Camp? No that doesn’t seem like the right word. Workshop? Not that either ? Let’s call it the slaughter house for suicide. I realize now that is what you have to do to become an amazing musician and to hold onto a dying tradition. You have to give yourself to it fully or die trying.
This camp has been a really enjoyable experience for me. From theory to practical methods, I have learned a lot from these two short weeks.
Proper practice is one of the big things I am taking with me from this camp. I have learned the proper techniques for practicing. Tha is where everything should be practiced at and then sped up. Finding anand in tha is where the beauty of music lies.
I feel that my knowledge has been increased quite a bit. Appreciation for Punjab is also increased. I realize that to learn these smaller gharana one should first look at the master of everything. The knowledge of Punjab combined with the knowledge of Benares that I obtain, even if a little, makes it so that I stand out a bit more from the crowd I was a part of.
The stories of your past that you shared with us was also something that I shall not forget. Those stories will help to remember some of these compositions and also showed us that to learn you have to struggle a bit. Knowledge is not freely given and has to be earned.
The memories that were created here in London are priceless. It is the first camp I attended and it certainly won’t be my last. Great friendships were made with Raviraj, Keerat, and Harkamal. They are very talented compared to myself, and it showed me that I have lots of work to do if I wish to catch up to them.
They inspired me to want to learn how to sing. Keerat and Raviraj were very inspirational for me wanting to learn. Hopefully someday I shall be able to learn. Harkamal showed me it is possible to learn a vast majority in such a little time. From only three camps of learning jori I was quite impressed.
Without these great new friends, I think it might have been difficult to learn what I did and enjoy it. Even though the class size was small, I was happy with it. I interacted more with the other students, and gained some knowledge from them as well. These friends now hold a place in my heart and shall never be forgotten.
Bhai sahib it is thanks to you that I have gained as much knowledge as I did from this camp. You had apologized for not teaching us jori early. You shall not be forgiven because in the absence of jori I gained a vast amount of knowledge, and for that I thank you from the bottom of my heart. The knowledge that you bestowed upon me shall be remembered and practiced with great love.
Hopefully we shall keep in touch over Facebook and hopefully I can show you my progress over Skype (obviously I shall pay the fees). I am looking forward to the next camp and all the knowledge and excitement that will come with it.
Please bestow your blessings upon us so that we may be able to carry on however much of this noble tradition that you pass onto us.
With love and respect,
Baljinder Singh Bassi