This batch of recordings comes as a result of three and a half months of study in India this past spring. I had the opportunity to take sitar and tabla lessons in conjunction with my own independent study of classical Hindustani theory and compositional techniques.
The actual recording of "Maitri" took place in the early parts of May. I would have started earlier but finding a decent condenser mic in New Delhi takes hassling multitudes of people on the phone and many fruitless trips around the city in rickshaws. One man told me he had a "condenser microphone of good professional quality" and when I arrived at his shop, showed me a lapel mic most people use for board meetings.
Despite issues like this, I did finally manage to find a mic I could work with and produced these three songs. I didn't write any of these songs before hitting the record button. My hope was that it would force the song to "write itself". Whatever that means.
Stupid? There were certainly a lot of bad takes but, taking this unrehearsed approach to composition, while making the recording process lengthy with endless takes, brought the sound closer to Hindustani classical roots, a style steeped in improvisation.
The traffic noises you hear are sounds I captured from the backseat of a rickshaw ride through New Delhi traffic.
PS: Check out more tracks, news, shows etc. on my Facebook page: www.facebook.com/BenCraneMusic
PPS: If you're interested in reading more about my experience in India, I kept a blog during my travels. Check it out here: bensaysnamaste.blogspot.com
Articles I wrote about India for the music blog "The Wild Honey Pie" : www.thewildhoneypie.com/recording-an-ep-in-india/