LakshmanDasBaul sings an invocation in Pondicherry from Michal Shapiro on Vimeo.

The second leg of my trip to India found me in the seaside town of Pondicherry, and shooting the trans-Pacific band Sing Sing in the evening, at the Aurodhan garden stage. “Opening” for the band was Lakshman Das Baul, of Bengal. I had seen him perform in Chennai, but there he was simply doing some simple backup chanting and bell playing for Parvathi Baul. (more of her in another post) Here he was performing solo, and I got to hear his fine, powerful voice in full cry, singing this invocation for the evening. The bells that you hear are on his ankles, so he is really quite the one man band. The Bauls are hereditary troubadors, and by custom they lead a devotional life, singing in public about the transitory nature of the physical world, and the quest for unity with the divine. The song here is credited to Lalon Fakir, one of the greatest song writers of the Bauls, and puts forth the proposition that when you die, you will take nothing with you, only your soul will be there when you meet the great Beloved.

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