When you play Sgt Pepper all the way through, the track Within You Without You always sticks out a bit – even in the midst of all of those masterpieces on the record It mesmerizes every time. George Harrison wrote it after spending time with Ravi Shankar. Learning the sitar was just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what the Quiet Beatle learned from Ravi, he came back from his Eastern travels a changed man. The spirituality within would become a hallmark of Harrison’s work forever after.
The friendship between George and Ravi would also lead to the 1971 Concert for Bangladesh. This show originally earned just $250,000 (a decent sum of money then) which was turned over to UNICEF to benefit the people. But in the ensuing years and decades, the recordings of that show would continue to generate royalties for the charity’s use.
Yesterday Ravi Shankar passed away at 92 years old. His legacy as “the godfather of world music” remains intact nearly 50 years after being introduced to the west