News from California that Ravi Shankar dies has brought sadness to the music world who remember the man who brought Indian music to the west and had a profound influence on the Beatles.
Ravi Shankar was 92 when he died, the result of upper-respirator and heart issued he had suffered over the last year, Billboard reported. He passed away Tuesday night at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, California Tuesday night.
Shankar is credited with introducing traditional Indian music to the West and for his work with the Beatles. As the Wall Street Journal noted, his is also the father of popular singer/songwriter Norah Jones.
After perfecting his craft in travels to Paris in the 1930s, Ravi Shankar gained a reputation as a hippie music icon in the 1960s. It was during this time that Beatles star George Harrison became a student of Shankar’s.
“Something clicked from the very beginning with George,” Ravi Shankar wrote in Raga Mala.
In the book George Harrison: Living in the Material World by Olivia Harrison and Mark Holborn, Harrison says:
“I could meet anybody. I could go in all the film stars’ houses and meet Elvis and everybody, and we met a lot of really good people, but I never met one person who really impressed me. The first person who ever impressed me in my life was Ravi Shankar, and he was the only person who didn’t try to impress me.”
As Ravi Shankar dies, he leaves a lasting impact not only on music but on fundraising. He pioneered the concept of the rock benefit concert with the 1971 Concert For Bangladesh.