Louiz Banks: A Symphony of Love


Author: Ashis Ghatak

9789390547906 | HB | pp. 242+xviii | 2021 | Rupa Publications

This is the biography of Louiz Banks – the godfather of Indian jazz.

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Pushkar Bahadur Budapriti was not only the best trumpet player in Darjeeling of the ’50s, but he was also an unsparing father every time his son Dambar played a wrong note. When Pushkar became George Banks to gel with the names of his English bandmates, he rechristened Dambar Bahadur Budapriti as Louiz Banks.

George was the best music teacher Louiz could ever hope for, and the most endearing lesson the young Louiz learnt was a three-step process to become a successful musician: imitation, integration and innovation.

The musical journey of Louiz Banks, the Indian counterpart to the modern-day jazz legends like Herbie Hancock and Chick Correa, spans over five decades and is steeped in surprising twists and turns. Starting his career as a pianist with a band in Kolkata, he first went to Mumbai at the invitation of the musical genius R. D. Burman. Inspired by the opportunities the ciy presented, Louiz soon made Mumbai his home and became the number one musical director for advertisements.

Packed with anecdotes shared by the musician himself and those narrated by other musical stalwarts associated with him, the book gives a fascinating insight into the life of a dynamic musician who has extended the boundaries of his craft. The book also goes back into the nation’s colonial past to search for the roots of Indian jazz and offers a fascinating glimpse into the socio -political and cultural scenario of the time.

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Ashis Ghatak




Rupa Publications





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About the Author

The author teaches English at a government-aided school in Kolkata. A film and music enthusiast, a photographer and an avid traveller, he has to his credit many academic books as well as travelogues in various travel magazines.


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