EP 279 . 06 Sep 23

Improvisations in music

With Pushkar and Kuldeep

In the episode

  1. What according to you is improvisation in the broadest sense?
  2. What does it mean to improvise in a concert? When is it required? How spontaneous it is
  3. Do you see a similar pattern in a Western Classical performances? Or perhaps Jazz? Can we confidently say that each performance by Loius Amstrong was different even for the same set of tracks?
  4. Do you need to be qualified to improvise? If yes, when are you allowed to improvise in Guru Shishya Parampara?
  5. Do we have a lineage kind of a thing in Western music as well – which deals with improvisations? Especially in genres like Jazz, Blues or country?
  6. What is the difference between improvising, exploring or presenting with a different perspective?
  7. When do we call something is improvised? After how much deviation from originally planned is called improvisation?
  8. When does one improvise? When they do the same thing over and over again or when they see some room for exploration? What’s a more common pattern?
  9. What are the extents of improvisation? Whats at stake when an artist is improvising?
  10. Can improvisations land in a loop of improvisations? How do you come back to the sthayi bhava?
  11. Does a well trained audience appreciate improvisations?
  12. When and how do improvisations become part of the main setup? As in, no longer be called as improvisations?

About Pushkar and Kuldeep

I quote John McLaughlin “I find Indian music very funky. I mean it’s very soulful, with their own kind of blues. But it’s the only other school on the planet that develops improvisation to the high degree that you find in jazz music. So we have a lot of common ground.”


Pushkar Lele and Kuldeep Barve joins us on Audiogyan and we will be talking about “Improvisation in music”. It’s going to be a bi-lingual conversation in English and Marathi.


Pushkar is a renowned Hindustani classical vocalist and Founder-Director of ‘Gandhara School of Music’. More about his Gurus, rich repertoire and enriching journey of learning music in the show notes.


Kuldeep is a classical guitarist. His practice is influenced by jazz and Indian classical music. He is a co-founder and a core member of the Pune Guitar Society. Just as a small plug, you can also listen to “Jazz in India” where I interviewed Denzil Smith in episode 133.