Shakti Announces new studio album “This Moment”

As a cornerstone of what is now called World Music, the vision and virtuosity of Shakti has inspired generations of musicians from around the world to explore sonic hybrids once thought impossible. Born of the musical and spiritual brotherhood shared by the revolutionary British guitarist and bandleader John McLaughlin and master Indian percussionist Zakir Hussain, Shakti’s soulful, organic intermingling of Eastern and Western musical traditions has proven transformative for both the band’s members and its listeners. Now, fifty years after the informal conversations and jam sessions that sparked the band into existence, “This Moment” – Shakti’s first new studio album in more than 45 years – will be released on CD and vinyl LP on June 23, 2023 by Abstract Logix.

A work of immense depth and radiant optimism, “This Moment” offers a set of new compositions and performances that burn with a rare intensity born out of passion. With McLaughlin (guitar, guitar synth) and Hussain (tabla) joined by vocalist Shankar Mahadevan, violinist Ganesh Rajagopalan, and percussionist Selvaganesh Vinayakram, the Shakti of now is a powerfully dynamic collective, defined by deft interplay, dazzling unison passages, extraordinarily dexterous improvisations, and the ability to draw from a vast well of global traditions and, miraculously, put them in conversation with one another.

The compositions making up “This Moment” each pass through a series of connected movements, highlighting different vocal and instrumental sub-groups within Shakti while transitioning between taut thematic statements, riveting solos from McLaughlin and Rajagopalan, invigorating rhythmic shifts, and soaring vocal passages by Mahadevan. McLaughlin’s contributions are remarkable in their ability to reconcile the great Ragas of North and South India with a chromaticism born of jazz and the blues, and the speed and precision of his articulation remains exhilarating. The engine room of Hussain and Vinayakram (son of original Shakti ghatam player T.H. “Vikku” Vinayakram) gives space to allow passages to breathe and resound, while equally capable of fomenting a roiling, galloping underpinning that push the soloists to increasingly ecstatic heights.

Shakti will be celebrating the release of This Moment by undertaking an extensive performance schedule, including their first U.S. tour in eighteen years. Beginning August 17 in Boston, the shows further reinforce Shakti’s pan-cultural ethos by introducing jazz and American elements via supporting spots by either Jerry Douglas, Béla Fleck, Bill Frisell or John Scofield – “Truly fine musicians whom I’ve admired for decades,” in McLaughlin’s words. The feeling is mutual, with Fleck recalling that “hearing Shakti was a revelation,” and Scofield adding, “I’m as much looking forward to playing on the bill with Shakti’s 50th Anniversary tour as simply being there to hear them.”

Listen/Preorder the new album today

A full list of Shakti’s 2023 dates is below. Visit for additional details.

June 27 Hammersmith Eventim Apollo, London, England
June 28 Hammersmith Eventim Apollo, London, England
June 30 Timisoara Jazz Festival, Timisoara, Romania
July 2 Erkel Theatre, Budapest, Hungary
July 5 Kongsberg Jazz Festival Kongsberg, Norway
July 7 Elbphilharmonie, Hamburg, Germany
July 9 North Sea Jazz Festival, Rotterdam, Netherlands

USA: (new dates in BOLD)
Aug 17 Wang Theater, Boston, MA ***
Aug 19 The Capitol Theatre, Port Chester, NY ***
Aug 20 NJPAC Newark, NJ *
Aug 22 The Keswick, Glenside, PA
Aug 23 Wolf Trap Vienna, VA *
Aug 25 Cobb Energy Center, Atlanta, GA*
Aug 27 Koka Booth Amp, Cary, NC*
Aug 29 Palace Theatre, Columbus, OH*

Aug 31 Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN
Sept 3 Ravinia Festival, Highland Park, IL*
Sept 5 Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, Portland, OR****
Sept 6 Paramount Theatre, Seattle, WA*
Sept 8 Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, Davis, CA **
Sept 9 Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco, CA
Sept 11 Irvine Barclay Theatre, Irvine, CA
Sept 14 Hill Auditorium, Ann Arbor, MI*
Sept 16 Riverbend Centre of the Arts, Austin, TX*

  • w/ Béla Fleck
    ** w/ Bill Frisell
    *** w/John Scofield
    **** w/Jerry Douglas