Notes of compassion

EVER SINCE the tsunami destroyed the coastlines of India and other South Asian countries, everyone — rich or poor, unskilled or professional — wanted to do their mite to help.

If you are an artiste, your art might be the one thing you can offer. Or you might be able to do many things simultaneously. Like the young, able and willing film stars Vivek Oberoi and Rahul Bose, who packed their bags, rolled up their sleeves and got down to the brass tacks of rescue and rehabilitation work. Then again, offering one's art could be a great contribution in itself. As in the case of Jagjit Singh, who has just released an album, Sai Dhun, produced by Sa Re Ga Ma in New Delhi.

Simple kirtans

It is in simple kirtan form, explains the eminent singer, whose voice has soothed millions of hearts. "When in trouble, people turn to God. The purpose (of the songs in the album) is simply to repeat the name of God. Slowly, you forget your grief."

The album can be said to have been composed by him, but it basically contains traditional kirtans, he says. Though the album cover shows a drawing of Sai Baba of Shirdi, the eminent singer points out that there is no hard and fast connotation for `Sai Ram'.

"Sai is a Sindhi word meaning `Bade Saathi' (Great Friend)."

The proceeds of the album will go towards tsunami relief.