Benjy and Heather Wertheimer lead kirtan (sacred chanting) worldwide as the duo Shantala, with soul-stirring vocals, sacred lyrics and exotic instrumentation. The weaving of Benjy’s Indian classical singing and instrumentation with Heather’s soaring vocals is freshly original and profoundly moving. Together they create music with beauty, passion, and reverence. Shantala has performed and recorded internationally with such sacred music luminaries as Krishna Das, Deva Premal & Miten, and Jai Uttal. In summer 2008, they were named as one of the top “Wallahs to Watch” by Yoga + Joyful Living. Kirtan is a celebration of spirit through the chanting of sacred names, carrying the audience into a state of heightened awareness, bliss, and devotion. The audience is invited to participate fully through call-and-response chanting, dance, and meditation.
Heather Wertheimer is a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who combines her special love of both music and yoga to lead devotional chanting for yoga workshops and spiritual gatherings internationally. Heather has toured in the U.S. and abroad with her husband Benjy, Steve Gorn, Manose, and Deva Premal & Miten. Heather’s debut CD with Shantala, “Church of Sky,” was named by New Age Retailer as one of the top ten albums of 2004. It has been aired on radio stations nationwide. In April 2003, she and Benjy released “The Love Window,” a beautiful and well-loved collection of sacred chants. In 2007, they released “Sri,” their second popular kirtan CD, and their first live CD “LIVE in love” was released in 2008.
Benjy Wertheimer is an award-winning songwriter, vocalist, composer, and multi-instrumentalist (playing tabla, congas, percussion, esraj, guitar, and keyboards). Benjy has toured and recorded with such artists as Krishna Das, Deva Premal & Miten, Jai Uttal, Walter Becker (Steely Dan), and virtuoso guitarist Michael Mandrell. He has opened for such artists as Carlos Santana, Paul Winter, and Narada Michael Walden. A founding member of the internationally acclaimed Ancient Future world fusion music ensemble, Benjy also toured the U.S., Canada, and Japan with renowned bamboo flute master G.S. Sachdev. He studied Indian classical music for over 25 years with some of the greatest masters of that tradition (including Alla Rakha, Zakir Hussain, Ali Akbar Khan and Z. M. Dagar). Benjy’s CDs receive extensive airplay around the world, and his CD “Circle of Fire” went to #1 on the New Age radio charts in November 2002.
For more about Benjy Wertheimer, visit www.benjymusic.com