YOGA REVOLUTION. Time Life Entertainment. $14.98.http://www.yogarevolution.com
It’s difficult to talk about the music in “Yoga Revolution” and not talk about yoga, the underlying emotion it invokes, the yogis who inspire changes in everyday lives, or the musicians who made this possible. The stated mission of this CD is to use yogic philosophy and music for a whole new kind of revolution—one that brings greater balance, harmony, and well-being to a world that is increasingly off-kilter. “I don’t condemn, I don’t convert, this is a calling, have you heard?” croons Ziggy Marley (Bob Marley’s son), the lyrics in his song “Love is My Religion,” reminiscent of the activist power of music.
Listening to the album, it’s easy to see what drew Frank Fitzpatrick, yogi and producer of the album, to these particular artists. These are sublime souls who guide you back to a nascent place within yourself.
“Yoga is an important part of my creative life. Like music, yoga is a journey, one that is long enough so you keep developing, and keep learning. I don’t see an end to it,” says Sting, whose collaboration with Anoushka Shankar and Karsh Kale, “Sea Dreamer,” speaks of bridges over seas and the sky breaking free. Krishna Das’ “Narayana/ For Your Love,” is the perfect opening for the album, a heady mix of Narayana chants merged with the lyrics of the 1965 hit by the Rascals.
Yoga has been quietly setting down roots in the United States and the world for several decades now. In the midst of the recent controversy over patents, lineage, and even bragging rights surrounding yoga, the CD shines through with its sheer ability to transcend the noise and present a simple humanitarian way of being.
The cover emphasizes the democratization of yoga, showing a young girl doing an asana on train tracks, pure joy lighting up her face. Fitting, considering the proceeds will benefit Yoga Health Foundation and programs for at-risk youth. The absence of Indian visuals is indicative of the current universal language of Yoga.
Guru Singh, the Los Angeles yogi, teacher, writer, composer-musician, shaman, ordained minister, healer for over fifty years contributes “I am,” along with English pop singer-song writer Seal. The song lyrics “I am who I am, that is that…I am who you are looking back…” urge all of us to seek harmony within us first. Other songs include Sarah McLachlan’s “Prayer of St. Francis” (short and dark), and Sheryl Crow’s “I Shall Believe” (pensive). Eeday brings a Jamaican hip-hoppiness to “Om Namo,” a remixed version of “Om Tara Tuttare” by Osho-inspired musicians Deva Premal and Miten. “Ganesha” by chant and kirtan queen Wah! deserves special mention; it brings a cleansing energy to a traditional Hindu mantra.