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Ananda Shankar

Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

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Ananda Shankar Ananda Shankar album cover
3.68 | 40 ratings | 3 reviews | 30% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1970

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Jumpin' Jack Flash (3:40)
2. Snow Flower (3:10)
3. Light My Fire (3:29)
4. Mamata (Affection) (2:50)
5. Metamorphosis (6:49)
6. Sagar (The Ocean) (13:13)
7. Dance Indra (3:49)
8. Raghupati (3:35)

Total Time 40:35

Line-up / Musicians

- Ananda Shankar / sitar

- Dick Rosmini / guitar
- Drake Levin / guitar
- Paul Lewinson / keyboards, Moog, arrangements
- Jerry Scheff / bass
- Mark Tulin / bass
- Joe Pollard / drums
- Michael Botts / drums
- Pranish Khan / tabla

Releases information

Artwork: Ed Thrasher

LP Reprise Records ‎- RS 6398 (1970, US)

CD Reprise Records ‎- 9362472632 (1998, US/Europe)

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ANANDA SHANKAR Ananda Shankar ratings distribution

(40 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(30%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(20%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (15%)
Poor. Only for completionists (8%)

ANANDA SHANKAR Ananda Shankar reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Kazuhiro
5 stars The element of ethno and the exoticism that derived to the style concerning musical instruments used and music might always have been taken in the item of Pop Music that centered on Rock and Jazz in the age. The music of India will be able to be enumerated in one of the music characters have been stimulated the musician in Europe and America most frequently in the situation and the flow and intensely.

Or, it was not simply introduced into Pop Scene of Europe and America as a flavor of the exoticism and it is also true to have acquired the fan and the listener by an indeed original expression. The respect and the flow that contributes by the music character that derives from India for a variety of music characters and has succeeded might be included.

The classics music of India might always have valued the tradition and the style from old. Existence and meaning of Ravi Shankar to contribute to activity of music to make Hindustani known to the world. Or, one main current and derivation in India Pop and Bollywood that can be listened in recent Indian music. The activity of Sheila Chandra and Talvin Singh of it might be remarkable. Point for power and charm of music character that derives from India as the reason and shade of meaning to have a route that is more original than other regions. Or, it is guessed that it is in one of the music to which it sounds the route and the profundity of the classics music of India in the method of expressing various music in top condition.

If the dawn of the item that is called time and Raga Rock that a famous music character of India is united with Pop Scene is considered, relations and the contribution of The Beatles might be large as an important correlation. They had the experience to have gone on a visit to India from the degree of interest in the religion by all members. Especially, the India intention that George Harrison had had interest might have contributed to the following Raga Rock. The flow that studied under Ravi Shankar and spread the sound of Sitar to the market greatly contributed to scene. Or, the route of Raga Rock often introduced into the music character of The Rolling Stones and Traffic is also important together. The flavor and the establishment of Raga Rock that derives appear remarkably of course in the item of Prog Rock and Jazz Rock.

The music character that this Ananda Shankar did in the situation in which the situation of psychedelic and Hip had carried everything before one the market with the fashion since the latter half of the 60's might have a lot of points that should make a special mention very much. Technical degree of freedom of method and expression that will cultivate this debut album as result by announcement. And, it flows of Ananda Shankar's having always pursued music as Shankar clan. It is expressed very well in the content of this album. Man who had learnt the performance of Sitar in full scale in Varanasi of India was always pursuing uniting the music character of the classics music and Europe and America. The zeal is recorded in this Album Cover.

To inform the world of the classics music of India indeed, Ravi Shankar at the uncle of Ananda Shankar might have spent a lot of efforts and labors. However, the method of establishing and expressing the music character that Ananda Shankar always pursued. Something might already have been gripped in the experience of the visit to America to some degree. Experience of competing with Jimi Hendrix in San Francisco. And, it means it. from be produced this album in Los Angeles in 1969This debut album talks no entire expression of classics music that Ananda Shankar is simple alone.

