Jon Barlow’s 70th Birthday++

Jambo 70* @ Bondel Road

Srinivasan Subramanian

I am happy to share with you a couple of video clips of an immensely enjoyable evening we had last month. My brother in law Jon Barlow (sometimes referred to as Jambo) completed 70 years on Buddha Jayanti. So my sister and I decided to surprise him with a musical soiree. The short clips are from this event.

I would also like to say a few things in context.

Pandit and Camera

We had the privilege of having Pandit Sanjoy Bandopadhyay play for us. In my opinion he is not only the finest Sitar maestro today but also one of the nicest men I have met- very kind ,generous and also a barrel load of laughs. I have not been able to record the full concert because I had to be involved with serving out the drinks , food and all that. The footage is I think good considering two factors, the device is an Intex Smartphone, I bought this due to its proclamation of being “Made in India” when I opened the box, the embossed declaration changed to “Made in China” but that is another story. Also I had way too much of spirits in me, an assortment of Rum, Beer, Vodka and White wine. Considering this I think the composition and steadiness of hand is admirable Ha!. The music is again absolutely fantastic the melodic quality of Sanjoy’s Sitar is at a different plane.

Comp-webFriends and the Pod

Jon and Bondel Road have attracted some of the most interesting people you can hope to meet. In my eyes The apartment at Bondel Road is not really a “pad” rather it is a “pod” stuck in some weird Space-Time complication. I will name and acknowledge some of the people in this party. There was Sibaji Bandopadhaya one of Kolkata’s finest intellects and also interestingly its premier Sex symbol. I think he enjoyed the break and thoroughly loved the music. There was Kavita and her two sons Dupleix and Yoyo. Dupleix is slated to be the next Ramanujam of Indian Mathematics and Yoyo a very fine artist, his portrait of Jon occurs in the first video and is truly striking. There was Soumyajit and Anindo fellow travellers of music with Jon under their late Guru Radhikamohan Moitra ( the term used is Guru Bhaiy). There was also Hari Vasudevan and Tapati very close friends of my sisters for decades. In all there were 20 people in Bondel Road on that evening.

Salaam Arsalaan

Needless to say you cannot be a Kolkatan and not love food and so we decided in ordering for Kababs and Roti from Arsalan. This is my favourite Mughalai restaurant and I have frequented this place regularly for the last 14 years. I have to put it mildly a relationship with them. The Kababs were as follows:

      • Mutton Arsalan Kabab
      • Mutton Kakori Kabab
      • Chicken Reshmi Kabab
      • Chicken Achaari Kabab
      • Paneer Tikka Kabab
      • Paneer Hariyali Kabab

Within an hour we ran out of food!! It was so incredibly good. I am not going to dwell much on this because nowadays blogs are written about food and so will provide you with a link to one of the items we had on the plate:  Confessions of a glutton: The Love Story of Meat and Cheese: Mutton Arsalan Kabab

This was one heck of a Bheema ratha shanti that Jambo got! Next stop Goa 24th June will keep you posted.


Here are the two audio recordings of Sanjoyjee’s sitar recitals of the evening with Dilip Mukherjee on the tabla. The music was recorded in Dilip’s small SONY voice recorder. It was hot and a big ceiling fan was running over the head. But, we thought it is good to post the recordings too… especially for the ‘overly enthusiastic’ music lovers.

Miyan-ki-Malhar [alsp and gat]

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Darbari Kanada [alap]

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The author Srinivasan Subramanian talks about himself: 
I have been  listening to music with passion for the last 4 decades.
It began like most youngsters with “pop music” but once Indian classical-
music mediated through a chance hearing of Bahadur Khan’s Sohini fell 
entered my ears I have been enslaved by Indian classical music especially
 the Carnatic system. I listen to music and teach Yoga.

Note: Srinivasan Subramanian is fondly called as Cheenu.

Darbari Kanada Allap-Jod

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