The music of Sharanam is born from the love for the sanskrit mantras and the tradition of kirtan chanting. It has been developing during long travels in India, studies of yoga and Indian music, meditation retreats and countless song circles and musical gatherings, then taken the form of a band which started performing in 2013 in Helsinki, Finland. Sharanam has been a pioneering force in the kirtan/mantra/yoga scene of Finland and have shared their music to wide audiences from yoga schools to festivals and church concerts.
In Sharanam's original music the power of the mantra comes together with influences of world music, Indian and western instruments, heavenly vocal harmonies and the passion for improvisation and epic sound journeys. All of the band’s six members are versatile musicians and solo artists in their own rights, and along with their musical gifts they bring to the music influences from their backgrounds from various fields of yoga, tantra, healing and other spiritual practices. Sharanam releasead their self-produced debut album "Sharanam" in January 2018 and second album "Eternal Now" in june 2019.
VELI SAKARI SOLA
Veli Sakari Sola is the main composer of the music of Sharanam. He has a background in classical guitar, a long history with Indian spiritual culture and holds a M.A. in comparative religion, specializing in the Hindu tradition. During many trips he has spent several years in India studying her spiritual and musical traditions, living in ashrams and monasteries, playing in satsangs. bhajan circles and concerts and learning with the masters of classical indian raaga music. Veli composes music for Sharanam, leads regular kirtan circles in Helsinki and works as a guitar teacher and a yoga teacher.
Maisa Tikka has been working with music since her childhood in the choir of the National Opera. She has continued to perform actively in Finland and abroad as a solo artist, singer-songwriter, writing, recording and performing her own music as well as facilitating healing music and kirtan circles and working as a vocal teacher. She also has education in performing arts and has directed several opera productions. Maisa's connection with kirtan, mantras and Indian music has led her to study the ancient art of Dhrupad singing with the legendary Gundecha brothers in Bhopal, India. She is a founding member of Sharanam together with Veli Sola and has contributed two of her original mantra songs 'Divine Mother' and 'Shri Hanuman' to Sharanam's debut album.
Silja Kulo is a vocal artist, a choir leader and holistic singing coach. She combines her love for the mantras with a professional background in classical and church music and a cappella singing which she studied in the Sibelius Academy as well as a cappella singing being part of the internationally acclaimed Ensemble Norma. She performs as a solo artist singing her own compositions and experimenting with intuitive and meditative healing music. Silja als facilitates vocal workshops. women's song circles and tantra workshops in which she inspires others to explore the voice as the way to connect with one's true self. Silja has been singing with Sharanam since 2015.
Iiro Kontio joined Sharanam in the band's earliest incarnation in 2013. His background is originally in djembe and drum set, but through inspiration of the mantras and the Indian sounds he very soon traveled to India, and miraculously in just a few weeks he learned the basics of tabla and immediately began performing with it! Since then he has been developing his knowledge of tabla as well as learning many other instruments including flute, guitar and various percussions. One of his special gifts is the delicate expression on the Soma Handpan. Iiro graduated in 2017 as a professional musician from the Conservatory of Jyväskylä and is currently working on his solo album that will be released on june 2019.
flute, bass guitar, vocals
Lotta Karppi is a versatile multi-instrumentalist and music educator. She has a background in classical flute but her talents extend to various genres and instruments. Along with her flute and her voice she performs also with electric bass and the Finnish folk-instrument kantele. Lotta has been working with music from an early age and through her vast experience and love for music she is able to transmit a wide spectrum of soulful sounds and healing frequencies.
Mikko Koivisto is an experienced and sophisticated percussionist who joined Sharanam in 2018 to expand the band's percussive possibilities. He has been a committed student of the tabla and the hindustani music tradition since 2010 and has studied it in depth with various Indian masters. He has been performing Indian classical music as a duo with Veli Sola and also accompanying many Indian artists in Finland. Along with his tabla skills he has also brought into the band his long experience of playing afro-cuban music which has shaped his highly refined sense of groove and rhythmic nuances.