Tabla maestro Zakir Hussain on Sunday was among the winners for three Grammy Awards for Best Global Music Performance, Best Contemporary Instrumental Album and Best Global Music. Flautist Rakesh Chaurasia won two of the awards along with Hussain.
Fusion band Shakti – comprising Hussain, vocalist Shankar Mahadevan, guitarist John McLaughlin, percussionist V Selvaganesh and violinist Ganesh Rajagopalan – won the award for Best Global Music for the album This Moment.
Hussain, Chaurasia, Béla Fleck and Edgar Meyer won the award for Best Global Music Performance for Pashto. The song beat Abundance of Millets – which was performed by Indian-American singer Falguni Shah and her husband, singer Gaurav Shah. The song Abundance of Millets featured Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Hussain, Chaurasia, Fleck and Meyer won the award for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album for As We Speak.
Hussain – along with Meyer, Fleck and Chaurasia – were also nominated for Best Instrumental Composition for Motion.
“It is really a proud moment for me, winning two Grammy Awards for my country,” ANI quoted Chaurasia as saying. “This album is a unique thing for me as it was also difficult to cope with the different genres of music. Coming from the classical background, I am very happy about one thing that I am bringing this award to my country and I will make India proud.”
Modi congratulated the musicians for their “phenomenal success”.
The awards marked Hussain’s third time winning at the Grammys. He won in 1992 for an album named Planet Drum in the World Music Album category. In 2009, a collaborative album named Global Drum Project, featuring Hussain, Mickey Hart of the Grateful Dead, Nigerian percussionist Sikiri Adepoju and Puerto Rican percussionist Giovanni Hidalgo, won in the Contemporary World Music Album category in 2009. Hussain has been nominated for a Grammy on three other occasions.
American singer-songwriter Billie Eilish’s song What Was I Made For, which featured in the 2023 film Barbie, won the award for Song of the Year.
The awards were presented at a ceremony in Los Angeles.
United States-based organisation The Recording Academy presents the Grammy Awards annually to recognise outstanding achievements in the music industry.