience at Bhaskara auditorium was truly special.
     The artists, Adrian D’Souza on drums, and Sharik Hasan are extraordinarily talented, professional musicians from Mumbai, who have led their own bands and played in each others ensembles whenever they can.
     Sharik Hasan on organ - is a young pianist/organist of International standing, he has performed at venues all over the world including the Blue Note (New York), Panama Jazz Festival, and Nancy Jazz Festival (France), he attended the Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music in the United States, and in 2007, moved to Paris for two years to study at the Bill Evans Piano Academy, resulting in the ‘Sharik Hasan Paris Trio which played at several international venues. During a scholarship awarded to him at Berklee College of Music he was selected to be part of the Berklee Global Jazz Institute under the tutelage of Danilo Pérez.
     Adrian D’Souza on drums - is an intellectual on the drums, always appropriate, always in the moment. In New York from 1997 onwards,Adrian has played with the who’s who of the Jazz world, Art Davis, Eddie Gomez, Joe Temperly, Ken Werner, Ratzo Harris, Gary Bartz, to name a few. In 1999, while playing in Memphis, he studied percussion under Peter Erskine who taught at the University of Memphis. Adrian has performed with Al Jarreau, George Duke, Earl Klugh and Ravi Coltrane at the 2005 Vh1 Jazz Masters. His debut album as a leader was recorded in NJ – USA, and featured Don Braden, Allen Farnham, Chieli Minucci, Roseanna Vitro and Bob Bowen. Adrian has had successful performances in Slovenia with the 'Maribor Philharmonic Orchestra'. He was invited by the 'World Philharmonic Jazz Orchestra and big band' to perform in South Africa for the United Nations - World Summit on Sustainable Development.
     Amongst the Jazz standards that the duo played with great artistry, were ‘Autumn Leaves’, ‘Georgia’ and the Jimmy Smith Organ composition, ‘Back at the Chicken Shack’, the audience was treated to Sharik’s own compositions ‘Odyssey’, and ‘Song for Bobby’ amongst other glittering tunes that studded the sparkling evening.
     Sharik and Adrian excelled in the evenings performance, Sharik, played the organ and sometimes the digital piano, and sometimes both together, as the tunes required. His keyboard skills are deceptively simple, his fingers caressed the keys and expressed his inventiveness and excellent rhythmic sense, bringing out poetic textures from the keyboard which emitted the unique and exciting sound of the ‘Jazz organ’ which was played and heard for the first time in Hyderabad.
     Adrian employs a holistic, restrained style of playing the drums; always listening, and when needed, provides powerful drive and dynamic flair, combining impeccable timing and style with improvisational ingenuity and presence of mind, as was seen when he took a dynamic drum solo when power failed for a short while.
     This was one of those rare and beautiful evenings, the music was good and left all in the audience feeling mellow and magical!  And it was progressive, sensitive and discerning of the sponsors - State Bank of Hyderabad, Andhra Bank and Mahindra Holidays - to encourage this kind of musical performance (jazz), because like most classical arts, considering what popular music is like today, there was wisdom in this music; and jazz is connected to everyone’s soul!
     It is musical performances like this which encourage and create pluralism and harmony and make the world a better place - which is the ultimate aim of the Hyderabad Western Music Foundation, the organisers of this event. It was indeed a very rewarding evening!