Behram Khan Teacher Extaordinaire of the Dagar Tradition


Baba Behram Khan(?-1878)

Son of Gopal Das ( Imam Baksh) is credited with giving the Dagar tradition its present form. Travelled to Benares in his youth to learn from Kalidas Dagur, who accepted him as his disciple after subjecting him to many tests, and trained him to be an outstanding musician and a scholar. He  later served in various imperial courts and received many grandiose titles. It is said that he owned an elephant, and would ride on it whenever he visited his patron  Maharaja Savai Ram Singh of Jaipur. He was renowned as a great teacher and a scholar, and trained his nephew Mohammad Jan Khan who had a beautiful  voice and showed great promise, but left home after a disagreement with Baba Behram  Khan at a public performance, and was never seen again. A repentent Behram Khan then took up the task of teaching Mohammad Jan Khan's  sons  Zakiruddin and Allabande. He had many disciples and trained many Khayal singers too.  He is credited with  developing  the elaborate, methodical, grammar bound system of alap of the Dagars.

see Maestros for more on other singers of the Dagar tradition.