Ganesh Prasad Mishra was the younger brother of Mahesh Prasad Mishra. Both were sarangi players with an intimate knowledge of vocal music. Although I had met them earlier, I only got to know them in 1994. They were old and their sarangis were in a terrible state of repair. I did some work on Ganeshji's sarangi, but he was resistant to the change implied and wouldn't let me take his instrument away to work on it. In our sessions he did his best playing  on my sarangi. Sometimes he would play while Maheshji sang. His nephew Mata Prasad Mishra would accompany them on tabla. He has remained a good friend, and featured importantly in my Growing into Music work (film forthcoming). Ganesh and Mahesh Prasad Mishra were both very colourful eccentric characters, but in some ways they typified the demoralisation of sarangi players in the latter half of the twentieth century. Under-employment leads to a lack of concern with practice and with the maintenance of one's instrument.

Our first series of films is from 24 January 1995. We begin with khayals in Bahar (Ganeshji playing), Adana Bahar (Maheshji singing and Ganeshji playing), and Adana (Maheshji singing with vocal contributions by Ganeshji). Then Ganeshji tells me the words of the Adana song:


Then a Komal Dha-pradhan Desi, quite akin to Jaunpuri:


next Ganeshji performs a dadra in Bhairavi:


Finally an ektal bandish ki thumri in Khamaj, the wonderful "mag rokhe aaj banavari" (Krishna stopped me on the road today). After this, Maheshji tells me the words of this rather long composition at a blistering speed and with a beautiful feel for the lilt of the poetry—amazing for someone who in other respects was not, as they say, sixteen annas to the rupee.