Business lessons from Rak

Occasionally I have sudden recollections of long-forgotten incidents in my life, usually from the time I played music for a living.

I reinvented myself so completely as a management consultant over the years that these memories seemed to vanish along with my rock & roll persona!

Today, however, I awoke with a surprisingly vivid memory of a jam session I had with a neighbor in Venice, California, many decades ago. One warm summer evening, toting a cheap pair of bongo drums, I invited myself into a party across the street and quickly found myself trading hand-drum riffs with an affable Indian gentleman. Little did I know that this diminutive but big-hearted fellow sitting next to me on the floor was considered by many to be the #1 percussionist in the world. I found out later it was Alla Rakha, the renowned tabla player who had played Woodstock and the Monterey Pop Festival with Ravi Shakar—events that introduced a generation of young Americans to classical Indian music.