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Ustad bade ghulam ali khan belongs to what is called patiala gharana (gharana being a certain flavor/grammar of ragas in Indian classical music) He was born in Kasur, Punjab in 1901. Being a muslim, he is said to have moved to Pakistan after India was partitioned in 1947 but then he decided to move back to India.

He is considered to be one of the greatest classical music singers. Some consider him the Tansen of the 20th century (Tansen was a 16th century Hindustani classical music composer considered to be the most prolific and adept musician in the Hindustani classical styles).

His style was distinct in a way that gave emotions more importance than technical richness of the music. He is said to have been inspired very much by nature in his music. Most of his work is around thumris and dadras(both being semi-classical improvisational styles). Having lived in Eastern India for quite some time, his music showed a blend with Purab ang (eastern style) too. With more inclined to semi-classical styles his favorite ragas were popular ragas like Malkauns, Bhupali, Bageshree instead of more obscure ones.

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