Divas & Devas is a CD of East Indian bhajans, sung as male-female duets, in Sanskrit, Hindi and Marathi. The overall feeling is romantic, with the intimate interplay of masculine and feminine gesturing toward the larger relationship of the human and the divine. The arrangements also echo this duality, employing traditional Indian instruments such as tablas, sarangi and santoor, along with Western instruments such as vibes, cello, trumpet, flute, mandolin and lap steel.
The English word diva conveys a number of shades of meaning, some complimentary and some pejorative, ranging from accomplished artist through demanding ego. The origin of the term, however, is the Sanskrit word deva, which means luminous, shining, god, or heavenly one. And it is toward this original meaning that much artistic expression ultimately points. For me then, the title of this CD, ‘Divas and Devas’, refers to the relationship of our limited sense of self to the expansive awareness that we call divine love, as one reaches toward the other.