Krishna Das – One Track Heart

Krishna Das – the rockstar Kirtan walla

Krishna Das re-defines the Kirtan, and what it is supposed to sound like. His voice and music sensibilities are of a hard-rock singer, but the heart is of a pure devotee. As he sings the traditional Indian devotional music in his accented deep voice, you find yourself going deeper into your own self. I got exposed to his singing as part of some meditation sessions, and now I have come to love his music. Listening to him helps me calm down instantly and helps me get connected to myself. He has become a globally renowned name for his Kirtans, and even got a nomination for the Grammys, probably the second Kirtan singer nominee ever. He is performing in Mumbai for the first time ever on 3rd Jan 2014, and it is an experience not to be missed.

The more I have come to know about him, the more I understand why his voice has the power to move people like it does. The journey of his life is beautifully captured in an award winning documentary called ‘One Track Heart’. He changed his life’s mission from trying to form a rock band, to becoming a Kirtan singer after he found his Guru in India. His life took  a wrong turn as his Guru passed away, and he went down the path of drug addiction and abuse. He then resurrected his life from this meltdown though this singing and found his true calling through love for his Guru.

His guru was a little known Hindu mystic called Neem Karoli Baba, who he met in 1970. Babaji had a big following amongst the locals of around Nainital in the foothills of Himalyas, and devotees thronged to his ashram in Kaichi . He was a recluse and his followers discovered him purely through word of mouth. My parents talk about visiting his Mandir when I was a kid, but even they missed any obvious reference to Babaji. A lot of hippies in the 60’s-70’s became his followers, and many of them cleaned up their lives and went on to becoming big names globally. Walter Isaacson writes that Steve Jobs  came to India in the search of Neem Karoli Baba and he was a big influence on him too.

Krishan Das does not perform for his audience; he only sings for his Guru as an expression of his love for him. The mission of his life is simple – to sing for his guru. He claims that this is the only way he can clean out the dark spaces in his own heart. His voice seems to come out of a deep part him and that probably gives it the power to connect with people’s hearts. With his unique voice and style of singing, he has become a bridge for the modern generation globally connecting them to the deep spiritual side of Bhakti yoga using modern sounds and music.

His upcoming Mumbai concert promises to be a collective melting of hearts. His tour has been privately put together by a few of his fans, and tickets are mostly being sold through word of mouth. Do not miss this once-in-a-lifetime chance to attend this concert (details below). 

Krishna Das melting hearts

Event details for his 2015 Concert in India:

MUMBAI
Jan 16, 2015 
Yogi Sabha Graha, Swami Narayan Temple, Dadar East, Mumbai
 
BANGALORE
Jan 20, 2015 
Sathya Sai Samskruta Sadanam,
 
DELHI
Jan 23rd, 24th, 2015 
 Shri Satya Sai Auditorium:
 
Buy tickets here (Link)
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