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1940-2011: Music maestro Ustad Sultan Khan passes away today…

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on November 27, 2011

Music maestro Ustad Sultan Khan passes away

Nov 27, 2011

After Jagjit Singh and Bhupen Hazarika, another music maestro, Ustad Sultan Khan breathed his last today at the age of 71. The Sarangi player passed away after succumbing to kidney failure on Sunday afternoon.

His funeral will take place in Jodhpur tomorrow.

Not just the world of classical music, Ustad Khan also ruled the world of Hindi pop music.


Sultan Khan in 2009.... (source:

Sultan Khan in 2009.... (source:

A Padma Bhushan awardee in 2010, the maestro popularized his favourite musical instrument, the ‘Sarangi’ throughout the globe, carving a niche for himself since the age of eleven.

Not just the world of classical music, Ustad Khan also ruled the world of Hindi pop music. Image from ibnlive

Ustand Khan’s profound baritone made him much popular, even to those who did not listen to classical music. Be it his ‘Piya Basanti’ or his ‘Albela Sajan Ayo re’ from the movie Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, his voice never failed to penetrate the hearts of listeners with ease.

He collaborated with legends such as Ravi Shankar on George Harrison’s 1974 ‘Dark Horse World Tour’ to make the kind of music which was classical and popular at the same time. Sultan has won numerous musical awards. He has won the Sangeet Natya Academy Award twice, also known as the President’s Award, as well as the Gold Medalist Award of Maharashtra and the American Academy of Artists Award in 1998.

Khan’s was a family of sarangi masters from Rajasthan. He was initially tutored by his father, Ustad Gulab Khan. Later, he trained under Ustad Amir Khan, a classical vocalist of Indore gharana (school).

After establishing himself as sarangi player, Ustad Sultan Khan also worked with musicians from the Hindi film industry, such as Lata Mangeshkar, Khayyam, Sanjay Leela Bhansali apart from collaborating with musicians in the West.

Bollywood was completely shocked at the demise of Ustad. Expressing his shock over Khan’s death, musician Salim Merchant said, “I lost my ustad – ustad sultan khan, my guru my friend my idol. He passed away this afternoon. We will never have a sarangi maestro like him.”

Actress Dia Mirza said, “Ustad Sultan Khan Saab our most revered sarangi player… your rich legacy will live on. RIP.”

Musician Ismail Darbar, who worked with Khan in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, said, “It’s a great loss for Indian music industry. I was shocked to hear the news of his death as I knew that he was not keeping well for sometime.”

“I share a different rapport with him. He was my father’s close friend. I was the first one to make him sing a song for a film. He sang ‘ Albella…’ brilliantly for the film,” Darbar said.

Shreya Ghoshal, who collaborated with Khan on ‘Leje leja re‘, wrote, “Just heard about the loss of our dear Ustad sultan khan Sa’ab I had the gr8 fortune and honour of working with him. Too saddened.”

His demise has marked the end of an era. The ‘Sarangi’ will no longer produce the same tune. The sufi probably will not sound as mystical as it sounded when Ustad sang. The soulful voice will never be heard again. But, Ustad will remain singing forever in our hearts. The songs he gave us, will forever be treasured.

(Source: 11/27/2011 – FirstPost.Bollywood) Ustad Sultan Khan Passes Away

Ustad Sultan Khan as vocalist…

Ustad Sultan Khan on Sarangi and as vocalist in one…

Ustad Sultan Khan – 3 x Sarangi unisono…

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