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Last night my friend Ani and I went to see Girish:Remixed at one of the local yoga studios I like to go to.  I had been on their site looking up a class for my sister when I happened to look at their upcoming events and saw the show.

REMIXED links Sanskrit mantra and chant with modern grooves in a heart-opening, soul-stirring union. This is sensual, funky, yet deeply devotional music that will have your body moving and your heart soaring.

REMIXED joins Girish’s lush, soulful voice and transcendent melodies with a dazzling array of international musical luminaries including Mac Quayle (Sting, Beyonce, Madonna), DJDrez (Black-Eyed Peas, Bombay Dub Orchestra), Herb Graham,Jr(MacyGray), Desert Dwellers, Rara Avis, Shujat Ali Khan and more.

REMIXED is an inspiring blend of musical styles ranging from dubstep to reggae, from dance to electronic – while maintaining the devotional heart and soul of Girish’s music. This is music to put your prayers in motion!”

I love music of all types, and I’m always looking for something out of the ordinary to do, so I figured it was a nice way to spend a Saturday evening.  I asked Ani to join me because she’s always up for new adventures. And I did something really a-typical for me – I didn’t research more about the music online before the event.  I wanted to experience the evening fresh, without any preconceived notions.

This is the Luna room at Breathe, where they hold their aerial yoga classes, among others. It was the beautiful setting of the evening’s music.

While I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I knew I’d hear some interesting music in a tranquil space, no matter what.  And I did.  We sat on blankets and bolsters on the ground, and most people were wearing loose, easy clothing.  I was a bit overdressed, but very thankful that I’d chosen to forgo my jeans, which would have been much too uncomfortable for sitting on the floor for two hours.

The music was based on chants from sanskrit, many of which are used in yoga practice.  I was actually shocked at how many people in the small group of 30 knew the chants by heart. The Girish website has samples of all the songs we heard last night, and here’s a sample of one of my favorites from last night, Jaya Hanuman. The thing that you don’t hear from the samples is the way that the songs built up in intensity and tempo.  As the description wrote, many of the songs took on a funky, jazzy vibe, courtesy of brilliant bass guitar playing and drumming.  Those were the moments I enjoyed the most, when I could just forget about everything else and FEEL the music.  And I guess that’s really the whole point, to let all of your troubles go and just be in the moment, exactly as you are when you’re practicing yoga. 

The only song I didn’t like was one that was sung in English and sounded more like a Christian revival meeting.  (It was something more impromptu, and not part of the CD or the samples).

Even though I didn’t completely feel like I belonged there (just my own thing, not because anyone was unwelcoming), I still really enjoyed the evening.  I liked the experience so much that I think I may go to the OM Music Festival in Santa Cruz in October.  I think it speaks to the fact that music can bridge all sorts of gaps.

Do you ever go to events that are very out of character for you?

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