Showing posts from December, 2010

Yvan Rebroff

I wonder if any of you have ever heard or for that matter even heard of a singer called Yvan (Ivan) Rebroff. I certainly had not until 1995, which was when I heard Rebroff belting it out from my Turkish friend Omar’s car stereo. Holy cow! As they say, it simply blew me off. The man had such a sonorous voice, a voice that I can’t think of anybody in this world imitating. Such was its uniqueness. A voice that is listed in the Guinness book (1998 Guinness Book of World Records lists Ivan Rebroff of Russia with a range of four octaves from low F to high F an octave and a quarter above middle C – bass to soprano!! – By comparison, Roy Orbison has a 3½ to 4 octave range in his voice), a voice that ranges 4 ½ Ocatves (now that requires explanation, here is the study….). Rebroff, incidentally was German, though he sang about his motherland Russia (born to Russian émigrés in East Germany)

Little did his parents know of his rise to fame, when he was prematurely born (real name sounds quite Germa…

Kozhikode Abdul Khader – A little bit more

Some years ago I penned a short introduction to this singer. This is an updated and corrected version with more details collected over the years, some received from his nephew and the rest from various sources and documentaries. In the course of time a book was also published on this rather unfortunate and unlucky singer and a few tidbits are thanks to the work of Nadeem Naushad, who was the author of both the book and the documentary. During this period I added to my collection of songs by Satyajit, some original songs by Khader himself, and a more ‘closer to original’ version of Pacha panam Thatte. But more about all that a little later, first let us get to know the legendary singer a bit better. To do that I must go back in time, just over a year ago in California.

It was a wonderful warm and sunny day actually. The previous night I got some mp3’s of original recordings of Khaderka and on the long drive back home, I decided to listen to them, together with songs by Satyajit (Khader’…