What’s in store: rocking buttes in Colorado with Dave Stringer, bhaktas band up in Brooklyn, Deva does Down Under, and Gurunam Singh sings for peace. Plus Irene Solea, Jai Uttal, Girish, David Newman, Wynne Paris, Satya Franche, and regional kirtaniyas to watch!
‘BEST’ OF THE BHAV
Colorado Rocks Its Butte
DAVE STRINGER will be rockin’ the bhav in Colorado this weekend, finishing out the “Dave-Joni-Patrick Utah-Colorado Kirtan Tour” with long-time accompanist JONI ALLEN on vocals and guitar and PATRICK RICHEY performing his percussion magic. Next stop: Friday Night Yoga Club in Denver, Friday, 2/10, where the Dave Trio will be joined by local musicians Dakini Ma, Kate Drazner & Kendall Perry. Live-music yoga at 6 p.m.; concert at 8.
Then, on to YOGA ROCKS THE BUTTE, a “snowga” and music fest in Crested Butte, Colo. with the requisite line-up of big-name yogis (including SHIVA REA, SARA IVANHOE and MICHELINE BERRY, among others). STRINGER headlines Saturday night, 2/11. GOVINDAS AND RADHA, JOEY LUGASSY, DJ DREZ, and STEVE GOLD will round out the bhakti love on the butte with performances throughout the weekend.
Brooklyn Bhaktas Band Up for BYS
JEREMY FRINDEL and LILY CUSHMAN FRINDEL have made the Brooklyn Yoga School, which they co-founded, a regular destination for Brooklyn bhaktas with their ongoing Friday night kirtans (this Friday’s features SATYA FRANCHE and friends). On Saturday, 2/11, Brooklyn bhaktas give back with a 4-hour kirtan with everyone from the Friday night series taking a turn at the call. That includes NINA RAO, DEVADAS, ANJULA PRASAD, SHYAMA CHAPIN, AMBIKA COOPER, TERRENCE POMPEY, AND SUNDAR DAS along with JEREMY & LILY. Whew! The whole thing will be recorded and edited into a CD to raise funds for BYS programs, so you can get your Brooklyn bhav on no matter where you are.
Deva & Miten Dive In Down Under
Have you noticed that Australia is the new hot destination for kirtan wallahs? DAVE STRINGER was there last fall, JAI UTTAL is heading there soon, KRISHNA DAS will be there in April… Right now, DEVA PREMAL, MITEN and MANOSE are gracing the Aussies at the Ecstatic Chant Retreat in Byron Bay. Retreatants got a special treat on night 2 when the GYUTO MONKS OF TIBET stopped by to offer puja (sacred ceremony) and in return, were serenaded with Om Tare Tuttare, the beautiful Tibetan mantra invoking compassion and liberation. The retreat was sold out, but the trio’s tour Down Under continues, culminating with the Bodhi Festival Feb. 25, which also features JAI UTTAL and DAVE STRINGER.
Gurunam Singh Sings for Peace
In Boston, a workshop to invoke power, peace and prosperity will feature the divine melodies of GURUNAM SINGH. The Friday evening session begins with a 75-minute live-music-powered vinyasa class, then a meditation to dissolve energetic blocks in order to live with prosperity, followed by kirtan to enter into a place of peace. Sounds perfect to us: Gurunam’s 2008 CD The Journey Home is a favorite, especially Dukh Par Har, a chant subtitled From Pain to Peace. Works every time.
THE ‘REST’ OF THE BHAV
Boston Metro Leads
Tons of bhav flowing inside and outside of Boston. In Byfield to the north, IRENE SOLEA is at Roots to Wings Yoga on Saturday, 2/11 for a kirtan concert with her rockin’ band, EZRA LANDIS (guitar), OWEN LANDIS (drums/percussion) and DANNY SOLOMON (keyboards/bass). We’re in love with Irene’s rich harmonies and soulful expressiveness — a joy to chant with. On Sunday 2/12 Irene plays for morning yoga in John Calabria’s class at Yoga & Nia for Life in West Concord, Mass.
In Malden, Mass., the place to be Friday 2/11 is the Grand Opening for the new Hridaya Hermitage Kaya Kulpa and Yogic Healing Center. The benefit kirtan starts at 8 p.m., and we know it’s going to be good, promising “lots of full volume-kirtan” and dancing with the SHIVA LILA BAND, TOM LENA and others.
