Sit Properly

sarva-dharman parityajya mam ekam saranam vraja

Update on Books for Sale!

Haribol!

I’ve added a few more books to the list and now actually have a list!

The Srimad Bhagavatam set has been sold, as have a few other books. Also, a few books have been added. Here are some pics (click to enlarge)…

(Hardbacks)
Sarartha Darsini: 10th Canto Commentaries – Visvanatha Cakravarti
Adventures of Young Krishna – Diksha Dalal-Clayton
Vrndavana Dhama Ki Jaya! – Dhruva Maharaja Dasa
Servant of the Servant – Tamal Krishna
Mahabharata (condensed) – Krishna Dharma
Nectar of Book Distro – Prabhupada, others
Sri Panca Tattva – Steven Rosen
Vedic Ecology – Ranchor Prime
Jaya Jagannatha! – Dhruva Maharaja Dasa
The Glories of Advaita Acarya
Jaiva Dharma (pink cover)
Sri Jagannatha; pastimes of the lord of the universe – Bhakti Purusottama
Doorway to Eternity – Ramon Dekkers
Sri Bhaktivinoda Vani Vaibhava
Little Krishna – Harish Johari
Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu; Life and Precepts – Bhaktivinoda Thakura

(Paperbacks)
The Pancatantra – Patrick Olivelle
Sri Brihat Bhagavatamritam – Sree Gaudiya Math
Bhakti Trilogy – Visvanatha Cakravarti
Sri Bhakti Raksaka Bhajana Madhuri – Bhakti Nandan Swami
Shrimad-Bhagavatam – Purnaprajna das
Appreciating Sri Vrndavana Dhama – Mahanidhi Swami
Shri Pushpanjali – Shri Patita Pavana das
Sri Guru Tattva Vijnana & Sri Bhakta Tattva Vijnana – Pandita Sri Ananta
The Bhagavad-Gita in Black and White – Charles Michael Byrd
Light on Life; Intro to Astrology of India – Hart Defouw
Stories of Krishna – Vivienne Baumfield
Krishna: The Beautiful Legend of God – Edwin Bryant
Transcendental Diary (Vol. 3) – Hari Sauri
Vedic Cosmography and Astronomy – Richard Thompson
Sri Gaura Lila – Varsana Swami
Reason & Belief – Tamal Krishna
Science of Yoga – Tamal Krishna
Celestial Key to the Vedas – B.G. Sidharth
Sri Krsna’s Names in Bhagavad-gita – Purusottama Dasa
The Loves of Krishna in Indian Painting and Poetry – W.G. Archer
Mukta Caritra – Raghunatha Dasa Goswami
Monkeys and the Mango Tree – Harish Johari
Folk Tales and Fairy Stories from India – Sudhin Ghose
Hrishikesa – Dr. T.V. Gopal
Beneath a Vedic Sky – William R. Levacy
How to Read Your Horoscope – Nalini-Kantha das
Journey to Unknown India – Walther Eidlitz
Dhama Sevamrta; Reciprocation Manifest
Sri Gopal Sahasra Nama – Lord Siva
Sri Radha Sahasra-nama-stotra – Lord Siva
Under the Spell of God – Makeda Cannon
Perfect Escape – Devamrita Swami
Vedic Astrology – Ronnie Gale Dreyer
Dictionary of Sanskrit Names
Unspoken Obstacles on the Path to Bhakti – Purnacandra dasa
The Power of Dharma – Stephen Knapp
The Hidden Glory of India – Steven Rosen
Sri Bhajana-Rahasya – Bhaktivinoda Thakura
Food for the Spirit – Steven Rosen
Vaisnavai – Steven Rosen
The Live and Times of Lord Chaitanya – Steven Rosen
Holy Cow – STeven Rosen
Sri Upadesamrta – Rupa Goswami
Sri Manah-siksa – Narayana Maharaja
Shri Chaitanya Shkshamritam – Bhaktivinode Thakur
The Play of God – Vanamali
The Song of Rama – Vanamali
Sri Gauranga-Mahima – Advaita Acarya
Devadasa – Shri Kedar Nath Dutta
Ramayana – Ranchor Prime
108 Names of Krishna
Six Volume Retelling of Ramayana – Ashok K. Banker
Six Volume Srimad Bhagavatam – Sri Gaudya Matha Chennai

Again, prices are:
For all of the Satsvarupa Maharaja books: $150 (there are 52 of them)
The Hardbacks are $4 a piece
The Paperbacks are $2 a piece

I also still have the Kushakratha books for sale. $3 a piece or $300 for all 113 of them.

