It’s 7th April and this is the day when ‘Godfather of World Music’, Pandit Ravi Shankar was born in Varanasi, in 1920. Yes, undoubtedly he is the legendary musician who popularised the sitar and classical music of India in Western culture.
Ravi Shankar was raised up studying music and spent his early stages touring India and Europe with the dance group of his brother Uday Shankar. He studied sitar under the guidance of famous court musician Allauddin Khan. After finishing his musical studies in 1944, Ravi started working as composer and as music director for All India Radio, New Delhi (from 1949 – 1956).
After 1956, the next phase of Ravi’s career started, when he began to tour Europe and the America playing classical music. By his compositions for sitar and performances in the Western world, he popularises India Classical Music at international level. He travelled around the world in 1970s and 1980s and performed till the last days of his life. Throughout his dazzling career, he earned many awards and honours including two Grammy Awards, 14 honorary degrees and also a membership to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. For his distinguished role and unparalleled contribution, Ravi Shankar was awarded Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award of India.
On 11th December, 2012 ; he breathed his last in San Diego, California. He passed his musical legacy to his two daughters, who are also well-known musicians – sitar player Anoushka Shankar and Grammy Award-winner, singer as well as songwriter Norah Jones.
Google is celebrating the life and achievements of this eminent musician with its doodle: