Q&A: JOHN McLAUGH­LIN

John Mc Laugh­lin ,who won a Grammy this week, on his Mum­bai gigs, his love for In­dia, and the acts that have a per­ma­nent place on his playlist

India Today - - INSIDE - ­­with Amit Gur­bax­ani

Q. What made you re­visit the Ma­hav­ishnu Or­ches­tra era now as op­posed to any other phase of your ca­reer?

Prin­ci­pally, two rea­sons: The mu­si­cians in the 4th Di­men­sion have been re­quest­ing we play mu­sic from the Ma­hav­ishnu Or­ches­tra era for two years now. In ad­di­tion, this mu­sic is a supremely im­por­tant pe­riod of my mu­si­cal and per­sonal life.

Q. Why do you think the 4th Di­men­sion, which you formed in 2007, has be­come your longest-run­ning band?

It is the great­est fu­sion band I ever formed. There is a won­der­ful spirit in the band that only ap­pears when there is a deep con­nec­tion be­tween all the play­ers that goes be­yond the mu­si­cal con­nec­tion.

Q. In­dia has been a source of in­spi­ra­tion to you for many years. Which are your favourite places?

You are right; In­dia has been in­spir­ing me since the ’60s. I do have favourite places, but it is my fa­vorite peo­ple I wish to see. One place I’ll visit is Mount Arunachala with my wife. Sri Ra­mana Ma­har­ishi lived here for many years.

Q. What mu­sic are you lis­ten­ing to these days?

I lis­ten to all my heroes (from) the East and West. Ra­jarathi­nam Pil­lai, Dr S. Balachan­der, Ali Ak­bar Khan sahib, Pt Ravi Shankar, Karaikudi Mani and V. Subra­ma­niam. I also en­joy lis­ten­ing to qawwali. [From] the West, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Bill Evans, Jimi Hen­drix, The Bea­tles, Jeff Beck, Sly and the Fam­ily Stone...

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