Lokah Releases Debut Album “The Ivy Ceiling”
Collaborations Include Sting, Russell Simmons, and Roderick & Anisa Romero of Sky Cries Mary
“The Ivy Ceiling” bridges the spiritual with the modern, the eclectic with influences of electronica, funk, rock and pop, and the upbeat with the serene. The collective creation and vision of two artists -- Sri Michael and Uma Nanda Saraswati - “The Ivy Ceiling” beautifully merges the ancient Indian art of Kirtan with contemporary musical styles of the 21st century, fusing East and West in a melodic tapestry of epic proportions.
The ten track CD blends Sanskrit mantras and highly textured beats in a cross-cultural expanse of sound. “The Ivy Ceiling” features the vocal styling of Sting on the track, "Ma Durga" and a soulful spoken word introduction by Hip-Hop mogul Russell Simmons. In addition, Roderick and Anisa Romero of the Seattle-based underground band, Sky Cries Mary, are featured on backup vocals throughout the compilation.
“We are thrilled with the release of our debut album,” said Sri Michael. “This is the realization of a long-held dream to blend a variety of influences and sounds that would appeal to a large cross-section of music lovers and bring them a message of universal peace and love.”
Long influenced by spirituality and particularly the practice of yoga, Sri Michael and Uma decided to blend their collective talents and influences to create a collection of songs that bridge the ancient and the modern, the spiritual and the sublime.
The word Lokah means, the universe, or all beings in the universe. It is also the title of the last track of the album. The lyrics of the last track, Lokah, are "Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu", which is translated as "May all beings everywhere be happy and free". The band named themselves Lokah as an expression of hope and acknowledgment that a world where all beings are happy and free is possible. It starts with each individual and the contributions made towards that happiness and freedom for all beings by each individual. No contribution is too small and each one will make a difference.
"The Ivy Ceiling is a real embodiment of everything Sri Michael and I love and hold dear," added Uma Nanda Saraswati. "The upliftment of consciousness through the spirituality of yoga, the feeling inherent in the meaning of the ancient chants, and the creation of divinely beautiful melodies. The music comes alive when you bring these three factors together into union.
"The Ivy Ceiling" is available here, on iTunes, and on Lokahmusic.com.