This is not a review as such... no question about the greatness and popularity of this album. I found this note on the internet and I am posting it here for other music lovers: Stringing together
McLaughlin and Hussain return with Shakti
Purva Mehra Mumbai, December 8, 2006: My connection with India is far deeper than memory allows. Zakir even believes that he and I were together in our previous incarnations,” says legendary jazz guitarist John Mclaughlin who co-founded the band, Shakti, along with tabla maestro Hussain. McLaughlin is visiting Mumbai for the Remember Shakti tour commencing December 9 in Mumbai and taking it to Chennai, Goa, Bangalore and Pune. The 64-year-old from Yorkshire, England, has performed alongside jazz great Miles Davis, pianist Chick Corea and Tony Williams. He has also founded the ’70s electric band Mahavishnu Orchestra. Founded in the ’70s, Shakti was a pioneer group that combined Indian classical music with jazz. Besides the stellar duo, Shakti features U Shrinivas on the mandolin, V Selvaganesh on the khanjira and Shankar Mahadevan, the Carnatic vocalist best known for his breathless renditions. It also featured Pandit Shivkumar Sharma and Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia. “Zakir and I have been great friends since 1969,” says McLaughlin. “The band has survived this long because the music is real. None of the band members care for each other’s origins and the music is deep. I guess when you have the will to play, the band stays put,” he adds referring to the band’s 30 successful years. McLaughlin’s discovery of Indian music began at 13. “As a boy when I heard Indian music, I had gooseflesh. It’s just one of those inexplicable things. I’ve been coming here for 30 years and I still can’t explain what binds me to this place,” says the pensive guitarist and composer. “The spirit of music”, “revelations from different cultures” and the “triumph of artistic success over commercial fame,” McLaughlin’s spirituality complements his boyish charm and jocularity. “Unless you’re Justin Timberlake or Madonna, you can’t have the backing of record companies today. What I appreciate is Zakir’s, Ravi Shankar’s and Alla Rakha’s attempts to build bridges between cultures using music rather than harp on pop hits,” says the artist who currently enjoys listening to underground and trance too. “Our music doesn’t have a label,” adds Hussain. “The record companies give us a category for the sake of marketing. When you enter the auditorium today leave behind your woes and our music will make you feel the most beautiful you’ve ever felt,” suggests the Grammy winner, who has received another nomination for his record with fellow musician Ustad Ashish Khan “More than the award, what matters is that Indian music is faring fabulously throughout the world,” he adds.