Shankar was best known in the Western world for his musical relationship with The Beatles, which shot him to stardom in the 1960s. In 1971 he pioneered the concept of the rock benefit with the Concert for Bangladesh.
A statement on Shankar’s website reads:
It is with heavy hearts we write to inform you that Pandit Ravi Shankar, husband, father, and musical soul, passed away today, December 11th, 2012.
As you all know, his health has been fragile for the past several years and on Thursday he underwent a surgery that could have potentially given him a new lease of life. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of the surgeons and doctors taking care of him, his body was not able to withstand the strain of the surgery. We were at his side when he passed away.
We know that you all feel our loss with us, and we thank you for all of your prayers and good wishes through this difficult time. Although it is a time for sorrow and sadness, it is also a time for all of us to give thanks and to be grateful that we were able to have him as a part of our lives. His spirit and his legacy will live on forever in our hearts and in his music.
Sukanya & Anoushka Shankar
Despite his ill health, Shankar performed on stage with his daughter in early November, his last public performance.
He will forever be remembered for bringing Eastern music into the mainstream in the West and transcending cultural barriers.