This Day in Death

12.11.12: Ravi Shankar – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 8:54 am December 12, 2012

“Pfft. 24 strings? Would you like a nice sequined purse and some Tampax to go with that?” -Rick Neilsen.


Well hold onto your pashm scarf, Indian readers and filthy culture-scavenging hipsters: World music pioneer Ravi Shankar is dead. Between this and jazz legend Dave Brubeck‘s passing last week things have really been rough for musical genres we all pretend to listen to in order to seem eclectic. I know what you’re thinking and I agree: If Zimbabwean mbira virtuoso Chiwoniso Maraire dies I just don’t think any of us could handle it right now.

His close relationship with [George] Harrison, the Beatles lead guitarist, shot Shankar to global stardom in the 1960s.

Gaining confidence with the [sitar] Harrison recorded the Indian-inspired song “Within You Without You” on the Beatles’ ”Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” helping spark the raga-rock phase of 60s music and drawing increasing attention to Shankar and his work.

That’s right; Without Shankar we never would’ve gotten “Within You Without You,” a not at all pretentious five minutes of noodling from the third most talented Beatle that kick-started the trend of sheltered millionaires making us feel guilty about how shallow we are by comparison. Not for nothing, but at least Bono gave us Achtung Baby before getting all pissy at me about Styrofoam.


Source: The Washington Post

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