Finding Inspiration in India with Javier Portilla

Lauren Krieger

Travel with Javier Portilla as he creates Nightlights in India

Just some weeks ago I finished my tour in India where I had the chance to play in cities like Delhi, Calcutta, Bangalore, Guwahati and Goa.

Before my last 3 gigs in Goa I decided to spend some days in Rishikesh, known as the world capital of yoga. Inspired in this peaceful and sacred place I did my FRISKY episode for June while I was there.

Luckily I found space to stay in an orthodox traditional Ashram in Rishikesh, an spiritual hermitage or monastery focused on imparting Yoga-related teachings and meditation.

Some of the rules there include: No music or loud noises at anytime, gate closes at 10pm and is forbidden to eat animals or eggs. Everything is very rustic and of course there is no wifi.

In the mornings I sit here outside my room to work on my music (with earphones) while I see the monkeys playing outside or trying to steal food from the yoga students. This is the perfect spot to work on a mix set.

It is probably one of the most peaceful places I’ve ever been.

I’ve been listening a lot of Rampue lately, love his work. For me doing mixes is not about putting together only new tracks. Is more about creating a story, so here I’m using new and not so new tunes.

During the days I go to the town to see the people, buy groceries, interact with the babas or just take a swim in the Ganges.

The Ganges here is coming straight from the Himalayas so the water still clean and very cold.

On the next days I’ve been doing the track selection for my June episode. Beautiful releases from labels like Sol Selectas, Natura Sonoris, Rebellion and All Day I Dream.

At this point I had more than a month traveling in India so I thought I was immune to the “Delhi-Belly” curse. Oh I was wrong, one day I got really sick. Seriously I thought I was gonna die. The doctor from the Ashram gave me some ayurvedic medical powders and after a few days I was able to eat normal again. Wow that wasn’t good at all.

Feeling better I continued listening to music for this mix. Currently I’m obsessed with Kora, all the tracks he releases are pure bliss. Also I included some recent music from Brian Cid, Öona Dahl, Himbrecht, Be Svendsen, Oceanvs Orientalis, Canson, Armen Miran, Simon Vuarambon and Bedouin among many others.

The main reason I decided to come to Rishikesh is because yoga is a very important part of my life. I was not looking for someone to teach me how to increase my flexibility or how to do a perfect handstand. I was looking to understand better the spiritual part of yoga as a way of life. I think I found it.

My days in this magical place was coming to an end. Just one more yoga practice before heading to Goa to play my last 3 gigs in India.

I’m definitely going to miss Rishikesh.

By the way…  Goa was fun!

This special episode of Nightlights will air June 5th @ 12PM EST [convert timezone].
Listen to the latest episodes now:

Javier Portilla – Nightlights

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