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Welcome to delicious Destinations, a GourmetStation blog. Through the charater of T.Alexander and occasional real-life guests, our aim is to share with you light-hearted fun ideas about food, gift giving, entertaining and culture. At the same time we would love you hear from you. Please share your experiences from home or abroad.

All From India – Good Food & Sacred Music


Posted: June 4, 2009
by: T.Alexander

I dedicate this post to these wonderful people - my new friend from India, Ramesh and his lovely wife and family. Ramesh has shown me the warmth and kind nature of the Indian people. I also dedicate this post to my dear friend Johnny Naugle, an Atlanta peace advocate with a great appreciation for Indian culture and the works of Gandhi.

Several months ago my friend Johnny introduced me to Snatam Kaur. I knew she sang sacred music from India and I liked the peaceful emotions her music evoked. That was about it. When we learned she was on tour and Atlanta was a concert destination, it seemed appropriate that Johnny and I attend. I had no idea that I was in for an experience of a lifetime.

SnatamKaur

 

Our evening stared with dinner at a local Indian restaurant, Planet Bombay. The owners and staff provided an authentic experience from décor to cuisine. I enjoyed Vegetables Biriyani and Johnny had Tofu Tikka Massala. One taste of the yogart and tandoori spice sauce on Johnny’s entrée and I almost took it away from him. I didn’t; I behaved. But I am going back for this dish – all for myself.

 

Plant Bombay   

 

The concert (I use this word loosely) was held at a local yoga institute. The performance room seemed large enough until hundreds of people arrived – most sitting on the floor in perfect yoga form. They knew why they were there and what to expect. Snatam performs Sikh devotional music; the practice of kirtan. In India’s devotional traditions, kirtan is call-and-response chanting. Although Snatam is Colorado born, the influences of her early exposure to India are very obvious. The musical experience was as authentic as the Indian culinary experience.

 

Snatam Kaur Concert  

Now I must say, it was not a concert. When I think of a concert I think of a person or group sending music to the audience. We might hum a familiar tune, but for the most part we listen. Not so with kirtan. This is participatory at it’s best.  The beauty of the melodies, the integration of performers & audience and the nature of the lyrics, soulful praises to God, all create a feeling of Oneness that is beyond words. Oh to have discovered all this 20 years ago – but then I might not have appreciated it then like I do today.


Your Comments

Blessed are those who get to hear kirtan in the USA.May God bestow His melodious blessings upon Snatam Kaur.She has awsome energy from what can be seen from her picture. My family is not sikh. But many persons of Sindhi commmunity, to which I belong are followers of Guru Nanik. My sister did kirtan from age of 20 until she died at 70. All my childhood I have attended such 'concerts' in gurudwaras. I remeber many years ago visit of a group of 4 Americans doing kirtans in Mumbai thru assistance rendered by my sister. To get deeper experience one should listen to this melody early
morning at 4 or 5. Keep up such concerts alongwith your gourmet activity. God bless.

Posted by: Ramesh M. Shani at Jun 8, 2009 2:51:42 AM

Its lovely reading your blog and the love towards your friends by the dedication of this blog!!Its great!

Posted by: Audi Middle East at Dec 4, 2009 3:54:00 AM

Keep up such concerts alongwith your gourmet activity. God bless.

Posted by: BMW Middle East at Jan 23, 2010 2:17:52 AM