Manika Kaur of Indian decent, but born and raised in Australia, grew up in a spiritual house where music, song and devotion were a way of life. Every evening the whole family would have a “jam session” where they would play the tablas, harmonium and sing together, this led her on the path of becoming a singer and songwriter. Once she got married, she moved to Dubai, (very different from living in chilled-out Melbourne!), and here she realised that she needed to do something positive with her time and was then lead on the path of creating a music CD that would help support financing the building of the first Gurdwara in Dubai where she now lives with her husband and son.
Manika’s first recordings were in English, however, when she met bhangra pop star Sukhbir Singh her dream of creating a traditional, (with modern aspects), kirtan CD became a reality. Kirtans are devotional chants and hymns that relay messages of love, peace and truth to the listener. Manika’s voice will transport you to another place and time and her love and devotion to her songs can be continually felt throughout all the tracks. Manika herself says it best: “Music has no barriers, which is why it brings people together. At times you don’t need to understand it but you feel it. Kirtan has something more extraordinary, when you connect to it; you are connecting to the purest love.”
What I love about this CD is that it has been created with a lot of thought and insight. All the Kirtans are translated into English – so that you actually have an idea of what you are singing about!
The beauty of this CD is that it has not been created for personal gain or recognition; it has been created to benefit others. The money raised through this CD is donated to help others less fortunate than herself, to build new Sikh temples that offer a place for her community to share, learn and practice their faith. The proceeds from her next album are earmarked to help educate children from the rural parts of Punjab in India.
Who is this CD for?
If you enjoy kirtan, devotional music and want to support the above mentioned projects then be sure to get your hands on this CD. Manika has a strong distinct voice and those who are Sikhlens will probably enjoy this CD the most. If you are not really into kirtan, then it is probably not quite right for you as devotional music is quite distinct in its own way. For those who practice or teach kundalini yoga you will be able to use and enjoy this CD in your classes.
Many thanks to Manika and her team for sharing her work and story with us here in South Africa.
We have 4 copies of the latest release “Satnam Waheguru” CD to give away. Let us know what Seva work you have done lately by commenting on this blog post or our facebook page and you could be a winner this month!