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Remembering Ravi Shankar

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Ravi Shankar - West meets East

Ravi Shankar – West meets East

I first got to know about Ravi Shankar more than forty years ago like most North Americans. Since my first exposure through the Woodstock Festival and for me, more importantly, the Concert for Bangladesh, I have always kept recordings of Ravi’s music close at hand and now have transposed many of them onto my mp3 player to enjoy while travelling around the world by plane. This album, West meets East, was the first record of Shankar’s to become part of my collection of his music.

It wasn’t long before Shankar’s music became part of my early meditation. I would take my seat with a small wooden Buddha in front of me, a Buddha with a missing few toes from being dropped, a cone of incense lit, and his music beginning to fill the spaces. I had brought the East to my West.

My fascination with the East soon extended to include the faces of Buddhism in China. When retirement came, I wasted little time in moving to China to re-enter my career of teaching. While there I took one of my long term breaks to visit India.

In 2008 I got to meet Anoushka Shankar, Ravi’s daughter, when she was playing in a concert in a small park in Jodhpur, India, Ravi Shankar’s hometown in Rajasthan, India. This morning, I found out that Ravi died yesterday. It didn’t take long for me to bring up one of his pieces of music, one in which he plays with his daughter, Anoushka. Enjoy!

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Written by Robert G. Longpré

December 12, 2012 at 11:14 am

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