Shipping to anywhere but the US will be a LOT of money.

Haribol!

A Ton of Books for Sale!

I’m doing some spring cleaning and have a BUNCH of books to sell. Soon, I’ll let them individually, but for now, Here are shots of the spines…

You’ll notice that I have a Srimad Bhagavatam set for sale. I’m asking $200 for that. If anyone is interested in anything else, we’ll work out a deal. You can click on the photos to enlarge them.

Edit:

Here are the prices….

For the SB, I’m asking $200.
For all of the Satsvarupa Maharaja books: $150 (there are 52 of them)
The Hardbacks are $4 a piece
The Paperbacks are $2 a piece
And the Kushakrata books are $3 a piece

Questions?

Chant Hare Krishna T-shirt for YOU!

As was mentioned in my previous post, I’ve started to print tshirts. My first two are doing well enough and so I’ll introduce a third…

The image is printed on a 50/50 retro-fit heather blue 4.2oz ringer tshirt (made in the USA by Canvas/Bella) and hand screenprinted with “earth-friendly” dark blue ink. The shirt is super soft and comfy and the ink has been reduced to make it softer.

It is available here.

Sizes available:
Men/Unisex: S, M, L, XL
Womens: M, L, XL

The sizing is very similar to American Apparel.

Some old folks might remember the image from the label the Born Against/UOA split 7″. That was released 18 years ago. Anyway, Chant Hare Krishna!

Also, don’t forget my other shirts, also available:

Lord Caitanya Tshirts!

I’ve been kicking around the idea of making tshirts for quite some time now and have finally gotten around to it. I have plans for five or six designs and more will come shortly.

My first design in a great old Indian print of Lord Caitanya dancing and chanting. See?

The color combination kind of reminds me of an old chadar I used to have. Anyway, I’ve got them up on Etsy (which has a sad lack of anything KC related on it). They’re $15 plus some shipping.

Click here to go to the Esty.com listing.

The shirts are 100% cotton and made in the USA. I screen print them myself using “earth friendly” inks. The shirts run a bit small, so check out the sizing chart I posted on Etsy, okay?

For now, I have another shirt for sale as well. That one can be seen here.

There will be more shirts over the next week or so.

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Radha Krishna Temple (Los Angeles) – “Gopinatha”

Radha Krishna Temple (Los Angeles) – Gopinatha/Ohe Vaisnava Thakura (7″ Single)
Golden Avatar Productions
GAP-1002

By 1975, ISKCON was in high gear and doing pretty well for itself. However, that didn’t mean they still couldn’t try to milk the 1969 George Harrison-produced Radha Krsna Temple for all it was worth. This single, though it may have the “Radha Krishna Temple” moniker, has nothing at all to do with the Radha Krsna Temple of London, 1969.

Most of the ISKCON records from the 70s came from Europe. Very few were produced in America. Golden Avatar Productions, in conjunction with the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, put out three (that I know of). The Radha Krishna Temple (Los Angeles) single may have been their last vinyl release. Mostly, they focused on cassette tapes.

Unlike a lot of the strange European releases, there isn’t much of a history here. GAP’s founder, Krishnakanti das, produced two songs and then released them. There’s no information on where or why or who played what on which song.

Side One
Gopinatha

Side Two
Ohe Vaisnava Thakura

You could hardly call these songs traditional Indian bhajans. Western instruments and a hippy folky feel dominate both sides. Thankfully, it doesn’t come of as contrived. The fact that the songs aren’t in English helps quite a bit, I’m sure.

The first song starts off like something from an early 70s Pink Floyd album, but with a violin thrown in for good measure. On vocals, we’ve got the amazing Agnidev. His voice is sweet, and pretty well saves the song. I think this song is trying to be a little trippy.

