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Ravi Shankar

Rabindra Shankar Chowdery, aka Ravi Shankar, was born on April 7, 1920, in Varanasi, India, into a well-off orthodox Brahmin family. His father, ShyÆm Shankar, was employed as a diwan (minister) by the Maharajah of Jhalawar. By the age of 13, Ravi Shankar was going along on every tour of his brother Uday Shankar's Compaigne de Danse et Musique Hindou (Company of Hindu Dance and Music). At the All-Bengali Music Conference in December 1934, he met the multi-instrumentalist Allauddin Khan. Precisely when Allauddin Khan was born is uncertain. People hazard dates in the 1860s around 1862, but in later years he himself gave his age haphazardly. He would transform many musicians' lives, but he had an incalculable effect on Ali Akbar (his son), Annapurna Devi (his daughter), and Shankar himself. Allauddin Khan joined Uday's troupe as its principal soloist around 1935-1936.

In 1938, Shankar gave up a potential career as a dancer and went to study with Allauddin Khan in Maihar. In 1939, he began giving public recitals and came out of training at the end of 1944. Until 1948, he based himself in Bombay and gave programs all over India. He toured and wrote for films and ballet. Around this time he began his recording career with a small session for HMV (India). Work for All India Radio followed, as music director from February 1949 to January 1956 in New Delhi. Concurrently, his international star was on the rise. In 1954, he performed in the Soviet Union. In 1956, he played his debut solo concerts in Western Europe and the U.S. Within a decade he would be the most famous Indian musician on the planet. Within two decades he became probably the most famous Indian alive. His English-language autobiography, My Music, My Life (1969), is still one of the best general introductions to Hindustani music. It would be hard to over-estimate his influence in late 20th century Western music. His disciples included George Harrison and Philip Glass.

Shankar was not one-dimensional. Apart from pursuing a career as a classical performer, he also experimented outside this field. For this reason he has attracted criticism from purists. Some of this, especially during the Beatles era, undoubtedly had an element of jealousy to it, and some was certainly warranted, because Shankar did take many chances. In fact, that was one of the things that kept his music exciting. To use a cricketing image -- baseball would be wholly inappropriate -- Shankar's batting average remained high throughout a long and illustrious career. In later life, he spent a great deal of time in the U.S. at his home in California, and continued to give spellbinding live performances well into the new century. However, his final concert took place in Bangalore, southwest India, in February 2012, where he shared the stage with his daughter, Anoushka. Sadly, following a long period of ill health, Shankar passed away at a San Diego hospital on December 11, 2012, aged 92. A pair of albums appeared later that year, Living Room Sessions: Part 1 and a performance of Shankar's only symphony composition, simply called Symphony, done by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with David Murphy. ~ Ken Hunt
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Living Room Sessions Part 2

