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Dalai Lama - Inner World

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Inner World

Dalaï Lama

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The Dalai Lama has surprised the whole world by releasing his very first album. It would, of course, be inappropriate to expect musical wonders from him and it’s best to take his music for what it is and keep in mind what it’s intended to do. Inner World is a mix of ambient, far-eastern harmonies, wind instruments, cymbals and even choral singing that was entirely composed by Junelle Kunin, a musician and loyal disciple of the Dalai Lama, with the help of her husband Abraham. It seeks to diffuse a combination of mantras and Buddhist chants across the globe in an unassuming fashion, helping to set people on the path that leads to their “inner world” by unravelling eleven concepts (The Buddha, Courage, Protection, Humanity, Wisdom, and so on). After her first request to make the album was refused by His Holiness, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, Kunin then wrote a letter to his assistants and he finally agreed to it. Nonetheless, the album took five years to make as it was tossed back and forth between recordings in Dharamsala, where the Dalai Lama has been living in exile for 60 years, and the New Zealander’s studios in Auckland. Kunin described how he was reluctant at first but soon took a liking to the idea, “He was so excited he actually proceeded to explain to me how important music is”, she said. “He leaned forward and his eyes were sparkling, and his fingers were rubbing together, and he talked about how music can help people in a way that he can’t; it can transcend differences and return us to our true nature and good-heartedness”. Unveiled by the Tibetan Supreme Authority to mark the spiritual leader’s 85th birthday, this debut album – which could also be viewed as a swansong as Beijing has forbidden him from having any successor – sheds light on a Tibetan cause that has been more or less forgotten in recent years in the shadow of Chinese growth. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz

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Inner World

Dalai Lama

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1
One of My Favorite Prayers
00:03:59

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Daniel Ryland, ComposerLyricist - Gandhaar Amin, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

2
The Buddha
00:04:20

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

3
Compassion
00:03:55

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

4
Courage
00:04:18

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

5
Ama La
00:05:31

Anoushka Shankar, FeaturedArtist, ComposerLyricist - Dalaï Lama, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

6
Healing
00:03:02

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

7
Wisdom
00:03:19

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

8
Purification
00:03:18

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

9
Protection
00:02:51

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

10
Children
00:02:33

Dalaï Lama, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

11
Humanity
00:04:53

Mahuia Bridgman-Cooper, ComposerLyricist - Dalaï Lama, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist - Abraham Kunin, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Junelle Kunin, Producer - Charles Goldstuck, Producer

2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited 2020 Gaden Phodrang Foundation of the Dalai Lama and Khandro Limited

Album Description

The Dalai Lama has surprised the whole world by releasing his very first album. It would, of course, be inappropriate to expect musical wonders from him and it’s best to take his music for what it is and keep in mind what it’s intended to do. Inner World is a mix of ambient, far-eastern harmonies, wind instruments, cymbals and even choral singing that was entirely composed by Junelle Kunin, a musician and loyal disciple of the Dalai Lama, with the help of her husband Abraham. It seeks to diffuse a combination of mantras and Buddhist chants across the globe in an unassuming fashion, helping to set people on the path that leads to their “inner world” by unravelling eleven concepts (The Buddha, Courage, Protection, Humanity, Wisdom, and so on). After her first request to make the album was refused by His Holiness, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, Kunin then wrote a letter to his assistants and he finally agreed to it. Nonetheless, the album took five years to make as it was tossed back and forth between recordings in Dharamsala, where the Dalai Lama has been living in exile for 60 years, and the New Zealander’s studios in Auckland. Kunin described how he was reluctant at first but soon took a liking to the idea, “He was so excited he actually proceeded to explain to me how important music is”, she said. “He leaned forward and his eyes were sparkling, and his fingers were rubbing together, and he talked about how music can help people in a way that he can’t; it can transcend differences and return us to our true nature and good-heartedness”. Unveiled by the Tibetan Supreme Authority to mark the spiritual leader’s 85th birthday, this debut album – which could also be viewed as a swansong as Beijing has forbidden him from having any successor – sheds light on a Tibetan cause that has been more or less forgotten in recent years in the shadow of Chinese growth. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz

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