Side Two’s “Ohe Vaisnava Thakura” starts with a pretty Spanish guitar and Mangalananda sings sort of like if Jim Croce were a troubadour. It’s a simple song backed up with the obligatory (and sporatic) kartals and mrdanga drum.

My first copy of this 7″ was so bad that I never bothered posting it. It was just a scratched up record in a paper sleeve. However, along with the Visnujana 7″, came a pristine copy of the “Gopinatha” 7″ complete with picture sleeve. Both came from my friend Alan. Thanks a bunch!

So should you download this? Yes. Why not? You’ve probably never heard the songs before and that’s usually reason enough for me.

If anyone has more information about this release, please let me know. I’m always interested in learning more about these releases.

Listen, if you like…

Gopinatha

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Ohe Vaisnava Thakura

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Just click on the button and it’ll start to download the zip file. Then open the zip file with WinZip (or whatever program you use to open zip files). Add to your MP3 library or burn it to a CD-R. Easy as pie!

Download the FLAC files here, if you like.




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl 7″ from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: Shure 97x
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.12 on Linux Mint 10
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-12
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Visnujana Swami and the Children of the Gurukula 7″

It’s been well over a year since the last time I posted anything from my collection Classic ISKCON Vinyl. Since then, I’ve acquired a few items and I will eventually get around to adding the rest of what I have (no promises as to speed, of course).

Visnujana Swami and the Children of the Gurukula
Isavasya Records
RK-108

However, a couple of days ago, I received a package in the mail from my friend Alan. Not knowing what to expect, I opened it and to my ridiculous delight were two Classic ISKCON 7″s. One was from Radha Krishna Temple (Los Angeles), which I already had, though my copy is trashed and this new one was in very good condition, plus it had a picture sleeve! I was delighted, to say the least.

The second one, however, nearly brought me to my knees. I had heard of it before, but figured that I’d never get a chance to listen to it, let alone add it to my collection.

Sometime in the early 70s (I assume), Visnujana Swami recorded two songs with the Dallas gurukula and released a 7″. I remembered that Alan had told me about it, but after I basically wet myself on Facebook, unable to thank him enough, he told me how he received the record.

Side 1
Prayer to Tulasi Devi

Side 2
The Golden Avatar and the Hare Krsna Mantra

You can listen to both songs while you read his story…

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

One fine spring Saturday afternoon, almost 40 years ago, a Greyhound bus pulled into Riverside Park, a tidy, quiet park near two college campuses in the Bellhaven area of Jackson, Mississippi. It was a Greyhound bus, but no ordinary Greyhound bus–this was a bus from the Radha Damodar Traveling Sankirtan Party. For those too young to remember, the Hare Krishnas converted three Greyhound buses into mobile temples to bring the message of Krsna consciousness to every town and village in the United States and Canada.

I couldn’t believe my eyes, ears and nose as devotees poured out of the bus; a wondrously exotic sight of saffron and white flowing garments, shaved, tilaked heads, the ching-ching-ching sound of kirtals, and a smoky-trail of Spiritual Sky incense billowing out with each devotee as each stepped out of the doors of the bus. The first one out was carrying a sparkling fiberglass (mirdunga) drum, and wasted no time in producing an infectious, exotic, melodious rhythmic beat. Well, up until then, I had seen these other-worldly young men and women, chiefly in my travels to and around New York City. These were the cultish people who approached my dad and I at the Atlanta and New York airports, books and incense in hand for anybody that would stop and give a moment. Taking walks with my Hasidic grandfather in the Lower East Side of the city, we’d often spot a group of these young men wrapped in saffron-colored sheets, surrounding a golden, glowing little elderly Indian man whose feet seemed to glide above the sidewalk. The mass of shaved heads with little pony-tails would stop every so often as the little golden man appeared to be expressing a point, arms and hands waving about–little did I know then, that the little golden man was His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Founder-Acharya of the Hare Krishna Movement.

As the Hare Krishnas left the bus, the mirdungas and kirtalas multiplied to produce a sound that seemed oddly familiar, not to my ears, but to my soul. Immediately, a group of people were drawn in, mostly college students, some hippies, and myself, a young, soon-to-be Bar Mitzvah boy. We joined in a circle of exuberant, uninhibited dancing and chanting lead by the devotees. This was my first kirtan.

