Just some years ago we used to climb together to the top of each mountain and in our hands carried the feeling of endlessness, and in those days our summers were long, hot and seemingly never-ending. And they were always undernoted with a certain kind of music as well. But just that time, in the generational year of 1967 which was flooded with a certain kind of sweet smell of ambrosia, the summer called »Summer of Love«, those times were especially remembered with a certain deep pulse of a global or more like a cosmic feeling of belonging, which opened its communicational waves to each and everybody who wished to pursue freedom. A big and sudden changed occurred right then and there, a change which travelled from across the City of Angels, from the American shores to Europe and all across our little town called Trbovlje, and it carried with it the time of hippies, the feel of a nation wrapped in all sorts of colors and flowers. The music became the main carrier of that kind of popular culture, which was spread all around the world in that fateful summer from a group called The Beatles, who’s only message at that time was that the only thing you truly needed in life is love. All you need is love. And thus, everything changed and everything became one. The West met the East, Yehudi Menuhin played with Ravi Shankar and the Beatles played the sitar in the far-away forests of Norway at least 2 years before all this.
Thus, in July 1967, the iconic summer gave itself, in a figure of speech, a feeling of special music and the most important music festival in the history of entertainment, in Monterey, in San Francisco, was born, where all of the local popular bands played together and in which one man especially shone out of the crowd. A man called Ravi Shankar who played his quality music for each and every one. He was accompanied on the tabla by the genius musician Alla Rakha, and Kamala Chakravarty playing on the 4-string tanpura.
And is it this exact trio who returned and I met 10 years after Monterey, in Dobrovnik at the festival called “28. Dubrovniške poletne igre” (28. Dubrovnik summer games). At that time I was on holidays for a few days and in the evening before the concert, I stared at their poster like a non-believer that Shankar will play on the 3rd of August in the atrium of the Knežji dvorec at the end of Stradun. I really could not believe it that in that summer of 1977 I came to see, at that time, one of the world’s best musicians and came to listen to his music live. Even today I can vividly remember the acoustic atrium and how the concert flew by like it was only 30 minutes long, as I was listening to the tunes of the sitar which were telling me their own story. In the educational part of the concert, Shankar explained about the teachings of Raga and the spirituality of Indian music in particular. And Rahka also underlined his story while he banged on the tabla and rhythmically followed his co-musician in his teachings. At the beginning of the concert Shankar warned us that the visitors should not smoke or take pictures with their cameras, since music has to be heard and felt and needs all of our focus and attention. But of course I had to tag along with my new Russian camera »Cosmic 35« and immediately hid from the mad looks of Shankar for making some pictures of him. But it was of no use, since at the end of the concert he found me in the atrium, which was meant as their changing room, because I wanted their autograph, and he gave me quite a speech about it. All 3 of them gladly signed later on and bowed in the special kind of Indian charm they possessed.
10 years after Dubrovink, Ravi Shankar played again, but this time in the amphitheater in the Ljubljanske Križanke, but in 13.7.1987 we sadly did not met again like in Dubrovnik. And in these days, where many musicians remember that fateful year of 1967 and the 50th anniversary of Woodstock and the Summer of Love, Ravi is sadly playing for 5 years now on God’s strings by now. May he rest in peace, that amazing musical master.
An old and grey bull, who still gets a bit dizzy when hearing Ticket To Ride, born in the years, when rock & roll was born and when Bill Haley, together with His Comets, climbed on the first place of the Billboard charts with his most famous single, which made huge waves in the movie Blackboard jungle with the younger generations at that time. Aquarius as zodiac, who had luck to fall in love at the right time with my famous oracle named The Beatles and enjoyed the flower-power movement, which I listened to on the radio station Radio Luxemburg on a small transistor, and who heard the Chameleons for the first time on a jukebox, not to mention all of the corresponding giants between Liverpool and San Francisco, with a short stop in Trbovlje (Amebe, Eden's, Jutro, Črni bliski, Kon-Tiki). I could enjoy all of the pure vibrations of the crowds, good ones, and also other ones, like when they killed Lennon for instance, when they walked Tito to his last resting place, and after those events, changed my country and went into a new millennium along with it.