Kirtan Rabbi
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Kirtan Rabbi

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States
Solo World

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Music

Press


"SoulDish.com"

Your CD is lovely and inspirational. - Salma Shamy


"Integral Yoga Magazine"

[This CD] completely blew my mind! - Premanjali, Editor


Discography

LP
Kirtan Rabbi: Live!
Achat Sha'alti (one thing I seek)

Photos

Bio

Kirtan Rabbi is an artist who is at the epicenter of a new musical expression. This expression is practiced via the age-old Yogic chanting style called 'Kirtan; which according to the New York Times is "the tuneful route to spiritual bliss and is surging in popularity. Organized chanting sessions, called Kirtans, happen weekly throughout New York." When intertwined with the lyrical language of the Torah (Jewish Bible) and Kabbalah (Jewish Mysticism) - the result is musical ecstasy. Rabbi Andrew Hahn is an ordained rabbi who has forged two ancient traditions into a timely and universal message of the sacred. His studies include a Ph.D. in Jewish Thought from The Jewish Theological Seminary, New York (Conservative) and rabbinic ordination from the Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion, New York (Reform).

Andrew has been involved in music and song his entire life. His family breathed music and loved to sing together. To this day, he enjoys singing niggunim (wordless melodies) and zemirot (songs), engaging the next generation - his nieces and nephews. As much as he loves facilitating public Kirtans and synagogue prayer with music, his favorite venue will always remain, the Shabbat (Jewish Sabbath) dinner table.

Starting at an early age, Hahn learned to play piano. He sang and acted in many school productions in his native Pittsburgh. During the curtain bows of Tosca, young Andrew asked the man playing Mario Cavaradossi how it felt to go out there all alone and take a bow. The next thing he knew, the future Kirtan Rabbi was whisked away to find himself before the cheering audience. Needless to say, the crowd's hearts melted as they saw the little boy with the Star of David. For Hahn, this initiated many future evenings in front of audiences.

Andrew took to the guitar as many in his generation, played in rock bands, and eventually studied classical guitar. He began college at the music conservatory at Carnegie-Mellon University. When his famed teacher, Carlos Barbosa-Lima left CMU, Hahn traveled to Montevideo to study with the fabled Uruguayan maestro, Abel Carlevaro. Eventually, Hahn decided not to continue as a professional musician; his love of literature, philosophy and, religion propelled him in a new direction. He maintained his interest in music throughout his years of academic and rabbinic study and ultimately began to attend Sanskrit Kirtans led by Krishna Das, Wah!, Deval Premal and Miten, and others. Under the influence of these Kirtan yogis, Hahn turned back to the keyboard of his youth and learned to play harmonium.

He uses the harmonium primarily as a deep background sound – a moving drone which, when played with gentle shading, is barely noticeable as instrumental accompaniment. He has developed his Kirtan practice to include mystical background for Jewish prayer services including the High Holy Days.

Hahn has taken Abraham Joshua Heschel's saying as his professional motto: First we sing, then we believe! He believes that God is discovered in what we do together – and, often, to sound our inner musical landscape. Kirtan is more about chant than singing; an internal intonation directed outwards. His main goal in facilitating Hebrew Kirtan is to find ways to inspire the participants to let go and release themselves into the Group Voice. Leader and “audience” disappear into one another as a group meditation, which you have to experience to believe. Or...sing to believe.

Band Members