A day or two later, the local FM radio station (which introduced the London Temple Album to Jackson), announced that the Hare Krishnas were giving a lecture and meditation discourse at an apartment near Millsaps College. My mom, very liberal and open-minded, took me, after all, she was a big fan of ISKCON’s Spritual Sky incense (she bought from some devotees in New Orleans earlier that year), and hoped to replenish her supply. I don’t remember much about the discourse, other than chanting the Mahamantra that was printed on little cards given out to everyone present. “Please chant: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Chant these words and your life will become sublime.” I didn’t realize it at the time, but the lecture was given by the mystical Vishnujana Swami Maharaja, as several years later confirmed to me by senior devotees at Mississippi’s New Talavana Farm Community.

Vishnujana was very kind to everyone, constantly smiling and patiently answering everyone’s questions. I remember tasting prasadam for the first time, thinking it was the most amazing food I have ever put in my mouth. Before leaving, Vishnujana made sure to thank everyone who attended personally, and gave my mom a KRSNA BOOK to which my mom gave a nice donation. Vishnujana Swami warmly thanked my mom, asked us to wait a moment, and briefly left the room. He returned with a 45 rpm record. My mom asked if it was a record of Indian music, to which Vishnujana laughed. I don’t remember his exact words but he explained it was a recording of a ‘bunch of ecstatic children screaming their love for God.’ We left that glorious evening, happily humming the mantra, KRSNA BOOK, Vishnujana record, and, oh yeah, Spritual Sky Patchouli Incense, in hand.

This record has given me and many friends years of listening pleasure. All thanks and praises to Eric, who painstakingly cleared out many scratches and clicks; now, this gem can be shared with so many others as it makes it debut into cyberspace.

All Glories to Srila Prabhupada!
Jaya Vishnujana Swami Maharaja Ki !!!!

Hare Krishna!

Aspiring to serve,
Alan

And now, Visnujana Swami and the Children of Gurukula…

Just click on the button and it’ll start to download the zip file. Then open the zip file with WinZip (or whatever program you use to open zip files). Add to your MP3 library or burn it to a CD-R. Easy as pie!>

Download the FLAC files here, if you like.




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl 7″ from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: Shure 97x
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.12 on Linux Mint 10
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-12
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Vrindavana LP from France and/or Holland

This album was requested some time ago and I’ve been meaning to get around to it. It wasn’t the easiest to clean up, but now that it’s finished, it really does sound great! I hope you enjoy it. Happy downloading. Haribol!

Vrindavana - Cover

Vrindavana
Parampara Productions
RPI 102

The Vrindavana LP, released by Parampara Productions, is tied for my favorite Classic ISKCON record with Temple Radha Krsna, also released by Parampara. It’s got almost everything you could want, including an amazing rendition of “Kesava Kali Mala” by Acyutananda Swami.

Sure, if you wanted to, you could see this as the poor-man’s Radha Krishna Temple (the George Harrison-produced LP that everyone has). Vrindavana seems to be trying mimic Radha Krishna Temple to a large degree. Most of the instruments are traditional, save a bass guitar and an often haphazardly played flute.

To me, however, the Radha Krishna Temple LP has always seemed over-produced. It’s too slick in many places and while a beautiful album, it doesn’t capture what you’d hear in the temple. Vrindavana pretty well fills that gap. It’s fairly well produced, but keeps enough of the temple spirit to satisfy my uselessly picky tastes.

Vrindavana - Back Cover (French) Vrindavana - Back Cover (Dutch)

Unlike many of the other records, there’s nothing weird or overly mysterious about this release. I have two copies of it and it’s obvious that they’re different pressings, but nothing too wacky.

The pressing from Holland has a purple stripe around the cover image. The French one has a blue stripe. Holland’s back cover gives a bit more information about the songs and places captions on the pictures (albeit, in Dutch). The Holland release came with an insert containing lyrics and purports (again in Dutch), while the French release (at least my copy of it) didn’t.

Vrindavana - Insert

If I could find one odd thing about this release it’s that each country’s release is a completely different pressing. The French vinyl is of higher quality and much thicker. Holland’s label is the same as the French label, except they printed some copyright and “Made in Holland” info around the outer edge (probably for legal reasons specific to Holland).

