‘EnCHANTing Evening of Kirtan’ pairs Krishna Das and Ram Dass
Acclaimed kirtan leader Krishna Das and revered spiritual teacher Ram Dass have combined their popular annual Thanksgiving programs into one special evening on Monday in the Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s Castle Theater.
Celebrating 15 years of Ram Dass’ satsangs on Maui, the “EnCHANTing Evening of Kirtan” features Grammy-nominated Das accompanied by a 6-piece band.
Layering traditional kirtan with accessible melodies and modern instrumentation, Das has been hailed as yoga’s “rock star,” who has taken the call-and-response chanting out of yoga centers and into concert halls, becoming a worldwide icon and the best-selling western chant artist of all time.
Raised on rock and blues, Das embraced Hindu chanting years ago during a pilgrimage to India. Over the years he has released 16 albums, including “Live Ananda,” which was nominated for a Best New Age Grammy. In 2013, he performed at the Grammy awards in Los Angeles.
Helping transform the Hindu practice of singing divine praises into an accessible form that many people have embraced, leading musicians including Sting sang on Das’ album “Pilgrim Heart,” and Steely Dan’s Walter Becker and Def Leppard’s drummer Rick Allen played prominent roles on his “All One” recording.
Das often hears how his recordings have helped folks cope with our turbulent times. “We’re all going through so much stuff all the time and the pace at which we live doesn’t give us any time to let go of that and release it,” he notes. “Chanting is like taking time off to feed your heart and let go of some of the tension. It gives us a deeper perspective for what we have to go through. From all over the world, people tell me how by listening and singing along to the CDs, it gave them strength to go through situations.”
On Monday, he will be accompanied by Arjun Bruggeman (tabla), Genevieve Walker (violin), David Nichtern (guitar), Nina Rao (finger cymbals), Noah Hoffeld (cello), and Mark Gorman (bass).
Living on Maui since 2004, Ram Dass is the author of the spiritual classic “Be Here Now.” His most recent books include “Be Love Now” (2011), “Polishing the Mirror: How to Live from Your Spiritual Heart” (2013), “Cookbook for Awakening” (2017), and “Walking Each Other Home” (2018).
In June, a new documentary on the renowned teacher, “Becoming Nobody,” was screened as part of the Maui Film Festival.
“The simple, yet complex teachings of Ram Dass, one of the most influential spiritual seekers of our time, are easily digested in the documentary ‘Becoming Nobody,’ a loving tribute made by one of his devotees,” noted the San Francisco Chronicle. And the Los Angeles Times praised, “it remains an inspiring, stirringly meditative portrait of one man’s profound spiritual influence on a world that has surely needed him.”
The satsang evening will serve as food drive for the Maui Food Bank. Concert attendees are encouraged to bring organic canned/boxed food donations to drop off at the MACC on Monday night. Donations will help feed the hungry on Maui.
* The “EnCHANTing Evening of Kirtan” will be held in the MACC’s Castle Theater on Monday at 7 p.m. Preshow dinner is available by Monsoon India. Tickets are $45 in advance, $55 day-of-show, and $11 for children ages 3-12 (plus applicable fees). For tickets or more information, visit the box office, call 242-6469, or go online to www.mauiarts.org.
Congratulations to Amy Hanaiali’i for her Grammy nomination for her marvelous album “Kalawai’anui,” and to fellow Maui musician Peter Kater, who was nominated for Best New Age Album for “Wings.” Keys and Chords praised “Wings” as, “a beautiful peaceful and healing album of solo piano.”
Amy has previously been nominated five times for a Grammy, first in 2004, for “Amy & Willie Live,” and Kater won the New Age Grammy in 2018.
Two country stars heading to the MACC on Dec. 7 also received Grammy noms. Miranda Lambert was nominated for Best Country Album as a member of the Pistol Annies group, and for Best Country Song for “It All Comes Out In The Wash;” while Maren Morris was nominated for Best Country Duo/Group Performance for “Common,” featuring Brandi Carlile, from her album “Girl.” Morris just won Album of the Year at the 53rd CMA Awards.
Tickets are on sale now for the annual New Years Eve party to benefit the Maui Food Bank and the MACC. Held at the Wailea Beach Resort-Marriott, musicians performing include Steven Tyler, Willie Nelson, Alice Cooper, Michael McDonald, Pat Simmons, Dave Mason, Weird Al Yankovic, Lynda Carter, Lukas Nelson, Nathaniel Rateliff, Willie K, Lily Meola, and Pat Simmons Jr. General admission tickets are $675, available at www.eventbrite.com.
The Maui Choral Arts Association, under artistic director Gary Leavitt, with pianist Lotus Dancer, will celebrate the holidays with a “December Joy!” concert on Sunday at 3 p.m. in the MACC’s Castle Theater. Featuring close to 100 singers the concert will feature familiar music as well as intriguing arrangements ranging from Renaissance to contemporary settings.
With singers ranging in age from 8 to 94, Maui Choral Arts “has been together for over 15 years, delighting Maui audiences with two concerts each year, a concert of holiday music right after Thanksgiving, and one in the spring featuring many intriguing themes” reports Lotus Dancer. “Last year we featured music from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s, and happy nostalgia prevailed.”
* Tickets are $30 for adults and $15 for students with an ID and kids 18 and under (plus applicable fees). For tickets or more information, visit the box office, call 242-6469, or go online to www.mauiarts.org.
The swing/ska band Cherry Poppin’ Daddies present a “Throwback SkaPunk” concert on Dec. 5 at Charley’s Restaurant & Saloon. After becoming popular nationally in the American ska scene, the Daddies broke into the mainstream with their 1997 swing compilation, “Zoot Suit Riot,” which sold more than two million copies.
Their latest album, the punk and ska influenced “Bigger Life,” was released in June 2019. Vocalist Steve Perry described it as, “deeply critical of racist and authoritarian elements in the U.S.”
The concept of their “throwback” show is to give audiences a flavor of some of the high-energy material that the Daddies don’t normally play in their swing music concerts.
Doors open at 7 p.m., show at 8. Three to 5 will open. Tickets are $30 available at: www.eventbrite.com.
Jimi Hendrix’s 77th birthday will be celebrated on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Mulligans on the Blue with a special show featuring more than 30 Maui musicians. The evening will include a costume party with a contest and prizes.
Famous on Maui for performing a concert in Olinda in July 1970, featured in the “Rainbow Bridge” movie, a new Hendrix album, “Songs For Groovy Children: The Fillmore East Concerts,” has just been released. It assembles all four historic debut concerts by Hendrix and the Band of Gypsys at New York s Fillmore East, across 5 CDs with more than 20 tracks that have either never before been commercially released or have been newly remixed.
Tickets are $25 advance and $30 at the door. Tickets are available at Bounty Music, Request Music, The Enchantress Gallery in Wailea, Little Tibet in Makawao, Spike’s Westside Ink, Mulligans and online at eventbrite.com. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Mana’o Radio.
Call 572-1000 for more information.
Award-winning saxophonist Rock Hendricks will perform a free concert at The Shops in Wailea on Wednesday from 5:30 to 7 p.m., as part of the monthly “Jazz at The Shops” series. Over the years Hendricks has performed and recorded with Michael Buble, The Temptations, Bobby Womack, Bonnie Raitt, and Sammy Hagar.