Mantra Radio – February 14th 2013

      Mantra Radio - February 14th 2013

An eclectic mix of beats, layers, and chants.

In his late teens, Prem Joshua (then known simply as Joshua), left Germany to travel across the Middle-East, ultimately arriving in India. Although already somewhat accomplished musically, his experience there awoke an even more subtle and intimate music within, something deeply spiritual. In his song Meera, he pays tribute to the great 16th century saint and devotional poet Mirabai. In her lifetime she composed well over a thousand poems and one such piece is here. The first line and chorus: Aisi Lagi Lagan Meera Ho Gai Magan – “Meera has become immersed in total longing (for the Beloved)” sets the tone for the rest of the poem. Meera wonders in madness drunk on the chanting of the divine names of Hari, Mohana, Gopala. This song comes from an album entitled Luminous Secrets.

Turkish-born Canadian producer and musician Mercan Dede comes next with a fusion of traditional and contemporary sounds and structure. Quoting him: “Success is not something to which I aspire, but rather I accept as simply a wonderful gift of life from the Creator, as a recogniton of my naive and simple belief, that with music we can help ourselves and others in a most humble way.”. The track we hear is Napas from the album Nefes (Breath).

The next set starts with Mark Medley’s dubbed-out rendition of Sat Narayan Wahe Guru, from a release entitled Akaljas (a spiritual name given to him and his wife), which means “One who is ever-singing the praises of the Divine”. The song contains mantras from the Sikh / Kundalini yoga tradition which help one connect with the indescribable wisdom and truth of source. Trevor Hall aka Rama Priya das sings a musical story about his beloved teacher and Guru in the next track, simply entitled Grace of the Guru – “You gave me that seed, and now it grows like banyan trees”.

Fabulous and multi-talented yogini Sharon Gannon jabs sacred sanskrit chants through the moody and bassy mix on Sattvam, a word simply meaning Truth. And Snatam Kaur with Todd Boston end this set with a short piece entitled Surya, from his release Touched by the Sun. Surya being a sanskrit name for the sun-god.

The show is capped off with an introspective, stormy-yet-soothing rendition of the Maha-Mantra by Australian kirtaniyas Shyamananda Kirtan Mandali. This track is from a release of the same name and is entitled Govardhana, after the place in India where Krishna and Radha grew-up and played.

Alternate MP3 Link – Mantra Radio – Feb 14th 2013.mp3

Mantra Radio – February 7th 2013

      Mantra Radio - February 7th 2013

An eclectic mix of beats, layers, and chants.

This episode begins with Temple Step Project from Australia, and the selection Truth and Grace from their most recent release entitled Embrace the One. Among other verses in this track you will hear the chant “Allahu Allahu”, a style common to Sufi traditions in all their vastness and variety, simply calling out and connecting with God, with truth, with the everything. Continuing in the same vein, The Vibrations bring the chant La Illaha Illallah on an untitled track from their album Pyramid Code.

Roots-reggae singer-songwriter Syd Perry drops by the CiTR studios for an on-air chat and performs a short piece accompanied by a simple Nyabinghi rasta rhythm. The words speak of surrender to the “voice within”, which guides us on our respective journeys. Next up is Srikalogy with another track from his recent Kirtan Remixes release. The track is called Radhika Raman, and was originally performed by Prema Hara. Radhika Raman means “The Lover of Radha”, and is another name for Krishna.

Two tracks featuring Brazilian multi-instrumentalist Sandro Shankar come next. The first is a series of sanksrit verses or slokas dedicated to the beautiful elephant-headed deity Ganesha. Some of these verses come from a text known as the Sankata Hara Ganesha Stotram and some are from a different text which was originally spoken by the great sage Narada. They are both chanted by Jonas Masetti. The second recording features the Gayatri mantra which addresses Savatri aka Surya (the sun-god), and which is performed by fellow Brazillian actor and singer Via Negromonte. Within that same theme, this set is capped off with a replay of Karsh Kale’s Glorious Sun remix, originally recorded by Laya Project.

The closing track of today’s show, Bhakti Ganapati, is by the Australian-based duo Subway Bhaktis. This is another song dedicated to Ganesha, or Ganapati, as he is sometimes known. It features various chants including “Om Gam Ganapataye Namah”, “Sri Ganesha Sharanam”, and “Om Balachandraya Namah”, Balachandra refering to the form of Ganesh in which he has a crescent moon on his forehead. It ends with selections from the thirty-two names of Ganapati.

Alternate MP3 Link – Mantra Radio – Feb 7th 2013.mp3

Mantra Radio – January 31st 2013

      Mantra Radio - January 31st 2013

An eclectic mix of beats, layers, and chants.

Today’s episode starts with a tribute to Shiva, otherwise known as Nataraja, the lord (or king) of dance. When he performs the cosmic ‘jig’ of destruction – Tandava – the weary universe is dissolved to make way for the beginning of another creation. A lesser known dance, called Lasya, takes place during the creation period. This version is sung by Nicolle Jensen, produced by Desert Dwellers, and remixed by Drumspyder.

A few years ago Karnamrita Dasi released a collection of songs called Prayers by Women. On this album was a song comprised of a series of sanksrit verses from the Bhagavat Purana (a Vedic text), spoken by a woman named Pingala. Srikalogy remix’s that track here, in which Pingala reflects on her life so far and her dissatisfaction therein. During the course of her story she comes to the point of divine realization, and ultimately surrender to that flow. The track is simply called Story of Pingala, and appears on Srikala’s recent album Kirtan Remix’s Volume One.

Karsh Kale weaves his magic, and beautifully remixes Laya Project’s track Glorious Sun, which is closely followed by Niyaz’s song Iman from their album Nine Heavens. This song is comprised of two Urdu texts from Mirza Salamat Ali Dabir and Maulana Altaf Hussain Hali, two 19th century Islamic poets who lived in India. The song speaks of the tendency to forget God during times when life seems easy, to remember him when times become hard, and his eternal sheltering and preserving nature. The arabic chants continue with the words La Illaha Illa Allah, this time sung by Dina Awwad with Manish Vyas, and coming from the release Sufi Splendour. This well-known mantra calls out in love to the supremacy of the One Divine Being, the word Allah itself simply translatable here as “God”.

Govinda Shakti kicks off the closing set with the Maha-Mantra from his release Sonido Espiritual (Spiritual Sound), and Chances R Good has the last word with his thoughtful, poetic, and inspirational piece Hapi Birfday .. “Remember to surrender .. and stay in the wonder…”.

(Note: In this episode, the Laya Project remix is announced as being Glorious Sun / Ya Allah / Muliya-Farihi by Ferenz Kallos, when it is actually a remix by Karsh Kale of Glorious Sun.)

Alternate MP3 Link – Mantra Radio – Jan 31st 2013.mp3