Bhubaneswar Meets America In Musical Ode To Supreme Power


Bhubaneswar: From Sufi to folk, several music genres have focused on the oneness of the god and the search a devotee is forever in. Giving that search to the God a new twist, city-based singer Abhijeet Mishra has collaborated with American singer Kristi Williamson to bring out a one-of-its-kind music.

The track ‘Sanctuary of Durga’ has Kristi singing the English verses, while Abhijeet took to infusing Hindustani classical music into it. “There is a bandish in it, that I have sung, and the mesmerizing voice of Kristi makes it really magical,” he said. The music video was released on World Music Day.

Sanctuary is a hymn by Randy Scruggs and John Thompson. Kristi wrote the lyrics and composed the music for the verse in this arrangement. The bandish, sung by Abhijeet, is based on Raag Durga which is written and composed by Indian classical maestro Sangeet Martand Pandit Omkarnath Thakur (Pranav Rang). Mishra arranged the music and handled all the technical work involved in the making of the music video, while Kristi sang and played the harmonium.

Kristi, a Yoga teacher from California, was in Odisha for 15 days about two years back. “She came here to learn Odissi and also, the culture here. She heard about me and reached out to me to learn music, as I was teaching kids then,” Abhijeet said.

It was then that Kristi sang ‘Sanctuary’ to him and the idea of collaboration struck him. “I waited for about one year to record and release this because I wanted to technically efficient. I needed to do justice to this composition, as it is really close to my heart. I believe, this is what fusion should be like- different people, different backgrounds, different music, but one emotion!” he expressed.

According to Kristi, this song is a prayer to the soul. “It is about returning home, to the source of the beauty within. It is an invitation to prepare ourselves to be a sanctuary of love, a vessel for grace, to move through,” she added. She further expressed her gratitude for having worked with Abhijeet.

Abhijeet said there is another in the pipeline, that will be released soon. He had earlier released two music videos under his banner Namaha Productions. One of them ‘Tum Phir Shuru Hogaye’, which is a tribute to true friendship, was released last year. 

He also had a successful stint with Odia film industry having been the playback voice of Ollywood superstar Anubhav Mohanty in the movie Sata Sure Bandha E Jibana. 

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