If the overall work group of Ananda Shankar is considered, it might often have the different kind of element. Part of a few psychedelic and parts of Funk. Or, it might be special if it thinks about the expression in Bollywood Music in the part of India Pop Scene and Indo Prog. However, he might already have had the establishment of the music character that he was liking, the expression, and the purpose. If his of that zeal is taken into consideration, the expression has diversity. Element of India Pop, psychedelic, and Funk that can often be listened. And, it is partial where the sound of the Moog synthesizer was boldly introduced. It is in uniting the directionality of music to have to express while surely following the classics music and the music character of Europe and America. Anyway, the mistake is not found in a very important album in the item of Raga Rock this album even if the age is considered. The expression of the free music that he gave might be splendid.

"Jumpin' Jack Flash" has succeeded in the conversion of the tune of famous Rolling Stones as complete Raga Rock. Part of Riff of aggressive guitar. Sound of effective synthesizer. Melody of Sitar to get on complete Groove. And, a complete melody that the chorus contributes is harmonized. All are complete. An old sound will not feel it. A complete expression is done as Raga Rock. This is neither monde music nor ethno. It is Raga Rock that Ananda Shankar does.

"Snow Flower" is a ballade that an expression of feelings melody gets on the flavor of Raga Rock. Flow of melody of glossy Sitar. The impression of the tune has been decided to the obbligati of the synthesizer and the part of Syncopation of the rhythm. Or, the sound of the keyboard that diversity and shines. The tune has been approved as a good Raga ballade while following an original melody of the classics music of India.

It is expressed attended with an anacatesthesia and a transparent feeling that "Light My Fire" is complete. Respectfully in the music character of Europe and America along with "Jumpin'Jack Flash". mightSitar completely performs the melody. And, the work of the guitar and the keyboard that greatly decides the impression of the tune is perfect. Especially, the keyboard that announces the sound of diversity is splendid. This tune is complete Raga Rock that Ananda Shankar does.

A pastoral, bright melody of "Mamata" to emphasize an acoustic part is impressive. Melody of glossy, gentle Sitar. The rhythm of a steady percussion instrument also gives the listener the relief. The sound of the keyboard and the guitar doesn't obstruct the tune either. There might be some elements of India Pop. However, the arrangement of the tune might be good.

The anacatesthesia of "Metamorphosis" and the progress of Chord are perfect. Melody and arrangement of synthesizer that splendidly produces space. Sound of keyboard with diversity to get on steady rhythm. Complete transparency of sound of Sitar and keyboard. The melody has a little part of Pop. However, the tune heads gradually for the top attended with a complete sound of Moog. The tune keeps the quality further and makes complete Groove. The tune does to 6/8 rhythms from now on and rushes into the gaga part there further. The performance invites the listener to the abstruse world attended with a chaotic part.

"Sagar" might be a grand tune that mixes an experimental part and the part of the session with the element of the classics music of India. Sound of Sitar that expresses abstruse sound. The melody of a heavy keyboard flows there in the base. It is possible to listen to the sound of Sitar as two or more sounds come in succession. Abstruse atmosphere continues. When 30 seconds of seven minutes are passed, the tune will rush into the gaga session before long attended with the rhythm. Sitar might use pentatonic scale. An acoustic, by sound of an acoustic guitar and the keyboard good part is emphasized and it brings it close. The device of syncopation in eight rhythms and three rhythms is expressed well as a composition. The tune is profundity as much as possible.

"Dancing Indra" gives the melody that the synthesizer looks alike to the music of Arabia. And, the flavor of Raga Rock is emphasized from the part of Sitar and the unison further. The diversity of the Moog synthesizer included overall and the music scale of Arabia are features. The composition including the part of the transposition has gotten on well for the rhythm of three rhythms. I will not feel an old sound at all. It is expressed oppositely as fresh Raga Rock. The arrangement of the tune might be complete through this album.

As for "Raghupati", a complete fusion of the music character that Ananda Shankar cultivated and India Pop is given. Complete Groove and an acoustic part are accompanied from the part of the narration. The song and the chorus give complete Raga Rock. The music character of Europe and America where Ananda Shankar was influenced might be introduced as an element. The repeated song also has a little enchantment part. However, a blissout that he does and abstruse music are splendidly expressed by this tune with the music character of Europe and America.

