Rabindranath Tagore, the Singer and His Song

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Penguin, Viking, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 291 pages
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We often forget that Gitanjali, the book of poems for which Tagore was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913, was actually a collection of songs. In his lifetime, Tagore was most renowned for his songwriting. But today, outside Bengal, his music remains largely unknown and his songs are scarcely understood. Much of what Tagore experienced in lifeā¬ his frustrations, his grief, his sense of devastationā¬ were expressed in songs. The distinction of Tagoreā¬"s musical oeuvre lies in the near-perfect balance that he achieved between the evocative lyrics, the matching melody and the rhythmic structure in which each song is bound. Even his art, which flowered late in his life, was influenced by music. Music, in fact, is the key to understanding Tagore: the man and his greatness. This biography maps out chronologically the musical journey of the poet with anecdotes and allusions, and includes translations of some of Tagoreā¬"s most evocative songs. It is also illustrated with photographs and paintings that are crucial to the understanding of Tagore as a musician.

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Early Beginnings
Music in the Family

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