The mixes are the same on each release, though the French release has two songs (the last songs on each side) that were mixed a bit too high, clipping a good deal of the vocals. Luckily, I was able to lift those two songs from the Dutch release. My copy of the French release was in much better shape than my copy of the release from Holland, which is why I chose one over the other.

As interesting as I’m sure this is, let’s get to the songs themselves.

Vrindavana - Side A (French) Vrindavana - Side A (Dutch)

Kant A / Face A
1. Sri Rupa Manjari (6′30″) par Kausalya dasi
A beautiful flute and sitar accompany the beautiful voice of Kausalya dasi. I’ve never heard of her before, but she’s a great singer. This is a pretty mellow piece and a fine way to start a great album.

2. Manasa deha geha (5′) par Manibandha das
The first of two “Manasa deha geha”s. This is slow, but kind of funky too. There’s definitely a bit of swank going on here. Especially with the bass guitar and the what is probably an autoharp. The flute adds to the swankiness, especially during the flute-freak-out towards the end.

3. Bhaja hunre mana (5′) par Achyutananda Swami
It’s Achyutananda Swami! There’s some pretty steady sitar work going on here. This is very Indian. Even more so than Achyutananda Swami’s bhajans usually are. This is practically a song ripped straight from a Bollywood movie. You can almost picture some chubby and sweaty Indian guy patting his chest and doing a well-choriographed dance while inexplicably kicking piles of colored dust.

4. Gopinatha (4′30″) par Manibandha das
Very slow and mellow. There’s a great rolling rhythm to this. Something very bassie about it. Maybe it’s just the bass guitar. There’s a lot going on here. The kartalas seem to be playing in a 3/4 meter (like “Damodarastakam”) while the rest of the music is in 4/4. Not totally sure about this, but it works.

Vrindavana - Side B (French) Vrindavana - Side B (Dutch)

Kant B / Face B
1. Srita kamala (4′30″) par Kausaya dasi
Back with Kausaya dasi! A very sweet voice, twice overdubbed. It’s quite nice.

2. Kesava kali mala (3′20″) par Achyutananda Swami
Hey now! This is just funky! Totally worth the price of admission right here. Again, nearly Bollywood in its swankiness. Is that a bongo drum I hear? No idea, but it’s great. Check out the kartalas! And yet again with the funky flute. Please listen to this. There are maracas!

3. Manasa deha geha (7′30″) par Kausalya dasi
Kausalya dasi gives “Manasa deha geha” a try. This is a very mellow, yet menacing take on this classic. It works, even with the oddly placed bass guitar.

4. Hare Krsna kirtana (4′30″) les bhaktas assembles
Let’s all get together and chant Hare Krishna! Kausalya dasi leads and everyone follows. This is the same melody that’s used on the Radha Krishna Temple.

Vrindavana - InsertAs I said before, my copy of the French album was in pretty ok shape – better than my copy of the Dutch album. Still, this was a tough one to clean up. Some of the pops were probably from the source tapes as they didn’t sound like vinyl pops. I fixed what I could and I think you’ll really enjoy this one.

The Vrindavana LP is my friend Rati’s favorite and I’m really happy that I can offer it to her in a much better quality than it was before. Vaisnavas should always leave a record cleaner than they found it! Hopefully they’ll play it for their beautiful deities, Nitai-gauracandra.

Vrindavana - InsertI’m unaware that any of these songs were ever officially rereleased by ISKCON (or anybody else for that matter). The album itself isn’t too difficult to track down. Some copies are selling for $100ish, but I see others for less than $10. This is definitely one you’d want to pick up.

And as always, this LP is available as high quality mp3s and as “lossless” FLAC files. For most of you, the MP3 at 320kbps will be more than sufficient.

Fairly high-quality scans of the album covers, records and insert are included as well (and as usual).

Samples of the songs are available in the comments.

