Trilok Gurtu Biography In English Life Story -1951

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  • Trilok Gurtu is an Indian percussionist and composer whose work blends the music of India with jazz fusion and world music.

Trilok Gurtu Biography In English

Birth Details –

Place – Mumbai, India

Date of Birth – 30 October 1951

Nationality – Indian

Family –

Mother – Shobha Gurtu

Teacher – Shah Abdul Karim

Early Life –

  • Gurtu was born in Mumbai, India to Hindu Brahmin parents; His father was Kashmiri Pandit and mother Marathi. He studied at Don Bosco High School (Matunga) in Mumbai.
  • His mother, the renowned Hindustani classical and semi-classical singer Shobha Gurtu, encouraged him to learn to play the tabla, and he received formal training in percussion from Shah Abdul Karim.


  • Gurtu started playing western drum kit in the 1970s and developed an interest in jazz.
  • In the 1970s, he starred with Charlie Mariano, John Tchikai, Terje Rypdal and Don Cherry.
  • One of Gurtu’s earliest recordings was on Apo-Calypso, a 1977 album by German ethnic fusion band Embryo. His mother also sang on that record, and later joined him on his first solo CD, Usfrette.
  • In the 1980s, Gurtu played with Swiss drummer Charlie Antolini and with John McLaughlin in the McLaughlin Trio, along with bassists Jonas Hellborg, Kai Eckhardt and Dominic DiPiazza.
  • The line-up with Hellborg opened at least one concert for Miles Davis in 1988 in Berkeley, California.
  • The collaboration between Gurtu and McLaughlin included vocal improvisation using the Indian Tal Talk method of verbal drumming notation to teach drum patterns.
  • In the early 1990s, Gurtu resumed his career as a solo artist and bandleader. Various famous musicians have supported him on many of his CD releases.
  • In 1999, Zakir Hussain and Bill Laswell founded a music group, Tabla Beat Science, which played a mix of Hindustani music, Asian underground, ambient, drum and bass and electronica. Gurtu joined the group along with Karsh Kale and Talvin Singh. The group released three albums before becoming inactive in late 2003.
  • In 2004, Gurtu made an album with Robert Miles called Miles Gurtu. His collaboration with the Arche String Quartet began in 2007 with the release of the album Archeology.
  • In 2010, Trilok Gurtu starred in minimalist composer Stefano Ian’s opera album Piano Car with Ricky Portera, Nick Beggs, Mario Marzi, Terrell Bryant, John De Leo.
  • In 2012, Trilok Gurtu collaborated with electronic folk duo Hari and Sukhmani in his hometown Chandigarh and produced a song ‘Maati’ on the music documentary-travelogue The Dewarists.


  • Multicultural Music Awards
  • Best Percussionist Winner

When and where was Trilok Gurtu born?

Trilok Gurtu was born on 30 October 1951 in Mumbai, India.

What was the name of Trilok Gurtu’s mother?

Trilok Gurtu’s mother’s name was Shobha Gurtu.

What was the name of Trilok Gurtu’s teacher?

The name of the teacher of Trilok Gurtu was Shah Abdul Karim.

Which award was awarded to Trilok Gurtu?

Trilok Gurtu was awarded the Multicultural Music Award, Best Percussionist Winner.

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