Ali Akbar Khan

Ali Akbar Khan Biography

Ali Akbar Khan, born in 1922 in Shibpore, East Bengal, now Bangladesh, as son of the legendary Acharya Baba Allauddin Khan, died at 87 at his home in San Francisco on June 18, 2009, having suffered four years of kidney-related illness. His vocal training began at 3 and, after studying the surbahar, sitar and tabla, focused on the sarod.

Ali Akbar Khan was one of today's most accomplished Indian classical musicians. Late American violinist Yehudi Menuhin, who became one of his earliest champions in the West, said he considered Ali Akbar Khan "an absolute genius, the greatest musician in the world." Regarded as a "National Living Treasure" in India, he is admired by both Eastern and Western musicians for his brilliant compositions and his mastery of the sarod (a beautiful, 25-stringed Indian instrument).


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