Bhai Baldeep Singh conducted an intensive gurbani kirtan retreat from January 8-14 in Albuquerque, New Mexico (USA) that will mark its twentieth anniversary this summer. Fifteen students from across North America and India gathered to continue their study of vocals, strings, and percussion as per the Sikh tradition’s pedagogical paradigm. In addition to imparting original shabad-reets dating back to the Guru period, BBS recounted narratives pertaining to particular compositions that were composed by the Gurus and Bhagats. Further, BBS elucidated some of the finer points of raag elaboration and the performance of percussive repertoire.
Throughout the course, BBS emphasized the linguistic, religious, and socio-cultural diversity embodied within Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Transcending mere toleration, such inclusivity in Bani Guru evinces celebration of Akaalpurakh as experienced by individuals from all walks of life across a vast geographical expanse. Accordingly, students of Sri Guru Granth Sahib must broaden the scope of their engagement if they are to be responsible custodians of what is truly humanity’s heritage.
—By the attendees of the Gurbani Sangeet retreat.