Abdul Rashid Khan
Abdul Rashid Khan
Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan (Rasan Piya) was born in 1910, in the family of the famous musician, Ustad Behram Khan. Ustad Behram Khan had earlier left his native Gwalior and settled in Kasba Salon, near Rae Barelli.
As a child Abdul Rashid Khan was under the training of his 'Bade Baba', Ustad Bade Yusuf Khan. This early rigorous training was followed up with further tutelage from his elders who had imbibed the Gwalior gayaki. By dint of sheer merit and extraordinary skill, he further developed this gayaki according to his own artistic sensitivity, retaining the native style of Gwalior. Apart from Khayal, Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan sings Dhrupad, Dhamar and Thumri with equal ease and panache. The extensive use of breath control and the Gwalior patterns of layakari were his unparalleled qualities. His ability to strike the pure and perfect note in the autumn of his life in fact was nothing short of astonishing.
In a career that spanned nearly 9 decades, he participated in innumerable music conferences and witnessed almost a century of the evolution of Hindustani Classical Music. He received many awards and felicitations from recognised institutions, including the Uttar Pradesh Sangeet Natak Akademi and the Banaras Hindu University. He received the ITC Award in 1994, the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 2009 and was the recipient of the prestigious 35th All India Bhuwalka Award of 2010 for his rich and valued contribution in the field of Indian Classical Vocal Music. In acknowledgement of his outstanding contribution to music he was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the President of India in 2013. Ustad Abdul Rashid Khan was also a prolific writer and an inspired poet, having penned more than two thousand compositions under the pseudonym ‘Rasan Piya’. Many of the 'bandishes' that he sang were his own composition.
He passed away on the 18th of February, 2016 at the ITC Sangeet Research Academy, where he was a Guru and trained a number of students.