Sarod players Amaan and Ayaan Ali Khan have collaborated with American singer-songwriter Carrie Newcomer to create their new album "Everything Is Everywhere", a mix of Indian classical and western country music. They say it is aimed at a niche audience.
"The album has something for the lovers of classical music and also something for the lovers of country music," Ayaan told IANS.
Their father, maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, too features in "Everything Is Everywhere".
In the album, the trio is accompanied by Grammy nominated percussionist Jim Brock, pianist Gary Walter and Carrie.
"Ayaan had attended one of Carrie's concerts in Delhi. He met her also and she gave him some of her CDs. We heard it and it was really nice. Then all of us met and everything fell in place and before we knew it, we were recording an album together," Amaan said.
"Initially, it was just like a trial album. We did not know where we are headed with it. But it was nice because while collaborating with Carrie, we knew exactly what we wanted out of the album. We knew where to start and where to end. It has come out very well. It's a very spiritual, very calm and peaceful album," he added.
"Everything Is Everywhere", released recently, is an aural embodiment of East and West. It has nine tracks and took six months to complete.
Throwing light on the collaboration, Ayaan mentioned that it's very important to connect with the person you are making music with.
"It's very important to connect with the person you are collaborating with. Carrie's ideas, her philosophy and spiritual connect link her music to our kind of music and that's how this album happened," he said.
"It's very important to find a meeting point and when you are doing something collectively, the idea is to make a beautiful bouquet of flowers and not to stand out as individual flowers. So you have to concentrate on that.
"Also, when you are doing an album with lyrics, you need to take care of a few things. You have to see that the instrumentation is not conflicting with the song, that the music is not overpowering the songs," he added.
In the process of recording "Everything Is Everywhere", the team improvised too.
"This is an album of collectively recorded songs. And this defines a new culture of song writing and classical music amalgamating together," said Ayaan.
"We had complete freedom to improvise, so did Carrie. So everything was in good faith, good energy and atmosphere. That's really important to make good music," he added.
As far as the sales of the album is concerned, Amaan said they are targetting a niche audience and, therefore, sales will take place through word of mouth.
"We've never believed in pushing it too much because if you do that, there is a bit of a doubt that comes in. Film marketing is different from Indian classical music marketing - if you push a classical album too much, people start doubting you.
"It is dealing with people who are aware of everything around them. These types of albums are not really mass choice albums. They are for the niche market. So not much marketing is required," Amaan said.