January 8, 2014

My 5 Favorite “Non-Traditional” Savasana Songs.

Music moves me. It always has.

Some purists may disagree, but I love incorporating music into my yoga practice. In Sanskrit, yoga translates as “to yoke” or “union.” Since I have started teaching yoga, I love yoking together two of my dearest passions.

Some will say music is a distraction. That may be true for some.

Others will say only “traditional” music like mantra or kirtan belong in the practice. If that is the music that moves your heart as you practice, then by all means—crank up the sitar and the harmonium. (The harmonium rules!)

I love it all. I enjoy chanting and kirtan and mantra music. I also enjoy the sounds of soothing classical guitar and singing bowls. Flowing through asanas to the sounds of Built To Spill and The Magnetic Fields is extremely enjoyable as well.

Today I’d like to share my five favorite “non-traditional” songs to play during savasana.

Savasana is “corpse pose.” It’s that final relaxation pose, at the end of every practice, where we all lie down and let the earth support our bodies. We let go of all the effort and energy we exerted in the previous 60 or 90 minutes, and just let our bodies melt into our mats, soaking in all the benefits of our yoga practice. So yummy.

Sometimes I will just play soothing ocean sounds or a super relaxing track of Tibetan singling bowls (if you’ve never heard them before, singing bowls are amazing) but some days it’s nice to provide something a little different for our hearts to soak in as we drift into an ever-so relaxing savasana.

Here are five of my faves:

1.The Cranberries – Dreaming My Dreams . A simple guitar track, some light percussion and Doloris O’riordan’s soothing and entrancing voice. Slip into oblivion.

2.The Shins – New Slang. Mellow and uplifting at the same time. Let youself go.

3.Looper – Quiet and Small. Gentle musings from Stuert David in his gentle Scottish voice. A sweet song that is so easy to sink into.

4.The Velvet Underground with Nico – I’ll Be Your Mirror. Written by Lou reed and sung by Nico, this song is beautiful, and it is such a fantastic yoga song!  We all have days or moments where we feel “twisted and unkind” but we must put down our hands and allow ourselves to see our true reflections, revealing the beauty inside us. (This song is a little short, just a couple minutes, but a great Savasana song to squeeze in on a tight schedule or at the end of a shorter 60 minute class.)

5.The Beatles – Across the Universe.  “Jai Guru Deva… Om.  Nothing’s gonna change my world…”   Just beautiful, and it even slips in a little mantra! (Simple translation: I give thanks to Guru Dev {heavenly teacher} Om.)

Bonus: Fiona Apple does a great cover of this song. It’s a bit slower and more mellow for an uber-relaxing savasana.

And one last extra bonus—my favorite “traditional” style song to play during Savasana:

Deva Premal – Aad guray nameh.  Her voice is purely intoxicating on this rendition of “the mantra of protection.” This track is a delicious six minutes long, for a deep and relaxing savasana.

May the music move you. Om shanti.

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Editor: Catherine Monkman

Photos: Courtesy of Author.

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