The sitar is a plucked stringed instrument predominantly used in Hindustani classical music, where it has been ubiquitous since the Middle Ages. It derives its resonance from sympathetic strings, a long hollow neck and a gourd resonating chamber.
Used throughout the Indian subcontinent, particularly in India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, the sitar became known in the western world through the work of Pandit Ravi Shankar beginning in the late 1950s and early 1960s after The Kinks' top 10 single "See My Friends" featured a low tuned drone guitar which was widely mistaken to be the instrument. The sitar saw further use in popular music after The Beatles featured the sitar in their compositions, namely "Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)" and "Within You Without You". Their use of the instrument came as a result of George Harrison taking lessons on how to play it from Shankar and Shambhu Das. Shortly after, The Rolling Stones used a sitar in "Paint It, Black" and a brief fad began for using the instrument in pop songs.