Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Oprah Likes Kirtan Too!

Oprah offers an evening of inspiration
Oprah Winfrey in Edmonton, Image Source: Edmonton Journal
So, Edmonton is buzzing from Oprah's appearance here last night!  Whether you were in attendance or not, her presence was palpable and somehow, we all felt part of it. 

In Oprah's own words,
“Why are you here?... You’re here because you’ve been called. Even with our sadness and victories and trials. Everything matters. It does not matter how you got here. It doesn’t matter if you were ignored, welcomed. If you are here sitting in a seat in Edmonton, if you are breathing, you’ve been called..."
It's no secret that Oprah is a fan of modern mystics like Deepak ChopraRam Dass and Eckhart Tolle, and that she has an appreciation for yoga, meditation and a variety of spiritual practices and music. 

But did you know she's also a Kirtan fan?  Seriously! 

Oprah's friends even arranged for Snatam Kaur to play at her 58th Birthday Celebration

Check out the album below and I'm convinced you'll understand why.  Click here to listen to Snatam Kaur on YouTube.

Prayers for Shyamdas

Oh, it is with many tears that I offer prayers for release from samsara for one of my most beloved Kirtan Wallahs EVER.  Shyamdas left his body in India a couple of days ago.  World-wide his students and fans are saddened, but I doubt he's feeling the same way. 

Since I saw him in the Fall of 2009 at the Omega Ecstatic Chant Retreat in New York, I've been affectionately referring to him as the "Drunken Uncle" of the Kirtan scene. 

I arrived that weekend utterly broken hearted and desperately in need of a big bhakti bandaid and some serious pressure washing for my nadis. 

All of the artists were amazing:  Krishna Das, Jai Uttal, Snatam Kaur, Deva Premal and Miten, David Newman (Durga Das) and Vishal Vaid... but I was so shattered that I just couldn't relate to either the ecstatic dancing or the sweet meditative vibes. 

I simply wasn't "in the mood".

At four in the morning, onto the stage came Shyamdas.  He had the voice and air of the last drunk Uncle standing at the end of a night of wedding celebrations.  His Bhava, and the perfection of his imperfection cracked me wide open. 

You can get a glimpse of what I mean in this Shyamdas Tribute on YouTube from Substratum Films.  The clips were pulled from interviews for the upcoming documentary One Track Heart, which I shared with you just a few days ago in this post.

Shyamdas-ji, from the bottom of my busted and bursting heart, thank you!  May you be forever melting in Blissful Union with the Divine!  Jai Sri Rahde!  Jai Sri Krishna!

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Sattvic Movie Saturday: One Track Heart

Ok, I'm putting it out there into the universe...
I am officially on a quest for my own harmonium! 

In the process, I found lots of information on Kirtan Central.
AND the trailer for an upcoming documentary about Krishna Das called One Track Heart (Click here to watch the trailer)!  I can hardly wait!

The film is named after Krishna Das's first album. Click here for more info on his website.  And here to listen to the whole album on YouTube. 

PLUS check out this little gem from the Virtual Kirtan Choir which brought me to joyful tears.  I just had to share it with you!  Jai Ma Durga!

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Kirtan with Sparrow at Yoga Within

I'm so excited to be joining Sparrow this Friday evening for Kirtan at Yoga Within

Come sing along!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Kirtan with Sparrow Grace

7:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

$20 + GST

"Sparrow is a Canadian singer songwriter and kirtan artist. She offers musical experiences featuring her original world folk art songs blended with uplifting, moving kirtan, mantras and chants."

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Happy 2013!

After two years of waiting patiently, look what opened up on my windowsill today!

Here's hoping equally beautiful surprises are "opening up" for you already this year.

May your yoga practice, your inner peace and your joyful effort blossom in 2013 for the benefit of all beings! 

Happy New Year!