Click here to download the whole album in one huge zip file! (95 MB)

Download the FLAC files, if you like: Part One, Part Two




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl LP from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: ATP-2XN (Stock)
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.7 on Linux Mint 7
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-10
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Srila Prabhupada’s Krsna Meditation Double LP

Let’s move back to some Srila Prabhupada bhajans, shall we? Next in the series of high quality rips of Classic ISKCON records is a double LP (in a gatefold sleeve!) of nothing but Srila Prabhupada. Listen to a few songs or download the entire album! Enjoy!

Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003)

Krsna Meditation
Radha Krsna Productions
RKP 1003 (also covers RKP 1005)

There aren’t many Krishna-related double LPs out there. And only one that is fully Srila Prabhupada.

Srila Prabhupada’s Krsna Meditation was released by the Radha Krsna Productions label. That label’s first release was Acyutananda Swami’s India LP. Their third was this double LP of Srila Prabhupada, Krsna Meditation ( I still don’t know what their second release was).

Though it’s a very long record, it contains only six songs, the first five seemingly recorded at the same session. Those five tracks feature Srila Prabhupada (here called A.C. Bhaktivedanta Gosvami Prabhupada) on vocals and harmonium and Hansadutta dasa Adhikari on mrdanga drum (and not vocals). A tampura and a couple of kartalas are in the mix as well.

Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003)

Unlike the Acyutananda Swami release, there’s nothing really mysterious about this one. No odd cross-record label antics, no strange cut-out markings, no bootleg quality recordings. This is a very straight forward Srila Prabhupada record. That is, until the last song rolls around. More on that in a bit.

Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003) - Gatefold

One of the cool things about double LPs is that they often have gatefold covers. Krsna Meditation is no exception. The inside of this gatefold sports a huge picture taken during the recording session of Srila Prabhupada in the studio with Hamsadutta, Haimavati and, I assume, Cakravarti or Purijit das brahmacari (the latter three played kartalas on this record).

A paragraph appears on the lower left corner of the gatefold. It reads:

The singing of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Gosvami Prabhupada is pure devotional music in praise of Krsna – Meditation, Srila Prabhupada explains, is not inactive, impersonal or void. Meditation is the awakening of the soul’s eternal relationship with the Supreme Person, Krsna. One who has experienced such an awakening cannot stop meditating on Krsna even for a moment, just as a young boy who has fallen in love with a young girl cannot stop thinking of her at any time. One can sing for Krsna, dance for Krsna, cook for Krsna, think for Krsna, work for Krsna or even fight for Krsna. In this way doing everything for Krsna, in the end one returns to Krsna.

By Hearing the spiritual sound vibrations of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Gosvami Prabhupada, the listener is immediately elevated to the platform of Krsna meditation which brings supreme peace and bliss within the heart.

This mixing on this album is interesting. Srila Prabhupada’s vocals are up front and in both channels, as you’d expect. The kartalas are in both as well. The tampura is lurking somewhere in the right channel while the mrdanga’s small, higher head pops up in the left channel as the larger, bass head hangs out in the center – an fun idea that works nicely.

Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003) - Part I Side A Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003) - Part I Side B

Here’s the track listing…

Krsna Meditation Part I
Side A

1) Prayers to the Six Gosvamis

Side B
1) Gaura Prahun
2) Sri Krsna Caitanya Prabhu

Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003) - Part II Side A Krsna Meditation (RKP 1003) - Part II Side B

Krsna Meditation Part II
Side A

1) Jaya Radhe Jaya Krsna

Side B
1) Yasomati-nandana
2) Cintamani

My copy of this album is in very near mint condition. The cleaning up process that I do was amazingly easy. The few stray pops and clicks that I had to deal with were no problem at all (except for the beginning of track two). The first three and a half sides of this double LP were a relative breeze to complete. That leaves “Cintamani,” with oodles of pops, clicks, weird flutters and lower volume as a bit of an anomaly.

RKP-1005 - Back CoverBut it was no mystery. Acyutananda Swami’s India LP was the same way. The record was in near mint condition, yet the whole thing was full of pops, clicks and general noisiness. And so just like the India LP, “Cintamani,” the last song on Krsna Meditation is a recording recorded directly off another record. The pops and clicks don’t come from my copy, but from someone else’s dusty, dirty copy of some other record that apparently featured Srila Prabhupada singing “Cintamani.”

