Susheela Raman

Decades: 2000s


1973, London, England. Raman juxtaposes the music of southern India with sounds from her Western upbringing. Her beguiling and sophisticated debut, 2001’s Salt Rain, featured a paean to the elephant-headed deity Ganesh (written by eighteenth-century composer Dikshitar), a song lifted from the soundtrack to Disney’s The Jungle Book, and a track half-jokingly described by its creator as ‘Armenian ska’. Raman’s music has been described as ‘hybrid, trans-cultural world pop with jazz and folk influences’, but for the artist the hope is for her music to be ‘without category’. Born in England but relocating to Australia at the age of four, Raman grew up singing the southern Indian classical music cherished by her parents but admits to having been seduced by the Western pop song. After performing in non-Carnatic bands in her adopted home, Raman left for India to study with Shruti Sadolika, reportedly tracking the Hindustani...

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