Come chant with us!
We are Samadhi (Krishna Nama, Prema, Rangadevi, Steve, Kat, and Courtney, with drummers Cypress and Julian), a kirtan band based in North Carolina. Samadhi is a Sanskrit term for the state of consciousness induced by complete meditation. By combining kirtan (call and response chanting) with the infectious melodies and danceable rhythms of a variety of music styles, Samadhi Kirtan enables its audience to be absorbed in meditation on bhakti, selfless love.
Tip: Click on the photos to read more about each band member!
Rangadevi Dasi has had a lifelong love of music and singing. From 1995-2004, Rangadevi lived and served at the New Goloka Hare Krishna Temple in Hillsborough, NC, where several hours of kirtan and meditation were part of the daily routine. Since then, she has founded the Samadhi Kirtan Band (2009), given numerous workshops on kirtan, and recorded and produced her debut album, Kalpa-Vriksa. Besides music, Rangadevi is also the mastermind behind Govinda's Catering, a pure vegetarian catering company that specializes in dairy-free and gluten-free dinners.
Guitar, Bass, and Vocals
Born and raised in LA, Krishna Nama made a career in criminal justice. He’s earned a BA in Chemistry, an MA in Education, and a PhD in Public Safety. From collaborating with high school fellows to jamming with professional musicians, Krishna Nama has experienced a little bit of everything in music (but especially jazz). He plays the tuba, sousaphone, trombone, upright bass, electric bass, and guitar, to name a few. He was introduced to kirtan through ISKCON and still regularly plays for temple functions with his wife, Prema.
Originally from Seattle, Prema began studying yoga in 1997. She completed a residential yoga teacher training at the Satchidananda Ashram in Virginia and teaches yoga regularly in Wake Forest. She encountered kirtan through her students and shortly thereafter began playing as part of Samadhi. Prema has been a part of the New Goloka Krishna temple for roughly 14 years and is married to fellow bandmate, Krishna Nama.
Guitar and Vocals
Originally from Rochester, NY, Steve Cole has been singing for most of his life, starting with church choir at age 10. For 4 years, he sang as part of a college acapella group, an experience that helped develop his quick ear for harmonies. Steve was introduced to kirtan at a Dave Stringer concert, where he was overwhelmed by the experience of being able to participate vocally with the artists. As part of Samadhi, Steve has been instrumental in incorporating Kundalini chants into the band's repertoire.
Vocals and Flute
After moving to Durham to do an MA at Duke University, Kat found herself quickly putting down roots in the local kirtan community. Originally trained as a flautist, she has since developed her vocal skills by singing with Samadhi and other kirtan groups. She practices yoga reguarly and has done a yoga teacher training at Heart of Yoga in Carrboro, NC. In addition to Samadhi, Kat now performs with local folk music and flute ensembles – that is, when she’s not trying to learn banjo!
Guitar, Bass, and Vocals
Courtney has always been active in the applied arts and practiced them through music, still photography, and television production. A multi-instrumentalist, Courtney plays acoustic and electric bass, acoustic and electric guitar, keyboards, and vocals. He is currently arranging for and performing with a variety of kirtan artists in the North Carolina area and plays live music for yoga classes. In addition to music, Courtney teaches a weekly yoga class in Carrboro and is a full-time engineering manager for a high-tech company.
Julian was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and grew up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He started playing music at the age of 13 after having some trouble as a teen. His mother thought he might need a discipline that requires individual expression, and music often provides that key form of identity, expression, and later belonging that we all crave. After battles with health issues, he took up kirtan as a way to heal. Julian currently works at the Carrboro UPS store and enjoys this on the side.
Cypress spent the first six years of his life banging and tapping on every surface available until his parents finally got the message and found a drum teacher. He has been studying percussion with a focus on West African rhythms with his teacher, Will Ridenour, ever since. Kirtan has been a part of his life for as long as he can remember – what’s more kid friendly than audience participation? One night he brought his djembe to a kirtan, and the rest is history. (Thank you, Rangadevi!) His newest musical adventure is learning to play the mandolin.
Want to see Samadhi live? Check out one of the events below!
All our kirtans are free, but donations are welcome.
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North Carolina, US