'Honesty and integrity are paramount to making music of value'

'Honesty and integrity are paramount to making music of value'

Sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar is the daughter of famous Indian sitar maestro Late Pandit Ravi Shankar.

After her father’s death in 2012, she has been successfully carrying forward his legacy not just in India, but also across the borders.

Anoushka, whose albums Rise, Live at Carnegie Hall, Traces of You and Traveller have bagged her four Grammy award nominations, tries to focus on the present while creating music.

“I believe honesty and integrity are paramount to making music of value. Everyone has something unique to offer the world, and as an artiste if I can tap into that internal core when I make my music, then I am bringing something of value into the world,” she tells Metrolife.

She adds, “I try to focus on the present moment and share and promote our rich musical heritage as much as possible.”

The 34-year-old sitar virtuoso, who started learning sitar from the tender age of nine, has belted out seven hit albums and is now up with her eighth, titled Home. But more than any of her other ventures, she relates more with Home.

She informs Metrolife, “Home is my first classical album of Indian ragas in over a decade. It is a tribute album for my father and guru, and on it I have featured raga Jogeshwari, which was created by him.”

She adds, “The album is called Home because it was my return to Indian ragas after years of making non-classical albums. It felt like a musical homecoming and I was going back to my roots.

Also because it was the first album I have recorded in my newly-constructed home studio, and so it felt wonderful to be playing in such a relaxed and homely environment. It was also special because it was recorded while I was expecting my younger son Mohan.”

For Anoushka, who’s now settled in London, Delhi holds a special place in her heart, may it be memories of her childhood or her debut performance at Siri Fort.

“Delhi used to be one of my homes for many years. I went to school in Delhi, had my debut performances on both sitar and piano here, had a family home and many close friends and also a past serious relationship.

In the last few years since settling abroad and having children, I have spent less time in Delhi except when I come for performances, but still it is a special city for me,” says Anoushka, who has also tried her hands at acting and writing.

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