The first time we listened to Steven music's early 2016. We had been so enchanted by his style that in march we published an interview with him just few weeks before the release of "Words of the River "
Since than, Steven has lived and made music in the Hawaiian land, nurturing his love for Mother Earth and the universe itself.
At the beginning of October ( the 2nd) Steven has released a full length album "Mauna" ( a wonderful word which means mountain in the Hawaiian language and Silence in Sanskrit ).
Mauna is a blend of sonorities, styles and once again Steven proved himself to be an ever-growing poet and shaman expressing his magic through words.
Here following a short interview with Steven himself and our personal review of Mauna.
What have you done during this time?
During this time I’ve made my home base an organic farm on Kaua‘i and scaled down my lifestyle and focused my energy and resources into my creative expression. When I first came to the Hawaiian islands all I did was write songs, probably sixty songs in the first six months, and counting since. So the seed of my new album was born from that initial explosion of music. Since I’ve moved I’ve travelled all over the islands and the mainland U.S. playing shows and festivals and sharing the songs.
Tell us something about Mauna.
The album is a template for the journey of the soul from before birth to beyond death. Mauna is an expression of what I feel the spiritual purpose of our creative power is, my inclination as creation and we as creators is to worship the wholeness that I call The True Love. It can be given any name, the Mystery, Great Spirit, God, the Infinite Meow, the Eternal Now, etc. My sadhana, spiritual practice, has always been to listen. And listening is receiving. The other half of receiving, is to sing, and singing is giving. These songs are about the climb, the climb to the heart, from the basic instincts, up to the heart, up to the eternal knowledge, through the crown and beyond, to the Holy Calm, the Silence that is sacred. What I like to call the Original Quiet gave birth to the First Sound, which is resonating today, and our hearts vibrate with it naturally and music is about harmonizing with the First Sound, that which created everything. Mauna is an album about finding the middle of Shiva and Shakti, in between is the guardian and the grace, the mountain of silence, from where all creation comes. Mauna means ‘mountain’ in Hawaiian and ‘silence’ in Sanskrit. So the title is used here to indicate the journey to the Holy Calm, and that really means an inner serenity. A 20th century saint of India, Sri Anandamayi Ma, said something that guides me… “It is through sound that one penetrates into silence..."
Which is the track you are most fond of, on Mauna ?
That’s like asking to choose your favorite child! I can’t, well maybe I could, I’ve never had a child so I don’t know if you can. hahaha I’m joking. but really they all hold special places and express different aspects for me. they each have their own story and fit into the larger story of the album. What matters is they all carry the Aloha Spirit. That really means boundless compassion. With the record, I wanted to express the beauty and emotions of this ‘aina (land), and some of the profound discoveries that can be made within any human heart. Every song is a love song to different parts and aspects of our journey here on Earth. Every part of the heart holds art.
Mauna is a full length album made of 14 wonderful songs.
It opens with Polikua, a short soothing tune just to get us into the right mood for listening.
Followed by the powerful Horizon we get ready ready to dive into Eastern Sunrise, a bright and positive song, whose heartbeat-like pace makes it a perfect wake up song to listen to while sipping morning tea, meditating and setting the intentions for the new day to come.
Follows Love Country, catchy and hunting and Children of the Land, a personal favourite, sang in a soothing voice with a captivating rhythm, filled with hope and oneness. Almost an anthem for Rainbow warriors.
We find then Mountain Woman, in which we find country and southern nuances, warm as a summer evening.
Patterns in the sand, almost a shamanic chant, brings you away in the arms of wind in the brim of waves, among the grains of sand.
Listen, delicate as a lace woven with words and music, covering everything in grace.
Mauna, the title track, just surrender and listen to the shaman voice, let it reach the depth of your soul.
Kalalea, a prayer in music.
Where is home ? Wondering and wandering, in a storyteller style, Steven bring us in a journey looking for home. Home within the love of a dear one.
Polihale: like a tribal gathering around a bonfire, ancestors watching us from above.
Amaya, a grounding and entering tune and to close the album, In your love, a love song for our collective mother: the earth. A strong connection with the whole.
Here at RQL we loved Mauna, Steven has sure fulfilled our expectation and we feel honoured to witness so closely the growth of such an amazing artist and human being.
Steven´s website : www.stevensedaliamusic.com