Shakti is back! Starting in the 1970s, British guitarist John McLaughlin and Indian tabla player Zakir Hussain forged the template for “world music” with their pioneering fusion band. Now, they resume their musical journey alongside percussionist V. Selvaganesh (son of Shakti’s original ghatam player T.H. Vinayakram), vocalist Shankar Mahadevan, and violinist Ganesh Rajagopalan. The show opens with a special solo set by Béla Fleck, the 15-time GRAMMY® winning banjo virtuoso.
“They nearly always come back,” said Béla Fleck. “All the people that leave bluegrass. I had a strong feeling that I’d be coming back as well.”
My Bluegrass Heart, out September 10, 2021 on Renew Records, is that return the 15-time Grammy winner is talking about – the third chapter in a decades-spanning trilogy which, by his counting, started with 1988’s Drive and continued with The Bluegrass Sessions, released eleven years later. Over the long and lauded course of his unique creative run, Fleck – the world’s premier banjo virtuoso and a celebrated musical adventurer – has both dug deep into his instrument’s complex global history and unlocked the breadth of its possibilities. My Bluegrass Heart is a homecoming in sound, to be sure.