EMWM is proud to announce that the Ravi Shankar Foundation has teamed up with Northern-Spy Records to release a new record by the Maestro – Ravi Shankar, In Hollywood, 1971 – presented across 2 LPs, for Record Store Day April 2016. Profits from this release benefit The Ravi Shankar Foundation, which serves to educate the world about Indian classical music and to preserve the archive of Ravi Shankar.
The recording is of a morning concert in 1971 at Ravi’s home on Highland Avenue in Hollywood, California with George Harrison in attendance. As Ravi’s wife, Sukanya Shankar, attests in her amazing liner notes, this concert most certainly sowed the seed for the overwhelmingly successful Concert for Bangladesh. (Full Press Release here.)
The never-before-released recording was found in the deep shelves of the Ravi Shankar Archive and includes inspiring performances of Raga Parameshwari, Dhun, and Raga Sindhi Bhairavi. With Alla Rakha on tabla and Kamala Chakravary on Tanpura, the music is a powerful mix of the ingenious modal scales, compositional elements, melodic forms, and improvisational phrasings that mark all Shankar recordings. But more than this, as the moment of origination for the Concert for Bangladesh, the recording is imbued with the heart and soul of the Maestro and his life-long commitment to the power of music to change the world.
The recording has some timely synchronicities – it was recorded on the date that Ravi Shankar’s son-in-law, Joe Wright, was born, and its April release will honor of what would have been Ravi Shankar’s 96th birthday.
As a project that is both a nod to Ravi’s long list of superb vinyl releases and a great way to get out and support your local independent record store, this release is a great way to celebrate music culture and the Foundation’s continued mission of Peace Through Music.