Yoga is Putumayo’s first CD release featuring songs selected to accompany yoga practice and serve as a relaxing soundtrack for daily life. Rooted in ancient Hindu, Buddhist and Jain traditions, the practice of yoga has evolved over the past 5,000 years. Adopted by millions of people around the world, yoga provides a vehicle for greater health and spiritual awareness. Music has long had a close relationship with yoga, particularly in the Bhakti tradition, which incorporates musical chants into its practice.
With his extensive background as a yoga instructor and musician, Sean Johnson, founder of Wild Lotus Yoga studio in New Orleans, collaborated closely with Putumayo on this project. Combining songs used in his classes with Putumayo’s global research, Yoga creates a musical flow that works as well during yoga practice as at home for meditation or relaxation. Sean’s expansive liner notes, which include a glossary of yoga terms, will help people better understand the practice of yoga and its relationship to music.
Yoga features renowned musicians from around the world. British-born, South Indian artist Susheela Raman duets with Kenyan singer Ayub Ogada on the harmonious “O Rama.” Krishna Das, who is the best-known US performer of traditional Indian kirtan-style music, demonstrates call-and-response chanting on “Hanuman Baba (Dub Farm Remix).” Costa Rican group Amounsulu create a serene atmosphere by blending sitars and glass bottles on the song “El Bosque Eterno de los Niños (Children’s Eternal Rainforest).” On “Bolo Ram” celebrated western devotional musician Wah! sings a tranquil verse that is believed to bring bliss to all who chant it. Sean Johnson and the Wild Lotus Band are known for their beautiful, melodic chanting as displayed on “Om Hari Om/Sharanam Ganesha (Refuge).”
Yoga also features the collaborative world fusion group The Lucknow Project, US kirtan artist Gaura Vani And As Kindred Spirits, renowned producer/musician Ben Leinbach and percussionist Geoffrey Gordon, bhajan and kirtan singer Karnamrita Dasi and British producer Niraj Chag. Rounding out this eclectic collection are Swedish musician and teacher Yogini, Senegalese singer Ablaye Cissoko with German trumpeter Volker Goetze, husband and wife duo Shantala and Bhutanese monk Lama Gyurme with French pianist Jean-Philippe Rykiel.