Ustad Imrat Khan

The Gharana

Ustad Waheed Khan - The Reluctant Guru

The enigmatic uncle of Ustad Imrat Khan, Ustad Waheed Khan was a talented musician and essential element in the Etawa Gharana. In complete contrast to the flair and charisma of his elder brother Inayat Khan, Waheed Khan was a shy and private man. He lived his life modestly, like a nomad, making his home for brief periods of time all around the country playing the surbahar and sitar. It was while he was in Calcutta and Kalyan, a town outside Bombay that Ustad Imrat Khan received his instruction on the surbahar. A respected and dignified musician, Waheed Khan spread the style of his gharana quietly yet elegantly illustrated by existing recordings. Interestingly, he appeared in the legendary Satyajit Ray film Jalsaghar in a rooftop scene performing on the surbahar.

This humble retiring nature was reflected in his decision to send his two sons, Hafeez Khan and Aziz Khan to his brother, Ustad Inayat Khan for instruction. Both sons learnt the sitar from their unlce for a time but much to his distress, they both decided to end their classical musical career at a young age at fourteen and sixteen. Aziz became a Musical Director in the Bombay film industry and his brother Hafeez, known in the industry as H Khan Mastana, became a celebrated playback singer.

Ustad Waheed Khan lived well into his seventies and his lifelong contribution to Indian Music was recognised when he was the first musician to receive the illustrious Sangeet Natak Academy Award.