A Few Words About Hippies and India

Anyone who’s spent time in India knows the phenomenon of the hippie.  Hippie participation in Indian music started thanks to George Harrison and Ravi Shankar; while many professional Hindustani musicians earn healthy teaching fees from these questing souls, most of them regard “hippies” with a justifiably skeptical eye.

About ten years ago, members of the USENET newsgroup for Indian classical music (rec.music.indian.classical) engaged in a lengthy and vociferous discussion of “hippies in ICM.”  As a former hippie and a full-time professional Hindustani musician, I was in a unique position to clarify matters, and I assembled a post which, it was agreed, shed some light on the matter.  I thought I’d share it with you, only slightly revised.

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