Known for his inspiring and soulful chants, Bada Haridas has studied and performed Indian devotional music, including Indian classical music and raga since 1975.
Originally trained in classical music and jazz, he earned his degree from the University of Southern California (USC) in music composition, and a scholarship for his graduate studies at the Institute for Advanced Musical Studies in Montreau, Switzerland.
Bada Haridas artistically blends his many influences to create unique music in celebration of the divine. A sincere practitioner of bhakti yoga, there is a depth to Bada Haridas’ music and quality of singing that is simply captivating.
Bada Haridas has produced numerous recordings of Vaisnava songs and poetry, especially the works of Narottama Das Thakura and Bhaktivinoda Thakura.
He travels internationally, presenting seminars on Vaisnava songs and devotional practices. He is also a celebrated Kirtan singer and performs at festivals around the world.
Bada Haridas, his wife and two children currently live in Gainesville, Florida, where he teaches mridanga, harmonium, voice, and music theory and composition. In his home studio he composes, arranges and records devotional music in traditional and contemporary styles. In addition to producing his own original music, he produces recordings for many other artists.
Bada Haridas will be the first to tell you he’s not a performer or a professional musician. He left that life behind him in ’75 when he chose to follow the path of his spiritual teacher, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Living as a monk in the Los Angeles ashram, accepting vows of austerity and sense control, his musician life and its trappings quickly became a past life, devoid of maya’s glitter. In its place, Kirtan, the devotional singing of Krishna’s names, became his music and his personal connection to the divine. Learning the Sanskrit and Bengali songs and prayers, studying the ancient melodies and ragas, and teaching himself eastern instruments to accompany kirtan, Bada Haridas became a sought after kirtan leader and teacher.
His teaching expanded beyond the local ashrams to high schools, colleges, and universities. With his knowledge and training in both western and eastern music, and his experience in composition and arrangement, he began assisting kirtan singers in recording and producing.
Others began recording and distributing Bada Haridas’ kirtans, though these early recordings were often of lesser quality. Requested to make his devotional music available to a wider audience, he taught himself recording engineering and built a studio.
In his studio an amazing array of artists and projects are immortalized in digital sound: young kirtan artist’s first albums, known kirtan artist’s albums, children’s plays and narrations, fusion music, hip-hop, jazz, pop, and more. It is also in this studio Bada Haridas produces his albums and kirtan courses.
In 1981, with the permission and blessing of senior devotees, Bada Haridas took leave of the brahmachari ashram to marry Kosarupa dasi. Together they led a missionary life of traveling and teaching, living in India, and later settled to manage the Laguna Beach temple, ashram and restaurant.
Their two children, both raised as devotees of Krishna, are amazing and powerful artists themselves. Malini began writing and performing her own songs from the age of four, and later, with her father’s help, recording them. A gifted writer, she is presently in college pursuing multiple careers. Gauramani is a natural leader and teacher. He enjoys travel, cooking, and sports.
When the children were young, Kosarupa began writing and illustrating children’s books. In 1998, she founded Arts of Vaisnava Culture (AVC), an educational non-profit to teach and promote Vaisnava arts and artists. Now, with the children nearly grown, Bada Haridas and Kosarupa are focusing on expanding the projects and services of AVC.
Bada Haridas travels to sing and teach. If you are interested to have him come to your school, temple, ashram, retreat, seminar, or festival, please contact us.
If you would like to record your music or project with Bada Haridas, or are interested to hire him to compose and produce a project, please contact us.