The Beatles & friends with the Maharishi in India, 1968; Hulton Archive/Getty Images
The Beatles and India, a documentary which examines how Indian music and culture shaped the band’s music, will start streaming February 15 on BritBox.
The documentary features recordings, pictures and interviews to detail both George Harrison‘s lifelong devotion to Indian music, which he discovered in 1965, and its effect on The Beatles’ subsequent recordings. It also explores the Beatles’ role in popularizing Indian culture and Transcendental Meditation, following their 1968 journey to Rishikesh, India to study with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
The documentary was named Best Film: Audience Choice and Best Music at the 2021 UK Asian Film Festival.
An accompanying soundtrack, called The Beatles and India: Songs Inspired by the Film, features 19 Beatles songs recorded by Indian artists, including Anoushka Shankar, the daughter of Harrison’s musical mentor Ravi Shankar.
Many of the songs included on the soundtrack — “Dear Prudence,” “Sexy Sadie,” “Mother Nature’s Son,” “Back in the USSR” and “I Will” among them — were written while the Beatles were in India and later ended up on their 1968 self-titled album, aka The White Album.
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