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Manindralal Sengupta ( Moni Babu)
GharanaDhrupad - Nauhar BaniManindralal Sengupta ( Moni Babu)
SpecialityVocal
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Tasadduq Hussain Khan 'Vinod'
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Moni Babu's musical journey started in 1930s under the tutelage of Shri Bipin Chatterjee in Barisal, Bangladesh. After shifting to Kolkata in probably 1940, he came in contact with Pandit Keshav Ganesh Dhekne, under whose training he participitated in the Bengal Music Conference in 1941 and topped the Alaap and Dhrupad Sections. Subsequently, on advice from the great Aftab-e-Mousiki Ustad Faiyaz Khan, he moved to Agra and, for several years, received training under Ustad Tassadaq Hussain Khan of Agra(Rangeela) Gharana.

Subsequently, compulsions of job and family forced him to largely stay away from active musical circles, but his passion and devotion never lessened. In 1973, he suddenly resigned from his job and immersed himself completely in music. During this period, till a few months before his death in June 1982, he practiced almost continuously, sometimes for 12-14 hours in a day.
By 1979-80, unfortunately, his habit of smoking had led to lung cancer and his voice had started losing its quality.

Some of his songs recorded during the last year of his life has been featured in a non-commercial website www.alaap-agragharana.com . The songs have drawn huge appreciation from a large cross-section of listeners from across the world. Many have felt that he was communicating with God through his songs . All the songs can be listened to and downloaded free from the website.

Moni Babu had a very dramatic life, particularly during his youth, that at times reads like a movie -script. A more detailed account given in the chapter titled A Musical Journey in the website provides glimpses of the world of music in those days and may be of interest to many, particularly to aspiring musicians.
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