Birth name Pandit Raghunath Seth
Born 1931 in Gwalior
Died 15 February 2014 in Mumbai
Pandit Raghunath Seth (1931 – 15 February 2014) was a noted Indian exponent of Hindustani Classical Music through the medium of Bansuri, or bamboo flute; he was also a noted film score composer. He has received Sangeet Natak Academy Award in 1994, given by India’s National Academy for Music, Dance and Drama.
As an Indian Classical Music Bamboo Flautist, he delighted his audiences and fans across the globe. His flute composition “Music to help you sleep” from the album Nidra has over 5.5 million views on YouTube.
His filmography included songs by stalwarts like Yesudas, Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhosle, Chithra, Kavita Krishnamurty, Alka Yagnik, Bhupinder, Suresh Wadkar, Hariharan, Udit Narayan and more. “Yeh Paudhay Yeh Pattay”, from the film “Ek Baar Phir”, has been documented as Anuradha Podwal’s first film song.
His private albums included songs by Talat Mehmood, Asha Bhosle, Vani Jairam, Arti Mukherjee, Talat Aziz, Peenaz Masani, Sudha Malhotra, Hari Om Sharan, Sharma Bandhu.
He scored music for around 2000 documentary films and many television serials. Several of them like, ‘Ocean to Sky, ‘The Last Tiger’, ‘Mughal Gardens’ & ‘Death Sentence’ were widely recognized for their music scores as well. He also composed songs for the 1988 Malayalam film “Aaranvakam” directed by Malayalam film director Hariharan with lyrics by the late Malayalam poet O.N.V. Kurup.
Pandit Raghunath Seth made many breakthroughs in the technique of flute making and playing. He is well known for adding a bamboo key to his bansuri that makes previously impossible phrases, such as the meend (Glissando) between Ma and Pa, easily playable. He also added an 8th hole which allows to extend the range of Indian bamboo flute, further into the lower octave.
As a flute guru, he has gifted the world with many fine disciples including: his son Apurva Shrivastava, Steve Gorn, Rao Kyao, Chris Hinze, Clive Bell, Sunil Gupta, Krishna Bhandari, Joshua Geisler, Chetan Joshi, Atul Sharma and Datta Chaughule.
He received his early training from eminent musicologist Dr S.N. Ratanjankar and principal of Bhatkande Sangeet Sansthan in Lucknow. Later at the age of 19 he moved to Mumbai, where he learnt under Pandit Pannalal Ghosh of Maihar Gharana.