Sitar became synonymous with Ravi Shankar, his Indian instrument maker says
Sitar became synonymous with Grammy winning composer Ravi Shankar, said his Indian instrument maker Sanjay Sharma, who crafted customized sitars on the former's request.
Ravi Shankar, who helped introduce the sitar to the Western world through his collaborations with The Beatles, died in Southern California on Tuesday. He was 92.
Saddened on hearing of Shankar's death, Sharma said "He was our God and you can understand how it feels when the God leaves us alone. He is globally famous in the music industry, not even a single person exists who does not know him. The name, which strikes in somebody's mind after looking at a sitar, was Pandit Ravi Shankar. His loss is irreplaceable, for us we have lost our God."
Shankar had introduced sitar to the Western world through his collaborations with The Beatles.
Ravi Shankar had also been nominated for the 2013 Grammys for his album "The Living Room Sessions Part 1" and was pitted against his daughter Anoushka in the same category.
He was awarded the Bharat Ratna, India's highest civilian honour, in 1999.
Sharma said with age, the maestro's sitar were getting smaller and lighter in size, as he used to find it difficult to handle them.
"When we used to make special sitar for him, it was automatically known as Pandit Ravi Shankar style sitar. His sitar had its own melodious tone and was of totally different in comparison to other sitars," said Sharma.
Sharma said that three generations of his family were associated with Pandit Ravi Shankar and the last sitar, which he crafted, had an internal microphone in the instrument.
Sharma had also crafted a small sitar with a stand, which the maestro could play comfortably while sitting on sofa.
Sharma's son, who was also learning sitar from Ravi Shankar, Rishabh Sharma said it was a sad moment for him.
"This is a sad moment for me because last time when I met him. He told me that if he is reborn as a human being, he will definitely teach me sitar," said Rishabh Sharma.