Krishna Das, a vocalist who is perhaps best well known in the U.S. for his performances of Hindu devotional music known as kirtan, performed in front of 1100 people on Friday, June 28 in Seattle.

The event, which is part of the Kirtan wallah tour, took place at the Center for Spiritual Living in partnership with East West Bookshop. “CSL is a trans-denominatinal, inter-generational, not your usual church” type of a place where you can attend Sunday services, concerts and a variety of events.

The bookshop opened in 1989 and over the years it has developed to be a resource center that offers a rich selection of books, local artists designs and products in addition to programs, events and concerts that represent ancient spiritual traditions.

It wasn’t a surprise that Das’ concert was nearly sold out. Das, who had traveled to India in 1970, studied the ancient meditation practices of Bhakti Yoga – the yoga of devotion, and since then he has been devoted to giving back to the community through his singing and teaching. His music is traditional, with a touch of modern instrumentation. Chanting, a prayer, is an important component of his performance and life. The chant was printed on a flyer and everyone sang along.

“He has taken the call-and-response chanting out of yoga centers and into concert halls.” (Description of Das’s work)

The concert, “was really lovely. It felt like we were in a temple singing spiritual chants,” said Mark Breckenridge, who works at the Bookshop as a buyer.

The event had a satellite parking shuttle arrangement for people who were attending the concert and parking was only five minutes away from the center. The venue was accommodating to the crowd and it was well lit with good sound. Throughout the event you could see that the crowd was embracing every sound and moment; people were engaged, they clapped, chanted and danced.

Das has an indulging presence that captivated the audience. He even shared some personal stories with the crowd about his guru in India. After the concert, Das stayed for over an hour to ensure he spoke with all of his fans.

What Breckenridge enjoyed the most is that the whole community gathered together and that everyone enjoyed the music and its spiritual magnetism.

“He carries that tradition. He is very humble,” he said. “It was like a little holiday.”

Curious about Krishna Das’ music? we invite you to listen to it and buy one of his album.