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Charles Davis, Ensemble Chanchala

CHARLES DAVIS - FLUTE PLAYER

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Ensemble Chanchala

Charles Davis - Flutes
Andieh’ Merk - Percussion
Sandip Bhattacharya - Tablas  and Vocals
Buba Davis-Sproll - Tanpuras

Ensemble Chanchala came to life in the year 1997 when I met the bansuri (bamboo flute) player Joachim Hübner. The concept then, was a meeting of flute players from two different musical worlds, India and Europe, where the contrasts and similarities could be mirrored on stage. My idea then was to work on the sound of the metal flute that it could approach the tonal qualities of the bansuri, with the bending of pitches and the warm soft sound of bamboo. Later came various percussionists to join us to give the group the rhythmic structure. 

The tabla player and singer Sandip Bhattacharya, brings his life long experience in playing with such greats as Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, Pandit V.G. Jog, Lakshmi Shankar, Shujaat Hussain Khan in giving the group the indian colour. Multinstrumentalist Andieh’ Merk plays a wide variety of percussion instruments, such as the udu, ghatam, darabuka, tablas and hang, giving the music an added flavour. The sensitive playing of Buba Davis-Sproll on the tanpuras gives the group a greater cohesion.

After the departure of Joachim Hübner in 2003, I intensified my studies in north indian classical music to the point where I felt confident in overtaking the majority of the solos in both the jazz and indian spheres. Since then the sound of the group has become more direct and intensive.

Ensemble Chanchala
with Charles Davis (flute), Buba Davis-Sproll (tanpura) and Andieh Merk (tabla) playing the raga Pilu in the Lutherkirche Konstanz, Germany on 7.11.2015.

Reviews about the new Ensemble Chanchala CD "The Day the Swallows Came"

Klaus Mümpfer in the Jazzpodium from Februar 2007.

"The Day the Swallows Came"  fascinates with a meditative melodical and rhythmical quality  of an incredible  intensity. It is a music which totally absorbs the listener."

Walter Bast in Folker  March 2007.

"The musical concept of Ensemble Chanchala is the most convincing that I have heard in the last thirty years   to the topic  "Jazz meets India". Congratulations!"

Rolf Thomas in Jazzthetik  May 2007.

"Many of the new pieces are based on classical Indian ragas and allow place for Davis' stupendous ablitiy to assimilate foreign musical cultures and fill them with life."

 

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