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Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt and Jay Dabgar

Nexus Arts is excited to host master of the Mohan Veena (slide guitar), Pt. Vishwa Mohan Bhatt. He is best known for his Grammy-award winning album A Meeting by the River with Ry Cooder, and is also known for other fusion and pan-cultural collaborations with Western artists such as Taj Mahal, Béla Fleck and Jerry Douglas.

Joining him is Melbourne-based Tabla virtuoso, Jay Dabgar.

Vishwa Mohan Bhatt
Vishwa Mohan Bhatt is a multi-award winning artist who has become synonymous with the Mohan Veena,a twenty string modified arch-top guitar with three melody strings, five drone strings and twelve sympathetic strings that Bhatt created. With it he produces a sound that blends the western Hawaiian guitar with sitar, sarod and veena techniques.

Bhatt has won a Grammy, Sangeet Natak Academy and Tansen awards and was the first Indian musician to be awarded the “Musical Scientist award” in Bangalore, India He has been praised by “Acoustic Guitar” magazine as “one of the greatest and most expressive slide players in the world”. The “Edmonton Journal” referred to Bhatt as “an inspiration even to Western guitarists”.

In addition to 39 solo albums, Bhatt has recorded with Ry Cooder, Bela Fleck, Jerry Douglas, Taj Mahal and Arabian oudh player Simon Shaheen. Bhatt became the first Indian to collaborate with a Chinese musician when he toured with Erhu player Jei Bing Chen. Bhatt’s collaboration with Ry Cooder, “A Meeting by the River” received a Grammy award in 1994. His collaboration with Bela Fleck and Jei Bing Chen, “Tabula Rasa”, recorded in a Santa Barbara, California church in October 1994, was nominated for a Grammy.

Tunes from “A Meeting By The River” and “Mumtaz Mahal”, recorded with Taj Mahal, were featured on the soundtracks of films, “Two Days In The Valley” and the Oscar award-winning, “Dead Man Walking”.

In 2017, Pt Bhatt has been awarded with the Padma Bhushan title, India’s third-highest civilian honour.

Jay Dabgar
Born in 1981 in a family of Tabla-makers in India, Jay has been living in an environment of music and instruments since childhood.Jay plays with many different artists from different backgrounds in Indian Classical, Semi Classical, Fusion and World music in Australia and have been teaching tabla and other percussion at his centre “Melbourne School of Indian Music”.

To further develop his career in music, Jay moved to Australia in 2006. He started performing and teaching, and developed himself as a freelance musician performing traditional Indian classical, semi-classical, spiritual, sufi, bollywood and world music. Within no time, he started touring nationally, performing with artists such as Josh Bennett, Keith Preston, Dya Singh, Alies Sluiter, Allan Posselt, Anne Norman, Vinod Prasanna. He regularly performs with international artists that visit Australia. He has performed at popular music events in Australia such as, WOMAD, OzAsia, National Folk Festival, Nannup Festival, APRA spot light, and so on. In 2011, he invited his Guru-Maa, the First Lady of Sitar, Vidushi Smt Manju Mehta. Together, they toured Australia-wide to perform. He continues to pursue his music in varying forms by practising as a performing musician, a music teacher, and a musical instruments retailer and repairer! He teaches both, in person and online, to cater to his local as well interstate students.