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Books

Kurt und Bongo und die Hippies - Roman

Kurt und Bongo und die Hippies

Roman

Matthias Matussek Buchbesprechung in Tichys EinblickB

 

 

 

Besprechung in YOGA Aktuell von Nina Haisken

 

 

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Jazz Christmas - e-book

Jazz Christmas

e-book

Jazz Christmas

Jazz, Love and Death in Soho

by Al Gromer Khan

 

Overview

 

A music tale Jazz Christmas by Al Gromer Khan portrays the attitude to life in the late sixties in and around Ronnie Scott´s Jazz Club in Jack Kerouac style. The story tells of love and jazz, sex and ecstasy and death in Soho. A young musician wins the trust and the friendship of a famous jazz saxophonist and gets to listen to many of the classical jazz players at close range. He experiences traumatic and ludicrous, painful and romantic situations. “Some of my best friends are blues”. (Ronnie Scott) Recommended by JAZZTHETIK Magazine, Berlin. “Jazz fans will want to hear this story not only at Christmas, it draws a loving picture of long gone era.” The story takes place at “Europe´s leading jazz club” (ever so humble, them Brits – are they not?), at Ronnie Scotts. A young musician gets under the spell of tenor legend Ben Webster and as a result experiences a number of adventures. It is told laconicly and with a touch of melancholy. (...) Besides the funny plot Gromer Khan portrays the jazz greats Webster and Ronnie Scott lovingly. Scott who died in 1996 used to announce the bands at the club himself, celebrating the high art of dry British humour. The author subtly points out that Ben Webster already has his best years behind him. The protagonist ends up in a jazz diva´s bed. Remarkably, the sex scenes by Gromer Khan are never embarrassing – he is saved by his laconic humour and his deep love for music. And so he experiences true climactic jazz shows at the club. “This performance was IT – the true path where it´s at, and that one constantly keeps forgetting.” “... an intense listening pleasure …, written like a jazz ballad, in between galloping improvisation and wailing blues.“ Ulrich Sonnenschein Radio H2 Hessischer Rundfunk, Frankfurt

 

 

Description

 

A music tale Jazz Christmas by Al Gromer Khan portrays the attitude to life in the late sixties in and around Ronnie Scott´s Jazz Club in Jack Kerouac style. The story tells of love and jazz, sex and ecstasy and death in Soho. A young musician wins the trust and the friendship of a famous jazz saxophonist and gets to listen to many of the classical jazz players at close range. He experiences traumatic and ludicrous, painful and romantic situations. “Some of my best friends are blues”. (Ronnie Scott) Recommended by JAZZTHETIK Magazine, Berlin. “Jazz fans will want to hear this story not only at Christmas, it draws a loving picture of long gone era.” The story takes place at “Europe´s leading jazz club” (ever so humble, them Brits – are they not?), at Ronnie Scotts. A young musician gets under the spell of tenor legend Ben Webster and as a result experiences a number of adventures. It is told laconicly and with a touch of melancholy. (...) Besides the funny plot Gromer Khan portrays the jazz greats Webster and Ronnie Scott lovingly. Scott who died in 1996 used to announce the bands at the club himself, celebrating the high art of dry British humour. The author subtly points out that Ben Webster already has his best years behind him. The protagonist ends up in a jazz diva´s bed. Remarkably, the sex scenes by Gromer Khan are never embarrassing – he is saved by his laconic humour and his deep love for music. And so he experiences true climactic jazz shows at the club. “This performance was IT – the true path where it´s at, and that one constantly keeps forgetting.” “... an intense listening pleasure …, written like a jazz ballad, in between galloping improvisation and wailing blues.“ Dr Ulrich Sonnenschein Radio H2 Hessischer Rundfunk, Frankfurt

About the author

Al Gromer Khan was born in Germany in 1946. He left his home at seventeen to become a jazz musician and a beat poet. At nineteen he found himself in the midst of Flower Power in London, England, where he attended art school and played music in a number of experimental projects; amongst others with Mike Figgis and Cat Stevens. It was in England a first contact with the sitar legend Vilayat Khan occurred. This meeting left a lasting impression in the young musician. From 1968 he started practising sitar music and became a disciple of Ustad Imrat Khan, Vilayat Khan´s younger brother, for seven years, (Gandhaband ceremony with Imrat Khan 1975) In India Al Gromer Khan had further tutelage from other masters of Indian music, like Rais Khan and Roshan Jamal Bhartyia. After returning to Germany towards the mid 1970ies he worked as a songwriter, sitar performer and new world music visionary. While keeping up his sitar practise he worked with Abi Ofarim, Amon Düül, Popol Vuh and many experimental projects of that time. In the 1980s he went into a seven year seclusion, fathoming and perfecting the Alap-anga Sitar technique of Ustad Vilayat Khan. From this a highly original type of ambient music called ´Paisley Music´ emerged. This new style found him an audience in lovers of contemplative music around the world. Al Gromer Khan has given breathtaking concerts of classical sitar music in Vilayat Khan´s tradition in Europe and India. After forty years he still practises sitar and surbahar daily. He doesn´t jam and he doesn´t do fusion. Al Gromer Khan contributes documentaries on the sublime aspects of music for a number of radio stations. He has written the two novels, ´Jimi of Silence´, ´Der weiße Mogul´, and the short story ´Jazzweihnacht´ (Jazz Christmas) all in German.

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The White Mogul - e-book

The White Mogul

e-book

Overview

The White Mogul by Al Gromer Khan

A teenage boy runs away from the national service in Germany. In ’Swinging London’ Indian sitar music seems to be an interesting option in his quest for self-exploration. Nineteen-year-old German Hans von der Thann starts out from the chaos of the Flower Power in London and moves on to India to follow an eccentric music master who has mesmerized him with his music. “Khan-Sahib – the sitar ...” The Khan-Sahib knew what he meant by ´the sitar´, knew well the exact amount that was still owed and gave him an irritated look. Orp Bennerji, ashen and sweating, came rushing in. “The raid! They are down on the first floor! They are here!” Nizam froze. But the shock lasted only for a moment. He ran into the bedroom and came back with the suitcase, the jute bags, and the chandelier. What starts out as a fun trip into an exotic universe soon turns into a forbidding maelstrom of ecstasy and obsession, of exploitation and abandon, of bliss and despair. In London and Bombay of the late 60s and early 70s dangerous and wondrous encounters unfold. Scenes of folly, cunning and deceit are inescapably interwoven – right up to the final act. Al Gromer Khan takes us through the late sixties of the twentieth century and the withering flower power in London to Bombay, the India of Indira Gandhi´s state of emergency, where the exotic, on a human level, very soon doesn´t seem so outlandish. His protagonist, who has his mind set on reaching the source of his inspiration, meets representatives of various levels of human endeavours on his adventurous journey – all of them linked by their darker side.

 

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