It is said that Ananda Shankar returns to the home country after this album is announced and was involved in the music for a variety of national events and broadcasting. Or, the dance company of Indian music is organized and it is said that it was continued until later years of his life. However, it is especially true in an initial work that the work of fine quality was being offered at the term of growth of Raga Rock in the music that he was purely doing on the other hand and the work group. It is all blocked in this album. This is complete Raga Rock and the listener should consider it as an introductory chapter of Raga Rock.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
4 stars ANANDA SHANKAR has a recognizable name if you are familiar with the extended family tree of the great Indian musician Ravi Shankar. ANANDA was the son of the famous dancer and choreographer Uday Shankar and the nephew of the great Ravi Shankar himself. During the latter part of the 60s, the world music cross-pollination effect was en vogue with extra interest in the exotic sitar ragas of the ancient land of India. ANANDA followed the family tradition and became classically trained on the sitar and left his native Bombay (now Mumbai) and headed to California in the USA to hop on the bandwagon of the craze of ethnic rock fusion that was initiated by the sounds he heard from The Beatles on their 1965 track "Norwegian Wood." While the West, particularly The Beatles had begun to flirt with adding Indian sitar to rock sounds, ANANDA SHANKAR would become one of the first Indian musicians to reciprocate this process and one of the very first Indian musicians to start shmoozing with the greats of the time like Jimi Hendrix.

All of this Western exposure ultimately led ANANDA to create the very first rock (well loosely speaking) album by an Indian sitarist which was released in 1970 when he hoped to capitalize on the increasing popularity of the raga rock trend of the era. On his eponymously titled debut release, ANANDA created a mix of rock music with moog synthesizers and Indian Hindustani classical music with instruments such as the sitar and tabla. The album starts off with a couple of instant attention grabbing covers of "Jumpin' Jack Flash" by the Rolling Stones and "Light My Fire" by the Doors which while admittedly are a tad gimmicky are quite excellent performances. However, despite the obvious temptation of just making an album of covers, ANANDA performs six other original tracks which admittedly sound closer to the Indian side of the equation than the rock with tracks like "Metamorphosis" completely dependent on sitar and tabla interactions albeit with a strong bass line and an infused burst of rock energy.

While the majority of the tracks are kept short and well within the attention span of the average pop rock listener, the track "Sagar (The Ocean)" sprawls out to over 13 minutes and 13 seconds and is a whole different league of psychedelia as it has the time to slowly unravel a mysterious and atmospheric sitar and moog collaboration into a Hindustani classical music experience wrapped around a simple organ scale that repeats as the sitar grows more restless and performs ever increasingly more dynamic finger gymnastics. Although the track creeps along, it gains strength towards the end with a heavy percussive drive and a fully caffeinated sitar. While the album is almost entirely instrumental, the beginning "Jumpin' Jack Flash" and final track "Raghupati" is chock full of vocals which includes a full chorus. The latter also has different styles of traditional Indian chanting as well as perhaps the most rock sounding compositional style of any track except for the two covers.

While the term rock attached to this may be hard to swallow for Western ears, it should be remembered that this is the exact opposite approach of bands such as the Beatles who dressed up rock songs with Indian instruments. This is at its heart Hindustani traditional classical ragas that have flavors of rock, not necessarily in the instrumentation per se but rather in light touches of compositional approach and energetic drive especially in the Moog organ department. While i was always in the opinion that this was a cheesy attempt of 60s pop rock fusion only by having sampled the two covers, this is in face a fairly sophisticated and stylistic display of Indian music crafted with eerie electronics and a rock infused work ethic.

While this doesn't quite reach the heights of John McLaughlin's works with his Mahavishnu Orchestra and Shakti for complexity, it is a beautiful mix and an interesting snapshot of the time and era when the Indo-raga rock trend was at its peak. While much raga rock of the day seems to be grounded in a droning technique, the debut release of ANANDA SHANKAR is a brilliant mix of traditional Hindustani classical raga techniques and Western pop rock which makes this a lot more accessible upon first listen for the majority of listeners. This one straddles the line between secular and transcendental and is quite the compelling listen.

Latest members reviews

1 stars I'm shocked that this album was ranked as the 2nd highest album in its category here. The covers of 60's pop songs are cheap-sounding and uninspired, as is the original music on the album. As each track ended, I thought that the next one would reveal to me why this album is well-regarded. It did ... (read more)

Report this review (#967018) | Posted by Earendil | Thursday, May 30, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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