I have a Pandora Station for Zakir Hussain....NICE STUFF
Just recently, in the last few weeks, I saw him play locally with Bela Fleck and Edgar Meyer...that particular CD of the three of them is beyond beer drinking or brewing music, its sit down and hold on tight music. I generally love Zakir Hussain when he's doing indian classical, ie. tabla solo with some sort of sarangi nagma or something, but he seems really well disposed to expanding to other genres...he seems to have the gift that Ravi Shankar has, in being a good ambassador. There are plenty of fantastic tabla players but to denigrate to play with an American banjo player is a good thing. Just like if a certain cery famous English guitar player had been deemed too much of a pop musician to warrant Panditji's attention, I for one might never have been properly introduced to Indian music. But Raviji, even as he was entering his late 40s, was willing to work with silly Western pop musicians, along with the strikingly serious musicians like Yehudi Menuhin, and without that influence I can pretty safely wager I would not have much of a knowledge of Indian music.
But anyway, Zakir funks it up!!! That dude can brutalize a tabla tarang like noone else.