Zakir Hussain

The first time banjo legend Béla Fleck, tabla master Zakir Hussain, and double bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer got together to make an album, it was to write, not to play.

It has been a week since Zakir Hussain brought the Masters of Percussion to Colorado, and although the review is already in the bag, there are still a few things left unsaid. As any concert photographer who has been around will tell you, catching candid moments others do not get to see is often more exciting and thrilling than covering the actual event itself.

Amidst a fresh snowfall, the rhythmic fires of world renowned Zakir Hussain and The Masters of Percussion burned brightly on Tuesday night at Boulder’s Neo-Gothic styled Macky Auditorium. Celebrating thirty years of the revolving door of players that has defined The Masters of Percussion Tour, anyone who has followed this well-known event knew well before showtime that the experience was something that would be memorable, momentous, and magical.

As a cornerstone of what is now called World Music, the vision and virtuosity of Shakti has inspired generations of musicians from around the world to explore sonic hybrids once thought impossible. Born of the musical and spiritual brotherhood shared by the revolutionary British guitarist and bandleader John McLaughlin and master Indian percussionist Zakir Hussain, Shakti’s soulful, organic intermingling of Eastern and Western musical traditions has proven transformative for both the band’s members and its listeners.

Following word of the Summer 2023 release of This Moment – their first new studio album in 46 years – revolutionary world music ensemble Shakti will continue to discover and explore the musical common ground bridging East and West on an extensive U.S. tour, beginning August 17 in Boston, current itinerary below with more dates TBA.

Today, two-time Grammy Award winning group Planet Drum is releasing the exuberant “King Clave” from their upcoming album In the Groove, out August 5th.  Master musicians  Mickey Hart (USA),  Zakir Hussain (India), Giovanni Hidalgo (Puerto Rico) and Sikiru Adepoju (Nigeria) are Planet Drum, and “King Clave” is based on a 6,000 person drum circle (which Hart directed in 2004) which establishes the rhythm that connects the musical cultures around the world.

Acclaimed global Indian music collective Berklee Indian Ensemble is releasing “Lady L,” the second single from their long-awaited debut album Shuruaat (out July 15th). The track features Grammy-winning tabla master Zakir Hussain and also commemorates the 50th anniversary of the iconic indo-jazz fusion group, Shakti, that originally released this song.

World-renowned Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart is gearing up for the Dead & Company summer tour which kicks off June 11 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. One of the busiest musicians alive, Hart is also currently preparing for the release of In The Groove, the first album from trailblazing world music supergroup Planet Drum in 15 years.

Almost a half-century ago, Shakti awakened the world.
An unprecedented, transcontinental collaboration, Shakti united eastern and western musicians, and in the process forged the template for what is now called “world music.” Their dynamic musical hybrid immediately enthralled audiences around the globe – and inspired generations of musicians, artists, and thinkers from all walks of life to embark on their own cross-cultural odysseys.  

“They say the Grateful Dead played here about 14 times, in the old days,” said percussionist Mickey Hart as he took the stage on May 1 at the Frost Amphitheater on the Stanford University campus.

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