While the rest of the album has cleaned up very well, there are still quite a few blemishes within “Cintamani.” I did what I could and it’s not at all hard on the ears. It features Srila Prabhupada on vocals and harmonium with a devotee or two on kartalas and a very buried mrdanga. No tampura here. This comes from a completely different recording session.

Radha Govinda ProductionsTwo releases later, Radha Krsna Productions took Part I – Side A and Part II – Side B of this record and released it as Krsna Meditations (RKP-1005). Same title, same exact front album cover and nearlyidentical back cover, but half the music. Even the matrix etching reads: RKP-1003-A for the first side and RKP-1003-D for the second, just like RKP-1003, the subject of this post, indicating that RKP’s fifth release used the same plates to press the vinyl as their third release (which means that the shoddy sound quality of “Cintamani” is still there).

Sometime later, a record label calling itself Radha Govinda Productions threw together a hodge podge of recordings from other records and used a ten minute edit of “Prayers to the Six Gosvamis” from Krsna Meditation. That was mysteriously punctuated “Prayers to the Six: Gosvamisos.”

Krishna Meditations - BBT releaseKrsna Meditations is one of the few records that was ever (partially) made available on cassette and CD under (basically) the same name. It was released by Bhaktivedanta Book Trust as Krishna Meditations in the late 80s as Timeless Meditations And then later, in the mid-90s as Krishna Meditations, part of the “Gold Series.” Both rereleases, however, lops off the last song (the noisy “Cintamani”) and seem to have edited “Prayers to the Six Gosvamis” (the first song) down to less than eight minutes (it’s original is just under 18 minutes). Also, the song titles on the newer release are changed to their more “proper” titles. “Prayers to the Six Gosvamis” becomes “Sri Sri Sad-gosvamy-astaka,” while “Sri Krsna Caitanya Prabhu” becomes “Savarana-Sri-Gaura-pada-padme.” This edited down CD is still available.

As for “Cintamani,” I’ve searched through the Srila Prabhupada Vintage Series recordings and found no trace of this version of “Cintamani” (which is usually renamed “Brahma-samita”). Where this came from and where it’s gone is beyond me and seems to be only available on this album (and it’s smaller re-release – #1005).

So, why settle of rehashes and edits when you can get the whole thing right here!

This Double LP is available as high quality mp3s and as “lossless” FLAC files. For most of you, the MP3 at 320kbps will be more than sufficient. For those who like FLAC files, leave a comment and I’ll get them to you.

Samples of the songs are available in the comments.



Click here to download the whole album in one huge zip file! (150 MB)

Download the FLAC files, if you like: Part One, Part Two, Part Three




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl Double LP from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: ATP-2XN (Stock)
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.7 on Linux Mint 7
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-10
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Hare Krsna Festival 7″ (HKR-2003)

Here we are at the third (and final?) 7″ release by Hare Krsna Records out of Germany. This one tacks on “Amsterdam” behind the usual “Hare Krsna Festival.” There is, of course, no explanation as to why it’s called “Amsterdam.”

hkr2003

Hare Krsna Festival Amsterdam
Hare Krsna Records
HKR-2003

Both of the songs on this release are sung by Hansadutta das Adhikary. One thing to take note of on all of these records is who is attributed to writing the song. The writing credits are usually listed in parentheses under the song titles. In this case, since a “traditional” song is being sung, the writing credit would read “(Traditional).” However, for some reason “Hans Kary” is credited as writer. Hans Kary is the legal name of Hansadutta. Hansadutta didn’t write either the Hare Krishna mantra or the lyrics to “Vande Ham,” he arranged the song. The writing credits should have read “(Traditional – arr. by Hans Kary).”

It’s a trifling matter, but also a bit telling at the same time.

Side A gives us Hansadutta’s take on “Vande Ham.” This was also on the last 7″ that I posted (HKR-2002). Though this version is pretty nice and mellow. It’s a good version, though not as pleasing to the ear as Avinas Chandra’s version on the last release. Recording it again seems almost unnecessary. “Vande Ham” was recorded on many of these records by many different people (including several versions by Srila Prabhupada). You almost never hear it these days.

