Indian Sun – The Life and Music of Ravi Shankar by Oliver Craske (2020)

Indian Sun is the first biography of Ravi Shankar. Benefitting from unprecedented access to family archives, Oliver Craske paints a vivid picture of a captivating, restless workaholic, who lived a passionate and extraordinary life – from his childhood in his brother’s dance troupe, through intensive study of the sitar, to his revival of the national music scene; and from the 1950s, a pioneering international career that ultimately made his name synonymous with India.

This was a profound read for me. Personally, I have learnt so much more about his life from this reading and the impact it had on many others. The complexities and challenges faced by him and others around him is worthy reflection. He also lived throughout the 20th century and was privy to much of how the world worked. This book illuminates the role and propagation of Indian classical music in the world and Ravi Shankar’s pivotal role in it. It’s a must read for any music lover. his passion for creativity, spirituality in sound, the art of collaboration and what it takes to be humble in your talent is well detailed. The book references many other Ravi Shankar resources for your further study of this man and his work. It’s a very touching and impactful biography of a great legendary artist who was also a flawed human being. I feel thoroughly enriched to experience his life through these words. This was a 5/5 read for me.

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