State Of Bengal
A cutting edge dj and producer, State of Bengal (aka Sam Zaman) got his start teaching music to kids in London. After a few trips to his native Bengal to study folk traditions, Zaman started making his own music and mentoring older artists -- including his brother MC Deedar, who went on to found the Asian Dub Foundation. Zaman was also breathing new life into drum 'n' bass with his club appearances, where he mixed Indian and Bengal influences with technical trickery and appealed to a young, urbane generation of British Asians. He caught Talvin Singh's attention, and appeared on Singh's Anokha: Sounds of the Asian Underground compilation (named for the famed British club night). His 1999 debut Visual Audio garnered critical praise, and he came back a year later with Walking On, a collaboration with Ananda Shankar recorded just before Shankar's death. 2004's Tana Tani saw Zaman matching wits with Paris-based singer Paban Das Baul.