1. Raga Mishra Kafi

2. Raga Singhi Bhairavi

3. Raga Bhairavi

x

Track List: The Living Room Sessions, Pt. 1

1. Raga Malgunji

2. Raga Khamaj

3. Raga Kedara

4. Raga Satyajit

x

Track List: Golden Jubilee Concert Volume 2

1. Raga Bihag

2. Raga Pancham Se Gara

x

Track List: The Shankar Project: Tana Mana

1. Chase

2. Tana Mana

3. Village Dance

4. Seven And 10 1/2

5. Friar Park

6. Romantic Voyage

7. Memory Of Uday

8. West Eats Meat

9. Reunion

10. Supplication

x

Track List: The Sounds Of India

1. An Introduction To Indian Music

2. Dadra

3. Maru-Bihag

4. Bhimpalasi

5. Sindhi Bhairavi

x

Track List: Live At The Monterey International Pop Festival

1. Raga Bhimpalasi

3. Dhun (Dadra And Fast Teental)

x

Track List: Pt. Ravi Shankar: Sitar

1. Raga Tilak Shyam: Alaap & Gat Teentaal

2. Raga Abhogi Kanada: Alap, Jod, Gat Roopak

3. Raga Mishra Piloo: Gat, Vilambit, Drut & Ati Drut Teentaal

x

Track List: Towards The Rising Sun

Disc 1

1. Padhasapa

2. Kaharwa

3. Improvisation On The Theme Of "Rokudan"

4. Namah Shivaya

5. Tribute To Nippon

6. Homage To Baba Allauddin

Disc 2

1. Alap

2. Jor

3. Gat I (Tala: Jap-tal)

4. Gat II (Tala: Ek-tal)

5. Raga Hameer

Comments

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eparralc
Hufhgyhhhhmy h h k k h h gr td mf3mf3
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eparralc
Hymn by j hungry hm hhnf fec g hhhhhrkredrr f r e r r g b e s tgjm
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Lest we forget....ne v e r forget the patron who brought this wonderful talent to life...Thank you Maharaja of Jhalawar
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MARAVILHOSO
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I LOVE THIS
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Mesmerizing.
There can not be better music and genius than this.
Those who write negative about his music are jealous or worse ignorant and shallow
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ptgldst9
"
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I love classical Indian music!
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Ravi Shankar is a f*cking pimp
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nice
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A superb intro, IMO, is the 4-CD In Celebration box set from 1996. It includes a CD of classical Indian music, but also a wide range of Ravi's dabblings with symphonic form and other experimental ideas. No one will like every piece, but there's something to inspire everyone. It's also the best place to be astonished by and reminded of the wide range of the sitar...it's not just an instrument for moody ragas despite typecasting.
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Leader of the troupe...
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a true great artist
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Buddha's favorite music.
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Ravi's music sure had it's effect on George Harrison
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lulu.gilman
My 5th grade teacher was named after him, Ravi is his first name and Shankar is his middle name. Haha.
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Exquisite and entrancing music! Saw him at Provincetown , M A Town Hall summer of 1967.Superb!
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I love the music of Ravi Shankar....t a k e s me to another place
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Kiss your hand 5 times then post this on two different songs then look under your pillow
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.
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I was a boy when I saw Ravi Shankar playing with the Puerto Rico Symphony... I was mesmerized. The audience kept clapping for nine minutes after he finished. Ravi thanked the PRSO percussionis t that played the tablas for him that night, saying that, of all the ensembles he had to play with in his tour, the guy's playing was the most inspiring of them all... so I believe I did see a very inspired Shankar rendition that night.
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agustagiovan n a
He came to my house with my yoga teacher, what a honor, I will never forget tha day and the great artist, he was
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Luv Hindi music fav kind of music other than hawaiian music
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it's soothe the savagebreast , d e a r
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I have always loved Ravi's music, always. I always will.
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gtdzaldumbid e
Love this music it's deep
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Thank you for gracing the world w/ your life and music. You have been an inspiration to many and a solace to many more. Namaste
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The Master Ravi give to the world peace inside the earth and a great feeling of well been forever and ever remind light full in the infinite universe .
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Hope I meet him in the hereafter! I'm sure all religions and sects merge in the afterlife.
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Keep the comments coming. Rav's musici was a great comfort to me in the 1960's
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karen.parson s 7 9
I had the pleasure of hearing him at Blossom Music Center years ago. He was the opening act for Rod McKuen.
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this is great homework music
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Music which embodies what is missing from our modern lives; peace, patience, discipline, improvisatio n and transcendenc e .
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music to soothe the savage beast also known as a teething baby!
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this is awesome


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Check apu trilogy. More great Ravi music.
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1202823822
Namaste Ravi master!
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Miss Ravi everyday
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fredscrazych i c k
An artist who will be missed ... may he return as an musician again
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tprasek
In a documentary Ravi was asked whether he was a Hindu...he did not claim to be any particular sect. But he did say that KRSNA is special, and that He (KRSNA) is everywhere. I pray KRSNA was on his mind's lips as he passed from this world. His artistic ideals are far reaching, and we'll never know how much he contributed to music. Another person not mentioned in the bio he met and instructed was John Coltrane. Coltrane must have been impressed since he named his son Ravi Coltrane after him.
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cboston67
Love Ravi. His music and the spirit he projected. My other love is George Harrison and may they rest in peace together.
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Love Ravi
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I missed a chance to see him in philly a couple years ago... biggest missed opportunity.
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bgpmd8
I never got a chance to hear him live, but have loved his music. Sooo Amazing. You will be missed, Rest in Peace.
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He is so amazing! My new favorite! Ravi rocks! Go india!
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solomonzen
Monterey, nuff said
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The same thing Happened to me when i asked about M.S. Subbulakshmi to a North Indian guy (who is good listener of music)...He didnt know anything about M.S...what a shame she is the Queen of Classical music First Musician got Bharath Ratna.....Do n t think every one has to know about North...thin k how much you guys know about South????
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I once asked some friends in Kerala (SW India) what they thought about Ravi Shakar. Who? was the response. I was outraged that they knew Bollywood garbage but had never heard of their greatest musician and composer. I became so incensed that I lost a couple of friends that day. So be it. I lost friends but their's was the greater loss. Richard Sneed- New Orleans / Jackson MS
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trollscruff
Heaven's house band just got so much greater... or maybe he'll be reincarnated , and we'll get to hear him again!

...with joy and gratitude, Mr. Shankar. May you go in peace, wherever you are.
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Rest in peace, my friend. You will be missed by millions-but now you're among all the other musicians that have passed. Peace.
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