His father died when Imrat was a child, so he was raised by his mother, Bashiran Begum and her father, singer Bande Hassan Khan. In 1944, the family moved with rising star Vilayat Khan, Imrat's elder brother, to Bombay where both the brothers learned extensively from uncle Wahid Khan, Enayat Khan's younger brother. Wahid Khan was one of the greatest surbahar players of his generation and a top-level sitar player, and taught Imrat on the instruments in the family style, known as the Imdadkhani gharana (school), or Etawah Gharana, after a village outside Agra where Imdad Khan lived. In 1952 Vilayat and Imrat moved in together in Calcutta. They performed together for many years.
From the 1960s onwards, Imrat has performed and recorded solo, playing both sitar and surbahar.  Solo career and legacy For decades, Imrat has recorded extensively on both his instruments. His full performance practice starts with a surbahar alap in dhrupad ang (embellished with more romantic touches), followed by a shorter alap on the sitar leading into gat in traditional Imdadkhani style. (Sitar players such as Ravi Shankar and Nikhil Banerjee added bass strings to their sitars to achieve at least some of the surbahar's lower range on a single instrument). He has toured to Europe, the Americas, and East and Southeast Asia. Surbahar players are rare today, and Imrat is the main living exponent. Imrat has four sons, Nishat, Irshad, Wajahat and Shafaatullah, who are all classical musicians: Nishat plays the sitar, Wajahat concentrates on the sarod and Shafaatullah is accomplished on sitar, tabla, and surbahar.
The surbahar tradition is largely upheld by Irshad (also a sitar player), who has made some very traditional solo recordings. Imrat Khan currently spends a portion of each year teaching classical Indian music and instructing sitar students at Washington University in Saint Louis. In addition to his sons, Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones and George Harrison of The Beatles (who also studied under Ravi Shankar) have been some of his famous students. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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