Tribute to a legend – Pt. Bhimsen Joshi
The world of Hindustani Classical Music lost a gem – Pandit Bhimsen Joshi today. He was born into a Kannada Brahmin family in Gadag, Karnataka. His father, Gururaj Joshi, was a school teacher and Pandit Bhimsen Joshi was the eldest of 16 siblings. He was mostly raised by his step-mother, as his own mother passed away when he was very young.
A practitioner of the Kirana gharana, Joshi was known for his mellifluous ‘khayals’ as well as for his popular renditions of devotional ‘abhangs’ and ‘bhajans’.
What distinguished him from the ordinary was his powerful voice, amazing breath control, fine musical sensibility and unwavering grasp of the fundamentals that made him the supreme Hindustani vocalist, representing a subtle fusion of intelligence and passion that imparted life and excitement to his music.
He was honoured with the Padma Shri (1972), Sangeet Natak Akademi award for Hindustani vocal music (1975), Padma Bhushan (1985) and Madhya Pradesh government’s “Tansen Samman” in 1992. Bharat Ratna was bestowed on him in 2008.