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Sitars in Her Eyes

Anoushka Shankar is her father's little raga-muffin

This year she experienced a different kind of loss with the passing of the man she knew as Uncle George. George Harrison first became intrigued with the sitar after hearing it played by an Indian band in 1965 during a scene for the movie Help! Harrison traveled to Bombay the next year to learn the rudiments from Ravi, an experience that also watered the early seeds of his lifelong dedication to Indian culture, music and Hinduism. In turn, the diminutive Ravi became a Zelig-like fixture on the British and American rock scenes, appearing on stage at the Monterey Pop Festival, the Band's Last Waltz and the Concert for Bangladesh, as well as in the famous films made about those events.

"We spent the whole day with him the day before he died…yeah, I got to say good-bye, which was very nice. He was very close to me," Anoushka says, her voice drifting off. "He had an amazing sense of humor. I will remember him saying some pun or really corny joke…that makes me laugh a lot."

When not practicing, recording, writing (her biography of her father, Love of My Life, comes out this summer in India) or performing gigs either with Ravi or solo, Anoushka also has a more typical 20-year-old's passion: clubbing. "I love trance music, drum 'n' bass and dancing!" she enthuses. Her favorite place to go is Goa, a hip beach town on India's west coast. "It's where trance music really started. Even now you'll hear things there that you won't hear anywhere else for two years."

Anoushka Shankar is not your typical California homecoming queen.
Anoushka Shankar is not your typical California homecoming queen.
Anoushka Shankar is not your typical California homecoming queen.
Anoushka Shankar is not your typical California homecoming queen.

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Saturday, May 18. For more information, call 713-227-4772.
Wortham Center's Cullen Theater, 500 Texas Avenue

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She also enjoys going to Brazilian and Turkish bars. But if she plans a postgig club-hopping night in downtown Houston, she'll have a tough time not getting carded. "Hey!" she says in mock offense, "I amlegal in England!"

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