Side A Side B

“Jaya Radha, Jaya Krsna” is our B-side. It’s a really sweet song, no matter who is at the helm. Hamsadutta hogs it a bit, but not enough to really ruin it. A female devotee’s voice (Krsna Premi’s?) floats in and out of this recording and that adds quite a bit to it. I really like her vocals. This time, the main vocals start in the center, but after about a minute, they slide to the left channel, leaving the reverb in the right channel with the the responses. It’s an interesting touch. I love this song. There are better versions of it out there, but this will do in a pinch. It’ll be in my head all day.

Side A
Vande Ham

Side B
Jaya Radha, Jaya Krsna

For the first side of this 7″, everything went along smoothly. The record is clean and relatively click/pop-free. But the second side was complete chaos. First, the source recording’s vocal track is clipping. It’s not really bad enough that the casual listener would notice it, but trying to de-click/pop this, it made for a rough morning.

On top of that, somehow the record got a skip in it. This is bad. Very bad. And it’s my fault. Click and pops I can usually take care of. Skips, on the other hand, I can’t. It literally skips over one whole rotation of the record. Nearly a second of music was gone.

My first thought was to dig up my old recording of this and just patch it up. But when I listened to that old recording, I found it to be completely unusable. It didn’t even sound like the same record.

So what I did was sort of like a skin graft. I lifted a very very similar part of the song and grafted it over the skip. It took about an hour to get the timing right, but it matches up almost perfectly. You will not notice it. I just thought I’d mention this, in the spirit of geeky full disclosure.

This 7″ is available as high quality mp3s and as “lossless” FLAC files. For most of you, the MP3 at 320kbps will be more than sufficient.

Samples of the songs are available in the comments.

Click here to download the 7″ in one zip file! (17 MB)

Download the FLAC files here.




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl 7″ from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: ATP-2XN (Stock)
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.7 on Linux Mint 7
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-10
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

Classic ISKCON Vinyl – Hare Krsna Festival 7″ (HKR-2002)

Two records in three days! Maybe I’ll throw Hare Krsna Records’s third 7″ up tomorrow. Maybe…. maybe Friday….

hkr1002



Hare Krsna Festival
Hare Krsna Records
HKR-2002

The second 7″ released by Hare Krsna Records features two songs, both by male devotees.

“Vande Ham” kicks off the record. A devotee named Avinas Chandra sings this slow and stirring rendition of a classic. There’s a mrdanga in the left channel as kartals and a harmonium fill both. The vocals are mostly on the right. This is a really a very beautiful version.

Hansadutta dasa (who was largely responsible for the vast majority of the 70s ISKCON records) sings at us on the b-side. “Hare Krsna Kirtana” is, to me, a little off-putting. Hansadutta’s voice is nice, but he’s loud and when the assembled devotees are responding, he’s often singing “Haribol!” and “Chant the Holy Name!” over them. He does this throughout.

HKR-1002 Side A HKR-1002 Side B

Side A
Vande Ham

Side B
Hare Krsna Kirtana

The copy that I own is in pretty OK shape. Side B took a while to clean up and a lot of the pops were very bassy, so it was hard to get rid of them without damaging the music. Most are completely gone, but a few remain. Again, the source recordings for both sides leave a bit to be desired. But also like the last Hare Krsna Records 7″, this one is very listenable. Especially Side A.

This 7″ is available as high quality mp3s and as “lossless” FLAC files. For most of you, the MP3 at 320kbps will be more than sufficient.

Samples of the songs are available in the comments.

Click here to download the 7″ in one zip file! (23 MB)

Download the FLAC files here.




Technical Information:
Media Used:
Vinyl 7″ from my personal collection.

Hardware Used:
Turntable: Audio Technica PL-120A
Cartridge: ATP-2XN (Stock)
TCC TC-750LC Audiophile Phono Preamp
Soundcard: Roland Edirol UA-1EX USB external soundcard

Software Used:
Audacity 1.3.7 on Linux Mint 7
-Digital recording from soundcard
-Editing and splitting of tracks

Gnome Wave Cleaner 0.21-10
-Manual and automatic click/pop removal

SoundConverter 1.4.1
-Converted WAV to 320kbps MP3 and FLAC

Artwork Scanned from Original @ 300 dpi with XSane .996
Edited and Restored Using GIMP Image Editor 2.6.6

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