Okay, I never knew it was not in the suburbs, nor what it was, but I found out last night.
Or let me correct that, I did not know that I knew what it was, but I am familiar with the singers Deva Primal and Snatum Kaur. Odd names, but beautiful songs of different mantras such as ‘Gayatri Mantra’ – the oldest of all Vedic chants which translates to “O Divine mother, our hearts are filled with darkness. Please make this darkness distant from us and promote illumination within us.”
Basically, kirtan is the rosary set to music. Hindu mantras in the ancient spiritual language of Sanskrit that are led by a singer and repeated by the audience of certain sounds/words believed to be sacred and beneficial.
Karen Weber, the lead singer, explained that Kirtan is meant to be felt by your heart not just heard. For us intuitive types, I got that as I closed my eyes and listened to the drums, the guitar and strange words: one heartbeat reverberating throughout. That’s the point, isn’t it.
I love when bands really look like they are enjoying the performance, and they did. Mitchell Manz on the drums with a continual smile and contagious happiness, and the enthusiastic talented Mike McGuigan on both the guitar and bass guitar providing the improvised riffs carrying the night. Regal Shelli Mullins led the audience with the chants. I just love her long blond dread locks.
And of course, the lead singer Karen Weber, it was fascinating to listen to her beautiful singing and pronunciation, emphasis of the Sanskrit words plus down to earth explanations. They like to jam and improvise.
Jam On, Blue Lotus; it was great.
As a first performance, I’m hesitating even to write this up and tell you all about it, as there is not much more space in the Garaj Majal for too many more to attend. Perhaps they’ll have to do an outdoor venue as well.