Google celebrates tabla maestro Lachhu Maharaj

Lachhu Maharaj

New Delhi, Oct 16: Google on Tuesday celebrated eminent tabla player from the Banaras gharana Pandit Lachhu Maharaj’s 74th birth anniversary with a simple string doodle.

The doodle showed Lachhu Maharaj drawn in primary colours of blue, red, yellow and green. He is seen playing the tabla for his audience, with a grin on his face and a look of contentment on his eyes. It is made by guest artist Sajid Shaikh, Google blog said.

Born as Lakshmi Narayan Singh on this day in 1944, Lachhu Maharaj came from a family of musicians.

He trained under his father Vasudev Maharaj to become one of the most celebrated tabla players of his time. He also started with public performance at an early age.

At the tender age of eight, he caught the attention of Ahmed Jaan Thirakwa considered a legend at that time.

“Lachhu Maharaj was best known for his inherent sense of rhythm which was best exemplified in his solo performances. Even though he played alongside nearly all the greatest tabla players of his time, his solo performance are the most remembered,” a statement issued by Google said.

“Girija Devi, whom he often collaborated with, claimed that ‘he would play for hours without repeating himself, new gats, tukras and parans, leaving his audiences awestruck’,” it added.

He married a French woman Teena, and they had a daughter, Narayani.

For his contribution to music, Lachhu Maharaj was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1957, which is the highest award for performing artists.

He was nominated for the Padma Shri, but refused to accept it as he felt audience appreciation was honour enough.

He breathed his last on July 28, 2016 and was cremated at the Manikarnika Ghat in Uttar Pradesh’ Varanasi.


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