Friday, March 26, 2010

Raga Bhairav - 1982 - SYNTHESIZING: TEN RAGAS TO A DISCO BEAT - Charanjit Singh

YouTube via bombayconnection. via Derek on Facebook
Update: 10 track video playlist added below.


CHARANJIT SINGH - Synthesizing: TEN RAGAS TO A DISCO BEAT - india 1982

OUT MARCH 2010 on vinyl & mp3, order here:

Bombay, 1982: Bollywood session musician Charanjit Singh set out to translate ancient Indian classical Ragas to the modern synthesizer and invented house music along the way!

OUT ON CD: april 19th 2010"

"*Until recently it wasn’t much more than some rumours on the web: a 1982 released LP called TEN RAGAS TO A DISCO BEAT containing Kraftwerk-like acid house music, years before the genre was invented.

So it turns out, the record was no rumour. Only a few hundred copies of the LP were ever pressed, and only a handful seem to have survived. Moreover, the LP outdoes all expectations. Performed on the synths that would later define Acid House, the Roland TB-303 and TR-808, the album sounds light years ahead of its time with its repetitive beats and hypnotic electronic melodies. Its maker, Bollywood session musician Charanjit Singh, set out to translate ancient Indian classical Ragas to the modern synthesizer and in doing so seems to have invented House music along the way. The 10 tracks make a consistent listen from A to Z. Its restrained minimalism and lack of cheesiness makes it incredibly contemporary, sounding animated, fluid and unabashedly alive."

First TB-303 recording?

Update 4/26/2013:

Uploaded on Apr 3, 2010 mudkipNDS·39 videos

"UPDATE: Changed the album title to the original release, away from the title that Bombay Connection gave to it.

Track listing found here:

B2 - 33rpm - Raga Yaman
Charanjit Singh
Ten Ragas to a Disco Beat [1982]

From the Bombay Connection website:

Charanjit Singh's 'Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat' is quite easily one of the maddest records we've ever had in stock. It was originally made in 1982 by a Bollywood soundtrack composer, intending to capitalise on the disco phenomenon with a combination of centuries-old classical Indian Ragas set to a disco backing. To achieve this Charanjit used a prototypical acid set-up of Roland TB303 bass melody sequencer and TR808 drum computer together with a Jupiter-8 keyboard. He basically created a sound which mirrored, and more importantly, pre-dated the first acid house record - Phuture's 'Acid Track' by five years, and even preceded Chip E's 'Jack Trax' in 1985. It's no throw-away novelty record either, instead capturing the hypnotic potential of acid music in the most ornate and scarily prescient fashion, making explicit the similarities of infinitely arpeggiated bass sequences and pure electronic pulses that would soundtrack dancefloors for the next 30 odd years. The more cynical among you will probably be thinking this is Ceephax or Aphex Twin delivering one of the most elaborate in-jokes of their career, but with the gatefold sleeve depicting the original sleeve and some in-depth liner notes from the label and Charanjit, our cynicism is waning in favour of absolute shock and awe. 'Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat' is vintage futurism of the highest calibre, and made all the more amazing by the fact it came from India, a place hardly renowned for its electronic output! This is a remarkable record and comes with our highest recommendation - AN ABSOLUTE FIND.

Recorded in 1982 at HMV Studios In Bombay [sic], India

© Bombay Connection, 1982"

via Waveformanalogueresearch Elektro on The MATRIXSYNTH Lounge


  1. India has found its Giorgio Moroder!

  2. is there any proof that this album was really made in 1982? just curious

  3. Judging from the crystal-clear, almost "plastic" sound, and comparing that to Bollywood tracks of the era (or to E=MC2 itself :D), this looks very suspicious, but I'd love to be proven wrong.

  4. in the picture of the back cover of the reissue it says 'audio restoration by see why audio'
    so that could explain the pristine audio.

  5. yes it is real
    the original cover

  6. Charanjit Singh Vs. Heems of Das Racist - Live November 2012:



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