When Akasa Sings, She Brings Together Eastern And Western Ideas
Akasa is a new age/world-fusion singer, songwriter, performance artist and conceptualist of positive-message music videos, but her life's work also takes her to a deeper level where she serves as a sound visionary, philosopher, ceremonialist and universal shamanic healer. She brings many of these talents together on her latest recording, Portal. "My sonic vision is to serve as a bridge between all of the world's cultures, to show the beauty of our diversity, and to help promote a greater awareness of our similarities, " says Akasa. "I want to do what I can to help the world heal, assist our society of human-beings in reaching its full potential, and prepare our planet to take its rightful place in the cosmos." Akasa works toward these heroic goals in subtle ways using gentle music, visually-interesting story-line videos, and lyrics sung in a variety of languages (including Latin, Native American, English and her own original Akashic language). "Messages do not have to be obvious and in-your-face to be powerful and effective."
Akasa's vocalizations are ethereal, mystical and enchanting. Her music explores the depth of the individual psyche and the breadth of the cosmos. Her CD contains authentic emotional expressions and multicultural elements. There are sounds for healing, expanded consciousness and transformation. "The main message in my music, " Akasa explains, "is encouraging everyone to set their inner spirit free, discover their own unique gifts, and become a creative force making a better world. I also believe in using love and compassion as the means for helping people understand their past, heal their psychic wounds and begin recognizing and transforming any negative emotional patterns."
Akasa's music is available on CD and as digital downloads, and can be purchased at a variety of online sales outlets such as iTunes, CDbaby, Amazon, and many others. For more information on Akasa, explore her website at akasasound.com. She has three previous albums - Singing in Tongues and Ecstasy, Safe to Love and Ethereal Stones. The first video from Portal is "Diamond Cor" and it can be viewed at youtube. Check her website regularly for other links to new videos.
Akasa holds a Master of Arts degree in Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. She conducted ceremonies at the annual international conference held by the Society for Shamanism, Healing and Transformation 2001 through 2009, and from 2007 to 2009 she also served as a council member for the organization assisting in the planning and execution of the conference.
The music on Portal ranges from spiritual new age to world-fusion. There are elements of pop, rock, trance, classical, gypsy, medieval Gregorian chant, Eastern, Celtic, Middle Eastern, Native American and numerous other influences. "In recent years I have been inspired by the music of Lisa Gerrard, Era, Enigma, Enya and Sigur Ros."
The songs include "Ameno Amen" ("a prayer of healing and grace for humanity"), "Sahara Rising" ("transformation can happen anywhere because even in a harsh place such as the desert there can be underground rivers or a rose blooming"), and "Diamond Cor" ("just as carbon has the potential to become a diamond, humanity has the potential to turn suffering into radiance"). Regarding her song "Return to Innocence, " Akasa says, "I encourage anyone with childhood sexual trauma to overcome it and heal themselves with forgiveness, compassion and rebirthing."
Other music on the CD includes "Hero's Journey" ("each of us finding the courage to face the challenges of life"), "Alba Rosa" ("a purification ritual after the dissolution of a relationship"), "Paradise Reborn" ("a vision for a new Earth"), "Ave Maria" ("evoking the Divine Feminine in all") and "Magic of Your Love" ("expressing the power of love"). Two tunes address the concept that humankind on earth originated deep in the cosmos - "Memory of My Star" ("expresses the longing to know our cosmic origin") and "Let Us Be" ("imagining ourselves Sky Children and trying to understand our purpose or mission on this planet").
Akasa writes the lyrics and vocalizations as well as much of the music. She is assisted in composing and creating the music by keyboardists and co-producers Morris Hayes (Prince, Chaka Kahn, Martika, George Clinton), Nick Michaels (Pete Townsend, Robert Calvert of Hawkwind, Tara London), Aaron Michael Stern (Jon Anderson of Yes, Tin Soldier, Charles Castronovo) and Andre Mieus (Steven Lee, and a CD titled The Tempered Klavier). Special guests Bill Scott plays guitar on "Let Us Be" and Shenkar (Shakti, Frank Zappa, Sting, Yoko Ono) bows viola and sings backing vocals on "Sky Children."
Akasa has performed her music, dance, ceremonies and personal growth techniques at numerous conferences, symposiums, workshops and academic gatherings including: The International Conference on Shamanism, Healing and Transformation; The National Association for Humanities Education Conference; Embodiment and Environment Conference, Oxford University, UK; The Future of Interdisciplinary Education Conference, San Francisco State University; The Society for Shamanic Practitioners Conference; Empowering Women of Color Conference, U.C. Berkeley (closing ceremony); New Living Expo (opening ceremony); Earthdance International Music Festival; and many others. She has collaborated with Belgian philosopher Michel Bauwens, humanistic psychologist and author Dr. Stanley Krippner, sociologist and Western mystery school teacher Dr. Pamela Eakins, visionary artist and teacher Dr. Rowena Pattee Kryder, mathematic cosmologist Dr. Brian Swimme, consciousness researcher and author Dr. Ralph Metzer, and spiritual comedian Swami Beyondananda. Akasa also produced a series of "Vision Statement Movies" featuring top leaders of the Four Wisdom Traditions.
Akasa was born and raised in Taiwan where she spent her youthful school years as both an "A" student, but also as a rebel who went hiking alone in the mountains and studied European philosophers and concepts such as existentialism. She also studied piano for several years. After moving to California in 1980 (where she continues to live), she listened extensively to popular music and went to concerts by Kitaro, Andreas Vollenweider, Van Morrison, Loreena McKennitt, Bob Dylan, James Taylor, Yes, Grateful Dead, Yoko Ono, Joni Mitchell, Stevie Nicks, Judy Collins, Moody Blues and Vas.
Akasa worked hard running a small business, but also helped set up a safe house for battered and abused women, and temporary housing assistance for single mothers with children. "But at the same time I started my spiritual journey, got into psychology and read the book The Nature of Personal Reality by Jane Roberts. It was a time of personal healing as well as fervent studies of the transformation of consciousness." Her musical journey began from an unexpected experience at the site of the ancient Oracle of Delphi temple in Greece. "It was the day before the summer solstice. I heard an inner voice telling me to buy a while dress, so I did. At the museum I started hearing musical notes. At the temple of Apollo I meditated and suddenly I heard such powerful music that I had to get up and dance in the sunlight for an hour. I didn't understand it, but I knew something had changed inside me. I went to swim in the Aegean sea where I heard a song in my head and I wrote it down in my notebook. It was 'Goddess of the Sea, ' my first composition. I began writing more songs and taking vocal lessons, and soon I was asked to do musical ceremonies, to sing during Holotropic Breathwork sessions and to participate in shamanic sound healing."
She says she named her latest album Portal because “on the individual level I want to inspire people to open their own portal to their own creativity and to access it while moving toward a place of wholeness in their lives. But on a global scale, I believe humanity is ready to move beyond where it is now to a place of transformation and freedom to explore our full potential.”
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