Cover of Passages

From Passages


After a slow introduction saxophone plays the Shankar raga melody, subsequently enriched by the two other saxes. A long middle section in quicker tempo treats the material more freely in several parts, concluded with a shorter recapitulation of the opening theme.

Review by Martin Perlich
This historic collaboration brings full circle a process which began when promising young American musician Philip Glass met Indian master Ravi Shankar in Paris in 1965. That week Glass, studying with the great Nadia Bulanger, was earning pocket money doing notation and conducting a recording session for the soundtrack of Conrad Rook’s film “Chappacqua.” The score’s composer, Ravi Shankar, was directing his ensemble from the sitar.

Ravi recalls, “From the very first moment I saw such interest from him - he was a young man then - and he started asking me questions about ragas and talas and started writing down the whole score, and for the seven days he asked me so many questions. And seeing how interested he was I told him everything I could in that short time.”

“It was possible to graduate from a major Western conservatory, in my case Juilliard, ” remembers Glass, “without exposure to music from outside the Western tradition. World music was completely unknown in the mid-60’s.”

“What the young Glass heard which lay beyond his conservatory hermeticity was RHYTHM, long out of fashion in the world of American academic post-Webernism, with its almost exclusive concern for harmonic organization.


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