Every morning when Poulose Kuyiladan would take his five-year-old autistic son George to school, he faced a problem.
“As soon as he got into the car, George would jump up and down,” says Paulose, a businessman in Orlando, the US. “Once, he opened the door and ran out.” One day Paulose played a CD titled Moran Amekh in the car. Hearing the soothing music, George calmed down. Since then, Paulose has always played the CD, and things have been quiet in the car.
‘Moran Amekh’ means “the Lord be with you” in the ancient Aramaic language used by Jesus Christ.
The Christian meditation album in Sanskrit has been produced by 42-year-old Indian singer Franco Simon. Recorded at Our Lady of Doloures Basilica church in Thrissur, the album was launched in January.
The church is a Gothic structure with a high ceiling.
“We worked through the night,” says Simon. “The orchestral tones contain theta waves and binaural beats. This is a frequency where you feel most relaxed. Listeners who are stressed-out and low in energy calm down when they listen to the songs.”
The album has eight songs, ranging between 10 and 30 minutes long. “The first one, a wake-up song called Yesusuprabhatham, has a faster tempo,” says Simon. “The rest are slow and meditative.” Apart from the musicians, a group of singers rendered a hypnotic chant.
Simon wanted to do an album in Sanskrit because there is a texture and divinity in it. “This cannot be seen in any other language,” he says.
Initially, he faced the problem in getting somebody to write Christian lyrics in Sanskrit. After a four-year search, he came across retired Sanskrit professor K U Chacko, who did the job.
Simon then assembled a team of musicians, including his uncle, the National Award-winning Mollywood composer Ousepachan, on violin; Rajesh Cherthala on flute, Sandeep Anand on guitar, K J Paulson on sitar, Bhavya Lakshmi on Carnatic violin, K O Gopi on shehnai, William Francis on keyboard, and Mithun Jayaraj on vocals. The group recorded Moran Amekh.
Simon has brought out eight meditative albums for Cosmic Music, apart from a pop album called Yeh Zindagani as part of Hindi pop group Band 7.
He admits that this labour of love, which is available on YouTube, has burnt a hole in his pocket. “Apart from the help I got from brother, my parents who live in the US contributed a sizeable sum,” he says. “I have no regrets in life. I believe that as people get more stressed, there is an urgent need for meditative music. And this is my gift to the world.”