In Cambridge, JAISHREE & PREMA BHAKTI will be chanting at Dazza’s Urban Ashram on Friday 2/10. On Saturday 2/11, the band heads to S. Portland, Me., for a kirtan at Sadhana. Check out their sound here. Me like.
And, in Brookline, Hebrew chants with Boston’s HEBREW KIRTAN BAND, who will open the festivities at Dance Friday (1615 Beacon St.) Kirtan from 7:45 p.m. to 9:15 p.m., followed by DJ dance party.
In Oakland, a special treat when JAI UTTAL teams up with his beloved NUBIA TEIXEIRA for “The Alchemy of Yoga and Kirtan,” a workshop described as a “heart-opening adventure through breath, movement and sacred sound, blending those traditions in a deep and playful way.” Namaste Grand Lake hosts the three-hour afternoon workshop and kirtan Saturday 2/11. Deets here.
In Sherman Oaks, DANIEL STEWART & FRIENDS present ecstatic kirtan at his studio, Rising Lotus Yoga, Friday 2/10; 8:30 p.m.
GIRISH’S tour schedule shows no signs of slowing anytime soon. This weekend he plays in Corono Saturday 2/11, at the Yoga Den Health Spa, then heads to Santa Monica to chant with the kirtan junkies at Bhakti Yoga Shala, Sunday 2/12. Next up for Girish: Pittsburgh.
L.A. take note: The KIRTAN WALLAH’S (aka ARJUNA O’NEAL & FRIENDS) and BHAKTI DANCE are having a kirtan LOVE FEAST, and you don’t want to miss a single course. At Core Power Yoga on Wilshire.
Two events to note: WYNNE PARIS is leading kirtan in Alachua, Fla., Friday 2/10 at the Ayurveda Health Retreat, with VISVAMBHAR SHETH of the MAYAPURIS joining in! Wynne never fails to bring it; have you heard his masterful collaborative CD, Om Spun by Groovananda? Good stuff. And rumor has it he’s working on a new live kirtan CD.
And, a Georgia band that just came into my consciousness, RAHASYA, is spreading the bhakti love throughout the Southeast. This weekend they’re chanting at the Yoga Room Healing Arts Cooperative in Myrtle Beach, S.C., Friday 2/10 and at Open Heart Yoga School in Carrboro, N.C., Saturday 2/11. Check out their music here, and catch them live if you can. They are going to be at Chantlanta, the sacred music festival in Atlanta March 9-10 that features WAH!, DAVID NEWMAN and SEAN JOHNSON AND THE WILD LOTUS BAND.
Speaking of DAVID NEWMAN, he’s back east after a mini-California tour, playing in Westmont, N.J., Friday 2/10 at a concert at Anjali Power Yoga to benefit Africa Yoga Project. On Saturday 2/11, he’s chanting back in Pennsylvania at the Shri Yoga and Wellness Center in Reading, Penn.
In New York City, DREAM TIME is back! The event that was born on New Year’s Eve lives on, and has now morphed into a two-day conscious-living extravaganza that includes (among LOTS of offerings) ecstatic kirtan, dance-party kirtan with SRIKALOGY, contact improv with JESSE JOHNSON, a tantra workshop with RAN BARON, and tons more. Friday 2/11 starting at 8 p.m.; Saturday 2/12 Noon to 6 a.m. Sunday.
Maine Kirtan Soars
PREMA BHAKTI is in S. Portland at Sadhana Meditation Center for kirtan Saturday 2/11, preceded by a Chakra Shakti Yoga class with JAISHREE.
In Portland studio Bhakti in Motion, TODD GLACY and KALEE COOMBS weave sacred tones of gongs, singing bowls, flute, voice and other sound remedies in a feast of sound at the Be-Loved Valentines Concert Saturday 2/11. Best thing about it? You don’t need to be a couple.
Elsewhere in Maine, ANANDA BHAKTI is playing at the new 6-S Yoga in Manchester, Me. (near Augusta) on Saturday 2/11; and ShivaShakti School of Yoga in Rockland, Me. hosts kirtan with AIYANA & KRISHNA on Sunday 2/12.
Maine kirtonaholics have a great Facebook page: Maine Kirtan. Subscribe to it to stay on top of the Pine Street State’s bhakti flow there.
Where do you find out about kirtan or yoga in your community? The Bhakti Beat wants to know…